The Sound Catcher - Graham Garrity
The Sound Catcher is a delightful children's story that has a good mix of drama/conflict and childish fun and delight.
Chloe is a sweet and curious protagonist who finds courage and determination as she journeys through a bizarre subset of our world. I really enjoyed watching her interact and get to know The Sound Catcher.
The Sound Catcher is a thoroughly entertaining character who is both colorful and hilarious. His mannerisms come across so vividly through the pages that even if there were illustrations (which they are and they're great!) there would be no issue in picturing this lovable character.
While Chloe loves this new world, and enjoys the challenges and adventures she faces while traveling with the Sound Catcher, there does come a time when she needs to return home. And just like a good young adult story should, she has matured through her experience and has a new outlook on life.
Some Bio Information
I was the kid at school who never paid attention. In English my grades were always D or E and I once received a report from a Geography teacher that said, 'This lad does well to find his way home.'
I left school with few qualifications and began work in a local factory as a maintenance engineer. After ten years of building and repairing machines I applied to join the police. One of my better decisions. I spent several years as a detective and worked on numerous burglary, robbery and murder investigations. I retired in 2011.
I began writing some years ago when I realised that everything I said to my children went in one ear and straight out the other. When I wrote them stories at least they paid attention.
My first novel, The Sound Catcher, a children's fantasy/adventure was released on Kindle in January 2015.
1. Can you tell us where you go the idea for your book?
One day my kids were being extremely noisy and I thought how great it would be if I could build a machine that could gather up all the noise. I knew that if it could be done parents everywhere would be forever grateful. That night when the kids were in bed I started putting a few ideas down on paper. A week later I had completed the outline of The Sound Catcher. As I started to put flesh on the bones, however, the story seemed to take on a life of its own. The finished book is a lot different from the story I had envisioned.
2. Who is your favorite author?
My favorite author is Michael Connelly. Being an ex-detective myself I think his portrayal of LA detective Harry Bosch is brilliant.
3. Describe the perfect writing environment.
For me it is a small room where everything is within easy reach. Next to my computer I have a radio, purely for background noise, a coffee machine, (I need lots of coffee), printer, paper, pens, a dictionary and a thesaurus. Above my computer there are three shelves full of history books. Behind me, four shelves crammed with fictional novels. Outside my window is a large expanse of grass and mature trees. Every time I walk into my room and see all those books and that view it gives me a buzz and puts me in the mood to write.
4. Can you describe your writing process?
My wring begins with an A4 ruled notebook and a pen. I think of things that amused me as a child and make a few random notes. I also try to recall conversations that I've had with others. What they've said may ignite a spark. I also try to recall all the amusing stories I've heard concerning family or friends or people I know. Once I've made my notes I read through them to see if I can find anything that may form the basis of a story. Sometimes I'll come up with a very basic idea for a story. Other times I'll see nothing at all. If I do see the possibility of a story I'll work at it until it begins to take shape. Once I have a basic storyline I transfer my notes onto computer, where the majority of my work is done. I try to write at least 500 words per day. I do my first edit once a chapter is complete. Once the story is complete I put it to one side for three to four weeks. Then I go back and edit the complete story. I usually edit three or four times with a week or two between each edit. Once I'm happy with the story I'll have someone else read it and, depending on their findings, do a final edit. At that stage I send my book to a professional company that does free book critiques. Based on their comments I'll either make the necessary changes to the story or put it to one side and consider a complete re-write.
5. What is your ultimate writing goal?
Like most authors I'd like to top the bestseller list for my genre. Having said that I once posted on Twitter that if my books can make one kid smile that would be enough for me. I know from the feedback I've received from friends and family that I've made quite a few kids smile, so I'm quite happy with my achievements so far.
6. Where do you draw inspiration?
As I've outlined above, personal experience and the experiences of others. Good ideas seldom surprise you. You have to work at them.
7. Describe your favorite place.
I love America and have been there quite a few times. But one place that stands out is Santa Barbara. It was a beautiful sunny day the sea was nice and calm and I sat at a table on the pier eating calamari. It felt like paradise.