Posted by: Kerry Gans | July 22, 2011

David Roth Guest Blog

The best place to begin is with appreciation. Many thanks to the Author Chronicles offering me a wee splash here. Perhaps one day I can return the favor at Poetica in Silentium.

Now on to the business at hand.

Hi. I’m David Roth. No, not him. I’m the other one – the author of The Adventures of the Magnificent Seven. I want to talk a little about a lot of things, a lot about a few things, and endlessly about one thing. I could keep you here for weeks, or moments, depending on how quickly you read and how easily you’re distracted. It appears that I’ve written a book for Y/A Tweeners (I presume they prefer to not be called YAT’s or anything like that) and it doesn’t exactly fit the current model. Let’s face it, if you’re not writing romance or thrillers and you are writing for the Y/A audience, many writers have fallen into the rut of limiting the exercise of their literary chops to either blood suckers, shape shifters, or that English lad who speaks ‘snake’. No one today reads Nancy Drew or the Hardy Boys, and I must acknowledge that J. K. Rowling and Stephanie Meyer have done rather well with wizards and vampires, respectively, so going there would be, well, rather redundant.

Yet, for all the time I spend in book stores, libraries, and Google, I cannot help but notice that the literary world has been curiously silent on the topics of cheese in general, and my grandchildren in particular. And while green cheese may have been the subject of some long forgotten fairy tale, well. There you have it.

Now, Mark Twain is rumored to have once advised a young Jack London to “write what you know.” While that story is likely anecdotal at best, it plays to why I do what I do. There are three things I know extremely well. I’ve written about the first one but failed miserably at selling it; I’m researching the second one, and I’m here today to talk to you about about the third.

The challenge came to me several years ago to “write about those kids you’re always talking about”. Now there’s a subject I know and know well! It’s certainly a familial thing. My grandfather used to bounce me on his knee and tell me stories. I’d considered that, but one of my grandchildren is six feet tall. I don’t think my knee could take it.

So that was my quandary. Carry on the family tradition but approach it in a different way than how it had come to me, and with different stories.

I have five grandchildren and two step children. I decided to make them my main characters, and I came up with a sort of formula that worked for me. Take seven young people. Make them best friends. Give them wildly imaginative minds that take everyday things kids might do – a school field trip – a trip to a water park – a day at the circus, just to name a few, and somewhere along the way have the real live adventure give way to an adventure of the imagination. From this, a field trip becomes a parody of a famous mystery on a famous train; a visit to water park becomes a white water rafting adventure, their day at the circus has them, in their imagination adventure, become the circus performers, and so on. The hard part is writing it in such a way that during the imagination adventure, the reader can imagine themselves what the kids in the story might be doing. Thus the birth of The Magnificent Seven, and their first set of adventures, appropriately enough called, The Adventures of the Magnificent Seven.

While there are no vampires, wizards or were-people, there are seven bright imaginative kids, a touch of the supernatural in ways you won’t expect, pirates, daring rescues, and a generally grand spirit of high adventure with enough elements of reality to make you think…Hmmm…I could do that.

Again, I want to thank The Author Chronicles for having me as a guest blogger. You can learn more about The Adventures of the Magnificent Seven at my book page, author page, Edin Road Press,, and in paperback here.

 Poet and Author David Roth began his personal journey of words when he was inspired to complete Forcas III, the epic story of the Klingon Bet’leH tournament set in the Star Trek: the Next Generation universe. Since then, he’s also written Sometimes I Hear Voices and Alice’s Goldfinch, collections of poems written over the last fifteen years, and his current YA novel, The Adventures of the Magnificent Seven. David is currently working on his next project, a sequel to Mag7, with more adventures about his wonderful kids.

David lives and writes in New Port Richey, Florida, with the love of his life, Linda, and two fur children; the delightfully cute Ms. Skittle; and the brazen but loveable Jazzy Cat.

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