The beloved author on her work, early battles with school censorship, and whether she ever felt pressure to tone down the topics addressed in her books for young adults:
“I read that you voluntarily removed a scene about masturbation from the original manuscript of Tiger Eyes. The movie seems to restore this scene in a sneaky way, by showing [the protagonist] Davey in the shower in close-up, smiling. Can you talk about the decision to remove that scene from the book, and to include it in the movie?
“Oh, everyone reads that. That story hurt my editor terribly, and I’d never want to hurt him. [The manuscript originally] said: ‘For the first time, I explored my body.’ It was about Davey allowing herself to feel again after her father dies. There’s nothing explicit about it. My editor did say, ‘We want to have this read by as many readers as possible,’ so I took it out. Do I have regrets? I don’t know. The question was: How important was this to the character? My editor agreed that this was psychologically important to the character coming into the world again, to feel again. Does it have much to do with whether the book is good at all? No. It would have made a big difference with Deenie.”