Interview with Sameera Righton!

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Today, I have the pleasure of interviewing Sameera Righton, fictional daughter of a presidential candidate, and the protagonist of First Daughter: Extreme American Makeover by Mitali Perkins. (I'll post a full review of the novel later today). So, without further ado, here she is:

When did your father first tell you that he was planning to run for president, and how did you react?

I always sort of knew he might run from the time I was little. Different people visited us and tried to convince him to go for it during the last two elections. Dad would always say no, he wanted more international experience. This time, though, when the party invited him to run again, we had lots of family Sunday night discussions, and the words "once-in-a-lifetime" kept going around the dinner table. Part of me was terrified, but the excited voice inside my head out-shouted the scared-to-death one.

Do you plan to follow in his footsteps and go into politics? Has the experience of being on the campaign trail changed your mind one way or the other?

No way. I don't want to go into politics, Ms. N., I want to write about politics. Being on the campaign trail has only convinced me more about the

power of writing to change the world.

Are there any specific causes you support, or reforms you hope your father would make as president? Will he listen to your suggestions?

Causes: hungry children, slavery, child soldiers ... those are my top three so far. Yes, Dad listens. That¹s one of the best things about him. But I don't think he's grown a special third ear he keeps tuned for his only daughter unless it comes to guys and dating.

Much of your story focuses on blogging (both your personal blog and your "official" blog); What inspired you to begin your blog?

I like to connect circles of people and create safe places. A good blogger is like an excellent host at a party, making sure everybody feels enough at home to express themselves. That's what I like about it.

I've been enjoying your blog ( and your coverage of the 2008 election; How do you think this election will be changed by blogs and MySpace and other new media?

Oh, I think techie gizmos will definitely will affect younger voters; we don't watch the old tube much for our news. One of my favorite sites tracks the candidates views on the issues using video clips: Expert Voter I also read Tech Pres <> (how the candidates are using the web and how the web is using them), and Prez Vid <>, which tracks the campaign at YouTube. I've also "friended" all of them in MySpace; it's fun to leave comments on their pages and blogs even though it would be a miracle to hear back.

Have you read any books about other First Kids (fictional or not)? Are there any that you would specifically recommend?

First Families: The Impact of the White House on Their Lives by Bonnie Angelo was good; we all read it before Dad accepted the party's invitation. And I liked Margaret Truman¹s The President's House: 1800 to the Present / The Secrets and History of the World's Most Famous Home, especially 'cuz she was a First Daughter, too. But I¹m not a big novel reader, Mrs. N. (sorry, hate to admit that to a librarian), so I watched movies like First Daughter (so-so) Chasing Liberty (better), The Sentinel (dull), Air Force One (scary but good), and reruns of the West Wing (good).

Thanks for the interview, Ms. N. Stop by my blog and comment every now and then, okay?

Definitely! And don't worry about the novel-reading thing... as librarians, we're just happy that you're reading!

My blog is the last stop of Sameera's blog tour, but be sure to check out her other interviews from the rest of the blogosphere:

Monday, 6/11: 5 Minutes For Mom and Jennifer Snapshot
Tuesday, 6/12: Big A little a
Wednesday, 6/13: Semicolon
Thursday, 6/14: Jen Robinson's Book Page
Friday, 6/15: Little Willow


Jennifer, Snapshot said...

Great questions (and answers). I really liked this book.

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