I’m pleased to bring you this interview today with Marin Darmonkow, author of The Epic of Gabriel and Jibreel!
1) What is your author name and in what state do you live (or country if not in the US)?
Marin; I am a children’s book creator living in Canada.
2) What is the title of your newest book and what is the genre?
My latest book is titled The Epic of Gabriel and Jibreel, which is going to be launched this month (December 2020). It is the fourth title in the 2GETHER book collection so, like all my other works, it is a children’s picture book.
3) What is the book about?
It is a poignant story about two young boys — one a refugee and the other a youngster from a wealthy suburb – who meet under unexpected circumstances, become best friends and form an unyielding bond. As unforeseen as their adventure is, so is the finale of the epic — sending a powerful and thought-provoking message to young and adult readers alike.
4) Where did you come up with the idea?
Although I have always been a ‘glass-half-full’ person, I learned at an early age that life is not fair. We all often hear about but quickly forget statistics concerning millions of displaced people in the world. This thought helped me envision how the two extremes, the haves, and the have-nots, can find a common ground and possibly connect on a deeper level. After all, we are all in the same boat called Earth.
5) How long did it take you to write it?
Although I do not report my ‘billable hours’ to anybody but myself, I highly respect the time since I am responsible not only for writing the story but for creating the illustrations, working on the book layout, selecting the soundtrack, searching for voice-over artists, producing the book trailers, recording the audio version, updating the author’s website, etc. For this reason, it is hard for me to determine the exact time it took me to write it in this rather elaborate process.
6) Did you learn anything from the project?
Yes, absolutely: I have the propensity to employ a fairytale element for younger readers so they can digest, with some ease, the surprises which life may offer. At the same time, with many other elements in the book, I tend to engage the attention and the interest of parents/adults.
7) Do you have an author website and/or blog? How about a book video?
My website’s domain name is Fontreal.com. I also maintain a blog on Goodreads — this way, I am part of a community of avid readers and book connoisseurs. All my books, including this one, come with book videos available on my website as well as on YouTube and on Goodreads.
8) Do you have any success tips to pass on to fellow authors? How about any great editors/cover artists?
My humble advice to fellow authors is: Write the book you want to read. I also want to remind them what Albert Camus said, “The purpose of a writer is to keep civilization from destroying itself”. If you believe he was right, please keep on writing. As for recommending certain professionals, I seldom provide such as selection criteria are deeply personal.
9) What genres do you like to read? Are you open to reading new authors and reviewing their work?
I am a literary omnivore. I find genres to be a construct and often serve as superfluous frames some authors try to squeeze their works into.
I welcome new and unknown authors. Concerning a review of their work, I am definitely interested, though at the moment my time is preoccupied with many creative projects.
10) What is your favorite book of all time and why?
It is impossible to pick up only one.
11) Fun Question: Do you have any pets? If so, what kind?
When our children were growing, we had many pets in the house – an elegant black cat, numerous hamsters, and an iguana. Currently, I am a pet-less individual.
12) Fun Question 2: Do you own an electronic reading device? If so, what kind and how do you like it?
Apart from a well-equipped desktop computer, I am rather indifferent to other electronic tools.
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