Where did the idea for Magical Shade of Blue come from?
The idea for Magical Shades of Blue came to me when I was on an adventure in Mexico. I had been there for two months sailing, scuba diving, surfing and writing. I was sitting in a cafe one morning that overlooked the light blue Pacific Ocean. It was a place I came to every morning to write, eat breakfast and plan my day. I have a routine of writing 1000 words every morning and I was sitting down to begin when the idea popped into my head. The ideas came forth so rapidly and started to take shape so quickly that I could not write fast enough. Characters names, settings and ideas were pouring forth at such a great speed it was almost overwhelming. As a writer, one has many ideas and once in a while you stumble across one (or one stumbles into you) that you feel must be developed. It's almost like stumbling across a story that is simply waiting to be told and it's up to you as a writer to work out the details. I have a deep love and respect for the ocean and the idea of creating a modern day superhero out of it was very appealing. Warrior Waves are superheroes, and are only in this story to protect our world. It's frustrating as a citizen to watch as many of our most beautiful landscapes are being developed or destroyed for profit by big businesses and part of this story is a voice for that frustration. A voice that will hopefully appeal to young and old readers alike.
What challenges did you come across when writing the book?
Well, it took 2 ½ years to complete. The first draft of Magical Shades of Blue took one year to write and was 130, 000 words. I had so much I wanted to say and so many characters to develop that it ended up being quite long. But, after many rewrites I cut it down to its current size (55,000 words), which made the story much tighter and more action packed. I decided to develop further plot lines and characters in the second book. The biggest challenge was telling a fictional story that would be adventurous and entertaining, yet still pertain to some of the challenges we face with environmental and wildlife conservation in our world today. I wanted to approach this issue in a way that I would respond to and that is through a whimsical story and characters one can empathize with. Hearing the difficulties many of our animal characters face in the story will hopefully reflect some of the difficulties they face in our world, and the greatest challenge in doing that was making sure the story would not come across as preachy.
What was the easiest part to write?
The easiest part to write was when Herman and Tortuga reach the Northwest. This is the area I hail from and the landscapes and animals described are so familiar to me that it was quite easy to relay them in the work. I also felt proud being able to share parts of the cultures in the Northwest and loved creating the animal characters there. Sir Walton is a personal favorite …
Do you identify with any of your characters?
Herman and Tortuga are essentially a part of myself. And I believe, in some way, they are a part of all of us. The part of us that doesn't quite believe we are capable or deserving of our dreams. They are both facing difficulties with their self-confidence, they are a little bit shy and quite sensitive. Both are capable of so much more than they think and they both have hearts of gold. They just need a little push to help them believe in themselves, and through their partnership they are able to give one another that. Throughout their journey together and the challenges they face, they learn to believe in themselves and become who they are meant to be. I felt I was growing with Herman and Tortuga as I was writing the story, facing my own challenges and difficulties along the way.
What is next up for you?
I am working on a second book as we speak. It's going to focus more on a few characters in Magical Shades of Blue and develop them further. There will be new villains, characters, a new challenge and many new adventures!
Blue! All different magical shades of it!
I'm quite eclectic with music. I like jazz, blues and rock a lot. I always have Miles Davis on my ipod …
It's always so difficult to name a favorite in terms of writers … as I have so many! Books also tend to remind one of a time in their life and that adds a lot to the experience. If I were stranded on a deserted island and had to take only one book with me it might have to be, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis. I've read it twenty times and it's always entertaining, and I really love the characters. I also have the greatest memories of reading it with my mother and brother when I was younger.
I really like The BFG, Aslan from The Chronicles of Narnia and Harry Potter.
I'll never turn down sushi ...
Anything else you would like to share about yourself?
I've been an avid reader and writer for as long as I can remember. Books have been companions, teachers and much more in my life. I hope to give the same sense of adventure, curiosity, heart and friendship in my stories that my favorite authors have provided for me and so many others. A portion of the proceeds from every sale of Magical Shades of Blue is working towards the creation of a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting literacy and environmental education among young readers. It will be a community that young readers worldwide can be a part of and a place they can exchange ideas about writing and environmental conservation. A place to provide support, encouragement and a sense of belonging.
How can people contact you?
The fastest way would be via my website at http://www.wdtuck.com
I have a contact page on my site that links directly to my email. Depending on the amount of mail I receive it may take a little time for a response, but I ALWAYS respond.
Any final thoughts you would like to share?
To all writers young and old alike, I wish you the best of luck in pushing hesitation and trepidation aside as you tell your stories! Protect and pursue your dreams, thanks for taking the plunge with us in Magical Shades of Blue and best wishes to you all.
Ok so now for the Great Giveaway. W.D. has been very gracious and is giving away 4 signed copies of his books which will be sent out sometime in August. To enter all you have to do is fill out this FORM. The giveaway will end on August 1st! I will post the winners during that week...Good Luck to everyone!! And thanks again W.D. it has been a pleasure reading your book and doing the interview!