We've all got them. Those little hidden treasures, like the mom and pop shop in your town or the bakery down the street. Maybe they serve the best apple pie in a hundred mile radius or they present a meal with a smile, knowing you by name when you walk through the door. Perhaps your favorite shop makes an organic goat milk soap that's soft on your skin, or they send your children cards on their birthday. Whatever it is, these little-known gems make our individual world a better place. But what if they could be known everywhere - not just in your town? Wouldn't it be great if you could share that with others?
Just like those little gems in your hometown, there are many wonderful books that are waiting to be discovered. They're hidden with your next-door neighbor who self-published a children's picture book, or with the person at church who found a small press to publish their young adult romance. Perhaps its even the lady who serves in the community that found an agent and is still working on a book deal. In any of these circumstances there could very well be a wonderful book just waiting to be discovered!
That's what this blog hop is all about: finding the books you might not have heard about, but ones that you might just end up loving. If you follow the blog hop long enough, you’re bound to find some great new reading material! Maybe you’ll even discover a book that ends up being the next big thing.
1: What is the working title of your book?
Cinderskella! The moment my daughter brought the book idea home, the title stuck immediately!We're a bit stumped on the series name though. Originally we'd planned on Scary Tales, but feel as though its a bit overdone, so we're letting a few ideas brew a bit. So far it's narrowed down to Scarily Ever Laughter, Funny Bones and RIP Tales.
2: Where did the idea come from for the book?
My then 9 year old daughter. She was listenting to the school librarian talk about fairy tales and retellings, mostly ones about Cinderella and quite honestly, she claims she grew bored. So she stapled some paper together, made a booklet, drew a coffin with a skeleton in it with the title Cinderskella written across the top. She'd written a few pages already and as soon as I saw all that she had done I knew she was on to something. So we decided to write the book together!
3: What genre does your book fall under?
Hmmm...that's a tough one. I think it could fall into multiple categories. Mostly magical realism, fantasty and humor. That was the toughest part about querying this manuscript. The story doesn't seem to fall into one category perfectly and I hated to raise expectations only to have the agent or publisher feel differently and reject it for that reason.
4: Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
Ha! This is a great one! I've never seen my characters as real people - they've always been claymation/stop motion figures in my mind! I'd love to see Tim Burton work his magic. And when Tim Burton is involved, you know that Johnny Depp is sure to follow. So yeah, Johnny Depp would be perfect for the voice of Ethan (the "prince"). So, I suppose a real person would have to be Amanda Seyfried as Cindy (Cinderskella). Her big, expressive eyes are a perfect match! For Cindy's dad you'd need someone with excellent comedic timing and a face capable of really dramatic expressions....but not Jim Carrey - he's too much of a clown!
5: What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
Well the pitch that garnered attention was this simple: Cinderella+ Skeleton= Cinderskella
I've never really used much of anything else for an elevator pitch since this seemed to work so well.
6: Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
After two long years of querying, I finally found the perfect publisher for this book! My daughter and I couldn't be happier! We're such lucky ghouls!
7: How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
The first draft only took 6 days. Granted those 6 days were over the course of a month, but it was a rather easy first draft to write. Now the editing and revising on the other hand...that's another story!
8: What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
I think the main character has similar personality traits to Ramona Quimby, which means the humor is evident in the story, but the premise could be compared to Coraline.
9: Who or What inspired you to write this book?
My daughter! See question #2 :)
10: What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
The very first feedback I received on this book was to change the MC from 12 to 16, transform the book from a MG to a YA and add a large emphasis on a love interest. At one point I contemplated following the advice because of market demands, but I'm so glad my daughter and I stuck with our gut. We could have written to the market, but we felt that wasn't right for us. The story works much better this way, the MC is more believable as a 12 year old and we both feel good about remaining true to our story.
You may have seen some of my friends around the blogosphere participating in this tour, since it's more like a game of tag than anything. One author posted, then tagged more, who then linked back to their site and so forth. Before you know it we've played The Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon!
I was tagged by Karlene Browning http://www.inksplasher.blogspot.com/ (way back in December, so I'm a little late to the game - sorry Karlene!). I was also tagged by Ann Marie Meyers http://www.annmarie-meyers.com/, Eric Bishop http://eric-bishop.com/ and Lehua Parker http://www.lehuaparker.com/ (recently - yay! I didn't slack this time!)
Rose Cooper http://www.rose-cooper.com/ will be joining the hop on February 6th. I hope you’ll visit her blog next week and learn more about her books. Maybe one of them will become your new favorite!