Sunday, September 16, 2018

Blog Tour: Splotch by @kenhicksnyc with an #author #interview #middlereader #fantasy #giveaway

Middle Reader Fantasy
Publisher: MuseItYA a division of MuseItUp Publishing.

Alice’s parents refuse to let her have a dog, so when Alice sees a paint stain on the sidewalk that looks like a dog, she decides that she will make him a virtual pet. She calls him Splotch and downloads a picture of him to her computer. To her surprise, he escapes from the computer and begins to act as Alice’s self-appointed protector. Unfortunately, he sees most people as potential enemies of Alice, including her teacher and the school principal, and he is not shy about giving those various enemies a bite. When Splotch starts to attack Alice’s best friend, Alice knows there is a big problem. But how will she get Splotch to stop being a guard dog and go back into the computer?


Is There a Message in Your Novel That You Want Readers to Grasp?

In all of our novels, we try to present a fast-moving story that also has various messages for the reader. In Splotch, ten-year-old Alice wants a dog and photographs a paint smear that looks like a dog, which she calls Splotch. Once the picture is uploaded to her computer, Splotch comes alive and begins to protect Alice from her so-called “enemies.” These include a girl in class who corrects her spelling, her teacher after giving her extra homework, and the principal, for reprimanding Alice, her best friend, Sarah, and Johnny, one of Alice’s many enemies, when they laugh at Splotch’s antics. After Sarah is nice to Johnny and Splotch starts biting her, Alice discovers that these people are not her enemies. Her teacher and principal are trying to help her learn and grow, and the kids in her class are just like her, trying to make their way in a sometimes-difficult world. Even more of a surprise to her is that Johnny—her nemesis since first grade—is as likeable and loyal as she is and a good friend. Future Alice adventures will include Johnny and Sarah.

Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?

It is always a challenge to make a story come alive, with characters who act and speak the way real people do. Anne and I hand the pages back and forth through draft after draft until we believe we have finally gotten the story the way we want it.

How many books have you written and which is your favorite?

Together we have written twenty-one books that have been published by various companies. Our favorite books tend to be the last one that we have written and sent out the door into the world. Like anxious parents, we wish each and every one of them the best!

If You had the chance to cast your main character from Hollywood today, who would you pick and why?

Kate McKinnon. She can play anyone, including a ten year old.

When did you begin writing?

 Anne and I were writing stories while we were still in elementary school. We began writing as a team in college for a course we created. After we got married, we started again and have been writing together ever since.

How long did it take to complete your first book?

Our first novel together was called Thick Coming Fancies and still resides in our closet. So, yeah, forever. Many of our novels have taken years to finish.

Did you have an author who inspired you to become a writer?

Neither of us have a particular author who inspired us to become writers. But we are both constantly inspired by great writers to work hard and become better at this difficult craft. Our inspirations would include Charles Dickens, Kurt Vonnegut, and innumerable others.

What is your favorite part of the writing process?

Anne and I take a lot of long walks while we work out the kinks in our novels and stories. We particularly enjoy being able to do that. Also, when we get good news, it is twice as good with a partner, and when we get bad news, we slough it off together as well.

Describe your latest book in 4 words.

Imaginative, New York adventure.

Can you share a little bit about your current work or what is in the future for your writing?

We have the fourth book in the Jane Larson mystery series now at the publisher. It is scheduled for publication in September of 2019. The next Alice and Friends book is still in the planning stage. We have a series for tweens and young adults involving Jennifer, James and a talking pigeon. The first two books are Things Are Not What They Seem and Remembering Thomas. A third is in the works. Finally, we are also working on a screenplay tentatively entitled Gargoyles and a family saga with the title, Minister, which is about —wait for it—a minister.

Anne Rothman-Hicks is a graduate of Bryn Mawr College where, in 1969, at a college dance, she met a student from Haverford named Kenneth Hicks. They have been together pretty much ever since, getting married, having children, writing books, making art, and generally conspiring to live lives that are happy, creative, and good.

Anne and Ken’s most recent novels and stories are set in New York City, where they have lived for most of their married lives. 

Their middle reader series, Alice and Friends, features Alice, a 10-year-old girl with a vivid imagination that gets her into and out of trouble. The titles are, STONE FACES, BROWNSTONE FACES, and SPLOTCH.

In Ken and Anne’s tween book, THINGS ARE NOT WHAT THEY SEEM, Jennifer and James find a pigeon in Central Park whose foot was caught in a bit of string attached to a fence. Only this pigeon was actually a man before he was turned into a pigeon over a hundred years earlier. Now he needs some help to be turned back into a man before a certain hawk captures and eats him instead. 

A sequel, REMEMBERING THOMAS, has been published by MuseItUp Publishing in March of 2018.

Contact Information
Twitter: @kenhicksnyc

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1 comment:

RuthB said...

I love the cover of the book
Thanks for the giveaway

Ruty @Reading…Dreaming

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