My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Are you tired of the old tale of Santa in his jolly red suit? Do you think he would be more fun if he was more like a commando? Well then this book is for you. When a rogue assistant of Santa named SR starts turning naughty children into wood and locking them up instead of just giving them a lump of coal, it is up to Jakob and his friends to set a trap to catch Santa and lure SR out into the open. Do they succeed? You are going to have to read this book to find out. This is a children's book but I would recommend it to readers of any age who are still kids at heart or if they were once teased about still believing in Santa.
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Here is an author interview Marc did recently:
Before we get started, could you tell us a little about yourself?
I’m a dad of three great kids, husband to a wonderful wife, brother, son, pet owner, author and former sex crimes detective. Being a Navy brat, I grew up living around the world. My dad met my mom in Spain. She’s a Spaniard. I guess that makes me half Spanish. She is also the reason I speak fluent Spanish. I drive a Jeep. Let’s see, what else? Oh yeah, I love the beach, surfing, swimming and any sport that involves the water. I play competitive soccer. I have a PS3 and love to play the Battlefield games. Okay, I think I just bored your readers.
How long have you been writing? 24 years on and off. I’ve ten books yet to publish.
Why did you start writing? I was bored. See, during my first year of college I was working for Pan Am. Now wait. I have to mention that I’m not that old. The year is 1987 and yes, Pan Am was still around, although not for much longer. I was an international travel baggage inspector. Translation: I sat around during my 5 hour shift until summoned by a ticket agent. This happened maybe twice during a shift. I would then physically inspect travelers baggage searching for anything suspicious. So, after I’d complete my school work, I’d write. Have you always wanted to be a writer? Nope, not really. I mean I never thought I’d pursue publication. Writing was a hobby.
Who or what has had the most influence on you as a writer? No one person. Well, God, because I always want to do what’s right in his eyes.
Do you have a favorite book, place, song, person, or movie that inspires you? Inspiration? Wow. It comes from all places. My brain is little ADD(my wife's diagnosis) so data comes in fast and scattered. And when it comes I scramble to find my writing journal to download the brain dump. My favorite book is Genesis, yes, just Genesis. Creation fascinates me.
How much research do you usually put into your books? Research, hmm, let me think because it depends on what I’m writing about. Catching Santa was quick -- 4 hours. All I did was research Germanic Santa lore. On the other hand The Eternal Library has taken weeks and research continues to consume my time.
Do you base events or people in your books off of your life, or your friends' and family's lives? Sure, the three Jablonski children in Catching Santa are based on my kids. I even use their first names. Their surname, Jablonski, is my mother-in-law's maiden name.
What do you do when you're not writing? I workout at the gym with my wife, hang with the kids and play soccer.
What was your favorite book or author as a teen? Anything R.A. Salvatore. What's your favorite now? Joseph Delaney of the Spook’s Apprentice series and anything written by Carlos Ruiz Zafon.
What is your writing process? Each book is a project. I outline first -- so as to know where I am and where I ‘m going with the story. Seriously, I see the outline as a skeleton. Once in place I add the flesh. I know that’s gross but it works for me. Do you write regularly at certain times or just when inspiration hits? I usually write either during the early morning hours or late evening hours. It just depends. If inspiration hits I write it in my writing journal which is never to far or I’ll record a voice memo on my iPhone.
What keeps you motivated? It’s fun creating and seeing my work in print and online. Positive reviews and awards are cool too.
What is your favorite quote? “Believe in love. Believe in magic. Believe in others. Believe in yourself. Believe in your dreams. If you don't, who will?” – Jon Bon Jovi
Are there any books you wish you'd written? No. Not yet.
What is Catching Santa about? I thought you read it? No, just kidding. It’s about a special boy, Jakob, and his friends. They find themselves in the middle of an age-old power struggle between Santa and Santa’s former assistant, the devilish S.R. See, things begin six days before Christmas and weird things are happening in 11-year-old Jakob's Florida neighborhood. His friends are convinced their Christmas is in danger, and then live snowmen strangely appear and confirm the threat. Jakob dismisses the bizarre events as an elaborate hoax concocted by the neighborhood bully. But when the bully turns into smoke, a devilish stranger appears as the mastermind behind the mayhem demanding that Jakob catch Santa...or else!
What inspired this book? I was tired of the Disneyesque portrayal of Santa and wanted to create a whimsical Brothers Grim-like story with sci-fi and fantasy elements.
Do you have any advice for aspiring authors? Don’t give up. Give 100%. Look and see what others are doing and do it better.
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