Thursday, March 14, 2013

Margot Finke, Author of Children's Books

Author Bio: Margot Finke is an Aussie transplant who writes mid-grade adventure fiction and rhyming picture books. For many years she has lived happily in Oregon.  Gardening, travel, and reading fill in the cracks between writing. Her husband is very supportive, and their three children are now grown and doing very well.  Seven wonderful grandchildren round out her life.

She has 13 published books ( picture books and young teen), with several more due for publication this year. She didn't begin serious writing until the day their youngest left for college. This late start drives her writing, and pushes her to work at it every day. Margot said, "I really envy those who began young, and managed to slip into writing mode between kid fights, diaper changes, household disasters, and outside jobs.  You are my heroes!"

When working as a teacher’s aide, she saw how many children had reading problems, dyslexia, or were simply reluctant readers. So she set about writing books with a WOW factor that would hopefully HOOK them on reading.  One picture book, “Horatio Humble Beats the big D”- dyslexia, helps and encourages both kids and their parents. A parent/teacher guide offers links to serious help, plus clues for diagnosing early.

Margot also runs a highly regarded Manuscript Critique Service ( see many recommendations on her Linkedin page)  She says, “Let me help you write pages that are tight and terrific.”

Tell us about your book:

2x Young Teen Books:

*The Revenge of Thelma Hill    ghost mystery set in Oregon

When Frannie and her twin brother move to Oregon, she has no thought of ghosts or hunting a killer. Their sibling rivalry and making new friends was what worried her. And a ghost bent on revenge is not Frannie’s idea of a cool summer vacation. Frannie agrees to help the ghost, but will an e-mail trap and a giant arachnid in the basement make her task easier?
ISBN:   9781301016945  

*Taconi and Claude – Double Trouble  Aussie coming of age adventure
Paperback ISBN: 978-1-61633-130-6; 1616331305
eBook ISBN: 978-1-61633-131-3; 1616331313 

4x Rhyming Picture Books:
Mama Grizzly Bear -  A year in the life of Mama and her cubs –
A fun and educational story – word puzzle + helpful links at the end.
Print ISBN: 9781616333041; 1616333049
eBook ISBN: 9781616333058; 1616333057

*Horatio Humble Beats the Big D -  Horatio is a smart kid who can’t read.
Help for kids with dyslexia, and their parents. Parent/teacher guide + Q and A and links to more help. 
ISBN: 978-1-61633-101-6;  1616331011
eBook ISBN: 978-1-61633-102-3;  161633102X

*Ruthie and the Hippo’s Fat Behind - 
How sudden BIG changes can really affect kids and turn them into brats.  Q and A + parent/teacher
guide, with links to more help.
Print ISBN 13: 978-1-61633-059-0
eBook ISBN 13: 978-1-61633-060-6  

*Rattlesnake Jam
Simply yucky rhyming fun boys will love. Pa catches rattlers, and Gran cooks them into yucky green jam. But will she make Pa the rattlesnake pie he craves?
Print ISBN 13: 978-1-935137-00-9  
eBook ISBN 13: 978-1-935137-24-5 

How long did it take to write the book?

I have been writing all my life.  About 15 years ago I got really serious about it, and joined SCBWI and some terrific online writing lists.  Slowly. . . oh, so slowly,  I discovered the writing rules,  and how to write books that would not only help kids, but WOW them and HOOK them on reading.

What inspired you to write the books?

I remember my childhood in Australia, as an only child, often lonely, but never alone. Books were the Magic Carpet Ride that took me to wonderful places and on fantastic adventures. I read under the bedcovers using a flashlight, when I should have been doing my chores. I even read up the huge mango tree in our back yard.  Although I now live on the other side of the world, my Magic Carpet knows no borders - I ride it to this day!  I want to help kids discover the fun and adventure of their own Magic Carpet.

Talk about the writing process. Did you have a writing routine? Did you do any research, and if so, what did that involve?

My writing routine begins late at night, when ideas for a story pop into my head the moment my head hits the pillow. I tiptoe into the bathroom, close the door, turn on the light, and scribble the gist of it on paper I keep there – just in case.  Next day I begin writing.  Every night the same thing happens.  I sneak into the bathroom and write down new ideas, a plot change, or add a new character – whatever my muse demands.

What do you hope your readers come away with after reading your book?

I want readers to root for and identify with my characters. I want them to hate it when they reach the final page.  I want them to want MORE!

Where can we go to buy your book?
Scroll down for FINKE

Barnes and Noble- soft cover + Nook

Many more. . .  

Any other links or info you'd like to share?

*Website –
Books for Kids – Manuscript Critiques – Help for Writers.
*Hook Kids on Reading:
*FREE BOOK Catalogue
*FREE “Sneak Peek” inside 8x of my books (download)

VIDEO Reading from The Revenge of Thelma Hill -
VIDEO reading from Taconi and Claude -
VIDEO Readings - Picture Books -



  1. Vary nice interview and page. Congratulations Margot and Virginia.

  2. Thanks Susan and Virginia. Lovely promo job, mate!! I would love some feedback from those who have read my books. Writing is an isolated game, and hearing from readers is a HUGE thrill.

    Books for Kids - Manuscript Critiques