While most kids are goofing off with texting, MySpace and Facebook, 14-year-old Gloria Tesch is writing, editing and preparing the story boards and concepts for her third novel. • She published her first book, Maradonia and the Seven Bridges (Liberty's Book Press), at 13. Her second novel, Maradonia and the Gold of Ophir, will be published soon. She is working on her third in hopes of a release at the age of 15. • Not a fan of television or "wasting time," Gloria spends most of her day writing and answering e-mails about her books.
What made you want to write a full-length novel at such a young age?
Well, anything can suggest a story to me. If I hear just one sentence, that would be all I need to create a whole story. I see real pictures and I write them down. Also, my love for fiction and fantasy also played a role in (inspiring me). I love reading lots of books, like up to five different books per week.
Did being homeschooled have a role in your writing?
I have more time for writing, so I spend more time writing. Before, when I was in (regular) school, I didn't have a lot of time. I was doing homework and I had eight hours of school.
Do you have plans to go beyond a trilogy?
Yes, I have a plan to go up to nine different books with the same Maradonia books. My current book shows the nine different books that could come from this. I had a movie offer from New York, but we didn't take it because it was too low. We also found out afterward that they wanted to buy my rights out and sell it to a bigger movie company. I wouldn't have known what would happen to my story.
Do you have any advice for writers who want to write a novel?
I think they should first know what they are writing about. Otherwise, they are sticking to one chapter (at a time) and constantly editing and redeveloping. I think they should just write it all out and then go back and develop what they have.
When did you start reading five books a week?
I started reading in third grade. We had this big treehouse and I had gotten a whole pack of books, Magic Treehouse books, and I sat up there and read the whole thing. And I did that the whole summer, and I came back to school with an entirely new reading level, and after that I had always loved reading.
Do you think the amount of reading you did had an impact on your imagination?
Yes! I have a saying which I tell people all the time, "Today a reader, tomorrow a leader." So, I was reading before and now I'm leading people because I wrote a huge novel. Reading totally opened my mind up.
I usually like to read fiction and fantasy. I don't like reading nonfiction a lot. Fantasy has many different doors, you can choose one way or another way and there are so many opportunities you can have. If you write nonfiction, it's a strict line, a straight line and that is why I like fantasy more.
How many copies have sold?
I think we printed out about a thousand copies and it is all sold out. I have editing for the second edition of the first book and the second book will be printed out at the same time.