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Daniel Handler
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Daniel Handler   Daniel Handler (a.k.a. Lemony Snicket) is the international bestselling author of A Series of Unfortunate Events, which have sold over 60 million copies and have been printed in over 40 languages. Daniel Handler was awarded the Colorado Children's Book Award, the Nevada Young Readers Award, the Nene Award, three IRA/CBC Children's Choice Awards, best book prize at the Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards, and a 2006 Quill Book Award. His books have also been adapted into a video game and a blockbuster movie staring Jim Carrey.

Buy Daniel Handler's Books at the following locations: (downloadable audio books) (independent bookstores)
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This episode originally aired on 01/28/2010 with the following authors:
Note: The following interview has been transcribed from The Author Hour radio show. Please excuse any typos, spelling and gramatical errors.

Interview with Daniel Handler

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Bonus Question(s) that Didn't Air on the Live Radio Show

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Matthew Peterson: Well let me ask you a bonus question here.

Daniel Handler: Sure.

Matthew Peterson: Iíll ask you a couple here. Well itís been a huge series. Millions and millions of people have read these books or watched the movie. What is the best thing that has happened to you because of the series?

Daniel Handler: The best thing that has happened to me? [laughs]

Matthew Peterson: Yeah, because of the series.

Daniel Handler: Oh! Because of the . . . .[laughs]

Matthew Peterson: Because of writing... ď[The best thing thatís ever happened to me was] when I was five years old I got this from Christmas . . .Ē [laughs]

Daniel Handler: Anything other than meeting my wife . . . Iíd be in trouble. The best thing that has happened to me because of the series . . . I guess just that I get to participate in the world of literature, in which I always wanted to be apart. All Iíve ever wanted to do was to be a writer and to be in the company of books. And I was always told by sensible people that that was practically impossible. And so every morning Iím astonished at my own luck, that what I get to do is wake up and make things up for a living. I find that an unending blessing.

Matthew Peterson: Being able to have your dream come true and get paid to do it.

Daniel Handler: Exactly.

Matthew Peterson: Yeah. Nice. You know, I know authors get a lot of fan mail and letters and a lot of funny experiences. What is an interesting letter that you might have received from a fan or a parent?

Daniel Handler: Well, one subject that comes up a lot in letters, a great number of children write me who have lost one or more of their parents.

Matthew Peterson: Mmm.

Daniel Handler: And that was certainly an audience that I never thought would particularly be interesting in a series of books in which three children lose their parents and terrible things happen to them. And so itís always moving to receive such a letter, and itís always astonishing to me that such dark material is appreciated and enjoyed even by people who are going through such dark things themselves.

Matthew Peterson: Yeah, I can imagine. You know, because thatís all over the place. And not just losing a parent to death but almost losing a parent to divorce and other circumstances. And so you get those letters . . . ?

Daniel Handler: Yeah. I get lots and lots of them. I get an astonishing number of letters from people who have lost a parent to one thing or another. And those letters I always answer and . . . but itís always . . . I mean I have literally boxes in my basement of such letters.

Matthew Peterson: Oh, wow. Wow.

Daniel Handler: I had never thought that these books would be any part of anyoneís grieving or separation process, but clearly they are.

Matthew Peterson: They relate to them.

Extra Material That was Cut from the Show Because of Time Constraints

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Daniel Handler: And it was sad to reach it, but mostly it was just kind of unbelievable to reach it. I couldnít believe that Iíd actually set out to write 13 books about terrible things happening to orphans, and then I had. It seems so unlike me.

* * * * * * * * * *

Daniel Handler: When I was growing up there was less information about authors and less sense of promotion. And literature was just something that kind of plopped into your lap.

* * * * * * * * * *

Matthew Peterson: And from Lemony you said that there is a book or a series that might be coming out. Any idea of when that would be? I saw a press release a little while ago on . . . I think it was Publisherís Weekly that you had announced that something would be coming out.

Daniel Handler: Yeah. Theyíre estimating that it will be published in 2012, I guess.

Matthew Peterson: Okay.

Daniel Handler: Iím working on it now. And so then weíll find an illustrator and a designer and all sorts of things that go into the publishing of a book. So itís somewhere down the road.

Matthew Peterson: Okay.

Daniel Handler: But if feels like Iím in the middle of it because Iím the one writing it.

Matthew Peterson: Yeah, yeah.

Daniel Handler: But people who are at libraries, sitting in bookstores, itís not time to line up.

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