Welcome to the Debut Author Bash!! Today I get to feature Debut Author Cynthia Reeg. Find out about her book below!! She was also kind enough to answer some of my questions, so I hope you will show her some love in the comments.
Title: From the Grave
Author: Debut Author Bash: Cynthia Reeg
Published: October 1st 2016 by Jolly Fish Press
Monster is as monster does, but Frankenstein Frightface Gordon is totally the wrong shade of ghastly green—pale, baby blue, in fact—and he's more concerned with keeping his pants neat and tidy than scaring the pants off his victims. But when a new law is passed to rid Uggarland of misfits such as Frank, he must decide if he will become the monster his parents can be proud of or be the monster he can be proud of. Trusting the monsterliest monster he knows, Frank looks to the grave and his dead grandmother to make his choice, entering into an adventure that will either seal his doom or prove he is truly monster enough.
Where do your ideas come from?
A: My ideas can come from anywhere: things I see, read, imagine—and generally a combination of all three. If you look at the world through a creative lense, ideas will overflow.
How do you develop your writing ideas?
A: When inspiration takes me, I generally start jotting down notes—on characters, setting, the premise. I start asking myself questions: who, what, how type of things. I begin actually writing, generally after a bit of outlining so I won’t totally get stuck. But invariably, the story changes to what it really should be as the writing evolves.
Where do you find inspiration for your characters?
A: My characters are usually composites of people I might know, myself, and people I want to know or am glad I don’t know. I do enjoy writing the villains a lot and often ask myself why these characters seem to come the easiest to me. ☺
When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
A: Very early in grade school, really as soon as I discovered the magic of reading, I couldn’t wait to write my own stories.
What makes you unique as a writer?
A: My stories are my stories—no one else can tell them like I can. Writing is like painting. My “brush strokes” are unique—in the words I use, the characters I create, and the story I tell.
What writers inspire/d you?
A: Richard Peck, Sharon Creech, Kate DiCamillo, Avi, Karen Hesse, Jonathan Stroud, Roald Dahl, Emily Dickinson and so, so many more!
How has your writing career changed since you started?
A: With the coming of my first middle grade novel (FROM THE GRAVE) in October 2016, after so many years of working toward this goal, I’m even more determined than ever to keep improving my writing, to keep inspiring young readers and authors, and to keep touching children’s lives one book at a time.
What does your writing process look like?
A: Never as neat and tidy as I would like it to be. ☺ But I do try to be pretty regimented about setting writing or editing goals and meeting my daily quota. That helps me stay focused and on track. I have a fairly flexible schedule, since I’ve retired from library work. I write in the morning or afternoon on pretty much a daily basis. And I read daily, which is really a study of successful writing.
What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
A: I always play classical music while I write. I can’t have distractions (tv, songs, noise.) All these block out the words in my head that are trying to get out onto the paper.
What are your writing goals for the next year?
A: If all goes according to plan, I will edit and publish the second book in the MONSTER OR DIE series with Jolly Fish Press, INTO THE SHADOWLANDS, in 2017. I’m also working on a new younger middle grade fantasy that I hope to polish and find a home for. It’s another one of my mash-up stories combining the supernatural with the here-and-now: the new boy at school meets a ghost, tries to evade a bully, and discovers the power of friendship.
Name the five biggest distractions from your writing.
A: Online media, marketing, travel, snack attacks, and my dog—but actually when my dog demands a walk, I do try to mull over plot points and I often find solutions. ☺
What character would you most like to be stuck in an elevator with?
A: Roald Dahl’s The Big Friendly Giant (BFG), which, of course, would make for a very crowded elevator, but I’d like to see just how friendly the giant really is. ☺
Do you hear from your readers much?
A: At this point I’ve not had too much published nor done too many school visits, but I do enjoy when readers respond that they’ve enjoyed one of my stories.
What kinds of things do they say?
A: I love it when kids use my stories as stepping stones to writing their own stories. Imitation is the best form of flattery after all. The children have such wonderful imaginations. I’m always amazed at their creativity.
Some Get to know me Questions
What do you like to do when you're not writing?
A: I love hanging out with my two grandsons. We laugh a lot, build pillow forts, and read stories. I’m also pretty active. I like to play tennis, hike, dance—and I couldn’t live without reading.
What’s the best vacation you ever had?
A: On a business trip with my husband years ago, we were entertained like royalty in France. We stayed at the Ritz, lunched at the Cartier store (although no diamonds were on the menu), visited Coco Chanel’s apartment, enjoyed a private ballet at the Opera, and a dinner at Versailles. I truly felt like Cinderella.
What’s your favorite rainy day movie?
A: I really don’t like to re-watch movies much, but during the holiday season, I do enjoy Ralphie in THE CHRISTMAS STORY.
If you could be any age again for a week, which would you choose and why?
A: I would like to be eleven again, so I could do a better job tuning into the characters I write—and to tell my then self to be braver and believe in herself!
If you could have personally witnessed one event in history, what would it be?
A: I would like to have met Joan of Arc and seen this medieval teenage French peasant girl convince the king-to-be and his officers that she should lead their army against the British during the Hundred Years’ War. Her bravery, humility, and determination were amazing.
What's your favorite place to read?
A: In bed, before going to sleep each night.
When you walk into a book store, where do you head first?
A: The children’s section always. It’s the most interesting area!
If you had a million dollars, what would be the first thing you would buy?
A: If money could buy health and happiness, then I would spend it on my family and friends who need it most.
About the Author:
Cynthia Reeg, an intrepid librarian, ventured from behind the book stacks to contend with quirky characters and delightful dilemmas in her very own picture books and middle grade novels. Her amazing husband, two grown sons, two adorable grandsons, and awesome family aid Cynthia on this wild and wonderful adventure. Whiles she has had her share of worldly adventures—fishing for piranhas in the Amazon, climbing the Great Wall of China, and white water rafting in New Zealand—she’s mainly a Midwestern girl. A Kansas native, she’s also lived in Illinois, Oklahoma, Indiana, and Ohio. Currently she resides in St. Louis, Missouri and loves to vacation in Florida and New Mexico. Cynthia enjoys tennis, hiking, reading, and hanging out with her family. For more information, visit www.cynthiareeg.com.
Twitter: https://twitter.com/cynthiareega Rafflecopter giveaway
6 signed FROM THE GRAVE posters.
6 signed FROM THE GRAVE posters.