Interview with Marc Clark

Marc Clark - interview for 7 Magic IslandsUp next in our Wizard of Words series is Marc Clark.
Marc is the award-winning author of The Princess Fables, including such installments as Princess Sabrina and The Very, Very, Very Long Day and The Princess Who Was Very, Very Organized.
In addition to penning several acclaimed children’s stories, Marc shot, directed and produced the HBO Family series 30X30 Kid Flicks and worked for HBO and Cinemax as a producer and writer of more than 2,000 pieces.

7 Magic Islands: Thanks for taking the time to talk to us, Marc. What types of stories did you to tell your son when he was young?

Marc Clark: I used to tell my son stories, usually with friends during play dates or sleepovers. They were adventure stories and would include him and his friends as characters.

7 Magic Islands: That’s a great way to immerse kids in any story! Do you have any plans to turn them into a book?
Marc Clark: There are no immediate plans to turn them into a book but I’m sure I will someday.

7 Magic Islands: We can hardly wait! How did your previous jobs as an actor, screenwriter, producer, help prepare you for becoming an author?
Marc Clark: I learned that I had some sort of talent for writing while I was attending various acting schools. I would write scenes and later plays and screenplays for myself, hoping to break into the business as a writer/actor. Telling or “pitching” my work to others helped me develop my story telling skills. I write more as a storyteller.

7 Magic Islands: It definitely shows through you’re The Princess Fables. Tell us, why did you choose to write Fables instead of another genre?
Marc Clark: I thought of writing these stories for my daughter, and I wanted to reinforce some life lessons to her through them. A lot of little girls love princesses, and they’ll listen more intently to stories about them.

The-Princess-Fables7 Magic Islands: Princesses are very popular among our readers, that’s for sure! What is your favorite part of being an author?
Marc Clark: I enjoy every part of being an author. I like coming up with the ideas, I like mapping out the storylines and especially watching the characters and plotlines come to life. I told someone recently that you don’t really know what you’re going to write until you start writing. What’s in your head is not what comes out on paper.
I also love reading to elementary school children. This is my audience and I can’t think of anything more inspiring than to get the reaction for them in person.

7 Magic Islands: Getting kids into reading at a young age is so rewarding. We know your daughter inspired you to make up the stories in Princess Fables, what made you decide to turn them into a book?
Marc Clark: During a difficult divorce, I didn’t get to see my daughter for almost a year. Writing the stories down allowed me to keep some kind of connection with her.

7 Magic Islands: We’re glad you were able to maintain that bond through such a tough time. What advice do you give kids when you are speaking at schools?
Marc Clark: I try to tell children about how much more effort it takes to write than just putting something down on paper the first time. That writing is really about re-writing. Of course, I always try to share my love for writing, too.

Marc Clark and Alana Seal7 Magic Islands: That’s an interesting approach to school speaking events. How did you come up with the idea for The Royal Fables?
Marc Clark: The idea for The Royal Fables originated from my publicist, Alana Seal. She was expressing how I would have to promote myself on social media and I told her that the only way we could Tweet or post every day would be if we had something important to say – if we gave something back to the world. Alana is on the board of the Ready Or Not Foundation supporting pediatric cancer research at the Texas Children’s Hospital and she came up with idea of getting concepts from the cancer patients, and developing stories around them.

7 Magic Islands: What a way to make kids happy! How is your second book, The Royal Fables, different from The Princess Fables?
Marc Clark: The Royal FablesI believe The Royal Fables expands on the stories and framework I developed in The Princess Fables. The stories are a little longer, slightly more involved, they have a bit more mysticism and fantasy, more adventure – especially in the case of the Prince Fables.

7 Magic Islands: That sounds really intriguing! How does visiting kids in hospitals differ from your school visits?
Marc Clark: My school visits are all about large crowds and full of enjoyment and inspiration while my trips to hospitals are engaging a child one at a time and hoping to bring them a smile or at least a few minutes of happiness in an otherwise difficult life.

7 Magic Islands: That must be so rewarding. Would you ever want to write a book for adults?
Marc Clark: All of my stage plays and screenplays were for and about adults. I would like to write for the rest of my life, so someday I’m going do something for grownups.

7 Magic Islands: It’s good to break into various genres and take on new challenges. Do you have any advice for how to make children better readers?
Marc Clark: The way I became a better reader – my children did the same – is that we found a subject that really interests us, or a person or place. It doesn’t matter what the subject is.

7 Magic Islands: Just as long as they read, read, read what they love, right? What inspires you to write now?
Marc Clark: The fact that I can write something that both entertains and enlightens children is a daily inspiration for me. I also look forward to going into schools and hospitals and sharing my stories with young boys and girls. I’m a very lucky man.

7 Magic Islands: It sounds like yoMarc-Clark-visiting-schoolur career has rewarded you well so far. How does your writing inspire your children or other young people?
Marc Clark: Because the book is comprised of short stories a lot of young readers don’t feel as though they are actual tackling a full-length book. Also several children have written me that The Princess Fables is the first book they’ve ever wanted to read because they read about why I wrote the book and it seemed like something they might like.

7 Magic Islands: That’s so sweet that your readers send you fan mail! What’s next for you?
Marc Clark: We work every day getting out the word on The Royal Fables because it so important to get as many donations as we can for pediatric cancer research. My next book will be a picture book called, Princess Sabrina and the Very, Very Long Day. It’s about a young Princess who doesn’t get enough sleep and hates everything she wears and everything she does throughout the day, until she takes a nap and then loves her life again. It teaches young children about how important it is to get a good night’s sleep and the hours of the day.


To learn more about Marc Clark and his work, visit him online at www.PrincessFables.com


More author interviews in our Wizard of Words series: