As part of the new Middle Grade Mafia series, Mafia 4-1-1, we give you key information (the 411 you could say) by asking four questions to one author to celebrate the release of one of their books. Get it, 4-1-1? Today we have the pleasure of interviewing Susan Adrian about her recent book. We love shining the light on the latest middle-grade book releases! NUTCRACKED released on September 26, 2017 and makes the perfect gift for Christmas!

Middle Grade Mafia: What was your inspiration for NUTCRACKED?

I saw the Nutcracker first when I was 7, and decided I wanted to be a dancer–more specifically, I wanted to be Clara. I danced intensively, mostly ballet, from ages 8 through 16, and during that time danced 9 different roles in the Nutcracker, including Clara! My experiences as Clara inspired this book…along with a healthy dose of magic.

MGM: What is your writing process? (Do you write every day? A certain number of pages etc?)

I try to write every day. As I have a full-time job and a family, I write from 5:30 am to 6:30 am, Monday through Friday. Saturdays and Sundays sometimes I can sleep in until 6:30 or 7, and write until the family gets up. I treat it very much like a job. No slacking off when you only have one precious hour!

MGM: What is the best piece of advice you’ve received regarding writing?

From Diana Gabaldon: 1. Read. 2. Write. 3. Don’t stop. It works very well. 🙂

MGM: How long was it from when you started writing this book until it was published?

Almost exactly 5 years! The book went through 7 drafts, 5 editors, and a lot of hair-tearing…and yet it’s one of my very favorites. It’s full of the magic of Christmas, the ballet, and friendship and family.

MGM: Have you had any personal experience with magic that inspired this story?

I believe–and it’s part of the book–that magic can be found anywhere. There’s magic in dance, and friendships, in family dinners, and in football. The magic in NUTCRACKED is just a more obvious kind of magic.

To order click HERE.

Thank you, Susan! To keep up with Susan, make sure to follow her on Twitter and visit her website.

I will have a review of NUTCRACKED on the blog Thursday so be sure and check back.

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