Jodi Picoult on relaxing with her family, writing every day and the objects she just can't live without

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A cup of tea with Jodi Picoult

Writer Jodi Picoult was awarded the New England Bookseller Award for fiction in 2003 ©PA

Jodi Picoult has enjoyed a very successful writing career and is famous for penning books including My Sister’s Keeper, Handle With Care and House Rules.

Her novels Nineteen Minutes and Change Of Heart both reached No 1 on the New York Times Best Seller list shortly after their release.

How do you like your tea?

Milk and no sugar. I usually take some tea home from Fortnum & Mason when I’ve been in England [Jodi lives in New Hampshire].

I love the tea-making tradition.

Who would you most like 
to have a cup of tea with?

J K Rowling. I’ve always wanted to meet her and she’s done such 
a service to children’s literature.

What inspires you?

My family.

My elder son because of his commitment and tenacity, my other son because of his talent and ambition and my daughter because when we write books together, I realise what a great imagination she has.

What’s your writing routine?

I clear my head with an early morning three-mile walk, and then I’m at my desk, writing by 8am.

When I’m writing, I’m writing every day, and also in 
my head (my travelling office!) when I’m in the car. Driving 
is great thinking time.

If you weren’t a writer, 
what would you be?

A pastry chef – I love to bake.

What scares you?

I’m constantly terrified at the thought of something bad happening to my kids.

How would you spend 
an ideal weekend?

Without question, hanging out at home with the 
family; a fire roaring, the dogs collapsed on top 
of me and not a single 
thing on the agenda.

Something of a dream these days!

What’s the one 
object you couldn’t live without?

My phone (but can 
I have my laptop, 
too, please?).

Leaving Time 
by Jodi Picoult 
(£20, Hodder & Stoughton) is out now.