Where did you get the idea for your most recent book?
Christian Page I start out with a world or larger idea. For the Monster Squad I was seeing a lot of emphasis on wizards and witches, vampires, werewolves and zombies in popular culture but not a lot of air time for the other great characters from classic Sci-Fi and gothic literature. I thought it would be fun to update this pantheon of classic fixtures and give them a young and modern twist kids who are just starting to get into reading could enjoy and be inspired by. From there I write a first chapter based on the idea and see if the idea hangs together. If I like it, I then go into an iterative process of outlining and writing using a long time story arc as my guide (the Monster Squad is designed to be four books to complete the broader story I want to tell). There is a lot of iteration of details but you keep to the broader arc for where you want the characters to ultimately go and the relationships you’d like to see develop. Along the way, the story is read aloud multiple times. Ultimately, I want my writing to “sound” like a movie with the same pacing and dialogue you would expect from something on the big screen. It’s got to have escalating pacing, well positioned set pieces, the right drama and character development with logical breaks for the reader where they can take a breather. I think the first Monster Squad did a good job of achieving the original vision both in terms of the world and the pacing/narrative style goals I set out. I'm excited for the follow on books because the setting of book 1 is constrained to the main characters' small Oregon hometown - Books 2-4 open up the settings and the cast of monster characters quite a bit - we'll hit on all the classics from Gothic Literature and classic Horror and Sci-Fi movies.