“Celebrate good times, c’mon!” This peppy line from a Madonna hit popped up on the car radio recently and it seems like the perfect anthem for a book party I just attended to launch the second book in Mackenzie Reide’s lively series for Middle Grade readers. The first book, The Adventurers: Troll Creek debuted to strong reviews from kids and adults alike and now Mackenzie has published a sequel, The Adventurers: The Mask of the Troll. After laboring mightily to complete just one novel, I am in awe of Mackenzie, who now has published two — what an amazing accomplishment!
A boatload of Mackenzie’s friends converged in Manhattan to celebrate with her and her illustrator, Jennifer Drucker, who not only did the snappy cover art for both books, but also baked a beautiful cake featuring her artwork! It was a lively evening, with friends and fellow writers buzzing and chatting. You could feel a warm, supportive energy in the air — and it was wonderful to see Mackenzie’s friends excited for her and inspired by the passion and perseverance she has shown. It reminded me again that writing is not only a solitary activity, but also a communal one — and that’s why it’s so important to take time to gather together and encourage one another.
The highlight of the evening (along with the scrumptious cake!) was a reading by Mackenzie and a talk-back in which she answered questions about her story and writing process. I could see that many of her friends were fascinated about the mystery of storytelling: how an idea grabs you, how you develop a plot and set of characters, how you map out a tale, and how much of your own personality and background finds its way into a work of fiction.
It was wonderful to hear Mackenzie talk about her passion for writing, her love of her story and characters, and her ambitions for creating a trilogy and ultimately, writing a screenplay. What an amazing feat: to conjure characters out of the air, fall in love with them, and inspire others to do the same. There’s really nothing like it, is there? You can find Mackenzie’s two books on Amazon and visit her Web site: theadventurers.com.
Bravo, Mackenzie — and write on!