#1. I am often asked what it takes to write stories that engage young readers. Is there is a formula or a specific method?
It came to me at an amusement park. My son was telling me how disappointed he was that a new ride was still not operational. As we talked my mind drifted, sorry it does that a lot, especially when I am writing a book, and it hit me: writing a successful novel for mid-grade level readers is like designing the ultimate amusement park ride.
There are rules:
**It has to be fast!!
**It has to be terrifying ** Exhilarating (if you can't breathe, even better!) **It has to be unpredictable ** It has to be perceived as a little dangerous! **MOST OF ALL it has to leave you wanting to do it again!
#2. How did you come up with the story for Escape From The Planet Terrapin?
My husband and I read to all three of our sons every night as they were growing up. One night our middle son decided he was bored with the 1000+ books (I’m exaggerating a bit) we had in the house and wanted a new story. He told me that I should just make one up. I remember feeling so tired. After I breathed deeply and restrained from replying with the first answer that sprang to my mind I relented and that night a DWEEB (diagonal wedge electronic energy board) was born. That was almost 20 years ago! The story grew over the years until they finally talked me into writing it.
Have you written anything else in this series?
Yes, I have written about 10,000 words for the second book and outlined most of the chapters.
When will your first CORY SUMMERS book be available to readers?
With persistence, luck, and hard work the first novel; CORY SUMMERS- Lost on the Planet Terrapin, will be published and ready for readers by the Fall of 2020. That will be followed by the launch of CORY SUMMERS- Return to Terrapin- a Promise Kept, in the Fall of 2021 and the 3rd in the trilogy by the spring/summer of 2022.
How did you learn to write a novel?
Probably the hard way!? LOL. Writing, Reading, and Studying more hours than I knew existed in a day! Classes, workshops, constantly perfecting, always learning, writers groups, conventions, and more... I have a great deal of experience writing in the business community so the transition has been less difficult for me than for some, I imagine. I have learned that no one escapes the doubt and mental suffering that comes with writing a novel. I am still learning, (attending monthly workshops and weekly writers groups) and always will be!