News, Notes & Inside Info from a Children’s Book Author

Archive for the ‘the writing process’ Category

Setting the Scene for My Next “Scary Tales”: The Importance of Place

Thursday, April 17th, 2014 Posted in Scary Tales, the writing process | No Comments »


I've had a semi-solid idea for the next "Scary Tales" book (number 6, untitled), for a while. But nothing real specific. I've been fleshing out characters, still debating the introduction of a third character, wondering if she's necessary or not. Definitely going ...

Good Advice from Ira Glass

Monday, February 3rd, 2014 Posted in the writing process | No Comments »


[youtube:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3ResTHKVxf4]

The Story Behind This Illustration: Art Inspiring Art

Thursday, January 9th, 2014 Posted in Scary Tales, School Visits, the writing process | No Comments »


When I first saw this illustration, I thought to myself, "Yes! That's exactly what I hoped for -- but better." Drawn by Iacopo Bruno, the image will appear in SCARY TALES: NIGHTMARELAND (June, 2014). For years, on school visits, I heard the ...

RE-POST: Pretty Lights on the Tree, I’m Watching Them Shine

Friday, December 13th, 2013 Posted in Greatest Hits, Music, the writing process | No Comments »


Sometimes you can hear a song a hundred times and on a random afternoon it will hit you in a new way. Whap, right upside the head. As a huge Bob Dylan fan, that happens to me frequently, ...

RE-POST: Imaging the Character of Griffin Connelly in BYSTANDER

Thursday, December 5th, 2013 Posted in Bystander, Greatest Hits, School Visits, the writing process | No Comments »


I just enjoyed a terrific visit to Virginia, three nights, visiting Matoaca Middle School and Davis Middle School. I stayed in Richmond, was treated like a conquering hero, and all I can do is express my heartfelt gratitude one more ...

My Interview at “Author Turf”

Sunday, December 1st, 2013 Posted in Before You Go, Bystander, Interviews & Appreciations, the writing process | No Comments »


I was recently invited for an interview by Brittney Breakey over at AUTHOR TURF. Brittney has really accomplished a lot with her site. It's worth checking out. She's recently interviewed Holly Goldberg Sloan, Sally Nicholls, Gennifer Choldenko, Jo Knowles, Kathryn ...

FAN MAIL WEDNESDAY #170: Seth from Iowa Is Scared & Happy About It

Wednesday, November 27th, 2013 Posted in Fan Mail, Scary Tales, the writing process | 2 Comments »


Here we go, folks. It's time for Fan Mail Wednesday -- and it's actually Wednesday, a first for the entire staff here at Jamespreller.com! I'm reaching into the big box of letters . . . ah, here's one from Seth in ...

One Nice Thing About Being an Author . . . Deserves Another

Thursday, November 7th, 2013 Posted in Scary Tales, the writing process | No Comments »


There are so many great things about being an author. What a life, truly. Blessed, blessed, blessed. I first published in 1986, and I've been involved in a lot of books over those years. Some of them good ones, too! One ...

NO NEW IDEAS: Writing Within the Tradition

Monday, October 7th, 2013 Posted in Scary Tales, School Visits, the writing process | No Comments »


I was speaking to a large audience of students, at one point explaining my writing process for an upcoming SCARY TALES book, titled The One-Eyed Doll. The first image that came to me was the discovery of a door, or a hatch, ...

Finding Inspiration for SCARY TALES: A New Part of My Writing Process (and an Excerpt, Too)

Wednesday, September 4th, 2013 Posted in Scary Tales, the writing process | No Comments »


I just handed in the revised manuscript for my SCARY TALES series, which is chugging along. I have to say, I love writing these books, it's like a faucet has been turned on all the way. I'm just gushing words, ...