Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Meet Powers Molinar, author of 'Spartanica (The Survivors of Sapertys)'


What was the inspiration for this book?
Kids inspire me to write because becoming a strong reader is such an important skill to have throughout life. I see a direct relationship with my kids’ friends between enthusiasm for reading and success in school. My hope is that young readers will find Spartanica engaging enough to make them want to read more and, in the process, develop skills needed to accomplish their goals later in life.
What is one of your favorite things about it?
I really like how the characters interact. They act and sound like real kids. Readers have told me they especially enjoy the dialogue because it makes the story feel more real.
Will we see these characters again?
Definitely. Spartanica is book 1 of The Survivors of Sapertys Series. There will be a book 2 and book 3. Many (but not all!) of the Spartanica characters will live on.
How did your family assist in the creation process?
They were a huge help. My wife and middle school son were beta readers and read groups of chapters as I completed them. My grade school daughter read the finished product and pointed out my text justification was wrong just before I published. That was a huge save!
On what other projects are you currently working?
Spartanica fans are clamoring for book two of the series. I get asked about it every day so that's what I'm working on.
What do you find fulfilling about writing science fiction?
Science fiction is about driving the reader's imagination. I find it most fulfilling when a reader comes up to me and enthusiastically talks about a scene from my book like he/she actually witnessed it happening. That is ultimate. That's when, as an author, you know you've hit the target and truly entertained your reader.
You say that you think that "being a solid reader is a foundational piece of leading an exceptional life." I agree. Would you care to expand on this thought?
There's so much potential in every kid. It genuinely pains me to see kids underachieve. Being a strong reader is a cornerstone for creating a wide array of options for oneself later in life. I'd love to see every kid have the head start that being a strong reader offers.
What can we do to help children become better readers?
Beyond just encouraging and rewarding kids for reading and, in general, doing well in school, it's crucial we provide them with books that are 1) interesting and 2) push their reading skills. Spartanica, for instance, occasionally has words beyond the typical middle or even high school vernacular. That's done on purpose in the hope the reader will ask or look it up.
What are some of your recommended reads for the middle grades?
Other than Spartanica? Hmmmm.... let me see. The Percy Jackson and the Olympians series by Rick Riordan is terrific. The Beyonders series by Brandon Mull is fantastic, as well.
What is something that readers may be surprised to learn about you?
I'm a huge Taylor Swift fan! The way this little blonde girl from small town Pennsylvania learned guitar and wrote songs to create an exceptional life for herself is inspiring. She came from nowhere to be a huge star. Whether you like her music or not, you have to be amazed by her story.
Is there anything else you would like to add?
I'd like to thank my readers. They really are the best. I've had so many tell me that they are my "biggest fan", and I totally believe every one of them. Thank you!
Thank you so much for your time!

Book Tour

Ty and Marcus Mitchell are average middle school brothers growing up north of Chicago until one night when they’re hurtled through an inter-dimensional gateway to a parallel world defined by its multiple moons and planet-wide apocalypse. As they struggle to figure out where they are and how to get home, the boys encounter refugees of “the last day” from the distant city of Atlantis and a mysterious girl called Bellana, the sole survivor and resident of the devastated city of Spartanica. Ty and Marcus soon learn they only have seven days to get home. But before they can leave, they must battle through long-extinct predators, track down the elusive Professor Otherblood, and rescue a new friend from certain death. Is all of this insanity just Ty’s overactive imagination or are the brothers truly on the brink of being stranded on the brutal wasteland known as Spartanica?


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Author Bio:

Powers Molinar grew up in the northern suburbs of Chicago and earned engineering and business degrees at the University of Iowa. While he works as a process engineer and project manager during the day, his passion is writing science fiction. His first novel, Spartanica, is the culmination of several year's of part-time effort mostly late at night and on weekends when he wasn't enjoying time with his wife and kids, all of whom were big helpers getting Spartanica written.

Powers believes every kid has the potential to become exceptional. In addition to being a blast to read, he truly hopes his books spark kids' imaginations and inspire them to read more and maybe even become writers. Being a solid reader is a foundational piece of leading an exceptional life. Powers hopes his books can be part of that foundation for as many kids as possible.

Follow Powers: Twitter | Facebook

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