I think many kids look at their immediate world and find it boring. As a kid I escaped into the world of my imagination regularly. Though I did enjoy the characters and color of growing up in a very colorful (albeit sometimes dangerous) neighborhood of East Harlem, NYC, having a very active imagination and a slice of heaven that was my backyard to escape to was a real blessing. In the summer I would climb my crab apple tree and pick the sour fruit that most hated but I loved. In the autumn the carpet of leaves was a blast to kick around in. When the snow came, igloos and snowball fights ruled the day. One day I was tossing snowballs at my sister who was teasing me from the bathroom window, My first three shots missed- hitting the window as it slammed shut. But the fourth ball hit its target. Problem was it turned out to be my Dad!
When Spring returned I would help my parents plant flowers and
vegetables in the small plot of soil that received enough sun. The sting
of snowballs long melted to memory.
Although I grew up with four sisters and enough friends, I often
enjoyed being alone in my world. Stories would fill my head. Worlds
morph and form before me. So jump ahead a bunch of years where I found
myself in a place in life where the job was a huge cloud of utter
boredom. My personal Graysland. An escape was often the beauty of
Central Park. So it was on an autumn day, when endless piles of leaves
crunched under my feet, when the world of Rupert Starbright was born.He
would live in a boring, gray world where the adults were more concerned
with raking leaves than the minds of their children.
Rupert would be lured by the song- the music and the colors of a
stranger who descends from the sky. Looking back it is obvious that Pie
O’Sky was a rock star. Music has always been my greatest inspiration.
Especially classic rock. Pie O’Sky with his Jimmy Page hair and Jimi
Hendrix clothing was that same musical muse.
He would provide the door to adventure. As a writer- we are always looking for that open door. That chance to get our work seen.
first Rupert book was THE DOOR TO FAR-MYST. The publisher (Zumaya
Thresholds) felt it would be better to split the book into two parts.
Thus, the SECRET OF MY-MYST was born of book one. The reviews were
I knew Rupert needed more adventures and I would happily send him on
them. I discussed a novella with my publisher- one with a holiday theme
that could be released in December. Well, the novella became a novel.
THE GHOST OF WINTER JOY. This story puts Rupert on an adventure where he
will face a ghostly horror and get some clues as to why his home town
is so boring. All while desperately trying to save the memory of ancient
holiday that the people of Graysland once celebrated.
Perhaps is most exciting and interesting adventure yet, THE GHOST OF
WINTER JOY, I hope, will join many others as a tale to be told every
holiday season. A story to bring color into the lives of kids of all
Will there be more adventures for Rupert Starbright. I imagine so…
A filmmaker and writer since childhood, Mike has directed numerous
shorts, music videos, documentaries, promotional videos and two feature
films (NO EXIT and TRIPTOSANE). His first novel, Milky Way Marmalade
received rave reviews and was the winner of the 2003 Dream Realm Award.
He is very excited about the release of the first of his exciting new kid-lit series, RUPERT STARBRIGHT: The Door to Far-Myst.
Mike, a certified Yoga instructor, has many interests including
gardening (loves growing chili peppers in his rooftop garden), playing
guitar, cats (long-time volunteer at NYC’s Ollie’s Place Adoption
Center), really good and really bad movies and 70s TV as well all kinds
of geeky stuff. He is a dedicated MST3K fanatic. He thinks of music as
his religion—especially Classic Rock.
He lives quite contently in a NYC apartment with his wife and soul
mate, Suzy and their rescued kitties, Cosmo and Rupert. You can visit
Mike’s website at www.mikedicerto.com