Through The Eyes Of S.E. Hinton


I am Susan Eloise Hinton. I was born In Tulsa, Oklahoma. I always enjoyed reading but wasn’t satisfied with the literature that was being written for young adults, which influenced me to write novels like The Outsiders. Viking published that book, my first novel, in 1967.Once published; The Outsiders gave me a lot of publicity and fame, and also a lot of pressure. I was becoming known as “The Voice of the Youth” among other titles. This kind of pressure and publicity resulted in a three yearlong writer’s block.

My boyfriend (and now husband), who had gotten sick of me being depressed all the time, eventually broke this block. He made me write two pages a day if I wanted to go anywhere. This eventually led to the book “That was Then, This Is Now.”
Which is known to be a much more well thought out book than The Outsiders. Because I read a lot of great literature and wanted to better myself, I made sure that I wrote each sentence exactly right. I continued to write my two pages a day until I finally felt It was finished In the summer of 1970, I got married a few months later. That Was Then, This Is Now was published in 1971.

In 1975, I published Rumble Fish as a novel (I had published a short story version In a 1968 edition of Nimrod,which was a literary supplement for the University of Tulsa Alumni Magazine). Rumble Fish was the shortest novel I had published. It received a great deal of contrasting opinions, with one reviewer claiming It to be my best book and the next claiming It to be my last.

The latter was apparently wrong. Tex was published in 1979, four years after Rumble Fish. It received great reviews and people raved about how the writing style had matured since previous publications. Tex would be the last book I published for nine years. After another span of four years, my son, Nick was born.

Four years after Tex was released, quite a few major events took place in my life. In March of 1983, the movie The Outsiders was released. The following August, Nicholas David was born. Two months later the movie Rumble Fish was released.

In 1985 the movie version of That Was Then, This Is Now was released. Three years later I became the first person to receive the YASD/SLJ Author Achievement Award, which was given by the Young Adult Services Division of the American Library Association and School Library Journal.

Taming The Star Runner was released In October of that year. It was the first book that I had published that wasn’t in first person. With a seven-year wait, I released another book in 1995. This time I did something that no one expected.

Big David, Little David was written for children around the kindergarten age. This deviation from Teen fiction seems to be a reflection of the current important things in my life: Family. The children’s fiction trend continues with my latest release- The Puppy Sister, which is a fantasy book written for Elementary school level children.

I currently live In Tulsa, Oklahoma with my husband David. My son, Nick, Is away at college. I’m a very private person, and I’m very uncomfortable talking about my personal life, but a few facts: My hobby is horseback riding; I’ve shown both jumping and dressage. I read constantly, and occasionally take a class at the university not for credit - It’s more fun when you don’t have to take the tests!

A writer’s life is not very exciting - usually you’re alone in a room with your tools - paper, pen, and Imagination. (I usually write longhand first, and then put it on a computer.)I walk the dog, ride my horse, and wander the grocery store wondering what to cook for dinner. I have a great husband, a wonderful son; I won’t invade their privacy by saying any more. Unless, I feel I want to write about them.

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