Skinny Dip with Rebecca Kai Dotlich

Rebecca Kai DotlichFor this inter­view, we vis­it with Rebec­ca Kai Dotlich, poet and chil­dren’s book author:

Which celebrity, living or not, do you wish would invite you to a coffee shop?

As most of my friends know, that would be Billy Collins. And then Meryl Streep would stop by too of course.

Favorite city to visit?

I’m not a far and wide traveler, but the city I’ve always wanted to visit is any city in Switzerland.

In high school, read­ing on the couch.

Which book do you find yourself recommending passionately?

The Glass Castle by Jeanette Walls. Friendly Fire by C.D.B. Bryan. On Writing: a memoir of the craft by Stephen King. Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert. Prince of Tides by Pat Conroy.

Stromboli (photo credit: wikimedia commons)
Strom­boli (pho­to cred­it: wiki­me­dia commons)

What’s your favorite late-night snack?

I haven’t eaten late-night snacks since my college days at Indiana University. Strombolis. Delivered.

Most cherished childhood memory?

Oh, so many. Piling into the station wagon on a summer night to go to the drive-in in our pajamas. Watching Roy Rogers and Sky King on Saturday mornings. The smell of baby dolls and new saddle oxfords.

First date?

First love 8th grade, Dennis. First date, high school and I am pretty sure it involved a double date and a drive-in.

Tea? Coffee? Milk? Soda? What’s your favorite go-to drink?

Coffee. Growing up, there was always a pot percolating in our house. My grandmother made me coffee from a very young age. She added lots of cream and sugar and called it Boston coffee. I still love it that way.

Favorite season of the year?

Fall. Why? The chill in the air. The freshness. The newness. Reminds me of new beginnings, sweaters, and school supplies.

What’s your dream vacation?

Being in a little town with bookstores, art museums, cobblestone streets, lamplights and nothing but time.

Burgess Meredith, Twilight Zone, 1960, wikimedia commons
Burgess Mered­ith, Twi­light Zone, 1960, wiki­me­dia commons

What gives you shivers?

Heights. Burgess Meredith. (Twilight Zone. “Time Enough At Last.”)

Morning person? Night person?

All of my young adult and adult life I was both. Easy up at 5 and to bed after midnight or 1 o’clock. Now I’m more of a morning person.

What’s your hidden talent?

Nada. Except maybe a good recall of song lyrics. And baking darn good Christmas cookies. Oh yes, and imaginative concept photography. (uh-huh, well it’s on the bucket list.)

Your favorite candy as a kid?

Sky Bar. Rock candy (icy clear, never colors.)

Is Pluto a planet?

Wait, I have to google that . . . seems it depends on the year, the poor guy keeps getting demoted. His head must be spinning.

I did get a little huffy sometimes. With my brother Curt on my grandparents' front porch.
I did get a lit­tle huffy some­times. With my broth­er Curt on my grand­par­ents’ front porch.

Brother and sisters or an only child? How did that shape your life?

A big brother and a little sister. Big brother ruled the land of siblings, so I am used to not squawking much when it comes to following rules suggestions. He also taught me by example that books in the hand, on the shelf and splattered on the bed are the best treasures of all. Little sister passed me the opportunity to rule in the land of siblings. And also to feel responsible to look out for someone, which fortunately or unfortunately I still feel compelled to do.

with my brother and sister and our cousins
with my broth­er and sis­ter and our cousins

Your hope for the world?

Besides peace, love and kindness, it would be for the eradication of bullying, and more understanding of, and compassion for, depression and other mental health issues, especially for our youth.

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April Halprin Wayland
7 years ago

Loved your answers, every one, Rebecca!

Reply to  April Halprin Wayland
7 years ago

Oh, thank you April! Great to hear from you.

Kristine George
7 years ago

Great inter­view! I can vouch for Rebec­ca­’s mem­o­ry for song lyrics (she also has a great singing voice) and her Christ­mas sug­ar cook­ie recipe is stel­lar. Thanks to Rebec­ca, I final­ly mas­tered the art of creamy-smooth no-lumps icing.

Reply to  Kristine George
7 years ago

Ha Ha Kris, I remem­ber that evening at Red­lands. I’ll always love know­ing you are mak­ing that icing dur­ing the hol­i­days. Miss you!

7 years ago

Won­der­ful inter­view! I remem­ber watch­ing Roy Rogers and Sky King on Sat­ur­day morn­ings too. My Friend Flic­ka was anoth­er favorite of mine. : )

Reply to  ldk
7 years ago

Yes, I did watch My Friend Flic­ka too. 🙂 Those were the days. Glad you liked the interview!

Charles Waters
7 years ago

Thank you for this inter­view! I love learn­ing more about what shaped and con­tin­ues to shape my favourite chil­dren’s poets and authors. Go TEACH Go!

Reply to  Charles Waters
7 years ago

Thanks Charles! You are one of the most curi­ous and inter­est­ed peo­ple I know. Will see you in Sep­tem­ber at High­lights! Look­ing so for­ward to it.

David LaRochelle
7 years ago

Great inter­view! I espe­cial­ly like your pho­to from high school. The tilt­ed angle seems very 70-ish! And are those go-go boots?

7 years ago

Glad you liked it, David! Thanks 😉 Those pho­tos are keep­ers, yes? I have too few from that time. I think it was a polaroid maybe. Go-go boot slip­pers if you can believe! But I had white shiny ones too. Ah, the 60s-70s.