Inkpop Blog

Write, Read, Connect

inkpopper of the Week: maria-chan

Posted by inkpop on February 2, 2010

Did you know that Overland Park, Kansas, is a “magical place where soccer moms thrive”?

At least that’s how member maria-chan (aka Maria Donado) describes her hometown. The 15-year-old inkpopper who has lived in the Wizard of Oz state for six years says Kansas is “all right but it’s no sunny Cali. But at least we won’t sink when the icebergs go nuts.”

A self-described “wild, crazy, talented artist-writer Colombian girl who absolutely loves run-on sentences,” the high-school sophomore has posted loads of projects on inkpop since she joined the teen-lit site in November 2009, and has become an influential Trendsetter.

Here, maria-chan talks about the “plot bunnies” in her head, her love of manga, and her favorite thing about inkpop.

inkpop: You’re a writer and an artist? What kind of art do you make?

maria-chan: I was hoping you’d ask. I excel in manga, the Japanese version of cartoons; and I’m full-out proud to be an “otaku”—a  total comic nerd. I do realism, too, but I’ll never give up my love for the art of Japanese cartoons.

What do you want to do after high school?

To get a full art scholarship and travel to Japan after I graduate from college.

How do you describe your writing?

That’s a toughie. I’d have to say that I write mostly in first-person, so my writing mostly expresses the character’s feelings. I guess you could say my writing is very emotional then.

What is your book, The Reader, about, and how did you come up with the story idea?

The Reader is a sci-fi/romance about a girl who has the ability to see into a person’s future, past, and what role she will play in that person’s future if she sticks with said person. When she was just 13, she was sent to a government facility to find out the source of her powers, but after she escaped, the detective in charge of her case went crazy and started to hunt her down.

I can’t give much of the details away—I don’t want to spoil a good read. I got the idea the first day I wore contacts; I took a picture and the flash reflected from the contacts, and then the plot bunnies were dancing in my head. Even though Dani (daa-nin here on inkpop) helped me out, it took us, like, two semesters to finish the whole thing. It was awesome getting to write with one of my closest friends.

What’s your ultimate dream job?

My dream job is to work with autistic children, and my side dream is to become a professional manga artist.

Who’s your idol and why?

My mom. Though we can’t agree on some things, we still love each other.

What’s your favorite thing about inkpop?

Forums! I go on there every day to just have a look-see, and sometimes I end up laughing for five minutes straight. We have some pretty wacky topics. … I’m glad I joined this wonderful community. I decided to join because, hey, you never know what can happen if you show your work to the right people.

What are your favorite inkpop Forums threads?

 I love “In-Character Chat“—I’ve tried roleplaying as one of my characters once or twice. “Girl Talk” is amazing, too! And “Me Gato Es En Fuego!” (“My Cat Is On Fire!) is hilarious.

You have a pretty good inkpop Trendsetter rank—at press time of this blog post, your rank is 27. What kinds of projects are you most likely to add to your Picks?

I’m obsessed with high-school reads and fantasy thrillers, but you can find any genre on my shelf. I’m not picky.

The inkpop blog is written by inkpopAmy

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