The inaugural year of Sheboygan’s Teen Book Festival is good news, and so local media let viewers know that their favorite children’s fest now has a teen component. Here’s video of a segment about it on Green Bay WLUK Good Day Wisconsin. Enjoy!
And here are some stills. Thanks to both WKUK-TV and Karin Menzer of the STBF for inviting me. I had fun and even went to Lambeau Field afterward. Go, Pack, go!
I am incredibly honored to be the very first author featured on the newly created WISCONSIN WRITES AUTHOR VIDEO SERIES. This interview chat was created by the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction for students to hear directly from authors about how they do what they do, providing a glimpse into both their current works and their creative minds.
I have two segments, which you can see above or at the WI DPI website. The first segment is on my writing process, and the second covers many topics, including my approach to subject matter, the role of research, editing, feedback from other writers, and advice to students.
Many thanks go the educators behind this series! I hope you enjoy it, too, and please feel free to share it widely with the writers (young and old) in your life!
I had the honor and pleasure of talking on a panel about kid lit at the Wisconsin Writers Association‘s Annual Convention yesterday. Beside me were some of the most talented writers of the day, their works spanning from picture book to young adult novel.
A few of the questions had to do with taboo topics and whether we censor our writing for the sake of our audience. The answer was a universal no to censorship but that, of course, a writer’s presentation is tweaked depending on age range and relevancy to the story. We all agreed that stories are a safe place to explore new worlds and perspectives. Besides, those readers who don’t enjoy a book will self-censor, that is, decide a particular book isn’t for them and put it down. It comes down to choices, which is an integral part of growing up.
Not every book covers deep, heavy topics, but most offer a window to emotional growth. My God Awful Loser is a light read and yet doesn’t gloss over the protagonist’s womanizing. He and other characters eventually learn, with the readers riding their wave, to value those around them.
Do kids need books to teach them such lessons? Perhaps another question is in order: Who remembers reading a book at just the right time and having it profoundly affected their worldview?
Soon Wisconsin students engaged in writing will have video proof that, yeah, sometimes you just have to scrap what doesn’t work. And who got to teach them that? Why, yes, you guessed right. It was me.
It was part of an interesting video project being put on by the Wisconsin Department of Public Schools, the state agency that runs public schools. The “Wisconsin Writes” project aims to catch Wisconsin authors wherever they happen to be in their work-in-progress to talk to students about how they’re advancing their work and to answer a few tough questions. My work-in-progress is the sequel to God Awful Loser.
It so happens that I was at a point in which I’d explored a certain path only to find it didn’t work, and so I was on the cusp of scrapping a full chapter. That turned into a talk about how sometimes you just have to try something out, see how it goes, get messy, be willing to change it or let it go if it’s not your vision, and embrace picking it up again where you left off. I hope hearing that is helpful to students.
Here I am signing God Awful Loser for the program’s host. Thanks, Marci, for inviting me.
What an honor it is to be interviewed about your work, but it’s especially wonderful when the interviewer is Tim Knox, author, entrepreneur, and host of the hugely popular “Interviewing Authors” podcast.
Tim Knox has interviewed many fascinating and talented publishing professionals. His podcasts are endlessly entertaining and a treasure trove of insight. I’ve enjoyed them, each and every one, for a long time now.
We are just a day ahead of my book launch, and in advance of it I chatted it up on Milwaukee’s favorite talk show, The Morning Blend. Hosts Molly Fay, Tiffany Ogle, and I talked about the light-hearted fun mythology can offer readers, my transition from writing news to now writing fiction, and of course how the gods misbehave.
You can view the video here in case you missed the show and the live stream. And please come on down to my launch party! It’s tomorrow, Friday, May 8th, at 7 p.m. at Boswell Book Company in Milwaukee. Love to see you there!
I’ve been converting some of my old TV news tapes to digital, and I found a report wherein I very enthusiastically explain the afterlife myths of Ancient Egyptians for an upcoming museum exhibit. I go pretty in depth, and the anchors’ reactions are priceless.
My upcoming novel, God Awful Loser, is about Roman mythology, and I had just as much fun writing about Roman myths as talking about Egyptian ones. Mythology seems to be everywhere, and perhaps The Fates demanded I write it.
If you spend enough years in front of a microphone and get plugged in to your community, eventually you’ll have interesting opportunities come your way. And me not being one to turn down opportunities (or people depending on me), I say yes.
So I’ve had the very good fortune to get pulled into live sports announcing. For the past few years, I’ve occasionally announced speedskating events in Milwaukee for meets ranging from Olympic Qualifying, World Cup Qualifying, and even small regional meets.
Now I’m adding high school swimming to my sports announcing! My daughter’s team needed an announcer for a large conference meet, and I was volunteered. I’m not hugely plugged into that sport, but I always want to stretch my abilities and try new things. I was asked back, so that’s a good endorsement.
I’m grateful to have the chance to try new things. Many thanks to all who provide the opportunities!
One of the things I love about guest hosting The Morning Blend talk show is the chance to discuss with people from all walks of life how they handle their personal trials and make things better for others. Below are a couple of recent segments that do just that.
The first features Speedskating Olympian Brian Hansen just before the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics. He talks about training, nutrition, and his other contribution to sport, the muscle-rolling, athlete-hydrating invention, Bottle Bark.
The second segment features Milwaukee-area moms who discuss the importance of finding time for themselves — and the wonderful people who help them do it. It’s a tribute to the parenting support system.