This giveaway is now closed. Thanks to all who entered. Congrats to #11 Sarah E. #42 Janelle, #76 Anne. Have fun finding out what happens in this final book!!
Yes, it’s here! Can you believe it? The 5th and final book in the Fablehaven series is out today: Fablehaven: Keys to the Demon Prison, and you have 3 chances to win it! I’ve written before about how much I love Fablehaven and am so excited to share the fun with all of you!
Happily, I was given the book to review, and can I just tell you, I am more than thrilled with how it came out! That Brandon Mull has quite the imagination! I almost don’t want to tell you any details, because it might ruin the surprise of all the fun adventures. But I can tell you what Brandon had to say about this 5th and final book, what he’s up to next, and how to get your kids writing their own fantasy books!
Here’s my interview with the Fablehaven author, Brandon Mull.
MT: When you write books in a series, do you know what’s going to happen for all five books from the beginning?
BM: I had a basic plan for the five Fablehaven books from the start. I knew a lot of the main problems and characters. I like to write with a plan. I daydream about my stories, sometimes for years, before I write them. Before I write, I want to see the story like a movie in my mind. As I dramatize each scene, I’ll make new discoveries. Sometimes the discoveries become important parts of the story; sometimes they start derailing the story and need to be weeded out. Part of why I like to have a plan is so I can create some elaborate set-ups and pay-offs. I love when something in book five can cast light on occurrences in book one. I love rewarding attentive readers with cool little twists and reveals.
MT: Do you have a favorite book in the series or a particular adventure that you love the most?
BM: I loved writing the fifth Fablehaven because it is the biggest roller coaster of a book that I’ve put together. It was fun to finally deliver the pay-offs and the climactic action that led to the end of the story. Fablehaven is about a system of secret wildlife parks for magical creatures hidden in our real world, and part of what I love is bringing to life the different magical creatures. I like making the centaurs like jerky, cocky jocks. I like making the satyrs funny and averse to responsibility. I like making the demons feel as ancient and unsettling as they’re supposed to be. Putting life into the story through the characters is fun. So is getting those characters into and out of difficult situations.
MT: There’s been a lot of heroes and villains. Do you have a favorite character from Fablehaven? Who is the most like you?
BM: Of the people, I’d most like to meet Patton Burgess. Of the creatures, it would be fun to meet raxtus the dragon or Newel and Doren the satyrs. I’m not exactly like Seth or Kendra, but their relationship is a lot like my relationship with my own siblings. We argued and teased each other, but we loved each other and took care of each other in emergencies. That relationship between Seth and Kendra is the heart of the story, together with their relationships with their friends and family.
MT: This the last and final book of the Fablehaven series. Are you going to be sad it’s over? I know I am!!
BM: It is strange not to have another adventure planned for these characters. I might write another book someday using some of these characters or magical preserves, but it would not be a book six to the series. My main feeling is contentment. I was worried about having the series end well, and once I felt like it did, I was very relieved.
MT: What is next for you? Another series or a picture book?
BM: My next major project will be a three-book series called the Beyonders. It will be for a similar audience to those who enjoy Fablehaven. In the Beyonders, we’ll follow a couple of teens who cross from our world into a strange, imperiled fantasy world. It is my most epic undertaking so far, and marks the first time I’ve created my own entire fantasy world. I’ve invented all my own races, creatures, kingdoms, history, and politics. I’ve been working on the story for over ten years, and it should come out in consecutive years, starting in the spring of 2011. I’m excited to share it.
Aside from that, I’m also planning a sequel to my novel The Candy Shop War, a sequel to my picture book Pingo, and a new picture book called Don’t Be Scared of Monsters: A Survival Guide for Kids.
MT: What tips and tricks can you give to parents to help encourage their children to write stories?
BM: Get them reading. When potential writers read good fiction, it helps awaken the urge to write. The heart of a story is interesting characters facing interesting problems. So try giving your kids writing prompts suggesting types of characters and/or problems. For example: tell me a story about a shy boy who learns he has to stop a dangerous super-villain. Maybe the boy has powers. Maybe he has to use his wits. The more kids read and practice writing, the better they’ll get.
MT: Thanks, Brandon. I can’t wait for Beyonders, how fun to get to make up your own entire world. I’m encouraging my own kids to think outside the box with reading and writing and I love your tip to ask my kids leading questions about different characters and problems and what they might do!
Now onto the giveaway fun…
Giveaway Entries: For your chance to win one of 3 Fablehaven #5 books: Fablehaven: Keys to the Demon Prison, leave a comment on this post by Thursday March 25th @ midnight, telling me which book in the series you’ve read! I’ll announce the winner chosen from random on Friday morning March 26th. Good Luck!