An Interview with Rainbow Rowell and Faith Erin Hicks, Creators of Pumpkinheads

August 6, 2019 | 2:00 PM

An Interview with Rainbow Rowell and Faith Erin Hicks, Creators of Pumpkinheads

By Team Fierce Reads

Do you love cooler weather, flannel, pumpkin-spiced lates, and all things FALL?

Do you ALSO love all things Rainbow Rowell and Faith Erin Hicks?

Then we have some GREAT news for you!

Pumpkinheads, the world's most perfect and adorable fall-themed graphic novel by Rainbow Rowell and illustrated by Faith Erin Hicks comes out on August 27!

We know that's still a few weeks away, so to get you READY and EXCITED, here's an interview with Rainbow and Faith.

Are you more like Deja or Josiah?

RAINBOW: Oh, I’m definitely more like Josiah. No question. I get anxious outside of my own routines and safe spaces. And I find it difficult to initiate friendships. I get anxious even thinking about how to do that! Josie really needed Deja to befriend him, and sometimes he needs her to drag him out of his constant risk management. Also, much like Josiah, I am swoony for fall. I want to live that pumpkin spiced life. 

FAITH: Definitely Josiah. I'm very much a rule follower, and I'm terrible at pursuing crushes. I'd much rather pine away for someone rather than actually doing something about it, haha. I wish I was like Deja! Being able to say, forget the rules, we're gonna go off and do this thing, no matter the consequences. I think she's really brave and awesome, and I wish I was more like that.

What's the best part of collaborating on this project?

RAINBOW: For me, the best thing was how completely on the same page Faith and I were from the very beginning. She immediately got what I was trying to do with the script, and she leaned into it. I wanted this pumpkin patch to feel so over the top—like the Disneyland of pumpkin patches—and Faith joyfully made that happen.

Also, there’s as much emotional plot in this story as there is pumpkin-patch plot. And Faith’s style really allows for that. Like, there’s so much expression in the way she draws the characters, in their faces, and in their posture. That really freed me, as the writer, to aim for the fences, emotionally. There was no feeling that I could write that Faith couldn’t draw.

FAITH: Pumpkinheads is not a story I would've come up with on my own, and for me that's the best thing about collaborating with another writer. I get to draw characters and stories that are different from the kinds of stories I create. It's a cool opportunity to try new things. 

What is your favorite pumpkin patch snack?

RAINBOW: At the actual pumpkin patch? Pumpkin chocolate chip cookies. But there’s a snack in the book I really want to try—THE PUMPKIN BOMB. (You’ll have to read the book to get the recipe.)

FAITH: I love a good slice of apple pie. The one I had at the pumpkin patch Rainbow took me to in Omaha was pretty great! The strangest snack I had was Frito Pie, which despite its name, is definitely not pie. 

Pumpkinheads by Rainbow Rowell and Faith Erin Hicks

Deja and Josiah are seasonal best friends.

Every autumn, all through high school, they’ve worked together at the best pumpkin patch in the whole wide world. (Not many people know that the best pumpkin patch in the whole wide world is in Omaha, Nebraska, but it definitely is.) They say good-bye every Halloween, and they’re reunited every September 1.

But this Halloween is different—Josiah and Deja are finally seniors, and this is their last season at the pumpkin patch. Their last shift together. Their last good-bye.

Josiah’s ready to spend the whole night feeling melancholy about it. Deja isn’t ready to let him. She’s got a plan: What if—instead of moping and the usual slinging lima beans down at the Succotash Hut—they went out with a bang? They could see all the sights! Taste all the snacks! And Josiah could finally talk to that cute girl he’s been mooning over for three years...

What if their last shift was an adventure?

Beloved writer Rainbow Rowell and Eisner Award–winning artist Faith Erin Hicks have teamed up to create this tender and hilarious story about two irresistible teens discovering what it means to leave behind a place—and a person—with no regrets.


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