Monday, May 27, 2013

Mikey Brooks, author of The Dream Keeper



Author Bio:
Mikey Brooks is a small child masquerading as adult. On occasion you’ll find him dancing the funky chicken, singing like a banshee, and pretending to have never grown up. He is the author/illustrator of several books including BEAN’S DRAGONS, the ABC ADVENTURES series, and the middle-grade fantasy-adventure novel, THE DREAM KEEPER. He spends most of his time playing with his daughters and working as a freelance illustrator. Mikey has a BS degree in Creative Writing from Utah State University. He is also one of the hosts of the Authors’ Think Tank Podcast. Find out more about Mikey at: http://www.insidemikeysworld.com/

Title: THE DREAM KEEPER
Author: Mikey Brooks
ISBN: Hardback: 978-1-939993-01-4, Paperback: 978-1-939993-03-8, EBook: 978-1-939993-02-1
Page count: 300
Genre: Middle-grade Fantasy-adventure
Price: Hardback: $19.95, Paperback: $12.99, EBook: $5.99.

Tell us about your book:
When an evil shifter takes over the gateway to the realm of Dreams, it falls to 14-year-olds Parker and Kaelyn to stop him. Their only hope lies with Gladamyr, the Dream Keeper, but can they trust a Nightmare to save their world?

How long did it take to write the book?
This book took almost 3 years to write. I came up with the idea right after I got married and would write a section whenever I could find time. At the time I was working fulltime and going to school fulltime. With getting my degree in writing I had tons of papers to write and little time for my book. The sequel took 2 months.

What inspired you to write the book?
It’s funny how it happened. I was trying to sleep and was tossing and turning. I look at the clock and said to my wife, it’s 10 after 11. I have to get up in 4 hours!” She responded by saying, “wait one minute and it will be 11:11—wishing minute.” I waited and wished. I didn’t fall asleep. One second later the story for THE DREAM KEEPER popped into my head and I forgot about sleep and went to my notepad. I don’t miss the sleep I lost that night.

Talk about the writing process. Did you have a writing routine? Did you do any research, and if so, what did that involve?
I am big on research. One of the complications in the book is that when the Nightmares close the gateway to Dreams no one in our world can sleep, they never reach REM. I had to do a lot of research into the consequences of not reaching this important stage in sleep. It was fun to do. I researched nightmares, night terrors, sleep paralysis, sleep walking, and subconscious behavior. Some of it made its way into the book, but mostly it was just to keep me straight with the facts.

I am big on keeping a routine. I learned this when I started writing the book. I was so busy it was hard to squeeze in a moment to actually do it. When I decided I wanted to take this seriously and make something out of myself I set up a specific time each night I was to devote to writing.  Gave up TV, the biggest waste of time I had, and finished the book. You have to sacrifice stuff if you want to succeed. Think about your own situation, what is taking up the extra time in your life? Is it important? Can you live without it? Then give it up.

What do you hope your readers come away with after reading your book?
My fondest desire is that they close the book with anticipation for the next. Then I hope they tell their friends how AMAZING it is.

Excerpt from book:
Parker was about to assassinate the general of the goblin army. It wasn’t murder, it was an assignment. He tried to justify what he was about to do as he jumped from the rooftop and landed just above the battlement wall. It was the perfect spot to scout the camp. The goblins filling the keep were everywhere, sharpening blades and axes or gathering weapons for the impending battle. Parker noticed a large troll in the right hand corner of the space below, hammering solidly on a sword large enough to split three men into six. He spotted his target.
The general of the goblin army was a large brute with golden braids hanging down his chest. He was the one who had ordered the burning of Parker’s home village. The one who had ordered the death of Parker’s family and friends. This monster, this villain, was the reason Parker had set out on his journey to seek vengeance upon the unjust. This was the creature responsible for Parker swearing allegiance to the Mightercore army, who quickly gave him the role of assassin-scout.
            Parker maneuvered his way down the wall, careful not to move too fast or his invisibility cloak would lose its power. He placed his foot in one crevice, then his hand in another. After a few moments of skilled climbing, Parker found himself precariously positioned just behind the golden haired brute, leaving only a small distance between him and his foe. In a quick session tactic, Parker could ignite his blade with the magic of the Mightercore and his target would be no more. He positioned himself to strike, raising his sword and whispering the incantation that would release the blade’s power—.
            “Parker.”
            He ignored whoever was calling his name; they did not matter. All he saw was the villain before him. The completed spell ignited Parker’s sword with a blazing haze of blue fire, and he had to act fast.
            “Parker!”
            The loud call startled him and he swung too late. The goblin general had already turned and he struck, forcing Parker back against the rocky battlements. Parker parried the attack and thrust forward with a low slash. The general sidestepped and lunged forward again. Parker parried and rolled away from the wall. A lightning spell was the only magic he had left. If he could find enough time to call out the incantation, he could have the general radiating electrons from every appendage.
He rolled until he was a good ten feet from his opponent, then quickly stood. Lifting his hand into the air, he called down the lightning. The sky filled with a brilliant white light, and the crack of thunder reverberated off the walls. Parker briefly closed his eyes then opened them, praying he had hit his target. As the white dust began to clear, he made out an image before him. He peered at it, his heart thumping.
The screen went black.
            “Parker, I’ve called you three times. Now get off that machine and go do your homework.”
            Parker sat on the floor staring fixedly at the television screen. He ground his teeth. It had taken him three days to get to that point in the game, and now it was lost.

Where can we go to buy your book?
The print book is available in stores and online at amazon.com and bn.com. I encourage you to request it at your local library.  The eBook is available for Kindle, Nook, Kobo, iBooks, and chapter selections can be viewed at Wattpad.com. For signed copies visit: www.insidemikeysworld.com.

Any other links or info you'd like to share?
I love to connect with readers and other authors. Here are ways to find me:
Twitter as: @writtenbymikey

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