Q: Why did you gravitate to the genre that you write in?
I like to write in all different genres. I started writing stories for kids when I was a kid. I’d take the stories to school with me and pass out to my classmates. I liked (and still like!) to write all sorts of stories with adventure, mythology and fun. So writing for kids is just kind of a natural path I’ve continued, and that has led to me writing my Minecraft books.
For my manga book, Manga Art For Beginners, I’ve been a big fan of manga since I was a teenager. When I was a kid I read comics like Betty & Veronica and TinTin, but it was manga that really took me off into the graphic novel world. I’ve worked as a journalist writing about manga and also have adapted manga into English for a publishing company. That means the editor would give me the Japanese-to-English translation, which would sound very literal, and I would rewrite it to sound more natural to readers. For example, something translated as, “What a disagreeable child!” could be rewritten to, “What a brat!” And then I’d do that for hundreds of pages as I worked on these different books.
Q:What are you reading right now?
Aldnoah.Zero. It’s a manga about a future where people live on Mars.
Q: If you could be a character in any children’s book, who would you be and why?
That’s tough, because I feel like I’d want to be one of the characters I’ve created. And I’m often creating new characters, so that answer would change a lot! I introduce Stevie’s cousin Alex in The Rise of Herobrine, and she’s a really fun character, very take-charge and adventurous, and much better with bows and arrows than I am. Maybe I’d want to be her for a bit.
Q: Where’s your favorite place to write?
Any place I can that’s quiet (unless I’m playing music for the mood) and uninterrupted. But I usually work at my desk or outside if it’s nice enough. When I’m writing at my desk, my dog Porthos is usually sleeping at my feet. I named him after the beagle Porthos from Star Trek: Enterprise, who’s named after the Porthos from The Three Musketeers. He is a very literary dog, even if he doesn’t know it.
Q: What’s your favorite classic movie?
I’d say The Graduate. It’s for an older audience than the one I’ve been writing for, but I first got into that movie as a teenager and have watched it more times than I can remember. It’s been a while though, so maybe I should check it out again . . .
Q: If you could have any animal as a pet (current or extinct), what would it be?
Are you saying I can have a pet dinosaur!? Then I want that, of course!
But more realistically, I love dogs and cats, and I have both. Stevie’s cat Ossie in my Minecraft books is based on my cat, Sarah, who is a Siamese mix. Whenever I get my author copies in of my books, I like to take picture of them with my pets. And Sarah likes to be the center of attention, so that works.
Q: Milk, dark, or white chocolate?
Q: What’s your favorite holiday?
I love Halloween! Every October I read nothing but scary horror books to get in the mood. I love how Halloween lets you safely play with the scary side of life and you can dress up and pretend to be different things.
In the fifth book of my Minecraft series, The Armies of Herobrine, I have Herobrine crash a Halloween party at Maison’s school and unleash a pack of zombies. I can’t give too much away, but I chose to do this because I’ve been wanting to write about Halloween for a while. When I was a kid, I’d write a different scary story every October and bring it into school to share.
Q: What’s your favorite emoji?
They have a unicorn emoji now, right? I’ll go with that!
Q: What did you want to grow up to be when you were 12?
A writer! When I was twelve I was writing novels and sending out letters to agents and editors and getting millions of rejections. I kept getting turned down because they told me I was too young, but that my stuff was good. I’ve never given up my dream to be a writer, and I want to thank all my readers for helping my dream become a reality.
Manga Art for Beginners: How to Create Your Own Manga Drawings by Danica Davidson
With titles ranging from Attack on Titan to Pokémon, manga is a billion-dollar industry with millions of fans worldwide. Readers will love this step-by-step guide to drawing characters that resemble the Japanese comics and anime they love. In this book, fans can learn how to draw their own manga characters and join in on the fun. Manga Art for Beginners explores the basics, like how to draw faces and eyes, and gradually shows how to get into more complex drawings.
Readers will learn to draw the following character types in easy, detailed steps:
• Male and Female Ninja
• Gothic Lolita
• Shrine Maiden
• Magical Girl
Down into the Nether by Danica Davidson
Stevie and Alex thought they defeated Herobrine completely, but they soon discover that he’s still on the loose. He has returned to Stevie’s nightmares, taunting him with threats to now destroy the human world.
The prophecies on music discs suggest that only Stevie and Alex, plus Maison, Destiny and Yancy, their friends from the human world will be able to defeat Herobrine. But the prophecies also warn that one of the friends will betray the rest, putting all the worlds at risk. Tensions run high as the group must figure out how to save the world while they try to discern the traitor in their midst. Maison, It isn’t long before the traitor is discovered.
Stevie and Alex find themselves separated from the others and must first journey into the Nether to find a special treasure that will enable them to confront Herobrine. The clock is ticking as they put their heads together to survive in the fiery depths of the Nether. Monsters are waiting for them around every corner and it won’t be much longer before they come face-to-face with Herobrine, who has become more powerful than ever.