Posted by Joyce Anthony at 3:42 AM Monday, May 18, 2009
GHOST FOR RENT
ISBN: 0-7599-0340-9 trade paperback
ISBN: 0-7599-0337-9 eBook
By: Penny Lockwood
Tomorrow, I will be sharing my review of this young adult paranormal book by Penny Lockwood. Today, however, I would like to share with you an interview I conducted with Penny. Please feel free to leave a comment for her--I know she'll enjoy hearing your thoughts!
Penny Lockwood (Ehrenkranz) the person:
1. What three words do you think describe you as a human being?
I tend to think of myself as attentive, nurturing, and creative.
2. How do you think others would describe you?
It’s hard to say, but I think others would describe me as usually calm, a good listener, and a caring person.
3. Please tell us what you are most passionate about outside of writing.
Outside of writing, I am most passionate about my immediate family which consists of my husband, son, daughter-in-law and granddaughter, daughter and son-in-law, and our furry children – five cats and three dogs. I also spend most of my free time, when it’s at least relatively nice outside, in my garden. Of course, I am an avid reader and have been since I first learned how to read. Finally, I enjoy crocheting items to give as gifts to my family and friends. This is what I usually do to wind down at the end of the day, before my hot tub soak.
4. Do you have any pets? If so, introduce us to them.
Currently, we have three dogs. Lucy and Ricky are four month old Lhasa Poos, and Gaston is a nine year old male Newfoundland mix. We have five cats, Bebe (a Siamese female), Tyra (a long-haired black female), Belle (a short haired gray and white female tuxedo), Misty (a gray tortoise shell female) and Loki (a black and white male tuxedo). We’ve always had at least two dogs (usually big) and five is the least amount of cats we’ve had. We’ve also had goats, rabbits, birds (cockatiels, finches, budgies, and doves), a turtle, and fish.
5. What is your most precious memory?
Without a doubt giving birth to my children, followed by all their little firsts as they were growing from infancy to starting school.
6. If you weren’t a writer, what would you be doing with your life?
I always thought I would enjoy being a teacher, probably an English teacher, however, I spent most, if not all my working life as an office manager and executive secretary. Fortunately this type of work allowed me to spend time writing letters, procedure manuals, and newsletters.
Penny, the writer:
7. Can you describe the time you realized you were indeed a “real” writer?
I wrote a grant for a local non-profit and was paid a nice sum of money for my efforts. I thought if I can get paid for writing grants, why shouldn’t I get paid for writing stories and articles? I had first tried to get my work published when I was in my early twenties. I didn’t have a clue what I was doing and didn’t know everyone gets rejected, even the successful authors like Stephen King and J. K. Rowling. When I received my first rejections, I felt like a failure and gave up. The success with writing the grant, gave me the courage to try again. By this time, I did know that rejection is all part of the writing game. Rejections help writers to write better. When my first article, about grant writing, was accepted by Byline magazine, I felt like I had finally become a “real” writer.
8. What is going on with your writing these days?
I try to stay versatile. I write non-fiction and fiction and write for both adults and children. Right now, I’m working on a re-write for a picture book, playing around with a YA novel centering on witchcraft, and working on a follow-up to my MG novel Ghost for Rent. I just recently sold a series of writing related articles to Writing World, a couple of children’s stories to on-line magazines, and two other writing tip articles to two other writing magazines.
9. What are your future goals for your writing?
I will continue to dabble in both non-fiction and fiction, writing whatever feels right at the moment. I feel like I don’t get bored by allowing myself to write in multiple genres and different types of non-fiction.
10. Can you describe a typical writing day for you?
I have no typical writing days as I’m pretty flexible. I retired from my day job a little over a year ago. Before I retired, I was more focused because I had a limited amount of writing time. Then, after dinner, I always went to the computer to work on my current writing project. Now, I don’t feel guilty when the sun is shining and the garden calls. I try to combine networking, marketing, and writing all on the same day, devoting whatever time seems appropriate for what is currently in progress.
11. Why do you write?
I enjoy writing and always have. I’ve been writing since I was in grade school. I still have some of those hand-bound, illustrated stories on my shelf. I love stories, both to read them and to write them. I’ll be reading an article in a magazine or the newspaper, and a story will pop into my head. Sometimes, someone will tell me about something that happened to them and that makes it into a story. A lot of my non-fiction articles are based on experiences I’ve had volunteering for different non-profit organizations. When I write for children, I hope I’m giving them a reason to enjoy reading. When I write for adults, I hope to either entertain them or give them practical advice that they can use in their own lives.
12. What writer most inspires you? Why?
Right now, I’d have to say J. K. Rowling, simply because she started with so little, yet was able to accomplish so much.
13. How do you define your writing?
I write mostly adult short stories and those tend to be either fantasy or science fiction with a touch of romance. My children’s novel is paranormal mystery and my illustrated YA chapbook is fantasy. When I write non-fiction, I generally share writing tips, parenting tips, and teen self-help tips. I’ve recently started writing more non-fiction for younger children and that has been about making them more aware of things around them such as bats and the environment.
14. In one sentence—what do you want people to say about your writing in fifty years?
This is a tough one. I guess I would just be happy if any of my work is still in print in 50 years! What I would want others to say, I have no idea.
Penny, the details:
15. Can you tell us where to find more information on you? Website? Blog?
I don’t have a website yet. My blog is http://pennylockwoodehrenkranz.blogspot.com/
16. Is there a place where readers can reach you?
If people have questions, they can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I try to answer all my correspondence.
17. Can you list all your book titles so people can look for them?
In print right now, I have Ghost for Rent and an illustrated chapbook, Dragon Sight. Most of my work has been short stories or articles for magazines.
Ghost for Rent is in trade paperback teamed with another MG novel, The Newfie Ghost and available at
Ghost for Rent as a download is available from a number of sites:
Kindle edition at Amazon http://www.amazon.com/Ghost-for-Rent-ebook/dp/B000FCKHD8/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1240013606&sr=1-1
Dragon Site is available as an illustrated chapbook at http://www.genremall.com/fictionr.htm#dragonsight
18. For new readers—what can they expect when they read your book(s)?
Ghost for Rent is a middle grade paranormal mystery. My main character, Wendy, is eleven years old. When her parents separate, she, her older brother, and mother have to move to the country to save money. After moving in, the family finds there country house is haunted. Wendy soon realizes the ghosts aren’t malicious; they’re trying to tell her something. With the help of a new friend and her brother, Wendy follows the clues and researches the history of her home to find out what happened. The ghosts aren’t mean, but Wendy does get frightened. After all, who wouldn’t be frightened by a ghost?
Dragon Sight, is a young adult fantasy with a touch of romance. A modern day girl is magically transported to a world with elves, dragons, and evil wizards. In order to fulfill an ancient prophecy, she has to battle the evil wizard with the help of a handsome elf and a determined dragon.
Please come back tomorrow to learn more about Ghost for Rent!
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