Sunday, May 24, 2009

Interview with Amanda Noll, author of I NEED MY MONSTER, and a contest!

Did you know that some kids need a monster to get to sleep? Well, Amanda Noll does. Her debut book, I Need My Monster, is about a boy who cannot get to sleep until he gets the right monster--his monster--back under the bed.

"First, and foremost," says Amanda, "it’s a book about monsters under the bed." But there's a twist. This boy wants his monster. Gabe, the boy's regular monster had the nerve to take off and go fishing. How's a boy to get to sleep? Howard McWilliam illustrates an array of cutely-cranky monsters who try to appease the boy and are not happy that they won't do whether it's because of polished nails or a long tongue.

What? You don't think a long tongue is scary either? My kids have found this book to be hilarious and have been having fun quoting it and changing things around. They've been threatening each other with a long lip--the book has definitely kindled their imagination.

Amanda has stopped by to answer a few questions about her book and her writing. Plus, she's going to give away a signed copy of I Need My Monster! Just leave a comment on this post (more details at the end of the interview.)

Amanda, I Need My Monster has been getting some great reviews, what inspired you to write the story?

Wishing my 3 year old would have a monster under her bed so she would stay in bed. Then wondering why the monster was doing such a lousy job (because she was out of bed again!). Then I imagined even monsters needed a break.

(Amanda! You are funny!)

I Need My Monster is your first published book. What was your road to publication like?

The road was long and rocky, like most people's.

(Ahem. Yup.)

How many manuscripts did you write before I Need My Monster? What have you done with them?

I have written many picture books and several novels. Most of them will stay in my drawer forever. I hope one or two of my novels see the light of day.

How does it feel to be able to call yourself an author now?


Are there any similarities between you and your main character?

No, but after the process I looked back and recognized several family members personified as monsters!?!

(Ha! But did they recognize themselves?)

What is the most fun thing you’ve done to support the publication of your book?

I created a “toe cake” to accompany my launch party.

(Who doesn't like to eat toes?!)

Do you have any other books in the works? Tell us about your work-in-progress.

I’m a little suspicious about talking about works in progress, but I will say I have a middle grade ghost story up my sleeve.

(Oh, sorry, don't wanna jinx ya.)

If you could live in any book, which one would it be and why?

I think that I would love to be in Anne McCaffrey’s Dragon Singer, because I love dragons and have always wanted a fire lizard.

I Need My Monster is published by Flashlight Press. You can read more about Amanda at her website,

Like I said, Amanda is giving away a signed copy of I Need My Monster right here! Just leave a comment on this post. If you want, you can tell us what your monster needs to keep you in bed. Mine has lots of rejection letters--they keep me in bed and writing! His name is Querrel.
The contest is open to U.S. and Canadian residents. I'll do the draw on Friday, May 29th at 8:00p.m. and will post then, as long as my kid's monsters keep them in bed.


  1. Yay, Amanda! And what a fabulous book it is. I'm proud to say I had the opportunity to read it long before it became a book. Good luck to you with the rest of your writing projects.

  2. Great interview, you guys!

    I had a monster under my bed when I was growing up, but he had really short arms. As long as I took a giant leap from halfway across the room, I could get to my bed without encountering him. Of course, that meant I could still get out of bed constantly. :D

  3. The nasty scale in the bathroom that lies with its ever increasing numbers every time I dare to indulge in anything that doesn't taste like cardboard!

    ajcmeyer AT go DOT com

  4. My monster needs deadlines. Nothing can keep me in bed like a deadline that's drawing near!!
    I teach kindergarten. This sounds really cute!


  5. This sounds like a gRAEt book and one that my son would really enjoy!!!

  6. Looks like an adorable book! Thanks for the contest!

  7. this looks super cute. My kids needs more monsters.I never thought of it that way

  8. Nice interview Heather. I love the idea behind Amanda's book, very cute.

    Hmmm, my monsters to keep me in bed? There are many, but they all go by the name Dirty: dirty laundry, dirty dishes, dirty kids. Yikes, pull up the covers and hide.
    Carrie Anne

  9. Oh, how cute. i have two kids in preschool who would love this!

  10. OMG, Linda, I forgot about that monster that would grab my feet if I let them hang over the side of the bed. Yeah, I had to jump over that one. Scary! Seriously!
    I could certainly use a deadline monster.
    And Carrie Anne, I think your monsters visit my house--alot!

  11. Hey, Amanda and Heather! Great interview, great book...LOVE the illos, LOVE the ominous pool of drool..and Gabe?

    I'm beginning to feel just a little bit deprived. I wish I'd had a Gabe. Our monsters were all in the closet. Closet monsters are just not the same. ;-)

  12. milk and cookies never told mom and boy did we have bugs i just explained to her they ate the monster thanks for the giveaway

  13. I would love to have this book for my children. They don't have imaginary monsters but they do have a convenient imaginary fried that causes way to much mischief in the house - she could use a holiday too!

    thanks for the giveaway!

    bsyb100 at gmail dot com

  14. I have Howie the Homework monster to keep me in bed. I started college at age 44 and I need my sleep if I'm going to continue to get good grades.

  15. Dirty laundry... and dishes! Thanks for the chance, this looks cute! hawkgirl_16 {at} hotmail {dot} com

  16. Ok, now I have an excuse to stay in bed. Or the monster will get me!
    This looks like a cute book.

  17. No monsters here. My cats ate them all.
    HobartsMama AT

  18. this looks like a great book for my daughter!

  19. My nephew would love this book. Thanks for the chance


  20. I don't know what would keep me in bed but, the monster under our bed seems to need our cat to keep him company.

  21. What a cute book! I need a monster to get me out of bed on weekends, I love to sneak my baby girl into the bed and we snuggle the morning away. I love every minute of it but do not get much accomplished.

  22. My 3 year old is going through her monster faze now and this book would be awesome

  23. Oh My Gosh, my kids would LOVE this book! Please enter me. Thanks so much :o)

  24. My kids would really like this one! My monster is nicknamed Stress -- that keeps me in bed faster then anything else -- sigh.

  25. My monster needs inapid bills.

    Thanks for the giveaway!

  26. Amanda,

    What kid doesn't have a monster under their bed. My 6 year old son surounds himself with a wall of pillows and stuffed animals. The crazy thing is I did that as a kid too and never told him about it. Weird how we think alike. I still cannot let my feet hang over the bed even today. My monster is the never ending lists I write of things I need to do. As I cross one thing off, I write a new thing down.

  27. Sounds like an interesting book. I'd love to win this for my son. Thanks!
    beatspammer at gmail dot com

  28. Mine trashes the house, dirties up laundry and teases the kids to make them cranky and whiny. Oh, and he also like to eat all the food in the house when I'm not looking.

  29. Sorry I'm a little late. Our monsters decided to take the night off. It is such a nice summer evening that I don't blame them.

    But, after a little random number generating, we have a winner! Cstironkat--congratulations!

    Thanks to everyone for playing. Seems that as grown ups our monsters have alot to do with work, household and otherwise. Bother!

    Didn't win? I'll be doing another giveaway on May 8th with Dawn Jeffers, author of Beautiful Moon. Frolick on over!

  30. Oh duh, I meant there'll be another giveaway on JUNE 8th.

    See what happens when I try to plan ahead!

  31. Looks like a fantastic book that I will want for my son!

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