Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Meet Middle Grade Author Ann Swann

Carpinello's Writing Pages welcomes Texas author Ann Swann and her Middle Grade novels centering around Stevie-girl.

First, a bit about Ann:

Ann lives in Texas with her husband and rescue pets. Her children and grandchildren live nearby so they can keep her out of trouble. Ann works part time as a researcher for an online journal. She taught fifth and sixth graders for a number of years before leaving to devote more time to her first love—fiction. Reading with children was always her favorite part of teaching.

Her Middle Grade books, Stevie-girl and the Phantom Pilot and Stevie-girl and the Phantom Student, were published in 2012. The third book in the series, Stevie-girl and the Phantom of Crybaby Bridge, was published in 2013.

Why did you pick to write books for MG?

I think I’m just a kid in a lumpy, grownup body.

What types of books do you like to read?

I love stories with characters that make you care what happens to them. Some of my favorite books were animal stories such as the Silver Chief stories, Charlotte’s Web, and The Bridge to Terabithia, and all the books by James Herriot. I also read adult speculative fiction. Stephen King has always been a favorite author, along with JRR Tolkien, Edgar Allan Poe, and Mary Stewart. I could go on and on.

When you are not writing, what do you like to do?

I love to listen to music while I’m walking the trails around our university. I also love spending time with my family, going to movies, and playing games.

Tell us about Stevie-girl and the Phantom Pilot and how the story came to be.

I was sitting at my computer one night—all alone in the house—when a small plane flew very low over my house. It was very loud, and then it went silent. I ran outside to see if it had crashed, but I saw nothing! That did make me wonder what it would’ve been like if it had crashed . . . and so the story was born. After it was published and got great reviews, I discovered Stevie-girl wasn’t done with me. So Book Two, Stevie-girl and the Phantom Student, practically wrote itself. Then Book Three, Stevie-girl and the Phantom of Crybaby Bridge, came about just as easily. I think it may be my favorite one of the three!

Here's a peek at Stevie-girl and the Phantom Pilot:

It was the late 60s: the Beatles had washed across America like a British tsunami, Vietnam was a grainy, green and black dose of unreality on the evening news, a bunch of hippies had taken over San Francisco, and there was a heck of a rainstorm pouring down on Woodstock. But I didn’t know all that then.
            I was a little bit lost, looking for something. I swear I didn’t go looking for a ghost . . . well, okay, maybe I did. But I didn’t expect to find one. Heck, I was just a kid. I didn’t expect much of anything.


Have you written other books? If so, tell us a bit about them.

I also write adult novels for 5 Prince Publishing. They are contemporary romance and romantic suspense.

What’s next for your writing? Are you working on a new story?

I just finished a YA horror novel—TAKERS. It will be released in a few months—it has to be edited first.

What advice do you have for other authors? 

Just write. Don’t worry if it isn’t perfect—that’s what revision is all about. But first, you just have to finish the story.

Anything else you want readers to know? 

I have a Middle Grade sci-fi story on Amazon called CHEMS. It is about a blue, chemically altered soldier who is on the trail of a killer. It’s a little bit gory if you like that sort of thing . . .

Where can readers find you and your books? 

www.annswann.blogspot.com  or www.annswann.net



Sony Reader


  1. Just gave me the shivers!! It certainly has the making of a great read Cheryl. I haven't bumped into very many horror genres so this was refreshing! :)
    Thanks for sharing on Kid Lit Blog Hop!
    -Resh @ Stackingbooks

    1. Thank you, Resh. One reviewer said, "It has just enough fright!" I liked that!

  2. Veeeeery interesting. Historical fiction ghost story. Sounds spooky!

    1. It is a little spooky and a little ... historical. =) Just for the record, it's now available on Audio, too. The narrator (Janet Borrus) did a tremendous job!

  3. Thanks, Ann, for taking time to visit with us. Hope you had fun!

    1. Yes, I did have fun, Cheryl. Thank you for a super interview!

  4. This sounds so interesting and unique. I enjoyed the review and her answer to "Why did you pick to write books for MG?" :) Thanks for hosting the Kid Lit Blog Hop!

    1. Thanks, Cool Mom. I really enjoyed this interview!

  5. Wow! What a diversity of stories Ann has written! Sounds like you have a very vivid imagination. Thanks for introducing us to another fantastic author Cheryl through the Kid Lit Blog Hop.

  6. Thanks, Renee -- I write like I read...anything and everything! LOL