Chris Sarracini has been working in the comic book and film industries for over 15 years. In addition to writing for a number of successful comic book favorites including TRANSFORMERS, STREET FIGHTER and DARK MINDS, his own creations include FATE OF THE BLADE and CASA NOSTRA. As a screenwriter, he has worked with Universal Pictures, Disney and Nasser Entertainment. His most recent publication is the children's picture book WHERE WISHES GROW...
Chris lives with his family in Toronto where he continues to create and write.
Website Address: www.chrissarracini.com
Twitter Address: www.twitter.com/chris_sarracini
About the Book:
Where Wishes Grow… is the story of eight-year-old Maggie, a pensive and courageous dreamer,
Watching Nana’s health fail has been difficult for Maggie and so now much of her time is spent dreaming up wishes for ways she can help her. Maggie conjures up three wishes for Nana she desperately wants to come true: for Nana to see again to enjoy her favorite beautiful things, for her to walk again to visit her favorite places, and for her to speak again so that she and Maggie can sing their favorite songs. The problem is, with wishes this important, Maggie wants to be sure she can realize them; wishing upon stars that may be long dead or relying on birthday candle hoopla just won’t cut it. Thankfully, Maggie’s mother knows the secret for turning wishes into reality…you’ve got to write each wish down and then go plant each one in just the right place. And, as Maggie discovers, retelling the story of how each wish was planted turns out to be the most magical part.
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Thanks for this interview, Chris. Congratulations on your new book! Would you say it’s been a rocky road for you in regards to getting your book written and published or pretty much smooth sailing? Can you tell us about your journey?
Where Wishes Grow... was a labor of love, that’s for sure. It was a very time-consuming process getting the story and the artwork to exactly where they needed to be. Although I have done a lot of writing for the comic book and movie industries, this was my first children’s book. I quickly found that writing a children’s book is, in many ways, a lot like writing a poem. You have to be very selective with your words in order to evoke the most amount of emotion using the least amount of words, all while still telling an interesting story. So, I can honestly say I found myself continuously editing and re-editing my writing for this book more than most other projects I’ve worked on.
Furthermore, collaborating with an illustrator on a book is always exciting and inspiring...but also tricky. Pauline Aksay’s artwork in this book is simply gorgeous. Naturally, however, it took some time for us, as writer and illustrator, to get into a groove with one another and develop a unified vision for the book.
With regards to getting the book published, Brownridge Publishing welcomed the project with open arms and has been incredibly supportive. The people at Brownridge have really helped make our wishes come true for Where Wishes Grow...
If you were to pen your own autobiography, what might the title be?
When not writing, what do you like to do for relaxation and/or fun?
I am a huge movie nerd so I love sitting back and watching movies to relax. Funny enough, the older I get the more I find myself resorting back to older movies that I love and re-watching them even though I’ve seen them dozens of times! Sometimes you just know what you like. Crime movies are my favorites.
What makes your book stand out from the rest?
I wanted to write a book that felt timeless. I wanted to tell a story that would have a powerful emotional impact not just on the kids enjoying the book but also on the parents or grandparents who might be reading it with them. “Where Wishes Grow…” focuses on the unbreakable bond of love between a young girl (Maggie), her mother and her grandmother. Maggie’s grandmother is bedridden and Maggie has some wishes she desperately wants to come true; wishes that would help her grandmother enjoy the vibrant life she once had. And so, Maggie’s mom comes up with a plan to help those wishes to grow. I wanted the story to remind readers, young and old, just how powerful the bonds of family are and how important it is to cherish the shared memories between generations because time with family is precious.
If your book was put in the holiday section of the store, what holiday would that be and why?
Because this book focuses so much on the bond between the main character and her grandmother, it is a perfect book for National Grandparents Day. I also think the book’s focus on the bonds of family and the importance of sharing precious family time makes it a perfect book for the Christmas Season.
Would you consider turning your book into a series or has that already been done?
This story was meant to be told in one chapter so turning it into a series just wouldn’t work.
When you were young, did you ever see writing as a career or full-time profession?
I’ve always imagined myself writing as a career but, as anyone who pursues it will tell you, it’s a bumpy road that requires a lot of patience and self-sacrifice.
Did any of your books get rejected by publishers?
I have not been rejected by publishers but I have been rejected by movie producers when trying to sell a movie script I worked on. Fortunately, the script eventually sold so, as it turns out, Act 3 delivered a happy ending.
What is your view on co-authoring books; have you done any?
planning stages of a story/script is great but, past a point, there needs to be a single voice that takes over and becomes the “style” of the writing. Collaborating to produce this “stylistic voice” rarely works in my experience.
What’s next for you?
I have recently completed writing a 4-issue comic book mini-series entitled Street Fighter Origins: Sagat that is currently being illustrated by industry superstar, Joe Ng. The series focuses on the origin story of Sagat—a major villain from the popular Street Fighter universe—and will be published by UDON Entertainment in early 2019.