Monday, June 26, 2017

Andrea Kaczmarek ~ an interview and her novel ~ There's a Stinky Goblin in the Shed

Andrea Kaczmarek

TITLE: There’s a Stinky Goblin in the Shed
RELEASE DATE: March 10, 2017
AUTHOR: Andrea Kaczmarek
CATEGORIES: Early Middle Grade/Fantasy
ISBN: 978-1542805629
IMPRINT: Sunquills

Born in Wales. Teacher training in Weymouth - married with two grown up children - and now grandmother to three amazing and clever kids.

I was a Town Councillor for many years in Hamm with a great interest in integration and education. Today I still work on the Committee for Special Needs and I am Chair of the World of Reading - Lese Welt Hamm - bringing books and stories to children!

I still organise art and English projects at my old school  - great fun working with children from many different backgrounds.

Children who enjoy stories and reading have a good start in life! 



Q: How would you describe yourself as a color? Think personality here. Are you a light and airy pastel person, or more of a deep, dark, sultry and mysterious color?
A: I’m green with a touch of yellow. Those are the colors that I like to have around me or wear. A green person is optimistic too – so, I’m green.

Q: Tell me one thing about each of the four seasons you like. It can be anything.
A:        Winter = Christmas time, candles and comfort, I’m a bit of a romantic.
            Spring            = Blossom and the smell that is in the air as nature gets started up.
            Summer = Blue skies and the feel of the sun on my skin, at long last.
            Fall = The color of the trees turning and the peace and tranquility.

Q: Bedtime, relaxing so you can sleep sounds. Is your preference, white noise, TV, soft music, ocean waves, forest or meadow sounds, babbling brook, or something else?
A: Soft music and a good book, is there any other bedtime ritual? Don’t answer that!

Q: Did you like school when you were a child?
A: I loved school. Not everything of course, certainly not math. But my school was full of books, reading, writing and painting. I became a teacher and am very saddened when kids hate school, they shouldn’t. School is your start in life, and mine was happy – apart from math – so, I look back fondly. My husband hated school because of awful teachers – that shouldn’t happen, but it did. Maybe the type of village school I went to is a thing of the past, pity.


Q: When did you start writing and why?
A: At school, creating little stories, we were encouraged. But I have always ‘scribbled’, as my husband calls it. But I have only had time to really work on my writing in the last 10 years. Before that, family, teaching and local politics too up so much time. But I always wrote in the summer holdays.

Q: Where do you get your ideas?
A: They usually pop into my head in the early early morning. And then the work starts with jotting down the ideas, walking to figure things out, and bouncing my almost finished stories onto my grandchildren- very critical.

Q: How did you come to write your genre of choice?
A: I have no idea why middle grade took over, it just did. I am trying to write stories for younger children at the moment, but find that very hard. I really admire writers who can tell a brilliant story under 1,000 words, and if they can do it in rhyme, I’m really impressed.  Middle grade is easier because you can go more into detail. But still you have to cut things out, and I find that hard, too.

Q: Which element of book writing is the  most difficult for you?
A: The correction phase. I usually do this after a month or two, because I have fresher ideas after putting the story away ‘to rest’ for a while. I do that with all my stories – this is good for me AND the story.

Q: What is your favorite part of writing?
A: When the idea is newborn and fresh and the story develops itself, so to speak. With the Stinky Goblin story, the grubby goblin seemed to take over and that was fun.

Q; Now your least favorite part?
A: Correcting, editing - Cutting out what isn’t necessary to the story. Re-reading, correcting and being tough on cuts.

Q: Describe your favorite heroine? (This doesn’t have to be one of yours.)
A: Perhaps not my all-time favorite, but at the moment I am reading a Flavia de Luce ( Thrice the Brinded Cat Hath Mewed) , a 12 year-old detective with a love of chemistry and set in the 1950ies.  Very well written and transforming the reader to a by-gone age.
My favorite childhood book was the Secret Garden

Q: Describe your favorite hero? (This doesn’t have to be one of yours.)
A: Harry Potter, well, this is/was Middle Grade at its very best. And Harry took everything that was thrown at him. I have to admit I loved the books, but never really got into the films in the same way. Yes, they are good, but the books have a special something.

Q: Who's your favorite author?
A: After praising Harry Potter, I have to say Joanne Rowling, she did so much to get middle grade reading back on track. But, that said, I have to say Roald Dahl, I hope Joanne will forgive me – but he was the best, and his books still are.

Q: Your favorite title?
A: So many, but I’ll settle for Mathilda, one of Roald Dahl’s best, I think.

Q: Would you ever consider a joint project?
A: Yes, I’d love it. I can’t imagine with whom.

Q: Which of your own releases was your particular favorite?
A: My favorite is There’s a Stinky Goblin in the Shed, because I had fun writing it and it took on a life of its own!


Q: What are you working on now? Would you like to share anything about it?
 A: I have just finished a story for younger children- Zola’s Spooky Specs-  here’s the blurb: How did Zola find those Spooky Specs? That’s easy, they found her. It was a party game and the girls all put on crazy hats and funny specs for mad photos. Except Zola – she ended up with big black ‘nerdy’ specs! But those specs turned out to be a bit spooky. Zola started finding lost things… Zola and her Spooky Specs always knew where to find things – and people are always losing things!
Until Zola decided to lose those Spooky Specs, why should she always help people to find things – they shouldn’t be so careless anyway. Until Zola lost something very special herself.
I am very pleased with it, but who knows?

Q: Do you have a new book coming out soon? Tell us about it.
A: Maybe Zola’s Spooky Specs will be the next project, as I said, just finished, so it is too new to plan.

Q: How can we find you? Do you have a web page, FaceBook page or any buy links?
A:  Yes, I do. Here are the links. ~ If you would like this line to read another way – please fill it in.   


KEYWORDS: Fantasy, Adventure, Fun, Goblins, Monsters, Middle Grade, Magical

Looking after a goblin is not easy, ask the twins Jerry and Jacob who stumble across a lost goblin, and foolishly help him out. Hiding and feeding him are bad enough – but when his sister goblin turns up – the boys are in deep trouble again!

Jerry and Jacob clean out Gran’s old garden shed to make a den, but on their first late-night walk in the woods behind it, they come across a very strange, grubby little person and their problems begin. A small pile of rags that can talk! The boys want to run away fast, but they take pity on the strange creature. They promise to try and get it back to its own world – GoblinLand.

Hiding a goblin in their den is a full time job. But in the end they find out that Hob had upset an elf, could that be the clue they need? But if the twins think that helping out their grubby goblin friend is the end of the story – they are very very wrong! Once you have let one goblin into your life…..the goblin door has opened!

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