Mike Malbrough: Will Write for Cookies PLUS Giveaway

 

WILL WRITE FOR COOKIES

INSIGHT – INFORMATION – INSPIRATION

FOR WRITERS

TODAY’S GUEST

head shot

MIKE MALBROUGH

Hip, hip hooray for another incredible 2017 debut picture book author/illustrator. Please welcome our Will Write for Cookies guest of honor.

Mike Malbrough was a freelance graphic designer, comic book artist, performer and teacher with a career spanning two decades before beginning his career as a picture book author-illustrator. He is an active teacher and mentor for young artists in his community, and has received several awards and honors for his work with children and teens. Mike lives in Orange, New Jersey, with his wife, two adventurous kids, and a cat named Agnes who hates him.

cat on desk

Mike, I’m so excited to welcome you to Picture Books Help Kids Soar!

ME: Who were your favorite authors/illustrators when you were a child?

MIKE:

I was always enamored with the work of Mercer Mayer, especially how his creature characters crowded the pages in PROFESSOR WORMBOG IN SEARCH FOR THE ZIPPERUMP-A-ZOO. And of course Shel Silverstein, Maurice Sendak, Dr. Suess and Ludwig Bemelmans. I also remember the HENRY books by Mark Taylor and Graham Booth always being around.

ME: What do you know now that you wish you had known when you first started writing for children?

MIKE:

That having terrible ideas and writing even worse sentences was just part of the path as opposed to a cosmic sign that you should never write. Putting that stuff down on the paper/ screen is important to getting somewhere as a storyteller.

ME: Where do you like to write – inside, outside, a special area in your home, on the computer, in a notebook?

MIKE:

I am constantly in flux, like I am trying to tune in a radio. I gravitate towards whatever gets me somewhere. As an author and illustrator, I interchange disciplines fluidly. Sometimes I can “write” quite a bit by designing a character’s clothes or setting, but there are times when just pounding the keyboard gets me there faster.

storyboard and illustration

ME: When do you write? Set schedule? When the muse strikes?

MIKE:

Early morning at a coffee shop is the best time to plow through a first draft. I haven’t quite exited the world of dreams while having enough caffeine in me to work quickly.

ME: Why do you write for children?

MIKE:

I think of storytelling, and art in general, as a call and response, a dialogue. You “see” certain things in the world and then reflect those back through your creativity to a certain audience. The things that I find fascinating and fill me with a sense of love and wonder radiate strongest in the world of children, and I find that the work that I find most pleasing to do resonates with the hearts and minds of young people.

MarigoldBakesCake_interior_1

ME: Mike, do you have any other tips or thoughts you’d like to share with everyone?

MIKE

My advice for writers: It’s never too early to take it seriously. Also, it’s never too late to take it seriously. And lastly, you should never take it too seriously.

MarigoldBakesCake_interior_2

I LOVE THAT ADVICE, Mike! We’ve got to buckle down and do the writing and rewriting, right? But we also have to find joy doing it and have fun with it…like kids. And it is NEVER too late. EVER!

If you’d like to find out more about Mike and his work:

www.mikemalbrough.com)

Twitter: @studiomalbrough.

Now dear friends, Mike has a very special treat recipe for us. Take it away, Mike.

Kourabiedes

A traditional Greek shortbread cookie, that is dense and delicious. The texture is amazing. Have some with tea!

Ingredients should be at room temperature.

Bake at 300 degrees for 22 minutes. Makes 2 ½ dozen.

 

2 ½ sticks of unsalted butter

1 cup superfine sugar

2 egg yolks

1 ½ tbsp. brandy

1 ½ tsp. vanilla

3 cups all-purpose flour

Whole Cloves (optional)

1 package 10x confectioners’ powdered sugar

 

Beat butter and superfine sugar in a large bowl with electric mixture at high speed for 15 MINUTES, or until light and fluffy. (Should have a white pearlescent look when ready.) Don’t skimp on the time it makes a difference. Scrape side of bowl with rubber spatula occasionally.

Add egg yolks, brandy and vanilla. Add flour, ½ cup at a time. If dough is too heavy, work it by hand. (Dough should be soft but firm.)

Break off walnut-sized pieces. Shape into crescents and place on an ungreased cookie sheet. Insert a clove (optional) in each crescent.

 

Bake in slow oven (200 degrees) for 22 minutes or until pale brown. (Color should not change too much.) Remove cookies from oven and place on a platter. Cool. Remove cloves. Dust generously with confectioner’s sugar. (The cookies will look like a mound of sugar.) Store in a metal tin with a tight-fitting lid.

WOW! These look amazing! I think I am gaining a pound every week with all of these fabulous treat recipes. But it is worth it, right?

Please don’t forget to leave a comment today…it will give you an entry into the giveaway of a copy of MARIGOLD BAKES A CAKE. And for another entry, make sure you comment on yesterday’s Perfect Picture Book Friday review of the book.

Marigold_COVER

And, if you have a little extra time, why not hop over to Amazon and/or Goodreads and leave a review for Mike and all of your favorite authors and illustrators. It will mean the world to them!

Have a safe and happy weekend!

About viviankirkfield

Writer for children - Reader forever Mom of 3, educator, author of SWEET DREAMS, SARAH (Creston Books, 2018), picture book junkie, lover of travel, hiking, cooking, playing Monopoly with my 8-year old grandson and fly-fishing with my husband.

Posted on July 22, 2017, in book giveaway, Dessert recipe, Uncategorized, Will Write for Cookies - Author/Illustrator interviews and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 33 Comments.

  1. Maria Marshall

    Wonderful interview and advice. I love your assistant! Can’t wait to read this book.

    Like

  2. Hello, from Patras, Greece! I am excited Mike for reminding us how important is to think that ”never is too late” regarding writing plus the fact that one of my favorite sweets ”Kourabiedes” is presented by you! Yiassou my dear friend!

    Like

  3. Lovely interview and gorgeous looking book. That cover and those cats eyes really grab you. Illustrations are fab.

    Like

  4. Thanks for a great interview (and the recipe)!

    Like

  5. Can’t wait to read about Marigold! Thanks for the great advice…got to have that behind in the chair!

    Like

  6. Never too early, never too late – I think it’s writing time right now! Wonderful interview & fabulous recipe – with butter AND brandy, how could it not be?

    Like

  7. Marigold is adorable. Mike’s advice…seriously! 😀

    Like

  8. Beth Gallagher

    Absolutely love Marigold and cannot wait to read it! Thanks for the great interview, the advice to keep on going despite life’s obstacles to quiet writing time :), and for the fabulous recipe! Yet another great post, Vivian! ❤

    Like

  9. I have the book on hold at the library so I can write a review – and preview it before I buy it for my grand baby! Mike, I am glad you named your cat Marigold instead of Agnes. Also, and since Agnes already hates you, I can say this: Marigold is GORGEOUS! Agnes is just . . . gray. 🙂 Best of luck with this lovely book!

    Like

  10. Love this interview! And would love to win this book to share with kids I work with – and honestly, for the kid in me. LOL

    Like

  11. danielle hammelef

    I have to keep your advice in mind–I tend to take myself too seriously. Thanks for taking the time to answer questions and give us a sneak peek into your art life. I also have to remember that my writing is a learning curve/hill/mountain! that I’ll always be climbing to seek improvement as I go. This book is a must read for me.

    Like

  12. I love the idea of art as call and response. From the book description, I think the response here will be lots of laughs! Continued success to you, Mike, as you call us with your words and illustrations. Thanks for hosting Mike here, Vivian.

    Like

  13. Mike,

    Thanks for sharing your process and advice.
    Love the photo of Agnes ‘sharing’ your work space with you. ; ) I have two cats that love to do the same. Off to buy ingredients for those yummy cookies. Mahalo!

    Like

  14. Ahh, now my tummy is growling, but that’s ok since my heart is singing! Thank you for your beautiful and inspirational words. You encouraged not only me but my 15 year old daughter who is sitting here with me writing her stories. :)!

    Like

  15. Oh boy, oh boy, a cat book! Must have. Fun interview, Vivian. Thanks for sharing Mike with us. Multitalented guy!

    Like

  16. I hope you’re right, Mike, that it’s never too late. I love your illustrations.
    Great interview, Vivian.

    Like

  17. I love your advice! And your cookie recipe sounds great. Congrats again on Marigold. I’m looking forward to the sequel.

    Like

  18. joanraymondwriting

    Thank you for the encouraging words and recipe!

    Like

  19. Ah, I just love your advice! Well said 🙂 We make a similar dessert in Bulgaria, too . . . yummy! Congratulations on the book! Can’t wait to read it.

    Like

  20. I can’t wait to read Marigold and appreciate your advice. A good reminder to persevere. Congratulations on your success!

    Like

  21. I can’t wait to read this book!

    Like

  22. David McMullin

    Marigold looks terrific. I’m can’t wait to find this book.

    Like

  23. Sounds like a cheeky kitty. Can’t wait to read it! Thanks for sharing.

    Like

  24. Looks like a really fun book– now I’m in the mood to bake!

    Like

  25. Mike, the photo and part about your cat Agnes hating you made me laugh. I thought “No, that can’t be true”. Then I saw the your illustrations and completely understood. The cat in your book does NOT look like Agnes. Agnes is insulted!!! I, on the other hand, find your illustrations lovely and the story sounds like a fun tale. I look forward to reading it.

    And thanks for the recipe.

    Another good interview, Vivian. Thanks for always keeping me up to date on new books. It’s hard to find the most recently published English books here in Germany. Your posts help me know what to look for (and what books to order when I can’t find them nearby.)

    Like

  26. I can tell already that Marigold has a unique voice and is a character to follow! Congrats, Mike on your debut book.

    Like

  27. ACK! Marigold is so adorable!! I love to bake and can’t wait to read it! Congratulations, Mike!

    Like

  28. Great article and wonderful encouragement. Thank you

    Like

  29. Love the cover on this book! Thanks for the great interview, Mike and Vivian!

    Like

  30. This book looks like a charmer for young and old. Just looking at the illustrations make you smile! Will be awaiting my copy!

    Like

  31. I absolutely love the sign on the door! We could all use that as a poster! I had to laugh at Marigold’s expressions. I knew a marmalade cat who had a way of letting you know just what he thought. I think he and Marigold would have been quite a pair.

    Like

  32. How cute for the kids!

    Like

  33. Am I too late to enter? Anyway, this looks delightful!

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

National Day Calendar

Fun, unusual and forgotten designations on our calendar.

Michelle Eastman Books

Kid Lit Author and Advocate

Hmmmmm

about reading, writing & thinking children's books

Laura Boffa: Write of Way

Giving the way of writing the right of way

PICTURE the BOOKS

A Gallery of New Picture Book Talent

EMU's Debuts

From Deal to Debut: the Path to Publication

Wander, Ponder, Write

A KidLit Journey...

Picture Book House

reviews and stories about parenting with picture books

pernilleripp.wordpress.com/

Blogging Through the Fourth Dimension

Norah Colvin

Live Love Laugh Learn . . . Create the possibilities

Beth Anderson, Children's Writer

Reader, Writer, Miner of Moments

Dan Szczesny

Travel Writer / Journalist / Author

Susanna Leonard Hill

Children's Author

The Stinky Backpack

Traveling the Everyday World

Write One Real Life

Where writing meets faith in the real world.

The Runaway Palate

Food. Travel. Cooking. Random musings. Maybe some historical stuff.

The Reader and the Book

"O Day of days when we can read! The reader and the book, either without the other is naught." Ralph Waldo Emerson

WRITERS' RUMPUS

Authors & Illustrators Wild About Kidlit!

One Good Thing

Teresa Robeson's 365-Day project

Tracy Campbell

Heart for Ewe Publishing

kidsbook friends

Check out this blog about children's books!

Mary Jo Beswick

Author and Illustrator of Children's Picture Books

Leslie Leibhardt Goodman

Children's Writer

Pattern Me Mommy

My journey from Type A know-it-all to MOMMY! by Anna Redding

READ to KIDS

PB author, poet, writing for kids

Friendly Fairy Tales

Fairy Tales and Poetry Celebrating Magic and Nature for Kids of all Ages

Lauri Fortino's Frog On A (B)log

Sharing and Celebrating Picture Books Since 2009

Stacy S. Jensen

Let's Read Picture Books Together

Reading With Rhythm

book reviews from Rhythm the Library Dog

Nerdy Book Club

A community of readers

Nerdy Chicks Write

Get it Write this Summer!

Laura Sassi Tales

Celebrating writing, reading, and life.

Erika Wassall here... The Jersey Farm Scribe

Author, Freelance Writer, Entreprenur... LIVER of life

Angie Karcher

Writing Children's Books

Chapter Book Chat

A Writer Reviews Chapter Books, by Marty Mokler Banks

The Blabbermouth Blog

Literary Agent Linda Epstein's Yakkety Yakking

The Waiting

Turns out, it's not the hardest part.

%d bloggers like this: