SPY MICE giveaway!

April 10th, 2013

Giveaway?  Did someone say giveaway?  Oh yeah, baby … it’s time to celebrate!

:: tosses confetti ::

The SPY MICE are back with a whole new look, and here to help me celebrate with a mini blog hop (of COURSE it’s a mini blog hop–these are mice we’re talking about) are my friends Debbie at The Styling Librarian and Courtney at Stiletto Storytime!  We’ll be giving away three sets of THE BLACK PAW, FOR YOUR PAWS ONLY, and GOLDWHISKERS to three lucky readers!

Click here to head over to The Styling Librarian’s interview with me, and click here to read my Q&A with Stiletto Storytime.

All you have to do to enter is tell us:  Who’s your favorite fictional spy?

Leave a comment below answering that question, or  use the snazzy Google entry form at The Styling Librarian or Stiletto Storytime.  Share on your blog or Facebook or Twitter (using hashtag #spymice) for additional entries. Deadline is Wednesday, April 17th extended to Sunday, April 21st at midnight.  U.S. and Canada only, please.  (If you tweet or blog or share on Facebook about this giveaway, please leave a link in the comments so I can assign you an extra entry.)

Tell your friends and help spread the SPY MICE love!

 

New THE BLACK PAW

NEW For Your Paws Only

NEW Goldwhiskers

 

SPY MICE!

April 4th, 2013

My SPY MICE are back, with a whole new look!

I’m thrilled to announce the relaunch of all three SPY MICE books — THE BLACK PAW, FOR YOUR PAWS ONLY, and GOLDWHISKERS!  Sporting fabulous new covers, along with Sally Wern Comport‘s sassy interior illustrations, the international mice of mystery are ready to whisk readers off on a trio of tail-biting adventures.

I couldn’t be happier with my wonderful publisher (take a bow, Simon & Schuster) for splashing out on this, and to celebrate, I have lots of fun in store, starting with a SPY MICE website (click here).

Hope you’ll visit it, take a look around, and scamper off to read the books.  Please tell your friends and share the SPY MICE love!

Up next:  a SPY MICE giveaway! Check back soon, mouselings…

 

New THE BLACK PAW

NEW For Your Paws Only

NEW Goldwhiskers

Monday musings: Inside the shell of character

November 26th, 2012

I love buying eggs from my next-door neighbor.

Aren’t they lovely?  So many different colors! On the outside, anyway — inside, eggs are eggs.  Lisa has at least four varieties of hens running around her yard, maybe even five or six.  It’s so much fun to look out my kitchen window and see them scurrying to and fro in search of bugs and other good things to eat.

We used to have chickens, too, but they eventually went into chicken retirement.  (You can read about that here.)  They provided not only eggs (and amusement), but also food for thought.  Click here for a link to a blog post from a few years back that was inspired by a little backyard observation.

That’s the best kind of observation, really, isn’t it?

So what does this motley dozen nesting on my kitchen table tell me today?  Well, perhaps that despite our outward trappings–race, nationality, gender, faith, age, political leanings, etc.–on the inside, where it really counts, we’re all the same.  As a writer, I’ve learned that it’s the inside of my characters that counts, too. Whether I’m writing about a girl on an adventure at sea in 1835 (THE VOYAGE OF PATIENCE GOODSPEED), a mouse who dreams of being a secret agent and the fifth grade boy who helps her out (THE BLACK PAW), modern-day stepsisters on the receiving end of a spell gone terribly wrong (ONCE UPON A TOAD), or a whole cast of moms and daughters who end up reading the classics together (THE MOTHER-DAUGHTER BOOK CLUB), it’s the heart of the matter that’s most important.

Sure, I need to pay attention to details like dress and appearance and mannerisms and all that.  It’s part of my job (and a very fun part, I might add) to make the window dressing as interesting and alluring as possible.  But what is it that really connects us to those who live out their lives on the written page? What is it that makes some characters wrap themselves around our hearts?  Think Charlotte and Wilbur in Charlotte’s Web.  Or India Opal Buloni in Because of Winn-Dixie.  Scout in To Kill a Mockingbird.  

It’s what’s on the inside, isn’t it?  It’s their hopes and fears and worries, their dreams and yearnings.  Those “inside the egg” things that each one of us can relate to, and that ultimately connect us all.  So when you’re writing, be sure to crack open that shell and breathe life into your character from the inside.

Give your character a heart, and it will speak to the heart in your reader.

 

 

 

 

 

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