Kid Reporters

Wimpy’s First Dance

Author Jeff Kinney talks to TFK about his new Diary of a Wimpy Kid book

December 07, 2012
COURTESY HALABI FAMILY

TFK Kid Reporter Yusuf Halabi caught up with author Jeff Kinney at a tour stop in Ann Arbor, Michigan

Have you ever felt left out? Author Jeff Kinney has. “There have been times when I’ve felt like the third wheel,” he told TFK. In The Third Wheel, the seventh book in the Wimpy Kid series, Greg is worried he’ll be left out on the night of his first school dance.

During his book tour, Kinney met up with TFK Kid Reporter Yusuf Halabi in Ann Arbor, Michigan. They talked about the characters in the Wimpy Kid books and the future of the popular series. Scroll down to watch a video from their interview.

TFK Kid Reporter Yusuf Halabi poses with a display of the Heffley family at Nicola's Books in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
COURTESY HALABI FAMILY
TFK Kid Reporter Yusuf Halabi poses with a copy of The Third Wheel and a display of the Heffleys in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

TFK:

Each of your books in this series has a very different story. What inspired you to write the The Third Wheel?

KINNEY:

I wanted to write about romance in the pre-adolescent age—romance for kids who are 11, 12 and 13 years old.

TFK:

Have you ever felt like the third wheel?

KINNEY:

There have been times where I’ve felt like the third wheel. For instance, you go out with a couple and you kind of feel like an extra part.

TFK:

In your new book, the school principal gets pranked by one of the students. Did you ever want to prank your school principal?

KINNEY:

In my book, the vice-principal gets pantsed. No kid would ever get away with that in any school.

TFK:

The mad pantser struck from underneath the bleachers.

KINNEY:

Who knows how the mad pantser struck from under the bleachers!? Nobody really knows who the mad pantser is.

TFK:

Is Greg going to stay in middle school forever?

KINNEY:

Yes, Greg is a cartoon character and therefore cannot age.

TFK:

Greg seems to get into a lot of trouble. Do you consider him a troublemaker or a victim of trouble?

KINNEY:

Kid Reporter
Yusuf Halabi

I think Greg is a victim of his own bad ideas.

TFK:

Will Greg always consider himself “wimpy”?

KINNEY:

I don’t think Greg ever considered himself wimpy. I think Rodrick always wrote that at the end of [Greg’s] diary.

TFK:

So Rodrick sabotaged Greg’s diary?

KINNEY:

We know that Rodrick sabotaged Greg’s diary in the second book by writing “Rodrick Rules” on the cover.

TFK:

What font do you use?

KINNEY:

I designed the font myself on the computer.

TFK:

Who or what inspires you to write and draw?

KINNEY:

The kids that I meet—they keep me going and wanting to draw and write.

TFK:

Will there be an eighth Diary of a Wimpy Kid book?

KINNEY:

There will be an eighth, ninth and tenth.

TFK:

Will you ever stop?

KINNEY:

I don’t know. Maybe I’ll never stop. Greg is a cartoon character and can go on forever.


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