Suzanne Collins is the daughter of an Air Force Officer who also taught college level history. She was born on August 10th 1962, in Hartford, Connecticut. She is the youngest of four children. She lived with her family in various parts of USA including New York City and Brussels.
FACT 1: After getting a Master’s Degree in dramatic writing, Suzanne started writing for children’s television programmes, including ‘Clarissa Explains It All’ and ‘Little Bear’.
FACT 2: She was soon noticed by James Proimos, who hired her as head writer for his series ‘Generation O!’ Proimos was a big fan of her writing and encouraged her to try writing books.
FACT 3: War always played a prominent role in Suzanne’s life. Her father was deployed in Vietnam when she was six. As a history teacher, her father always took his children to war monuments and battlefields. He would then explain to them the causes of the war and the incidents that took place on the battlefield they were visiting. The events that followed the war were also discussed. She says, ‘so throughput our lives we basically heard about war.’
FACT 4: Suzanne wondered what urban kids made of the pastoral setting of children’s’ classics like ‘Alice in Wonderland’. City children were more likely to fall down a man hole than a rabbit hole. This thought prompted the book ‘Gregor, the Overlander’. The book is about a boy who accidentally falls through the grate of the laundry room of the New York apartment where he lives.
FACT 5: What Gregory finds, is not a tea party. The world he discovers makes for a five part fantasy/war series of books, of which ‘Gregor, the Overlander ‘is the first. The book is a New York Times best seller and has been sold in 21 foreign territories.
FACT 6: Her next series The Hunger Games Trilogy made her a celebrity. Written in 2008, it became an international best seller and was on the best seller list of the New York Times for 6 years. It has been sold in 56 territories in 51 different languages.
FACT 7: In 2010 Collins was named to the TIME 100 list and the Entertainment Weekly Entertainer of the Year list. Her books have sold 87 million copies worldwide. The film adaptation of Hunger games generated nearly $ 700 million at the worldwide box office.
FACT 8: Suzanne’s books deal with war. This is especially true of the Hunger Games Trilogy. The inspiration for the trilogy came as Suzanne was flipping through the channels of late night TV. She was amazed at the reality shows being presented. They were so far removed from the Iraq War that the US was engaged in. She wondered if Americans were becoming desensitised to war. She wants her books to give children food for thought. She wants the books to encourage debate on war, both ‘necessary and unnecessary’ she feels that young minds can process information and that children do not shy away from the unpleasant facts of life.
FACT 9: Jack Proimos illustrated her autobiographical picture book ‘The Year of the Jungle’ which deals with the year her father was away in the Vietnamese jungles, when she was six. The book was released in September 2013.
FACT 10: Her first picture book ‘When Charlie MacButton Lost Power’ came out in 2005. It is illustrated by Mike Lester and is about a boy obsessed with computer games.