Susan is passionate about getting children to be great readers and writers and often posts free activities regarding reading and writing on her blog.
WHERE DID HER IDEA FOR THE SERIES COME FROM?
Susan's passion for animal welfare inspired the series.
"My friend and I wanted to do something for animal welfare," she told me. "I have worked in the pet and dog training industry for years and she is very compassionate. While there are many shelters and pounds that try hard to rehome unwanted dogs we felt that there needed to be a greater awareness of the plight of many dogs that are left un-walked in their backyard.
“From there I created The Organisation which all my characters belong to which operates under our noses without detection. Its purpose is to save dogs from neglect. I thought it would be fun if the dogs took control of this situation themselves. It also gave me a great deal of material to work with.”
HER CHARACTERS ARE BASED ON REAL LIFE DOGS
“When I decided to write my first book, The Great Escape, I sat down and made a list of the all the dogs I knew,” she said. “Some of them were mine, others belonged to family members. I then wrote down three characteristics each dog had that I thought would be useful.
“So, Alfie the Doberman cross is very strong, is always hungry and he’s not very clever (not as far as dogs go, anyway). He has other characteristics but I chose those to build his character. And it worked really well.
"He’s one of the funniest characters in my books. In Major Dakota’s Ghost, he sees five ghostly shapes coming towards him and mistakes them for pizza delivery boys. When you have characters like Alfie you can have so much fun with them.
“Indy’s another character. If the real Indy doesn’t like you she bites you; it’s that simple. Naturally, I made her into our no nonsense combo who enjoys fighting anything and anybody. On many occasions her bravery saves the day but there is also an understanding between the characters of how lucky they are she’s on their side because life would be extremely difficult if she wasn’t!
“I run workshops for children and we do this same exercise with their pets. They just love it!”
Shiver me timbers! Susan’s next tale in the Astro’s Adventures series is set at sea. Neptune’s Trident is for ages 8 and up.
Neptune has lost his trident and without it he can't protect his kingdom under the sea. He calls on our brave team of dogs to help him find it. What he doesn't know is that it has been stolen by the wicked genius Speed Bump Charlie and a gang of evil pirate catfish. They want to use it to take over the oceans and rule the seas.
The book takes readers on a slightly wet journey of sea monsters, hammerhead guards and a little crab floating on a raft of rubbish.
WHAT'S THE KEY TO KEEPING READERS CAPTIVATED?
Susan believes you have to think outside the box.
“When I was planning my second book, The Golden Treasure, I knew my characters were going to have to find a treasure. I considered that most treasures are found on desert islands, under rainbows, on pirate ships etc. So, I thought long and hard thought of one place that you’d probably never expect to find a treasure and it also had to be the one place where you were not likely to find any dogs.
“The reason for this was I really enjoy challenging myself as a writer. Sure, I could get the characters to ride in a boat to a desert island or use a map to discover treasure in the forest but that would be too easy! No, I decided that the one place that met these two criteria was a cat show. Can you image the fun I had getting the dogs into and out the show without being detected by any human beings?
“In Neptune’s Trident, I wanted to explore the oceans. I am also concerned with the terrible pollution and I wanted to showcase this issue in this book. I created a character called Little Crab who finds himself floating on an old bucket. As he goes on more rubbish becomes attached and it eventually becomes an island. This describes the Great Garbage Patch and how it evolved.”
YOU CAN BUY NEPTUNE'S TRIDENT AS A KINDLE EBOOK OR COLOUR PRINT BOOK ON AMAZON HERE
AND AS AN EBOOK ON SMASHWORDS HERE
OTHER BOOKS BY SUSAN:
The Great Escape
The Golden Treasure
Major Dakota’s Ghost
Dogs in Space (Coming Soon!)
Find out more about Susan on her blog HERE
Meet all the gang at Astro’s Adventures official website HERE
And for more information about her books go to Susan’s Amazon Author page: http://www.amazon.com/Susan-Day/e/B009SS8IJK
Or her Smashwords Author Page:
Bye for now. But wherever you are on your Earth Walk, always try to Reach For The Stars.
You'll be surprised just what you can achieve!