The Ink Splat is our monthly activity letter filled with inspiration sparking challenges and resources guaranteed to inspire your creativity. In this Ink Splat, the book and author spotlighted is The Spell Bind By James Iver Mattson and Barbara Brauner along with an author interview! Submit a response to a challenge and you may have a chance to be published online! What are you waiting for?
The Challenge: Make A Wish
For this month’s challenge, base your story around a wish your main character makes. Does it go terribly wrong, or wonderfully well? How do they get to make this wish? How does it change their lives?
Submit your response HERE.
Do a little digging:
There are lots of different myths about fairies from so many different cultures. If you’re thinking about writing a story about them or any other mythical creature, do a little research about the stories behind them!
The Spell Bind By James Iver Mattson and Barbara Brauner.
The Oh My Godmother Series is about an ordinary 12-year-old named Lacey Unger-Ware (what were her parents thinking). When she accidentally injures another girl’s fairy godmother, she had to take the godmother’s place or else not only will the other girl’s dreams not come true, none of Lacey’s dreams will ever come true, either. Book 1, “The Glitter Trap,” tells the story of how Lacey became a godmother-in-training. In Book 2, “The Magic Mistake,” Lacey has to arrange the perfect wedding – including finding a groom! – in less than a week. Book 3, “The Spell Bind,” was published on October 28th, and Lacey’s new client is the most unpopular boy in school.
The OMG series is co-authored by James Iver Mattson and Barbara Brauner.
About the BOOK:
Q: Which of your characters inspires you the most?
A: Barbara: I’m the most inspired by Katarina. I just love her irritating, snarky personality. If I channel my crankiest, just-woke-up-in-the-morning self I can usually come
up with how Katarina would respond to any situation.
James: I like Lacey. Even when things go very, very wrong – which for Lacey, is all the time – she keeps on trying. I also appreciate how much she loves her family,
Q: Do you have a favorite moment or scene in the book?
A: Barbara: There are so many moments in OMG Book 3: The Spell Bind that I love. But if I had to choose a favorite it would be when Lacey, our fairy godmother-in-training, accidentally turns her teacher, Katarina, into a bear. And not just any bear, a bear with beautiful butterfly wings and a craving for porridge. I always enjoy writing scenes where Lacey’s magic spells go wrong.
James: If I went into too much detail about my favorite scene in OMG 3, I would be giving away major plot points and everybody would be mad at me. I can say it involves a penguin.
About the PROCESS:
Q: What’s it like co-authoring a book?
A: We work in an unusual way. While most co-authors split up their books, write separately and then combine their chapters later, we write every word together. We each have a computer monitor and Jim does all the typing. Then we talk through every sentence. The great thing about our process is that we have instant feedback on any idea we have. Writing can be a lonely occupation — when you write a book with someone else you don’t feel so alone and it’s much easier to stay focused on your task.
Q: What made you guys decide to work together?
A: We worked on a student film together and became friends. We had an idea for a movie screenplay, and decided to write it together. So we wrote the screenplay in our spare time, a comedy called “Fluffy.” It was about a man who finds his perfect woman – and her cat hates him and tries to kill him. To our surprise and delight, it sold to Walt Disney Pictures. Even though it was never made, we knew that we liked being writing partners. We’ve written a number of screenplays, including one for a movie called “Deliver Us From Eva,” which played in theaters and is still on cable TV all the time. We also worked as staff writers at Disney Feature Animation. (On projects that were also never made – that’s the life of a writer in Hollywood.) Barbara had the basic premise for the “Oh My Godmother” books, and we thought it would be fun to try writing a novel series. And it was!
About the AUTHORS:
Q: Do you believe in magic?
A: Barbara: I really, really want to believe in magic, but I don’t. Somebody prove me wrong. I’d be thrilled.
James: I don’t believe in magic in real life, but I love fiction where it’s an element. Some of my favorite books include the Harry Potter series and Bed-Knob and Broomstick; you can’t get much more magic than that.
A: Barbara: No. When I was in high school and college I wanted to be an actress. But one night I had an epiphany while I was onstage performing in Arsenic and Old Lace. I realized that I didn’t want to say the lines that were written in the play, I wanted to say lines that I had written. And right in the middle of the play I decided to be a writer.
James: When I was a little kid, I wanted to be an artist. Then, growing up, I wanted to be a scientist, but also loved science fiction; especially Ray Bradbury. I sold a short story to a magazine in high school (to the now-defunct Creative Computing magazine; yes, I was a geek!), got sidetracked for a while after college working in film special effects and animation production, and then found my way back to writing by selling a couple of scripts for half-hour shows, which led to a certain bad cat named Fluffy.
Thanks again James and Barbara!!