Welcome to Anne and Kenneth Hicks' blog tour. I had a few questions for them which they graciously consented to answer so let's get started.
When did you know you wanted to be a writer?
We both were voracious readers at a young age and the desire to write was engrained in both of us very early in our lives. Ken remembers writing stories when he was in the third grade and showing them to his teacher. Anne had a poem published in her elementary school literary magazine. When we were in college, we wrote our first book together – a book for middle-reader children.
How long did you write before you got published?
The book we co-authored in college was finished in 1970 and was not published. Anne then concentrated on poetry and had individual poems published in small poetry and literary magazines in the early 1970s. Ken had a non-fiction book called The Complete Hitchhiker published in 1973. A few years later, still in the 1970s, we began to write novels together. The first published novel was Theft of the Shroud, issued by Banbury Books and distributed by Dell in 1984. Shortly afterward we had a series of twenty children’s books published by Banbury Books and distributed by Putnam..
What is your favorite scene from your book?
Jenny is a six-year-old girl who is being taken care of by Kate’s neighbor across the hall, Sally. Jenny is a very difficult child and Sally does not have the patience to deal with her successfully. In our favorite scene, Sally is going away for the weekend with her boyfriend and is trying to get Jenny to pack her things so that she can go to stay with an older woman in the building, Mrs. Morley. Kate hears Sally screaming at Jenny and then she hears the sound of glass breaking and knows that Sally has thrown Jenny’s most prized possession—a doll named Miranda—through the window of her bedroom. To calm Sally down, Kate promises to take care of Jenny for the weekend, but then she sees Jenny outside on the fire escape, looking down into the courtyard where the doll is lying on the ground. Kate has a great fear of heights and the thought of even stepping out onto the fire escape is inconceivable to her. However, there is no other way for them to get to Miranda and Kate does not want Jenny to do it alone. When Kate crawls out the window, she begins to shake uncontrollably and tears stream from her eyes. In a very touching moment, Jenny puts her arms around Kate’s neck and kisses her and tells her that they will help each other to retrieve the doll. This gives Kate the strength to brave the fire escape stairs, although she does so sliding on her rear end and wearing a hole in her pants, that becomes the source of a joke between them.
Do you have any advice for new authors?
The best advice we can give is to stick with the project. Be prepared to rewrite—possibly several times—before the book is finished. Then, try to get people to read the manuscript and give honest comments. Listen to those comments and, yet again, be ready to work.
Is there anything else you'd like to tell the readers?
In addition to Kate and the Kid, we have recently published two other books. The first is a mystery/suspense novel entitled Mind Me, Milady, in which the main character, Eve Andersen, is a lawyer who lives and works on the Upper East Side of New York City. One of Eve’s clients is being stalked and is also having strange dreams and visions of having lived in New York City two hundred years before. Eve must protect this client and herself from a serial rapist who has been terrorizing the area and who has announced his intention to add Eve to his list of victims. A second recent publication is a novel for middle-readers called Things Are Not What they Seem, in which Jennifer and James discover a talking pigeon in Central Park and they and two friends try to help find a magic spell that will change the pigeon back into a man before a hawk can kill him for botching the spell and transforming them into the creatures bodies they now inhabit.
Kate and the Kid
by Anne Rothman-Hicks and Kenneth Hicks
KATE AND THE KID is about a young woman (Kate) who has just lost her job and had a major fight with her boyfriend (also arising from the trauma of being fired). At this very low point in her life, Kate is tricked into taking care of a sweet but emotionally damaged six-year-old girl (Jenny) who only communicates with adults through a doll she calls “Miranda.” As a result of an eventful night of babysitting, Kate begins to bond with Jenny, which causes a whole new set of complications with the people in Kate’s and Jenny’s lives. This book tells the story of how Kate and Jenny help each other to heal, grow, and navigate the difficult and sometimes dangerous world of New York City.
When Kate got back to the bedroom, the girl was still on the fire escape, tiptoeing close to the edge, looking over the side for Miranda.
“Please, come in, Jenny,” Kate said. “We’ll have the superintendent next door help get Miranda. Really we will.”
Jenny shook her head and stared straight down over the railing at the courtyard below. Kate tried not to think about what Jenny was asking of her. Surely she knew this was not possible.
“I realize the Super’s not around now. But tomorrow he’ll help us. We’ll get up first thing in the morning...”
With a quick glance at Kate, Jenny started down the fire escape stairs.
“Jenny, no!! Please wait. Just wait.”
The girl hesitated, looping one arm over the railing. Her face was not impassive. Her eyes were not those of a zombie. Her face was alive with pain and confusion and determination.
Kate swallowed hard, then lifted the window open as far as it would go. She took a deep breath. Her arms and hands were trembling as she eased out sideways, her rear-end first, followed by her right leg, her head and upper torso, finally her left leg. She was hoping to act confident, but as she reached the center of the metal slats, she began to shake. A breeze caught her hair. She couldn’t breathe. She began to cry. The world was a spinning blur.
Then she felt the girl beside her. A bony little arm was wrapped around her neck. Smooth cool lips were kissing the tears on her cheeks and on her eyes, over and over again.
“It’s okay, Katy,” the girl said. “We can help each other. We’ll do it together, Katy.”
Anne Rothman-Hicks was born in New York City and, except for a brief exile to the suburbs imposed by her parents, she has lived there all of her life, the latter part of which she has shared with her co-author, Kenneth Hicks, and their three children.
Links: website -- www.randh71productions.com
Facebook author page -- https://www.facebook.com/pages/Kenneth-Hicks-and-Anne-Rothman-Hicks/622272714477979y
Buy links http://www.amazon.com/Kate-And-The-Anne-Rothman-Hicks-ebook/dp/B00D9W3V20
The authors are giving away a $40 Amazon/B&N gift certificate to one lucky winner so use the link below to enter the drawing.