Alice FAQ

  • Writing to Phyllis
  • Publishing Schedule
  • Being a Writer
  • Other Books by Phyllis
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  • Alice Movie
  • Finding a Book
  • Censorship
  • The Alice Books
  • Click here for Facts About Phyllis (FAP)

    In what order do I read the Alice Books?

    Click here to find out the order of the Alice Books and Phyllis’ other series!

    Is it still okay to read the books out of order?

    Well, nobody’s going to chop off your head or anything! The books are best if read in the right order because Alice gets a little older in each one, but each book can be read and enjoyed at whatever point you decide to read it.

    How many Alice books are you planning on writing?

    I plan to write 28 books in all, and there will be 3 books for every year of Alice’s life up to age 18. And in the final book, Alice goes from 18 to 60. The whole book isn’t about Alice at 60.

    Will you use my name in one of your books?

    Sorry, but I never use names of people I know. It gets in the way of the plot.

    Will Alice and Patrick ever get back together? Will Lester ever marry? Will Alice and Pamela and Elizabeth stay friends?

    Now you know that I’m not going to tell you what happens in future books. It would ruin the suspense for everyone.

    Did all the things that happen to Alice in her books happen to you when you were her age?

    Not all, but some. Remember that Tarzan scene in The Agony of Alice?

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    How can I get the Alice poster?

    If you would like one–free, of course–just email me at with your full name and address and we’ll send the poster. Your name and address will not appear on this website. The poster comes to you by snail mail, not email.

    Can I write you from other countries or just from the USA?

    I get letters from Italy, Ireland, England, South Africa, Canada, France, Australia–it doesn’t matter. I put most of the ones I receive by email on the Alice website, and will be glad to include a letter from you.

    Will you sign my Alice book?

    Do not send a book in the mail. I think a better way is to just send me a book plate–it’s a stick-on label that you can put in a book. You can buy them in bookstores, or just send me a large blank label of any kind. Tell me who the book is for, and I’ll autograph it and send it back. Then you can just stick it in the book you want.

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    When are your new Alice books coming out?

    A new Alice book comes out each May.

    What are the Alice prequels?

    These are three books that take place when Alice was much younger. These will take Alice through 3rd, 4th, and 5th grades, so that she’s ready to start 6th grade in The Agony of Alice, the first book in the regular series.

    Why do we have to wait a whole year for a new Alice book to come out? If you’ve already written the one that comes out next year, why can’t it come out now?

    Because it takes a whole year for a manuscript to go through the publishing process. After I write it, my husband reads it and makes suggestions. Then I read it to my critique group and they make suggestions too. After that it goes to the editor, who asks for more revisions. Then it goes to the copyeditor for checking, the art department, the marketing department, the printer, the binder, the salesmen, the reviewers, etc. etc.

    But why can’t you start a new Alice book as soon as you finish one, and write more than one a year?

    Because I like to write other kinds of books too–novels for adults, picture books for little kids, suspense novels, mysteries, serious family fiction, fantasy–and I never do the same kind of book twice in a row. I try to do something entirely different in between books so that when I come back to an Alice book, my writing will be fresh.

    How long is it before a new Alice book appears in paperback? I can’t afford a hardcover edition?

    It almost always takes a year–sometimes longer–for a new book to appear in paperback. Publishers naturally want to sell as many hardcover copies as they can before they print it in paperback.

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    Where do you get your ideas?

    From memories of things that happened to me and my friends and the way I felt about them when I was Alice’s age. Also from things I observe happening around me, or things that people tell me about.

    I would love to be your pen-pal. If I write you every week, will you write back?

    I really wish I could write regularly to everyone who has asked. I just can’t. There is always a book deadline hanging over me, and you KNOW how much you want me to write another Alice book. Although my secretary answers the letters that come by regular mail, she sometimes saves a few that she feels I should answer personally. I do try to reply, if only a sentence or two, to every email that comes to me on the Alice website.

    Can you give me a good writing tip?

    Think about the time you were most sad or angry or scared or embarrassed. Write down a few lines about it, then change it a little–the way it began, the way it ended. Pretend it happened to someone else. Turn it over to your imagination and, most of all, have fun!

    I want to be a writer. If I send you a story I have written, will you give me some suggestions?

    I’m sorry, but I get far too many requests to be able to do that.

    What’s it like being an author?

    Extremely busy. I put in about ten hours of work every day.

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    What is the Boys-Versus-Girls series about? Is it like Alice?

    No, those books are not like the Alice books. The Boys-Versus-Girls books are about a family of boys in a West Virginia town trying to drive out a family of girls by tricks and teasing. Except the girls are good at playing tricks too, and both families have a marvelous time trying to outdo each other. Start with “The Boys Start the War.” Boys and girls like them equally, and they’re best for readers in 4th, 5th, and 6th grades.

    Can you recommend any of your other books? I’m 13.

    If you’re a gal, try Night Cry, A String of Chances, Send No Blessings, and Ice. If you’re a guy, try The Fear Place, The Year of the Gopher, Being Danny’s Dog, Danny’s Desert Rats, Walker’s Crossing,The Solomon System and The Keeper. Both guys and girls would enjoy Jade Green: a ghost story; Sang Spell, the three books of my York Trilogy: Shadows on the Wall, Faces in the Water, Footprints at the Window, Blizzard’s Wake, and Cricket Man.

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    I wrote to you last week and I don’t see my letter in “Fan Mail.”

    I don’t print all the letters. Some of them ask questions that have been asked dozens of times, in which case I usually email an answer to you instead of putting it on the screen.

    Do you do book signings and readings?

    Yes, and when I have one scheduled, I’ll post it on the home page of the Alice website in my “Note from Phyllis.” Please don’t keep asking me when I will appear in your state. Each “Note from Phyllis” stays up on the website for two weeks, and if you check it weekly, you will know in advance when or if I’m coming to your town. Mostly I speak at large conferences of teachers and librarians, but I try to add bookstore signings and school visits to my schedule when I can.

    How can I get you to come to my school?

    Requests must come from a teacher or librarian, and should be addressed to Author Appearances Coordinator, Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 1230 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10020.

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    Are you going to make a movie or TV series out of the Alice books?

    There is already an Alice movie out on DVD, Alice Upside Down, based loosely on The Agony of Alice.

    Could I audition for a part of one of the characters? I’d make a good Alice (or Pamela or Elizabeth).

    If I hear that a movie or series is being made and they are auditioning for the parts, I’ll post it on the website.

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    My bookstore doesn’t have your most recent Alice book and neither does my library. How can I get a copy?

    Ask your bookstore if the book is on order. If not, ask them to special order a copy for you. You will find that online bookstores often get a book to you faster than a local bookstore. If you want to borrow a copy, not buy one, and your library doesn’t carry the Alice book that you want, ask them to order a copy for you on inter-library loan.

    I can’t find your new book anywhere. If I give you my address, will you send me a copy?

    I can’t do that either. I only get twenty free copies myself, and I have a hundred and forty-four relatives. Does that answer your question?

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    37 responses to “Alice FAQ

    1. Nhung

      I like reading the fan mail posts, especially the ones asking for advice. They are very useful, so thank you. I myself wanted to ask you for some advice on a situation but I don’t know where to put it. Do I just post it here or do I email you? If I should email you, can I have the email please?thank you so much for becoming a writer, I love your books. Xox-NH

    2. Shayla Parker

      Just finished Incredibly Alice. Took 3 hours with no breaks! I couldn’t put it down. I’m extremely excited for the next one (though a bit sad the series is nearly over). I love this series and I feel as if really I know Alice. She’s like a best friend!

    3. justyce

      Hi I wanted to let you know that I absolutely LOVE your Alice books which I began reading in the 5th grade starting with the prequals. Im in the 9th grade now and I stay up all night reading them and when I finish I feel sooo sad that I have to wait all the way till next year for another to come out. I was wondering if you can possibly , for the last book, Could you possibly. Post a sneak peak on the website or the back of the Alice on board book that would be great. I think it would bring more customers because it would leave us guessing and we could catch a little glimpse of the year to come.

    4. Vanessa Clarke-Deaver

      If I ask, can I receive some fan memorabilia ( for example, posters, stickers, anything inexpensive that won’t be any trouble for you) I’m one of your biggest fans, and I’d really love something with Alice.

    5. dolce

      I wanna know Who’s the red haired girl who’s in the front of the book covers for
      the alice series? She’s in most covers starting from the prequels. I
      would like to know her name and say to me, she’s always fit the role. I always
      pictured her when reading the books! I’ve started reading the series
      in fifth grade but somehow lost track, now 19 n about to start college
      I come across it again, I can’t wait to pick up where I left off !
      Much love!

    6. Katherine

      I know you must get this all the time, but I am a huge fan of your books. I started reading the Alice series when I was in seventh grade and I just finished reading Incredibly Alice… your writing skills are truly amazing

    7. Alexa

      What book do I read after “please dont be true?”

    8. DD

      I have just seen the teaser of an Alice book and already I am in love with her character and her books!

    9. Meg

      I love all of the Alice books! I finished reading Alice on board and can’t wait for the last one to come out! You’re a great writer!

    10. JFS

      I am so inspired by your books Phyllis! I am 13 and I am always scared to talk to my friends (the 2 tht i hav) and my parents. So I read Alice and I don’t feel so alone she’s like my secret answer to life. To me i think that for writing such AWESOME books you should live the happiest life Ever!

    11. Amberger Westlake

      I agree with Shayla Parker. To me, the series is almost real and it’s like Alice is my friend! I love the books because I can relate to them and they’re fun to read. They’re comforting to read while being a teenager. I’m sad that the series is over. :”””””(

    12. alicemckinley

      The next book after Please Don’t Be True is Alice in Charge. You can find a whole list of the books in order here:

    13. alicemckinley

      Sadly I can’t give out the name of the models on the covers, but I’m so glad she feels like the real Alice to you! Hope you enjoy the rest of the series!

    14. alicemckinley

      If you email, you can get a free poster!

    15. alicemckinley

      I can’t promise a sneak peek, but I promise there will be plenty of ways for you to get a glimpse of what’s to come for Alice before Now I’ll Tell You Everything comes out!

    16. alicemckinley

      You can email me at

    17. Harlie Ireland

      Hello! I just wanted the chance to say how AMAZING your Alice books are. I had started reading them in June and I’m almost done, I can’t get enough of them. They made me laugh so much! You’re writing style is fantastic, and I admire the way you’re able to connect to so many of us personally. Being a Senior this coming year, I wish I could’ve known about the Alice books way back when so I could journey through life with Alice and her friends. I’m so excited for the final Alice book, I know it will be epic! Thank you so much for writing this incredible series throughout the years, blessing us with the courage to experience life to the fullest just like Alice and her friends and family. -Harlie Ireland

    18. I Luv all the Alice books, I’ve sent u a email for a free poster, if that’s ok???!
      Whenever I read an Alice book it feels like she’s sitting right next to me!!:)
      I write books myself u know!!

    19. Della Chen

      I love all the Alice books and my mom does too! Because then every time I have a blunder, I read an Alice book! I write FanFiction about Alice too!


    20. Rosie

      I started reading the Alice books in 8th grade and I’ve been hooked ever since. I can’t wait to see how the last Alice book turns out!

    21. Yamilex Sanchez

      Hey does anyone know the book where Elizabeth confides in Alice and Pamela about the man who would molest her? I really want to know the book title and I tried looking for it but I can’t seem to find it. Can you please help me out?

    22. alicemckinley

      The book’s title is Alice Alone. You can find it on its own, or as part of the book I Like Him, He Likes Her, which is a compilation of three Alice books!

    23. MCK99

      Just wondering if both of your e- mail adresses work? AND

    24. alicemckinley

      The best email address to use is — can’t wait to hear from you!

    25. Alyssa

      Hey! Where is the Just The Facts section? I just finished the last book and couldn’t wait to read Just The Facts!!

    26. Sarah

      I just finished the last Alice book and it was the best ever!! I feel like I know Alice and she is a real person. Thank you so much for writing the Alice books.

    27. alicemckinley

      We’re working on getting this up as soon as possible!

    28. Amelia

      why your Alice books there are only 13 in Indonesia?

    29. FanofAlice

      Your books have helped me through my life and understanding growing up! Thank you soooooo much!!!!

    30. iluvalice

      I am so thankful for the Alice books. I have only read a few but they are already the best books I have read. I can’t wait to continue the Lice series and read it over and over again.

    31. Imani Johnson

      Do you think you can introduce your books inVidalia, Georgia? Not many people heard of the Alice series. Also will they be making another movie?

    32. Auria D

      What are two things that you fear?

    33. stravenski

      I wanted to know..
      1) did alice and patrick get back together
      2) did alice have kids with patrick
      3) did penny and patrick stay together

    34. Stephanie Williams

      This is not about the Alice books but about Shiloh, the first one. Our homeschool Classical Conversations students just read this. We are wondering what year this book is based in? Thank you so much for your time! Absolutely loved the book!

    35. jojo

      is there a movie coming out if so when

    36. Mia

      Do you have to be so young to read and enjoy the Alice book series?

    37. Diana

      I LOVEEE LOVEEE LOVEEEE the Alice Series. I’ve been reading them since I was about 15, I’m now 22! When I graduated from HS I stopped reading since I was all caught up. Now I recently got back into them and I’m currently reading Alice in Charge! I am so anxious to read the next couple especially the very last one. Buy I’m also sad at the same time! I can’t believe it’s the VERY last Alice book!!:( I feel like Alice has been my best friend! Thanks for such awesome readings!!! Hope u start a new series soon!!:)

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