Nikki Tate born in Birmingham, England on May 2nd, 1962 is one of Canada's great authors. When she was young her favorite authors included C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, Marguerite Henry, Anna Sewell, and Walter Farley. When we asked who is her favorite author now, she said, "I don't really have one. I read constantly and my favorite author keeps changing."
Tate didn't always want to be an author. She loved to read and make up stories. However, when she was young, Nikki thought she might like to be a veterinarian, a horse trainer, a doctor, a gymnast, or even a spy. What inspired her to write about horses was she absolutely loved horses as a kid and never grew out of it! Tate still spends most of her free time horse back riding. "When I'm riding, I feel like I'm in another world," she says.
Some of the stories that she wrote and never finished were her past dreams that she dreamt at night. There was a story where a girl dreams all the things she does. Basically none of the stuff really happens.
Tate has visited many schools in Canada. She tells stories of how she became a writer and of her childhood. Most of Nikki's books are about herself, of what happened to her when she was young. Because she has been riding all of her life, it's fairly easy for her to come up with new ideas for horse novels.
"When I want to write a new book, or I'm looking for a new idea, I just look out the window down to the children of Vancouver. I see what they're doing and and use their actions to write a story." Jessa Be Nimble, Rebel Be Quick is a book that has dialogue taken from the kids on the streets.
Unlike most authors, Tate does not use a computer. She explains: "Well, I do use one when I revise the story and make changes before I hand it in to the publisher. But when I'm first making up the story, I like to be portable. Sometimes I write at a quiet table in a coffee shop, sometimes at horse shows, and sometimes on my favorite bench out in the garden."
Her hobbies include riding, gardening, kayaking, hiking, camping, traveling, reading and going to the theatre.
A word of advice for whoever wants to be a writer from Nikki Tate: "Just keep on writing - about whatever you find interesting. If you write about what you love doing most yourself (or something you'd love to learn all about), your reader won't be able to miss your enthusiasm. Whatever happens - don't give up!"
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