For day 3 of the Hop! Plop! Birthday Bash, I am giving away NIGHTSHADE CITY by Hilary Wagner. Can you believe this exciting underground MG adventure started out as a picture book?
Hilary is here to tell us about it in her own words:
When I got the idea in my head to write Nightshade City, it started out far different. I was pregnant with my daughter Nomi (who at the time we were told was a boy), so I thought wouldn't it be great if I wrote a picture book for my two sons! Vincent was about five at the time and my baby on the way was going to be called Victor. If we have another boy anytime soon at least we already have the name picked out!
So, I started writing. The story began on a roof top of an old apartment building in a dilapidated city, two bony rats brothers, shivering close to each other on a dark and stormy night. *insert record screech here* Hmmm...two emaciated rats in an old dirty city on a dark and stormy night...that didn't scream picture book to me, especially when the owl comes after them moments later!
At that moment, I realized (quite clearly) I was not meant to write picture books. I adore them and buy way too many of them for Nomi--two now--and a total bookavore! I think writing picture books takes a special kind of knack, just like novels do. You either have the talent for them or you don't and just because an author can write a string of bestselling novels, don't think picture books are easy peasy to that same author--total myth! Last year I saw literary agent Michael Stearns speak (who has this awesome dry sense of humor) and he said (I'm summarizing) that many picture book writers move on to novels, but it is rare for a novelist to move on to picture books--at least good ones! He was certainly right in my case.
Just a few weeks back, I finished KINGS OF TRILLIUM, Book II in the Nightshade Chronicles and now I'm working on a second series. I'm so hooked on novels. I can never see myself moving into picture books. I'm just not built for them! For now, I'll just buy Corey's! Nomi can't wait for Three Ninja Pigs!!!! ;)
NIGHTSHADE CITY is available at Barnes and Noble stores nationwide, Indie Booksellers, Amazon and more.
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Contest ends Mon, April 11th at 5:00 PM.