#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 CORY SUMMERS?
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 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.
#3. Have you written anything else in this series or other books?
Yes, I have written about 10,000 words for the second book and outlined most of the chapters. I am working on finalizing the first draft of a middle-grade contemporary humor novel.
#4. When will your first CORY SUMMERS book be available to readers?
With persistence, luck, and hard work, the first novel, CORY SUMMERS And The Wrath of Naytas will be published and ready for readers by the Spring of 2024. That will be followed by the launch of CORY SUMMERS And A Promise Kept.
#5. 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!