© Michael Lionstar

Markus Zusak

"I always had stories in my head. So I started writing them."--Markus Zusak

Markus Zusak received the Children's Book Council of Australia's Book of the Year Award for I Am the Messenger. He lives in Sydney, where he writes, occasionally works a real job, and plays on a soccer team that never wins.

***Check out www.markuszusak.com for more information!


13 Facts (+ a few more) about Markus Zusak

1.He has severe troubles writing biographies about himself because he doesn’ t find himself particularly inspiring.
2.He lives in Sydney near the Royal National Park, where he has lunch with the local deer, the kookaburras (a very tough brand of laughing birds) and other creatures.
3.He is a dog person, but he has two cats, Bijoux and Brutus. He named the second one.
4.His middle name is Frank. (When he hated the name Markus, his brother and one of his sisters suggested he use his middle name…Clearly, Frank was not really a step in the right direction.)
5.His three favorite books are:
·What’s Eating Gilbert Grape by Peter Hedges.
·The Half Brother by Lars Saabye Christensen.
·My Brother Jack by George Johnston.
6.The last book he read was Werewolves in their Youth by Michael Chabon, and the book he is currently reading is Ulysses by James Joyce.
7.In 2005, he is attempting to read 52 books. He is writing a book about this ridiculous reading challenge and calling it 53 Killers. People ask him, “Why fifty-three and not fifty-two?”
8.His three favorite movies are:
· Amelie by John Pierre Juenet.
·The Big Lebowski by the Cohen Brothers.
·Run Lola Run by Tom Tykwer.
(And although it’s not a favorite, he also has a soft spot for The Goonies.)
9.The last movies he’s seen are A Very Long Engagement and The Motorcycle Diaries.
10.If he could meet anyone who ever lived, he would choose Michelangelo.
11.He got the idea for I am the Messenger when he was sitting in a park one night eating fish and chips and saw a bank with a fifteen minute parking zone out front. He thought, “Fifteen minutes, that’s not very long — every time I go the bank it takes a lot longer than that.” He then thought, “What if you were in that bank when it was being robbed and your car was out in the fifteen minute parking zone? How the hell would you get out to move your car to avoid a fine?” (That’s exactly what happens at the start of the book.)
12.He is riddled with self-doubt about I am the Messenger but is glad he wrote it because he loves The Doorman.
13.His favorite number is thirteen.