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Meet the Author of The Firebug of Balrog County


After welcoming attendees and introductions, the author will read a passage of his choosing from the book.  A few questions will be asked about the author's writing process, followed by questions about the book.  Questions about future books and activities will conclude the discussion with the author.  Throughout the question and answer period, attendees are encouraged to ask their own questions of the author.  The event will end with a drawing for a copy of David Oppegaard's book.

Questions About the Writing Process

1. How long did it take you to write the book and then how much longer did it take to get it published?

2. What is your preferred routine for writing?

  • Do you sit down at a desk for a period of time or do you wait until the mood strikes you?
  • Do you have a designated area for writing?
  • Do you write in longhand or use a computer or laptop?
  • What research do you usually conduct either before or during the writing process?

3. You have previously written books for adults in such genres as science fiction, horror, fantasy, as well as a blending of all three.  What inspired you to write young adult fiction?

4. What aspect of writing is the most challenging for you?

Questions About the Book

1. Is the storyline of the book based on real events that happened in your life?  If so, how have those experiences colored your life and in turn your writing?

2. How did you go about developing the various characters in the story?

  • What did you take from your personal experiences and using creative license incorporate it into a character's persona?
  • What other types of inspiration did you draw upon to develop characters in the story?
  • Grandpa Hedley is a fascinating character.  He seems to know more than he let's on and in some ways he is an archetype.  In other words, he's peculiar.  Could you tell us a bit about the construction of that character and his importance in Mac's life?

3. Fire is an integral component of the story.  Why use fire as opposed to something else?

4. In the midst of all that's going on in the story, there's a romantic story line.  How do you see Katrina fitting into Mac's character trajectory?  How did she occur to you?

5. If you could go back and change anything, would you do so?  If so, what would you change? (If possible, no spoiler)

6. Did you ever consider a different ending to the story? (If possible, no spoiler)

7. After readers have finished the book, what questions would you like them to ponder?

Questions About Future Books

1. Do you have another book that will be published in the near future?

2. What are you working on now?

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