Interviewing Author Rick Starkey Q1. Tell us about yourself. What are your favorite books to read? A. My wife and I own Make It Magic. It’s a magic shop in the Great Smoky Arts and Crafts community in Gatlinburg TN. We sell magic tricks and carve bears with a chainsaw. My favorite books to read are in middle grade. I like Carl Hiaasen’s Hoot, Chomp, Scat, and Squirm, though some of the languages in Squirm surprised me. I also like anything by Jack Gantos. I love his humor. There are many others. These were just the first to come to Q2. Where did the inspiration to write come from? A. Probably in 2010. I started one, then realized I didn’t know what I was doing so I took a course through the Institute of Children’s Literature. When I finished it in 2012, I sold a few pieces to Highlights for Children magazine, and then I got back to my book. Q3. How did you come up with the titles of your books? A. I have always loved scary stories, and I am a guitar player.