When you’re writing a book it becomes your child. You pour your heart and energy into it, you nurture it, you give it time to grow, you edit it for its greater good, and you proudly show it off to others. And no matter how much time passes or how many other books you write and do the same for, every book you write remains dear to your heart. I would like you to meet my “other children”:
The first book I had published that launched my writing career is a middle-grade mystery series called Sherlock Academy with three books currently available.
Sherlock Academy: Teachers in disguise, secret libraries, hollow books…these and more away 11 yr old Rollie Wilson and his best friend Cecily at the mysterious Sherlock Academy of Fine Sleuths. There they learn the art of detection just like the great Sherlock Holmes. While there, a strange burglary is committed and a mystery is afoot. Determined to investigate, Rollie discovers that appearances can be deceiving, the truth can be hurtful, and friends sometimes turn to foes.
Rollie read over the class schedule again. He had no idea what he was about to learn at Sherlock Academy, but he knew it would be thrilling. For the first time, he couldn’t wait for school to start.
Watson’s Case: Stolen tools, holes in the walls, secret codes hiding in plain sight…even more mysteries await Rollie Wilson and his best friend Cecily at Sherlock Academy. This time an enemy spy has been planted inside the Academy. With Cecily’s help, Rollie is determined to catch the mole. Rollie’s great-aunt has sent him an antique newspaper from 1894 reporting on a Sherlock Holmes case. What appears to be old news is actually a secret map hidden within the pages. Rollie must decipher the map and discover the Academy’s secrets before the spy can hand them over to Herr Zilch.
A shadow passed along the wall at the top of the stairs. The shadow was short. It must have been a student…or a short adult. Whether student or staff, no one had reason to break the rules and be on the second floor in the middle of the night…unless he or she was spying just like Rollie.
The Holmes Brigade: Coded clues, midnight escapades, secret societies…these and more await Rollie Wilson as he enjoys his Christmas vacation from Sherlock Academy of Fine Sleuths. While Rollie’s school is on break, the mysteries surrounding the elusive Herr Zilch continue. Rollie, Cecily, and their detective comrades discover a prowler has sneaked into Zilch’s empty mansion filled with Zilch’s secrets and evil schemes. As the mysteries and danger increase, Rollie and his friends’ safety is threatened.
Rollie only hoped his own confidence in himself would be enough to combat the creeping fear of Herr Zilch. And he secretly hoped the cost of being a young detective would not be too steep.
After finishing Sherlock Academy my muse took me in a different direction with my first middle-grade fantasy/adventure The Magical Flight of Dodie Rue.
The Magical Flight of Dodie Rue: In a land of fortune telling, alchemy, and magic carpet racing, Dodie Rue feels out of place. Dodies wishes he could more like his big brother Taj, everyone’s favorite pick to win the upcoming Grand Flyer, a magic carpet race across the desert. But Dodie doesn’t have the nerve or stomach for flying, and the town bully Atallah won’t let him forget it. On the eve of the race, Taj is suddenly poisoned by an unknown opponent. Dodie’s only hope of saving his brother is to win the Grand Flyer and its prize: one wish granted from a genie. But the desert is a treacherous place with ghouls, sandstorms, and dragons. In a race with no rules, can Dodie overcome his fear of flying, outsmart the other racers, and save his brother from the grip of death?
“Listen,” Dodie said softly as he grasped his brother’s clammy hand. “You’re supposed to be racing today, and you’re supposed to be the next Rue legend–not me. I’m doing this for you. And if I win and make it back alive, I won’t owe you another favor ever, got that?”
I just finished a middle-grade Steampunk fantasy called The Professional Society of Seconds: A Tale from the Sea Division that I’m currently submitting to agents and editors in hopes of finding it a home. Fingers crossed!
PSS: A Tale from the Sea Division: Tibby Lester is a homebody, so moving is unacceptable, even if it’s onto a steam-powered submarine. On voyage, Tibby and her brothers discover their parents work for the Professional Society of Seconds, a secret organization that scours the earth for time portals, and destroys them to preserve the sanctity of time and history. But a traitor plans to overthrow the Society and use time portals to change his past. To launch his plan, he kills the Lester parents. Alone on a submarine, Tibby and her brothers set out to find a time portal in the sea (before the traitor does) to undo their parents’ murders. Little do they know someone from the future has time-traveled back to do the same thing.