Thursday, January 10, 2013

Heather Spiva, The Puzzle Master

AUTHOR: Heather Spiva                 
BOOK TITLE: The Puzzle Master
PUBLISHER: Self published

Tell me a little about your book.
This is a classic friendship story, with a twist. Two unlikely of friends becoming the best of friends, despite troubling surroundings.

What gave you the idea for this particular story?
My son did, actually. He was telling me how cool it would be to actually go inside a puzzle and be in the picture he had put together. I thought that was a pretty cool idea too! And that it would make a great fantasy book … only it turned out to be a middle-grade book, with a serious undertone to it.

Are you a full-time writer or part-time, and how do you organize your writing time?
Totally part time. And that’s what keeps my writing fun!

When did you first know you wanted to be a writer?
Ever since I could read and then write creatively I knew I had to be a writer. I’d say third grade was the first inkling  that writing was for me!

What do you hope readers will take from your writing?
Something to think about. Not just a feel-good book, but a story that they can apply to their own life. Who are the important people in your life? Do you love them? Do you tell them? If not, do it because life is fragile.

Which genres do you write, which do you prefer, and why?
I love middle grade fiction; it’s what really hooked me when I was a middle-grade reader myself. And I plan on sticking with it!

What is the toughest part about being a writer and how do you get past it?
Writing when there’s not a single word in my brain that needs to be on paper. It’s tough doing something you love, at a time when it doesn’t feel like love. But a lot like relationships, you keep loving even when they (or the book you are writing) are unlovable.

Is there anything in your story based upon a real life event? If so, tell me about it.
Yes, in that I grew up with the American River in my back yard. Literally. It was my view growing up in Sacramento. It’s as tranquil and beautiful in the summer as I depict it in the book.

What about your book makes it special?
It’s special because it’s a plain and simple, yet eloquent and poignant story. It isn’t a story that fits in with the latest trendy genre. Hopefully, it makes it as a classic in every reader’s opinion … and stays there.

Where can people learn more about you and your work?
I have a little blog. I’m a random writer but you can find out more about me there.

Any tips for new writers hoping to write in the genre of your book?
Keep writing. And mostly, write from your heart. That sounds cheesy and clich├ęd. But, it’s true. The best stuff will be what you feel, what is inside you, what you love, what you are passionate about, and it creates a story that’s fresh and unique. And we can all use fresh and unique in this copy-cat world.

What’s in the future for you?
Keep doing what I’m doing. Whether I’m ever published again or not isn’t the issue. I write because I love it, and hopefully people who read The Puzzle Master can feel this as they travel through this sweet and sad story.

SYNOPSIS: Twelve-year-old Marshall Thompson's favorite place in the world is Luke's Junk Store. With one more trip in before school begins, he's intent on finding the perfect thing to take with him on his first day back. But his "great find" ends up being a girl -- and a friendship begins that will change him forever.

Together, they share a love of puzzles and something else: sickness. With his asthma, and her in cancer recovery, they're linked as kindred spirits. But when a life-changing incident threatens their friendship, Marshall has to learn to pick up the pieces to his broken puzzle of life ... and put them back together.

The Puzzle Master is a story of friendship, love, forgiveness and hope; issues that surround us at the youngest of age. Through Marshall's tragedies and triumphs, he learns to accept change and overcome his trials even when they seem insurmountable


  1. Great interview. I have this book downloaded and hope to read it soon.