Today I'm delighted to introduce Laura Quimby, whose debut novel, THE CARNIVAL OF LOST SOULS: A HANDCUFF KID NOVEL, came out early this month and sounds like tons of fun.
Congratulations on the publication of your novel, THE CARNIVAL OF LOST SOULS. It’s such an intriguing title! Can you tell us a bit about the story and what inspired it?
THE CARNIVAL OF LOST SOULS: A HANDCUFF KID NOVEL is the story about Jack, a charismatic delinquent, a foster kid who never seems to feel at home anywhere. His one constant in life is his love of magic and his hero Harry Houdini. Jack is placed with an eccentric professor and finally feels at home, until the professor sells him to an evil magician, the Amazing Mussini, into the land of the dead. Jack must travel with Mussini through the Forest of the Dead where he performs some of Houdini’s famed tricks in Mussini’s traveling magic show. If Jack stays in the Forest long enough, he’ll die himself. To find his way home, he’ll have the help of kids stolen just like Jack—and his wits, nothing more.
I was inspired to write the story after I read an autobiography about Harry Houdini and was inspired by how hard he worked to create magic tricks. Magic is often portrayed as easy and effortless, literally magic, and I loved the idea that magic was man made and tough.
I love stories about magic, and so do kids, who are sure to love this one. How long have you been writing for children/teens? Have you written other books or is this your first?
I’ve been writing for children/teens for about five years. This is my first published novel, but like many writers I have piles of short stories, poems, and novels that I have written over the past twenty years.
Can you describe your path to the publication of THE CARNIVAL OF LOST SOULS?
Publishing THE CARNIVAL OF LOST SOULS has been a long journey. The book was sold back in 2007 and has been in the pipeline for three years. It got bumped from its original pub date by a year, so I’m excited for it to finally hit the shelves.
Do you have any advice for beginning writers?
My advice for beginning writers is simple: finish what you start. Every project no matter how small or ambitious, no matter if it sells or ends up in a drawer will help you develop as a writer.
Do you have any new writing ventures underway?
My latest writing adventure is a YA steampunk murder mystery! I tend to gravitate to strange stories and my latest mystery was inspired by Edgar Allen Poe and is a mystery set in the alternate history of New Baltimore in the late 19th century. I have started a mg/ya mystery blog at: http://lauraquimby.blogspot.com/
Steampunk - one of my current favorites! Do you have a website where readers can learn more about THE CARNIVAL OF LOST SOULS?
And my new web site is up at: www.lauraquimby.com