Please welcome Kai Strand!
Hi, Kai. It is so wonderful to have you here! Take it away! Sara 🙂
Hi! My name is Kai Strand. I’m a children’s writer. There is a character in my new middle grade fantasy, Beware of the White, who readers fall in love with. Well, in crush with is more accurate. Skim the reviews on Amazon and you’ll find Frank mentioned a number of times. When I tried to figure out why readers are so drawn to Frank I realized it’s because he is the best of what I know.
Let’s do an exercise. Think about the loved ones in your life. What is it about them that makes you glow when you think of them, or grin, or melt, or snicker?
Make a list for each person. They will look something like this (except your lists will be true – I made these up for demonstration purposes. I don’t even have a brother):
Lights up when I enter the room.
Belly laughs when truly amused.
Lip twitches when concentrating
Always seems regretful when he has to let go of my hand.
Hums aloud – everywhere
Skips a couple steps before she walks
Makes up funny terms of endearment
Smells like a Creamsicle.
Is always in a bad mood along with me, even when he isn’t
Emails in text talk and texts in full words
He remembers minute details about Dad.
Keep these lists handy and add to them whenever you think of something. You can even have a list of random actions that you love, even it they aren’t done by people you love. For example, I LOVE when a man guides me through a door with his hand gently resting against the small of my back. It makes me feel SO feminine.
Now, when you are developing the characters in your book, pull things from the different people in your life and from your favorites list. Since you’ve observed them over and over in life you’ll be able to write them in a natural manner so these little quirks/habits/foibles will feel genuine to the reader. And chances are, if you love these things, so will your readers. Next thing you know, your readers will fall in love with your characters as much as you have.
Share a habit a loved one has that makes you grin or fall in love all over again.
About the book
As is tradition, Terra learns on the Saturday past her twelfth birthday that she is a Natures Spirit. It is her legacy to serve in the peaceful underground city of Concord. Learning she is named in a prophecy and being threatened by the leader of the death tribe…that part breaks tradition.
The Trepidus are the death janitors of the Underworld, responsible for delivering fatalities with a smile and cleaning up after themselves until Blanco, recent leader of the Trepidus, decides the day of reckoning for his species is coming. He begins organizing the creatures and leads them toward an uprising. The prophecy says there is one person who can stop him. Terra.
With Spirit of Security, Frank, protecting her, Terra attempts to complete her training and discover her Spirit talents. Together, they go on a rogue investigation to learn how to defeat Blanco. In the end, it comes down to a battle of the minds. The future of Concord is at stake. Will Blanco, the older, more experienced being win? Or will Terra, the young, new Spirit earn back the peace of the city?
Or look for it on iTunes
June 17th is the last day to enter to win in my big book launch giveaway! Hurry and hop over to my blog and get your entries in!
Enter to win one of three book related prize packages: http://bit.ly/16q8PZu
About the author
Kai Strand writes fiction for kids and teens. Her debut novel, The Weaver, was a finalist in the 2012 EPIC eBook Awards. She is a (very lucky) wife and the mother of four amazing kids. The most common sound in her household is laughter. The second most common is, “Do your dishes!” She and her family hike, geocache, and canoe in beautiful Central Oregon, where they call home.
To find out more about Kai’s books, download companion documents, find links to her published short stories and discover all the places to find Kai both virtually and in person, visit her website: www.kaistrand.com. She loves to hear from readers, so feel free to send her an email or visit her facebook page, Kai Strand, Author.