“Gripping play-by-play and a fast-moving plot will appeal to sports enthusiasts and reluctant readers.”–School Library Journal.
John will also be leading the mid-grade track at our upcoming Staying On Track July conference! And now that he’s settled with his big herbal tea fan, (Rooibus is his favorite,)
and his favorite snack, nuts of any kind,
. . . let’s get started!
When did you decide to be a writer, John?
I became a writer by being a reader. When my daughter was little and we were reading lots of books together is when I began thinking of writing a picture book. The first story I wrote was Night Driving.
How long did your path to that first glorious book sale take, and what were your biggest hurdles?
From start to finished book, Night Driving took six years. A few hurdles were a change of editor, an illustrator who turned it down, and an extra year waiting for art. It was all worth it.
Seeing how hindsight is 20/20, what advice for beginners do you wish you would have followed?
So simple, and SO TRUE! Okay, where’s your favorite place to work?
I like working in my studio at home where you’ll see plenty of paper.
How were you inspired to write your current or upcoming release?
I was inspired to write the 4 for 4 middle-grade series by memories of my own transition from elementary to middle school. For this project I have enjoyed talking with fifth and sixth graders and getting their feedback on the four books.
What is your favorite line from this book?
“Spencer Milroy, remove that food from your mouth immediately.”
Are there any other genres that you’d like to tackle some day?
What’s next on your agenda, any juicy projects you’d like to tell us about?
A picture book called Hoop Genius that has been nine years in the making is scheduled to come out in 2012.
Time for the lightning round—no more than four words per answer!
Do you . . .
Outline or wing it? More wing it.
Talk about works-in-progress, or keep it zipped? Pretty zipped.
Sell by proposal or completed draft? I’ve done both.
Prefer writing rough drafts or editing? I like both.
Dread marketing/blogging or love it? Somewhere in between.
Read Kindle or traditional books? Both
And finally, what’s your favorite:
Time to work? When I’m rolling.
Music to listen to while writing? No, birds.
Writing tool? Pencil, pen, keys
Favorite shoes? Slippers.
Line from a movie? And now for something completely different.
Awesome, thanks, John, for stopping by and best of luck with HOOP GENIUS! We’re looking forward to seeing you at the conference. 🙂
Have a great day, everyone!