My uncle is a published author :) After years of reading short stories and poems, I am extremely excited to dive into the first installment of the series, The Adventures of Jimmy Farrell.
When did you know you wanted to be an author?
In the fourth grade we had a class project, to write a story. The story had to be 500 words long and I wrote about 5000 words. My uncle edited it for me and I got an “A”. Then my teacher sent it into a publishing company and the anticipation of getting a letter back telling me they wanted to publish my book was all I needed to fall in love with the idea of being an author.
How did you come up with the idea for this book?
Back in ’96 or ’97 I enrolled in a writing course and one of the assignments was to write a 1200 word fiction short story which became the idea that drove me to write The Adventures of Jimmy Farrell series.
Are you the type of writer to outline the entire story before filling in the details or do you write one chapter to the next? In other words, when you begin writing a story, do you already know the ending?
As a matter of fact, I do know the ending before I write the first word. However, I also know some key points I want to touch on throughout the book. So what I do is write a sentence or two for each chapter, then expand on that until I come to the end I wanted.
Are any of the characters modeled after people in your life?
No, Jimmy (the protagonist) is more of an idea of what children were like in a simpler time.
What is the biggest obstacle you ran into while writing this book and how did you overcome it?
To be quite honest, the story flowed very nicely. It was the editing that almost drove me insane. It wasn’t a matter of overcoming it, it was a matter of plowing through it.
What are some techniques or exercises that you do to overcome writer’s block? Or do you even get writer’s block at all?
I believe every author is faced with writer’s block at one time or another. The way I get past it is to step away and return to writing after a little rest. If that doesn’t work, I just write past it by writing a few different outcomes for where I am in the story. By the time I almost decide which one to use, I get a moment of clarity and I am able to find what I want in that moment.
What is your personal favorite book?
A Wrinkle in Time, by Madeleine L’Engle. That book rocked my imagination.
Who are some authors that have influenced your writing?
Any author that inspires the imagination of children in a clean and fun way is my hero.
Will there be future installments of Jimmy Farrell adventures?
Yes, I have book two written already. I just have to go through the grueling task of editing it again.
Can you give a little preview of what happens in book two? Is it a continuation of book one?
Book two, “The Summer of Magic,” takes place the following summer as Aponi and her family are separated by chance. Jimmy and friends all work together to help Aponi. It is an adventure deep in Aponi’s world with a heightened risk of danger.
What do you most want people to take away from this book?
A smile, and the knowledge that anything is possible when we set our minds to it.