Author Interview & Book Giveaway: 8 The Previously Untold Story of the Previously Unknown 8th Dwarf

Welcome to Author Michael Mullin


Michael grew up in New England, where all his sports allegiances remain. He is co-author of the successful Larry Gets Lost picture book series, and was recognized by the WGA’s Written By magazine for an animation screenplay. Before writing as a career, he taught preschool and college, two positions he found disconcertingly similar. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife and 10-year-old twins who pretty much run his life (despite his best efforts to appear as if he is running theirs).

If you could travel in a Time Machine would you go back to the past or into the future?

Back, but just far enough to make my sports betting more lucrative.

If you could invite any 5 people to dinner who would you choose?

I’m passionate about the need to overhaul our country’s education system. I’d invite Ken Robinson and Geoffrey Canada and have them help me find three other influential people (notice I didn’t say “powerful”) to share ideas and further the plan of action.

What is one book everyone should read?

Mine. It is (as we would say back in Boston) wicked short.

If you could meet one person who has died, whom would you choose?

Although I can sadly add Steve Jobs to the list now, it would probably be Joseph Campbell. Fascinating breadth of knowledge and a wonderful storyteller – seemingly without the pretension. (I don’t know for sure; I never met him!)

Pet Peeves?

I don’t have a pet. And if I did, I certainly wouldn’t name him “Peeves”.
Please tell us in one sentence only, why we should read your book.

Who doesn’t like an alternative way of seeing something we thought we knew all about?

Any other books in the works? Goals for future projects? 

I am about 2/3 done with an original fairytale I’m callingThe Plight and Plot of Princess Penny. It’s about a Princess who hires a witch to get revenge on a Mean Girl at school. The nod to “retelling” is that the witch is from The Frog Prince.

What was your favorite book when you were a child? 

Where the Wild Things Are. My son Max is named after its protagonist.

Is there a song you could list as the theme song for your book or any of your characters?

An Arctic Monkeys version of “Whistle While You Work” would do.

What’s one piece of advice you would give aspiring authors?

Be a brutal self editor. You’re not as “from the hip” smart and funny as you think you are. No one is.

What is your favorite Quote?

My previous answer.

When you were little, what did you want to be when you “grew up”?

A police officer, but “undercover” so I could wear sneakers.

If a movie was made about your life, who would you want to play the lead role and why?

Daniel Craig or some action star who could ramp it up a bit. (See uber-boring description of my typical day below.)

What movie and/or book are you looking forward to this year?

I never look forward to books. I always get recommendations of books that are already out – often for some time. I’m a bit of a Batman geek, so The Dark Knight Rises for movie.That’s actually summer 2012. Does that count?
Give us a glimpse into a typical day starting when you wake up till you lie down again.

I get up earlier than I’d like and take my twins to school (boy/girl in 5th grade), which is about a 45-minute drive. Then I sit in a small coffee shop for a couple of hours and work. If I have no copywriting deadlines, I work on my own writing or online marketing of my book.Then maybe lunch with a client or friend. I take care of any house/family errands before getting to the kids’ school early to squeeze in some more work. After their schoolday I’m watching their sports games or taking them to tennis class or running a small study group before band practice. Then the drive home, dinner, kids’ do homework while I do home work. Mommy comes home, and I hear about their day (again). I’m last to bed. Yes, writing again at night.

What’s your favorite season/weather?

I’m a hockey fan from New England (though I live in Los Angeles now), so Fall has always had special meaning. Now that continues because it means back to school for my kids. There is no more distinctive example of them growing up.

What TV show/movie/book do you watch/read that you’d be embarrassed to admit?

I have plenty of opportunity on the TV side. My wife is a marketing executive at a cable network geared toward teens. She tapes many shows (her network and competitive). Truth be told, however, I can only politely last through about 10 minutes of any of them.

Finish the sentence- one book I wish I had written is….

The Bible. I would have made it hipper, more accessible, less contradictory and WAY funnier.

Favorite music?

My favorite band is The Police. I’m also a big Peter Gabriel fan. I listen to classical music while writing, though. (No distracting lyrics.)

Write a Haiku about your book

Seven in the tale

But another lived below

Quite misunderstood

Title: 8: The Previously Untold Story of the Previously Unknown 8th Dwarf

Written in verse, this is the previously untold story of the previously unknown 8th dwarf, named Creepy. He is banished to the basement for being different and, well, weird. Yet he plays a vital – and of course previously unknown – role in the popular tale of Snow White (whose title character is an intruder Creepy refers to as “the Maid”).

The stories we pass down from parent to child
Were once filled with darkness, but somehow turned mild.
We tweak and revise, and when all else fails
We choose to omit certain crucial details.
Until they’re forgotten, and nobody knows
How a story originally, truthfully goes.

My Review:

So begins 8: The Previously Untold Story of the Previously Unknown 8th Dwarf, a short 22 page story told in verse.  I’m a lover of fractured fairy tales so I got quite a few laughs while reading this clever tale of “Creepy” the 8th banished dwarf who lives below the floorboard in the 7 dwarf’s cottage.

The rhyming text is perfectly done but this is not a fairy tale for children but rather aimed at adults or older teens. If you are looking for a new twist on a favorite story this is definitely worth reading.

Giveaway Details: 
5 Winners will each receive an ebook copy (if you don’t have an ereader this can easily be read on your computer – it is just 22 pages long).
Open Internationally
Ends 11/9/11

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