1. The idea for Jinny and Cooper came from Tania’s then 7 year old daughter who asked Tania to write her a story about a magical guinea pig.
2. Jinny and Cooper was originally going to be a picture book but once Tania started writing, it soon turned into a novel.
3. Tania’s daughter chose the names Jinnifer and Cooper for the characters.
4. Originally the books were called ‘Jin and Cooper’ but the publishers thought Jinny and Cooper sounded better.
5. Book 1: My Teacher’s Big Bad Secret was written in 14 days, with one chapter completed per day. Tania would then read the chapter she wrote that day to her daughter before bed.
6. Cooper’s food-obsessed personality was based on a black Labrador Tania once owned.
7. Although Cooper’s 4th favourite food is Vegemite sandwiches, Tania can’t eat Vegemite!
8. Three months after the first book was accepted for publication, Tania was given two baby male guinea pigs by a friend who had recently purchased a guinea pig from the pet shop, only to find out it was pregnant! One of Tania’s new guinea pigs had black and brown fur, which stuck up in all directions. He also didn’t eat carrots. Of course he was called Cooper!
9. In Book 2: Revenge of the Stone Witch, Tania had no idea which of the three new characters (Miss Morgan, Katie or Mrs Goodfellow) was the Stone Witch until she wrote chapter 11 of the story!
10. Cooper’s brother Humphrey is real and, like in the books, doesn’t look anything like Cooper.