Kevin Sylvester is an award-winning writer, illustrator and broadcaster. He writes and illustrates everything from murder mysteries and science fiction to books on sports and financial literacy. Kevin has written and/or illustrated more than thirty books, including the first book in The Almost Epic Squad series: Mucus Mayhem and the bestselling MiNRS and Neil Flambé series. His latest series combines two of his greatest passions: hockey and graphic novels. Hockey Super Six is about a special group of kids who must save the world with — what else? — HOCKEY!
Kevin lives (and plays goalie) in Toronto, Ontario. Visit him online at www.kevinsylvesterbooks.com.
WHAT IS YOUR SUPERPOWER?
I have the ability to take a puck off the head and STILL finish a hockey game. I’m also known to be able to make a last-second dinner from whatever smells reasonably edible in the fridge. If I can pretend to have a “real” one, maybe to instantly turn circles into cats and ice cream cones into dragons. Well, cat and dragon cartoons anyway.
KEVIN’S TOP THREE TIPS for aspiring authors and illustrators
1. Know your characters. To write a good story you can't just throw a "cartoon" character into an action filled-plot. You have to know everything about your character. What do they like to eat? Do they sleep well? Do they like to exercise? All the answers to these things will help you write a believable scene
2. FINISH! Lots of people have great ideas for stories, but give up. Even finishing a BAD story is useful. You learn from that. Think about athletes and all the hours and hours of practise they go through in order to play better when the game starts.
3. TAKE CRITICISM. I haven't read your work, but your first draft stinks. It's true of EVERY writer. The first draft is never a good book. You always have to write and RE-write. Neil Flambé books take me a year because I have to re-read and re-write them dozens of times. When you finish your work don't give it to someone who will tell you how much they like it. That's useless. Find a good friend who will be honest about what is right and what is wrong with the story.