Bootles looking pensive

As the talented James Chapman works on the illustrations for Kyle Evans and the Deadly Plague, I thought I would share one of his new images of Bootles.  Clearly, the cat (who is not a cat) has a lot on his mind.bootles-pensive

Kyle Evans and The Deadly Plague will be available in November, but in the meantime, the first book in the series is available at your local bookstore, or online at ( and (

Kyle Evans and the Deadly Plague

The second installment in the Kyle Evans trilogy will be available this November!  It continues the adventures of Kyle, Sofia and Bootles, along with a host of new characters – some lovable, some not!

If you haven’t had a chance to read the first book yet (Kyle Evans and the Key to the Universe) it is available at all bookstores, or you can purchase it online here or here

Working with Lainey




For me, one of the most important and enjoyable elements of the editing process is having kids read and critique an early draft of a manuscript.

This is Lainey – one of my favorite readers –  discussing the upcoming Kyle Evans book (number 2 in the trilogy).  Feedback from Lainey, and others (Sofia, Leo, Samantha, Kaden, Nicole and more!), improves every book I write.


I want to thank all of the Middlebrook sixth graders who entered the story writing competition.  The submissions were awesome, but there could only be one winner and that person has been notified by email.


For privacy reasons, I will not reveal the winner’s name here, but they will have a character named after them in my upcoming book (The Alexa Hill Chronicles) which is due to be published in Spring 2017.


Kyle Evans Update

I am thrilled to announce that the first draft of the new Kyle Evans book (the second book in the trilogy) is complete.  All being well, this book should be ready for release by Thanksgiving 2016.  In case this seems like a long time, here’s what has to happen between now and then:


For the text

  1. A first round of editing
  2. Early readers review the manuscript
  3. A second round of editing based on feedback from the early readers
  4. A third round of editing by an independent editor
  5. A final round of editing by me
  6. Production of a proof copy of the book
  7. Final approval of the book


For the illustrations

  1. Selecting which scenes might be illustrated (in conjunction with James Chapman – my brother and the book illustrator)
  2. Producing early sketches of 15-20 scenes
  3. Narrowing sketches down to 8-10 final scenes
  4. Producing and digitizing final illustrations
  5. Developing a cover concept for the book
  6. Producing an early version of the cover artwork
  7. Producing and digitizing the final cover


I have a sudden feeling that I better get started!

What’s new?

It’s been a while since I posted anything, so here’s a quick update on what’s been going on:

  1. The first draft of the second installment in the Kyle Evans trilogy is about 75% finished. My current plan is for the book to be available either by Christmas 2016, or by spring 2017.
  2. The Alexa Hill Chronicles (Volume 1) is currently being read by my team of advance readers. I’m not sure when this book will be ready for release.
  3. I had a great time presenting to the 6th graders of Middlebrook School last week. Three hundred kids and I wrote a story about a chipmunk stuck on a cruise ship with his grandpa and an 8th-grade bully.
  4. Our pet goldfish survived the annual “full” cleaning of its tank, but it was touch and go.
  5. I have been traveling a lot – most recently to London – and have several more trips coming up to LA, Denver and Chicago. Hopefully I will be able to use these flights to make more progress with Kyle, Bootles and Sofia!
  6. And finally, Kyle Evans and the Key to the Universe and Flicker continue to be available at and other retailers, worldwide. Yes, I realize that’s not news, but I have to plug the books every now and then!🙂