Saturday, May 16, 2020

Author Spotlight ~ Johnny Odd Socks

Writers get inspiration from many, other books, real life experiences, but this children's book author gets inspiration from his own kids! And by the looks of his profile pic, we don't have to guess why his name is Johnny Odd Socks. (Perhaps it's a safe assumption that the busy task of being a father of two toddlers is the reason his socks don't match.)

Welcome to our blog, Johnny!

1. Tell us about yourself. 
Well apart from writing and blogging, my days of hobbies are on hold at the moment due to having two toddlers and limited time! When I get the chance though I love going to gigs and festivals, and I'm also a big football fan. I play musical instruments (guitar, trumpet, piano) so these are hobbies I can do with the kids - and you will see that these feature in my first book, "What's My Instrument?" Since lockdown began we've gotten well into our gardening (like everyone else) so we have been planting lots of veggies, and getting the garden as good for the kids as possible. So far they have gained a sandpit and a mud kitchen!

2. What was the last book you read and how did you find it? 
I tend to find new books from Waterstones. I still find browsing the shelves the best way to discover new authors. The last one I read myself wasn't a new author though - John Wyndham - The Midwich Cuckoos which my wife already had. A brilliant and slightly weird sci-fi story!

The last book I read was "The Tale of Benjamin Bunny" to my eldest. He's loving the Beatrix Potter's at the moment.

3. Who is your favorite author?
Terry Pratchett by a mile - when it comes to children's books it has to be Roald Dahl. They are both extremely funny and brilliant, imaginative storytellers.

4. What inspired you to begin crafting children's books?
My boys. I've been writing sci-fi and fantasy for a few years but I started my first children's book when my eldest, Bruce, came along. To be honest, my grown-up writing is generally quite silly so the transition hasn't been huge! My boys are now getting old enough that they get quite excited by books and it's so nice when they ask for one of mine!

5. How do you find your illustrators? 
I do my illustrations myself! It's taken a bit of practice but I find it quite therapeutic.

6. Are you a plotter or a panster? 
It doesn't really apply to children's picture books because they are so short, but I'm definitely a panster in general. I have no idea how my stories finish until I get there - way more fun that way!

7. Do you read the reviews on your books?
Yes I do, and it makes my day when I get a good one. It's pretty tough when you get a bad one, but fortunately there haven't been too many of those (so far, fingers crossed!)

8. Tell us about your newest release. 
My newest release is "Freddy The Bird", about a likeable young parrot who lives with a smile on his face. Unfortunately Freddy is so silly, clumsy and unlucky that even something as simple as saying "Hello!" to his friends can turn into a great adventure. This is the first of six picture books in his madcap, crazy story!


Freddy The Bird will be released at the end of May - but I am currently giving it away for free HERE All I ask is that you give me an honest review when it comes out. It will be available on Amazon UK.  and Amazon US

9. How can readers find you? 

You can find me in lots of places!

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