By Seija Rankin
July 06, 2021 at 01:59 PM EDT
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Rainbow Rowell's Simon Snow trilogy has had a heck of a run. The fantasy series brought The New York Times best-selling author even more fans, as readers followed along with Simon and his friends as they navigated the world.

Now, Rowell's closing out the series with Any Way the Wind Blows. To mark the occasion, Rowell sat down to answer all of EW's burning author questions.

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What is the first thing — ever — that you remember writing?

When I was in third grade, I wrote a little family comedy about the gorillas at the zoo. I think I only remember this because my teacher was so nice about it.

What is the last book that made you cry?

The Ugly Cry, a memoir by Danielle Henderson. Accurate title!

Which book is at the top of your current to-read list?

I just read My Antonia by Willa Cather, and it was amazing. Next, I'm reading O Pioneers.

Where do you write?

I used to write at Starbucks, but now I write in my house, in my office, sitting on the floor with a coffee table.

Which book made you a forever reader?

I was really into picture books, even after I started reading longer stories. One of the first books I remember reading over and over is Alexander and the Wind-up Mouse by Leo Lionni.

What is a snack you couldn't write without?

Almond flour crackers. (How boring is that?)

If you could change one thing about any of your books, what would it be?

There are things I'd change in all of them, but top of mind is — I should have figured out Simon and Baz and Penelope's birthdays when I was writing Carry On. I later realized that I'd written inconsistencies into their histories. If I had realized that I was going to write a sequel, I probably would have done a number of things differently in Carry On.

What is your favorite part of Any Way the Wind Blows?

There's a scene where Simon and Baz go "hunting" together, and they're both very themselves. Ultimately, I just really enjoy writing their dynamic.

What was the hardest plot point or character to write?

I always struggle with antagonists and villains. In each Simon Snow book, I've ended up rewriting and reframing one of the antagonists to make them more dramatic.

Write a movie poster tagline for the book.

I actually love the tagline my publisher came up with: A finale that gives you everything you want, and nothing you expect.

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