Since most of my published work has been for an adult literary audience, you may be wondering what I'm doing writing fantasy novels for kids. Well, children's books--especially fantasy--are my first love. Ask any bookstore owner in my area: they'll tell you I spend most of my time and money in the Children's/Young Adult section. And my all-time favorite books are still the ones that come with Newberry Medals, swords, dogs, magicians or ships on the covers.
ANATOPSIS is the first novel I ever wrote. I started it more than 20 years ago, and my goal, at the time, was just to see if I could finish it. The first version was 600 pages long and, by any measure of literature, unpublishable. So, while I was recovering from my disappointment and trying to rewrite the book, I took the opportunity to do what every struggling writer does: work at a lot of different jobs so that I could list them on the back flap of my books some day.
Here is the list, for those of you who are curious: store clerk, teacher, children's magazine editor, production manager at a sailing magazine, secretary, telecommunications programmer, web consultant, Director of Information Systems for an on-line music company, and most recently, Java developer. Oh, and for a few years, I was also guitarist and vocalist for the Beatles tribute band, HELP!
Now I'm writing pretty much full-time. I live in a nice house with my wonderful, supportive, and extremely patient wife (who also, by the way, is a published author and a fantastic writer) and my 2 children, who are equally wonderful but not quite as patient. I like to tell my kids a lot of stories, and they seem to enjoy them. But when I pick up my guitar, they leave the room, because, as my daughter once said, "Daddy's singing doesn't taste good."