Today I am so excited to welcome author, Max Anderson. He writes the most amazing adventure-mysteries for readers ages 8-13. As a special treat, he is giving away a copy of his latest book, Barney and the Runaway . Leave a comment for your chance to win. Ooh, an S - is for Sneak Peak!
RB: Thank you so much for joining us, Max. Your writing style is know for its stunning visuals. Can you tell us how you do that?
Max: I bring the same heart-pounding action and adventure to my books for readers 8 and up, based on my lifetime experience in the production of films, television commercials, and video productions.
RB: Wow, that's a lot of experience behind these books. Tell us about your recent release.
Max: Barney and the Runaway tells the story of Michael Ellis, who has recently told his parents to start calling him Mike from now on. He especially hated the way they were always telling him what to do. Mike decides to teach his parents a lesson by pretending to run away for a day with his dog Barney.
The plan of running away gets a bit more complicated than planned when Mike and Barney hide in a railroad box car, fall asleep, and end up in Georgia with a circus in the middle of the night. Luckily for the runaways, Big Bob the Clown takes Mike and Barney to safety in his wagon. Mike decides that living and performing with the circus might be a good idea until Big Bob opens Mike’s eyes to his tragic past.
Mike’s encounter with this grown up runaway, in the circus, helps him to understand that his parents truly love him. Then Mike and Barney save the circus. Through it all, Mike learns the importance of family.
RB: Running away to the circus, that must have been so fun to write. I know this is an amazing adventure, but is there an overriding theme you hope your reader takes away from your book?
Max: Yes. It's important to know that when parents discipline their children, it means they love them. And children don't always know how good something is until they lose it.
RB: Is there a character you've created that has special meaning for you?
Max: It would probably be Big Bob the Clown. He sees something of himself in Michael. When he shares his tragic past, it makes all the difference in Mike's life.
RB: Is there a lot of yourself in your characters?
Max: I’ve been blessed since childhood with an active imagination and a life of adventure. These elements tend to find their way into my main characters. While I’m writing, I enter each scene, in my mind, and see myself interacting with others in that scene. I think my dramatic film production life has a lot to do with that process.
RB: In your book, a character sharing his past has a profound effect. How much does your own background influence what you write?
Max: My writing began just after 9/11 in 2001. As I said, my life has been filled with imagination and adventure. There is no question that the writing I’m doing today has everything to do with that background. I shot my first film in Germany at the age of 16. I’ve travelled all across the country, and around the world, in film and video production. Some of the productions were in war zones. The places I’ve visited, people I’ve met, things I’ve seen, and experience I’ve had are vivid in my mind as I’m writing. And I think the many years in and around dramatic film production help me to understand plot, characters, conflict, dialog, humor, and other elements that are helpful to writing.
RB: With so many books under your belt, do you have any advice to struggling authors out there?
Max: Don’t ever give up, no matter what. If you have that spark inside of you, you know it, you feel it, and you can’t let anyone discourage you or keep you from realizing your dreams. At the same time, you have to be realistic. This is a business. At times, it’s a harsh business. There are plenty of opportunities to get discouraged. Getting your work published will likely take years to achieve.
Look to be unique. There isn’t much reason to copy the style of others and expect to sell your work in an already crowded market. Each year hundreds of thousands of new titles are released. You have to figure out why anyone would want to buy what you’ve written. Once you understand that, chances are you’ll be on your way.
Max: Because I’ve completed 36 manuscripts, and several are published or will be soon, I’m spending a lot of time in promotion and marketing. Lost Island Smugglers will be released as an audio book soon. I have a book coming out this fall called When the Lights go Out. It’s an action-adventure for kids so we never forget what happened on 9/11. The book is to be released in time for the 10th anniversary this September. A motion picture company in Hollywood has requested a full read for Captain Jack’s Treasure. No telling what will happen with that, but the book will be out this summer. I have several bookstore events coming up and the ICRS convention in Atlanta in July. Other than those things, I keep working with my publisher on editing the next books to be released.
The next books to be released include Newspaper Caper, Terror at Wolf Lake, and North Wood Poachers.
RB: Wow, you have a ton going on. Congratulations on your books...I hope you hear back good news from the motion picture company!
Max has generously offered a free copy of his book, Barney and the Runaway to one lucky commenter. Leave thought or question and I will use a random number picker to choose who wins. Be sure that you have an email associated with your comment profile so we can get your address to mail the book to you.
Max Elliot Anderson grew up as a struggling, reluctant reader. Using his extensive experience in the production of motion pictures, videos, and television commercials, he brings the same visual excitement and heart-pounding action to his adventure and mystery stories, written especially for boys. Both boys and girls have reported that reading one of his books is like being in an exciting movie. Author Web Site: http://www.maxbooks.9k.com. Books for Boys Blog: http://booksandboys.blogspot.com.