CONAN: I wonder, looking back, some of the things that might have shocked someone 30 years ago or 40 years ago don't seem so alarming these days. Are your books in trouble sometimes because they're by Judy Blume?
BLUME: Well, I have to say that 40 years ago, whenever that was...
(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)
BLUME: I know when I started to write, it was the '70s, and throughout that decade, we didn't have any problems with book challenges or censorship. It all started really in a big way in 1980.
CONAN: And why, do you think?
BLUME: Well, it came with the election, the presidential election of 1980, and the next day, I've been told, the censors were crawling out of the woodwork and challenging, like it's our turn now, and we're going to say what we don't want our children to read.
But I think it's more than that. It's what we don't want our children to know, what we don't want to talk to our children about, and if they read it, they'll know it, or they'll question it.
CONAN: There is so much I want to ask you about, but these days, as you know probably much better than I do, there are far more - the line has moved considerably. There are language issues that you never crossed. There are lines of sexuality that you never crossed. There are - yet you defend all of those works.
BLUME: Other people's works?
BLUME: Oh, absolutely.
CONAN: Is there a line?
BLUME: I don't know what that line would be. I mean, children read. I read widely in my parents' bookshelves. There were no books for me to read as - about young people after I was 12, let's say. I had read them, or I felt that I had read them. And so I was crawling around in the bookshelves at home, and in my house, reading was a very good thing.