R.J. Palacio lives in New York City with her husband, two sons, and two dogs. For more than twenty years, she was an art director and graphic designer, designing book jackets for other people while waiting for the perfect time in her life to start writing her own novel. But one day several years ago, a chance encounter with an extraordinary child in front of an ice cream store made R. J. realise that the perfect time to write that novel had finally come. Wonder is her first novel. She did not design the cover, but she sure does love it.
On how surprised she was by the movement Wonder sparked:
Little did I know – I mean the "choose kind" quote was not mine. It's one that I heard a couple years ago, by [author and motivational speaker] Wayne Dyer, and I put it in there because I think it's such a beautiful quote, and it's so true. And it's something that really resonates with kids, because they kind of get it right away. You know, sometimes because especially at that age, you're in an argument with a friend and you know you're right, [but] you need reminding that ultimately the important thing is to choose to be kind, not choose to be right. [Source]