Sunday, May 13, 2018

~ MMGM - SOME VERY MESSY MEDIEVAL MAGIC ~

~ MARVELOUS MIDDLE-GRADE
MONDAY NEW FICTION FEATURE ~
'SOME VERY MESSY MEDIEVAL MAGIC': 
THE ADVENTURES OF PETE AND WEASEL BOOK 3
-- AUTHOR C. LEE McKENZIE --
POST INCLUDES AUTHOR INTERVIEW,
BOOK SPOTLIGHT & PRINT COPY GIVEAWAY 
{US ONLY--SPONSORED BY THE PUBLISHER}






AUTHOR INTERVIEW:

JUNE: Welcome to 'Reading, Writing & Stitch-Metic', Lee. I've enjoyed reading your website, blog, and Goodreads page because you've posted such interesting content about your life and your books.
When did you declare, to yourself or to others, that you wanted to be an author? What led you to want to write children's and young adult fiction?

LEE: What a great welcome. Thank you so much!

I never did declare that I wanted to be an author. This career crept up on me…kind of. I’ve read and written and been in love with stories forever, so it was a natural transition, I guess you’d call it. And it was a news article that started me writing for young adults. I read that 1 in 5 Ivy League students admitted to some form of self-abuse, and I wanted to find out what was behind that statistic. It was supposed to be an article and it turned into my first novel. Surprise!


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JUNE: Please share whether or not you have written, or would like to write, in genres other than middle grade and young adult fiction? Would you ever consider writing non-fiction? If yes, what would be your subject matter?

LEE: I’ve written non-fiction—topics from plagiarism to early fire engine history to vermiculture. I kid you not. I publish my non-fiction under Cheryl McKenzie. I really enjoy non-fiction because it has to be interesting, yet factual and well researched. It appeals to my left brain, and my desire to dig into archives for information others have left for me.


Recently, I did a couple of adult fiction pieces that were published. Matilijas is a short story that tends to the literary style that I love. It was published in Lost, the Creative Writing Institute’s anthology (2018).  I also dipped my toe into horror with Heartless. It's in Tick Tock: A Stitch in Crime, (Dancing Lemur Press, May 1)

Thanks for asking this question. I forget to say anything about my other writing.

JUNE:  You're welcome. You certainly have a diverse writing resume!
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JUNE:  Do you outline or sketch out your books before you begin the task of putting words on paper (or typing on your computer) or do you create the story as you write? Do you always know the ending of a book before you begin writing the manuscript?

LEE:  I have a notion of my ending before I write the story. In fact, I’ve sometimes written the end first. I always write a three sentence synopsis. I put this in the header. It’s only a guide, not how the story absolutely MUST go. When I see a different possibility, I change the synopsis and continue writing. Now that I’m writing this, it sounds very organized. It’s not. When the discussion of Panster v. Plotter raises it’s inquisitive head, I claim the semi-pantser status. Visualize a crazed author at her computer with question marks swirling around her head.

JUNE:  What a great idea about including that brief synopsis in the header so you see it as you compose. Brilliant!  
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JUNE:  When you're seeking inspiration for a new story, what do you do to get into the correct mind-set to write? Do you listen to music? Do yoga? Play with your cats? Read? Watch a favorite movie or TV show? Journal?

LEE:  I’m out of cats at the moment, unfortunately. I do practice Yoga, but interestingly enough—at least to me—it’s when I’m out hiking or buying toothpaste that ideas pounce. What? And where’s my notepad (the paper kind)? But once the idea settles into in my head, if it’s a solid one, it sticks, and I don’t need to write down anything. (I confess to some scribbling on toothpaste receipts) The problem is that after the idea comes, then the characters show up, and they talk to me for months. It’s sleepless nights. It’s 4am at the computer. It’s “Why did I think this was a good idea?” Then it’s over and I’m very content for five minutes before I think, “I need some toothpaste.” And off I go again.

JUNE:  I frequently have my best ideas when I'm out walking around the neighborhood or at a park or botanical garden.
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JUNE:  What is your current work in progress?  Will there be a Book Four in this 'Adventures of Pete and Weasel' Series?

LEE:  That’s an interesting question. And the answer is I’m writing my first ever fantasy for young adults. I said I’d never do it. I promised myself, “NO YA FANTASY. EVER.” And then…I bought toothpaste. 

I’m in love with Pete and Weasel and all the other weird and wonderful characters who have kept me up at night. Aunt Lizzie. Harriet Hadley. Fannon, the clairvoyant alligator familiar (lots of toothpaste buying around the time I thought of him). So who knows? If I can think of another exciting adventure that I can take with the boys, yes. Book Four. Bring it on.
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JUNE:  From reading the Author Bio on your website, you have lived in a lot of cities and countries. What was your favorite place to live and why? Assuming you could move anywhere in the world where you have not yet lived, where would you go? Why there?

LEE:  I was young and the world was one huge playground waiting for me. I guess I’d have to say that I loved living in Laos. I couldn’t have landed in a more foreign place—Gilroy, California to Vientiane, Laos?—but it was a favorite for me. Of course, my choice is tinged by time. If I could live someplace now other than where I live (which I love BTW) I’d choose the south of France. Why? Because it’s a lot like where I live now, but it has castles. Instead of toothpaste purchases for inspiration, I could use castles.
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JUNE:  Thank you! 

LEE:  No. Thank you! You asked fun questions and let me have play a bit. I always love doing that.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:


C. Lee McKenzie has a background in Linguistics and Inter-Cultural Communication, but these days her greatest passion is writing for young readers. When she’s not writing, she’s hiking or traveling or practicing yoga or asking a lot questions about things she still doesn’t understand.
FACEBOOK  

ABOUT THE BOOK:
'SOME VERY MESSY MEDIEVAL MAGIC'




Pete’s stuck in medieval England!

Pete and his friend Weasel thought they’d closed the Time Lock. But a young page from medieval times, Peter of Bramwell, goes missing. His absence during a critical moment will forever alter history unless he’s found.

There’s only one solution - fledgling wizard Pete must take the page’s place. Accompanied by Weasel and Fanon, Pete’s alligator familiar, they travel to 1173 England.

But what if the page remains lost - will Pete know what to do when the critical moment arrives? Toss in a grumpy Fanon, the duke’s curious niece, a talking horse, and the Circle of Stones and Pete realizes he’s in over his young wizard head yet again...

Release date – May 15, 2018
$13.95, 6x9 trade paperback, 178 pages
Juvenile Fiction - Fantasy & Magic (JUV037000) / Boys & Men (JUV005000)
Print ISBN 9781939844460 / EBook ISBN 9781939844477
$3.99 EBook available in all formats

PRAISE FOR THE BOOK:

“A gripping adventure back in time, with action around every corner.” - Stephanie Robinson, author of The Secret Files of Fairday Morrow

“A great addition to middle school classrooms and libraries, as well as your own private library.” - Beverly Stowe McClure, award-winning author of stories for children and teens.

“This third book in the Adventures of Pete and Weasel series was as much fun as the first.” - Kai Strand, author

“A rich cast of characters who bring the story to life – both in modern and historical times. I highly recommend librarians and teachers get this series on their shelves.” - Hall Ways Reviews





BUY THE BOOK: 
BARNES & NOBLE
NOOK  

KOBO 
ITUNES  
AMAZON


GIVEAWAY:  The publisher, Dancing Lemur Press, LLC, is giving away one print copy of this book to a lucky US winner. Enter to win using the Rafflecopter form below:



a Rafflecopter giveaway

~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~
COMING UP SOON ON 'READING, WRITING & STITCH-METIC':
-- Tuesday, May 15th: Blog Tour Stop for Author Shawn Pollock's historical World War II novel, 'The Road to Freedom'. This stop will include a fun list of ten little-known facts about the book created especially for 'Reading, Writing & Stitch-Metic' by the author.

-- Thursday, May 17th: Book Blast for 'Safe House'. Snippet and Sneak Peek of Book 2. Event Host is Singing Librarian Books.

-- Friday, May 18th: Blog Tour Stop for Author Mary Connealy's new release, 'The Accidental Guardian'. Post includes an author interview, book spotlight, and giveaway. Tour hosted by JustRead Publicity.


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23 comments:

  1. Loved learning all these new things that I didn't know about Lee. Like how varied her writing is, including nonfiction. I'm excited to read her new book.

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    1. Hello, Natalie ~ I found Lee to be one of the most versatile authors I've interviewed. She's amazing! Thanks for sharing your remarks here. Regards, June

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    2. That's kind, June. What my family says is I'm a fidgety person--always on to a new project. But I like versatile much better.

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  2. Great interview. It was fun getting to know Lee better thanks to her honest answers. I'll be featuring a review of her new novel in a few weeks. Can't wait to share it!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you, Greg ~ I enjoyed Lee's candor and wit. Can't wait to read your review of this book now that I know some of the background behind Lee's work. I appreciate your stopping by today. Best, June

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    2. Hi Greg. Many thanks for your visit. I love your site, but you know that. I'm there every week.

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  3. I'm the first here this morning! I'm seldom the first anywhere, but this was perfect timing for a change. Thank you so much for letting me be here today. I loved you questions, but I've already told you that. I want to come here again and "chat."

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    1. Greetings, Lee ~ You were 'right on' with your answers in our interview. Thank you for taking your time to share with us. I, for one, learned some new tips about writing that I plan to implement during my next writing session. PS--You are welcome back to my blog any time you wish! With appreciation, June

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    2. I love being here! I'll take you up on that offer one of these days.

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  5. I really enjoyed the interview and getting to know Lee. What a great way to teach kids about the medieval period than through an engaging and exciting fantasy. Congratulations, Lee on your sequel.

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    1. Hi, Patricia ~ I'm so glad you enjoyed the interview! Lee was mostly certainly an interesting and engaging guest. Thanks for posting your positive comments here. Sincerely, June

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    2. I love history, but reading those lists of dates never made it stick in my head. I used to tuck historical novels inside my textbook. At least I looked engaged in the assignment during history class. :-)

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  6. We need to get you some cats, Lee.

    I also love writing non-fiction. Once you've put in the research, it comes together quickly.

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    Replies
    1. I'm warming up to the idea of letting cats own me again. I do miss those furry bodies on my computer keyboard.

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  7. Thanks for stopping by today, Diane. I agree with you about writing non-fiction! Best, June

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  8. Wonderful interview. It's nice to learn so much about Lee. The cover and title of her new book are really enticing. I hope to get to it soon. Thanks for an interesting post.

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    Replies
    1. Hi, Rosi ~ Thank you so much for your comments about my interview with Lee and her new book's cover and title. I hope you do get a chance to read this novel soon. You're welcome for the post--I'm glad you enjoyed it! Regards, June

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    2. Thank you so much, Rosi. June has been a perfect host!

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    3. Now I'm blushing, Lee! Thanks for your kind words. Best wishes, June

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  9. Hi Lee!
    I hope to get my hands on SVMMM as soon as possible.
    I love the world of Pete and Weasel!
    ...and who can resist Aunt Lizzie, Harriet Hadley and the charming Fannon? Great characters!
    I also have a non-fiction project in the works. As you mentioned, it has to be interesting, yet factual. I think the trick is finding that balance...
    Congrats, once again, on the new release!!

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    Replies
    1. Would love to hear about that non-fiction project, and thanks for congratulations. Glad you enjoy those rascals and Hadleyville residents.

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  10. Hi, Michelle ~ Thanks for your encouraging words to Lee. I agree with what you posted about writing non-fiction--balance is definitely the key. Thanks for stopping by my blog. Sincerely, June

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