Author, Teacher, Psychologist and Speaker

Posts Tagged "blog hop"

My Blog Tour Stop

Posted by on Oct 7, 2013 in Blog, Featured | 7 comments

I want to thank the very talented Sandra Warren, for inviting me along on this Blog Tour.
Sandra has a wonderful web site and blog, The Grateful Writer. Please stop by and read all about Sandra and her work.

Here’s what Sandra wanted to know about me and my work:

SW – What are you working on now?

AE – I am currently working closely with my publisher on the final launch preparations for the second book in the Sean Gray Junior Special Agent Mystery series, Fallen Prey. The release is scheduled for November 7, 2013.


Fallen Prey Web Cover 2

Twelve-year-old Junior Special Agent Sean Gray is in a race against time. Could there be a connection between his testimony in the trial of an international child kidnapping ring and his mysterious accident?

While the sheriff’s department and the FBI are investigating, his new friend, Gabby, gets caught in the web of an online predator and disappears. She’s been missing for more than 48 hours, and the authorities have not been able to find her.

Sean goes undercover to bait the mysterious hunter. But when he becomes the prey, how will he rescue her?


Sean was first introduced in Hiding Carly, book one of the series.




Eleven year old Sean is in search of the truth. Someone murdered his father, Special Agent Max Gray, and the FBI has officially closed the case. Now it is up to him to find out who was to blame.

While investigating online, Sean stumbles upon a mysterious connection between his father and that new girl in his class. Now he has two puzzles to solve.  What really happened to his dad and what does Carly have to do with it?

In the face of danger, Sean sets aside his fear and finds the courage, compassion, and conviction to “follow the evidence.”


And, yes, the third and final book in the series is well underway! At least Sean is plotting and planning in my head! Untitled, the final installment, is already filled with twists, turns and tumbles. And the ending (yes, I do know how it ends) is a Sean Gray surprise!

SW – How does this book differ from other works in its genre? 

AE – The series itself differs primarily in that there are absolutely no zombies or vampires! Seriously, it centers on a young boy who helps to solve crimes and mysteries using the things he has learned from the FBI Junior Special Agent Program. I got the idea for Hiding Carly while mentoring a fifth grade student who was participating in the program. The FBI Agent that I interviewed for Hiding Carly, Special Agent Bill Malinowski, as well as others at the agency really liked the book. They suggested I write a series.

Malinowski said, “I believe any time you can reach out to young people and impress on them that doing what is right outweighs peer pressure, then we need to make efforts toward that end. The FBI’s Junior Special Agent – sometimes referred to as “Junior G-men” – Program does just that. After personally coordinating the program, I saw such positive changes in many of our youth.”

Though the books contain some universal themes, such as friendship, bullying, family, and separation and loss, they also deal with murder, kidnapping, and internet crime. These are things that affect kids today across the nation and the world. The Sean Gray Junior Special Agent Mystery series features events that strike at the core of children’s issues.

As Joseph Bowman stated in his review, Something New is “Elementary, My Dear Watson”:


From murder and disease to kidnapping and betrayal, Hiding Carly holds onto a tradition of dark content in children’s mystery novels – Nancy Drew, The Box Car Children and Sally Lockhart were all orphans – but it approaches the story in a way rarely embraced by children’s authors. Eisenstein chooses not to pursue the rain coat and magnifying glass, looking for footprints in the rain approach that is seen so often; instead, she focuses the narrative around the everyday crises and uncertainties faced by children poised before puberty.

The complications of losing a father, the confusion of watching a loved one slip into mental decline, a first crush, a bully, all of these take the main stage for the first two thirds of the story while the mysteries of Carly and of Sean’s father more so bubble to the surface. That bubble, though, proves indicative of something worth waiting for as the conclusion takes more twists and turns than is typical for this genre.


SW – Why do you write what you do? 

AE – I wish that I had some magical explanation that would dazzle and amaze. Truth is I just write the story that is in me. Most of what I write stems from my persona as an author, an educator and a psychologist. Though I didn’t start out writing for children, it has been the most natural beginning. My fiction works-in-progress encompass all genres, including picture books, middle grade, young adult and adult. I also write nonfiction and screenplays.

SW – How does your writing process work? 

Wow…let’s see. I have an overactive imagination. I pay attention to inspiration. I get an idea – or two – or three. Poof! Magic! Not really. I do add those three things together and often the character, or characters, enter the picture first. They usually bring some sort of agenda with them. Often resulting in conflict. Yea! As a teacher, I could do without the conflict. As a psychologist, I really need it to begin – but hope it’s not too troubling. As an author – bring it on! Once I have the start of story, I tend to research – a lot! I am concentrating on realistic, contemporary fiction right now, so it is important that my facts are – well – factual. As the story unfolds, I begin to plot and storyboard. I like the plan of it, the road map. My characters usually take some twists and turns that I didn’t count on, but that’s okay. I just move the scenes around or throw them out and add more. It’s a big giant jigsaw puzzle on my wall. And I love puzzles!


Next Monday, October 14, 2013, this Blog Tour train will stop at the pages of the following fabulous, imaginative, and gifted children’s writers:

Donna Welch Earnhardt

Holly Hughes 

Suzanne Warr


Please click on their links and climb aboard to discover new and fascinating things about these talented authors and what they write.


In the mean time, Happy Trails to you until we meet again!


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Week 19: The Next Big Thing

Posted by on Oct 10, 2012 in Blog, Writing Wednesday | 1 comment

Holly Hughes tagged me for The Next Big Thing blog hop. She answered these same questions last week on her blog,

What is the working title of your book?

Where did the idea come from for the book?

This is the second book in the SEAN GRAY, JUNIOR SPECIAL AGENT series. The idea for the first book HIDING CARLY, and the series came from a mentoring relationship that I had with an eleven year old boy who went through the FBI Junior Special agent Program. The main character, Sean, was born from this relationship. The story is his.

What genre does your book fall under?

Middle Grade mystery and adventure

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

Sean – Dylan Boyack  (from The Hangover)

Andy – Tucker Albrizzi  of Big time Rush and good Luck Charlie

Carly – Joey King  of Ramona and Beezus

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

Sean’s testimony in the trial of a child kidnapping ring involving a rogue FBI agent is at the root of a mysterious accident plunging Sean and his new friends smack in the middle of another mystery.
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

Published by Peak City Publishing
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

One year…still revising
What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

NANCY DREW or the HARDY BOYS. Other popular series in this category are Encyclopedia Brown and Cam Jansen stories.

More contemporary novels in the compete category:

CHARLES COLLIER, SNOOP FOR HIRE – A series of middle grade mystery novels by John Madormo follows the adventures of a 12 year old investigator.

CLOSED FOR THE SEASON by Mary Downing Hahn – a stand-alone book follows the adventure of 7th grader, Logan and his friend Arthur as they try to solve a murder mystery.

THE BIG SPLASH by Jack D. Ferraiolo features Matt, a middle school boy who tries to keep the halls safe and free from crime.

THE POSTCARD by Tony Abbott, is an Edgar Award winner, in which 13 year old Jason cleans out his deceased grandmother’s home and gets involved in the mysteries of her life.

John Grisham’s THEODORE BOONE series is also in the competitive category. Where Theodore works with the justice system in his home town to solve some situations of his peers.

Who or What inspired you to write this book?

My love of children and the issues that they face. My continued involvement with the FBI.

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

The uniqueness of the SEAN GRAY, JUNIOR SPECIAL AGENT (JSA) mystery/adventure series is the FBI and the continued involvement and collaboration of the protagonist, Sean with the agency.

Tagged for next week:

Debra Koontz Traverso

Joan Y. Edwards

Linda Anderson

Gretchen Griffith

Sandra Warren


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