What is Star Crossed Rascals about?
Star-Crossed Rascals was first written as my diary as a seven-year old. I turned it into a fictitious children’s story, but of course I changed the ending because I was banned from playing with my best friend because we were such a bad influence on each other. We weren’t mean kids, just mischievous. My friend would dare me to do something and I would do it. And yes, we really did collect used dirty bubble-gum from the pavement, chew it and make a giant ball. Of course my mother was horrified. Though there was no real aunt Mabel, I did have a mean teacher just like that character, so I modelled Aunt Mabel after her. I also did hide my dinner of cabbage and spaghetti in my suitcase when staying at an aunts house. I mean, what kid would eat cabbage with spaghetti with no sauce or cheese? I also flooded our kitchen and lounge room, but not on purpose. I was just a fickle child.
I’m writing the sequel Star-Crossed Rascals and it will be available soon. In this story, the MC breaks the school bathroom wall and stinks out the classroom, but I can’t tell you with what. It would spoil the story for anyone reading it. Great aunt Mabel is back again to make Polly’s live a misery, but Polly always gives as much as she gets. In this sequel I also use my childhood memories and the things I did to the very cruel teacher I had. I was such a naughty little girl, but she deserved it as she stopped me from learning anything and I was just a kid. I had that mean woman as a teacher for four whole years – but she had me. LOL.
Where did you get the idea for your book? My childhood memories turned into fiction.
How did you come up with the title? I came up with the tittle because Polly and Gertie are inseparable, like my best friend and I were, but they are banned from playing together. However, they sneak off to play together and don’t let anyone stop them, just like star-crossed lovers sneak off together no matter what.
Who designed the cover? I designed the cover for Star-Crossed Rascals paperback with the help from CreateSpace template for book covers. I used my own illustrations, uploaded it and changed the colours and font. With the ebook I used the same illustrations and a friend of mine embedded the stars into the cover and we resized it for an eBook.
Do you have to travel a lot for your books? Hopefully one day, but not sot far. I mainly sell on line, but sell them myself too. I either post them out or deliver them if they’re not too far away. I do travel around to all the local libraries and schools where I donate my books and also to markets. I also sell them in locale coffee shops and art shops. I’m working on getting them into book stores too.
When did you write your first book and how old were you? The first book I wrote was Star-Crossed Rascals. I wrote it as a child, but of course updated it as an adult. It was the antics of me as a child. I left school when I was fourteen and I couldn’t write properly. I didn’t know where commas went or how to spell. As I said, I had a bad teacher, who was fired long after I left school for being cruel. I had spent some time in hospital at the age of seven and I got behind with my school work, but she wouldn’t help me to catch up and told me I was too stupid to learn anything. I believes I was stupid and so instead of paying attention to her, I used to draw in my books instead and I became the class clown. I spent many days outside the principals office for laughing.
What is the process of writing a children’s book? Well, when I left school, I started work and I also married and had two children when I was still a teenager. As soon as the kids went to school, I went back to full time work, so it wasn't until I was in my early fifties and had more time on my hands that I began writing. First I had to learn grammar, so I went on an online critique forum called Absolute Write Water Cooler. I posted my first chapters of Star-Crossed Rascals, but then my MC was called Molly. The wonderful writers on there in the Children's Forum all helped me and I also bought a book on grammar. Í then joined Critique Circle and formed a private critique group with a number of other authors. I also studied hundred’s of children’s books and read other writer's and agents blogs. That all took me four years and I now have three published children’s books. I did study day and night with very little sleep. I’m also a member of a wildlife rescue charity in Australia and I use the knowledge of the animals I care for in some of my stories. My latest book is about a bandicoot I cared for when it was attacked by a cat. I wrote a fictitious children’s story about this and called it Molly Gumnut Rescues a Bandicoot. Molly doesn’t want to send the bandicoot back to the wild where it belongs, so she kidnaps him and takes him on a journey to find him a safer home. Of course she gets into all kinds of trouble.
Do you plan on writing sequels? Yes, all my three books have sequels, and probably a third book each too.
How long did it take you to complete Star Crossed Rascals? Not long because I already knew this story. I did edit it over and over. so I think it was about three months. However, Velvet Ball and the Broken Fairy took me about six months and Molly Gumnut took me a year as that was the first one I sent to publishers. One publisher kept it for six months and nearly published it, but then said it was too long for a children’s book. So edited a couple of characters, added illustrations and self published it along with my other books. So far, it’s doing great and receiving five star reviews as are all my books so far.
What is your favourite book? Um, I think it would have to be Star-Crossed Rascals, though I love all my books. It’s just that that one even makes me laugh and I’m embarrassed to say that I read it over and over when I want a good laugh. How weird is that? I also Love Molly and the Bandicoot too as I fell in love with that baby bandicoot and I didn’t want to give him back when he was well. Molly is how I would have been if I was still eight year-old and had to give a bandicoot. She’s modelled after Polly because originally Polly’s name was Molly Gumnut, but Molly evolved into a girl who rescued animals, but Polly is a child who just want s to have fun and get up to mischief, so I separated the character into two people. I have already written two more books about each of them, but I’m editing them. Velvet is different altogether and is totally fictitious. She’s nine and has alopecia. she gets bullied at school until she finds a dysfunctional fairy in the forest. But Roseberry just brings more problems to Velvet until she learns a lesson. Funny, I never thought about it before, but it has just occurred to me that there is some of my traits in Roseberry. She can’t do magic because she didn’t pay attention in magic school and instead gets up to mischief and causes trouble. Gee, why hadn't I realised that before. How funny. See, Spencer, you've made me realise that with your questions. You’re a great interviewer. I hope you’ll let me do the same for you. I think it’s amazing that a boy of your age has published books. I wish I had paid attention at school like you. I might be rich now if I had. Good luck with your writing and thank you so much for a great interview.
Her Website: http://www.patriciapuddle.com/
Her blog: http://trish-mollygumnut.blogspot.com/
Social Media sites: Goodreads; Facebook Twitter: YouTube. I have many movies and Book trailers. You can find the links on my websites here: http://www.patriciapuddle.com/pages/book-trailers.php
Links to where her books are available:
Molly Gumnut Rescues a Bandicoot: https://www.createspace.com/3583202
Velvet Ball and The Broken Fairy: https://www.createspace.com/3505805
Star-Crossed Rascals: http://www.amazon.com/Star-Crossed-Rascals-Lovable-ebook/dp/B0051XSEC2/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1312588881&sr=1-1
Molly Gumnut: http://www.amazon.com/Molly-Gumnut-Rescues-Bandicoot-ebook/dp/B004XMOI4K/ref=ntt_at_ep_dpt_2
Barnes and Noble paperbacks: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/patricia-puddle
Barnes and Noble NookBooks: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/patricia-puddle?store=ebook&keyword=patricia+puddle