MEET BRIAN ROCK
It is GREAT to have you here on my blog Brian. I am SO looking forward to get to know you more. And I know my readers are too!
1. Tell us a few things about yourself.
I was born the day after Christmas (not the first one!) In addition to writing children’s books, I also write Country songs (I’ve even won an ICMA award for my songs!) I play in a recreational football league. I like playing video games with my daughter and cooking with my wirfe. And of course, I adore reading.
2. What is your favorite book?
My favorite book is Don’t Play With Your Food! That was my first published book and I still remember the excitement of seeing my name in print for the first time.
My favorite book when I was a kid was Ferdinand The Bull. I related with the bull who didn’t fit stereotypes and preferred quiet meditation to conflict.
Today, my favorite children’s book is The Duckling Gets A Cookie? by Mo Willems. I love the way Mo can create such emotion and personality in so few words. This is also a book my daughter and I read together (she does and awesome Duckling!) so needless to say, those shared moments mean a lot to me.
3. Who is your favorite author?
Mo Willems. He reminds me of my childhood hero, Jim Henson. Like Henson, Willems is able to unleash a sort of “controlled chaos” that is impossible to experience without smiling. I strive for some of that same quality in my writing, where my characters have a quirky and distinctive personality that isn’t limited by the rules of normal behavior.
4. What inspired you to want to write The Deductive Detective?
My daughter’s BFF snuggle buddy is a stuffed duck named Quacky. Quacky is surprisingly good at hide and seek (especially at bedtime!) So the Deductive Detective was inspired by him.
5. Was this a difficult book to write?
Not difficult, but because of the “whodunit” nature of this book (a cake is stolen from a baking competition,) I had to do a little more planning ahead for the story than my other fiction works. I had to make sure that I had enough suspects, that each suspect had a clue that excluded them as a possible perpetrator, and I had to make sure that the clues were revealed in a logical sequence. So in some ways, this book was much more left brain oriented than my other titles. Not necessarily difficult, just different.
6. What are your future writing projects?
I have several other picture book manuscripts that I’m revising or shopping to editors. My favorite is a character-driven series about a boy who always seems to have outlandish excuses for the things he does (or doesn’t do.) I also have a writer’s “to do” list of story ideas with dozens of ideas for future projects.
7. How do you divide your writing day? Are you a full-time writer?
I have a full-time job, a wife and a daughter so my time for writing is limited. On a good day, I can get an hour of writing/brainstorming before work and another 30 minutes or so at the end of the day. The trick for me is to keep a notepad where I can quickly jot down story ideas, character names, bits of dialogue, etc. as they occur during my work day, so that when I do have time to write I don’t have to start from scratch.
8. Any tips for aspiring writers?
Yes. Read as much as you can. Write as much as you can. And when you’re ready to share your genius with the world, join a critique group before you start submitting to publishers. You’ll be surprised what an objective set of eyes (or several) can reveal about your writing.
9. Any last words?
Do you now something about my health that I don’t?
I hope these aren’t “last words,” but I write because I love it. So when you find what you love to do, go out and do it! You don’t have to know in advance where your path will lead, but it will never even be a path if you don’t begin!
10. Could you share your website with our readers?
Yes, if they promise to give it back when they’re done: