Guys. Guys. I'm 3 weeks out from my release.
I can't. I thought it felt real, but it suddenly doesn't anymore. How can this be actually happening to me? I have mere weeks until a book I wrote is out in stores.
Last week, I said I had a series of special posts as we approach the release. Well, for the next few weeks, I'll be doing interviews with a few of my characters so you can get to know them a little better. This week, we have Casey "Case" Kingston, 12-year-old football enthusiast, artist, and forger.
Case: Hey, cool it with "forger." I don't want my mom to find out.
Me: Okay. How about we just leave it at "artist"?
Great. So, I thought we'd be seeing Hack here too. Where is he?
Grounded. Where else?
I'm sure he'll tell the story better than me. He'll be free again next week.
I look forward to it. First real question: how you do eat your pizza?
Easy. I don't care what's on the pizza itself, but I always use a knife and fork. Picking up the slice itself gets cheese and sauce and grease on my gloves, and it's annoying to clean them off.
I see you wear fingerless gloves. Philadelphia Eagles, huh? Is that your favorite team?
Yep. One day, they'll get what they deserve and win a Super Bowl.
If the gloves are annoying, why do you wear them?
I never said the gloves were annoying, just that getting pizza on them is. I need the gloves. An artist is only as good as his instruments, and my hands are my primary instruments. I need to keep them warm and safe for when I need them for...uh, work.
It sounds like precision work.
Thank you! I have been telling Hack and J that for years and they STILL don't get it! If I get one stroke wrong, the whole thing comes apart. One twitch, and I have ink lines where they shouldn't be, and heaven help me if I hesitate and leave those marks on a signature, because then everyone can tell it's not real. J has a lot of room for error when he's picking locks, and Hack is always a monkey with a keyboard, but me, if I make any mistakes, the whole ceiling will crash down around me. Sheesh! No wonder why I investigate which brand of pens the principal uses to sign documents before I forge copies--
Uh, I mean....
It's okay. I'm sure the readers appreciate the work you do.
Um, I hope so. Any other questions?
Yes. What is your favorite Disney movie?
That's a tough one. Classic films like Beauty and the Beast, The Little Mermaid, and The Hunchback of Notre Dame are so intricate and opulent. They look wonderful and grand, but Atlantis: The Lost Empire has such a unique style, I have to give it credit. Not to mention the new computer generated films, like Tangled and how they use the new medium to mimic old art styles - oh, you weren't just talking about the art? Well, I guess I'll say The Emperor's New Groove, then.
What is your favorite thing to do when you're not at school or "working"?
Video games with Hack and J. I prefer Madden games; I love football. Hack always kicks my butt, but I can beat J half the time.
Why don't you play real football if you love it?
Um, hands! Can't let anything happen to them.
Right. I forgot. What is your family like?
Big. I have two younger sisters and a new little brother. It can get pretty loud. My parents try to rein it in, but I like to get out of the house as much as I can.
Do you have any big projects you're working on right now?
A couple. The Scottsville Youth Art Show and Competition is this summer, and I'm entering this year, so I'm working on a painting for that. I'm also spending a lot of time at the art museum, examining a Picasso they have there, so that I can - uh, not copy it home just to see if I can. That's all. Just to see if I can. Nothing bad, I swear.
You sound busy. I have one more question. How do you feel about Becca Mills?
She's a self-righteous little monster. If it wasn't for her, I could help the kids at Scottsville Middle like I do the kids at other schools. But as long as she's prowling the halls, I don't dare work here. Hack won't either, other than the occasional time he loses control of his impulses. But J keeps retrieving right under her nose. If he's not careful, one of these days he's going to slip up and Becca will be there.
Thank you, Case, for your time.
You're welcome. Now, if you'll excuse me, I have a Picasso to study.
Well, that wraps this one up! Join us next week when we meet Hack.
Here are this week's debuts:
Alyson Gerber - Braced (3/28)
Susan Tan - Cilla Lee-Jenkins: Future Author Extraordinaire (3/28)
Karuna Riazi - The Gauntlet (3/28)
Rebecca Donnelly - How to Stage a Catastrophe (4/1)
Rosalyn Eves - Blood Rose Rebellion (3/28)