Background Around the Emma Burns Series
The inspiration for the first book came one day while I was working through the editing process of my first full length crime novel Cloud 10. At the time, my seven year old niece was sitting with me at my computer and asked me to explain to her what my book was about. I explained it was a "mystery book" but due to the adult content, instead I could write her a mystery book of her own that was aimed at kids her age. We sat down together for a little while and sketched out a basic plot. I suggested we could create the main character in her image, only a few years older. Someone she could aspire to be. My niece has also been a straight A student, so I realized I needed to come up with a principle character who was both intelligent and curious. I thought a junior detective would be the perfect choice.
Emma Burns loves to read Sherlock Holmes novels and has made it her passion to solve mysteries of her own for friends and family. The first book is called Emma Burns and the Case of the Missing Cat. The first book is an introduction to both Emma and the characters in her life, as she helps to search for her best friend’s cat who is lost in the neighborhood. In this first book, we meet her brother Charlie who wants to be a junior scientist because secretly, he thinks this is his best route to becoming a real life superhero. Other characters include Chester her favorite Oak tree that houses her tree house and detective laboratory, along with her parents, her favorite Aunt Lindsay and other friends who live on her street. In books 2-4, we are introduced to new characters and the stories begin to unfold outside of Emma's immediate neighborhood. I have begun drafting the next evolution of the Emma Burns series. Right now the working title is Emma Burns and the secret Theory of the Mathemagician. In this story, we meet Emma in the week before her first day of High School. While she doesn't solve mysteries the same way she did as a young child, she still has a budding curiosity. The story will focus around helping her quirky uncle, who is a University Professor, solve a problem that has baffled humanity for decades. (A Mathemagician is someone who combines their love of Math and Magic since many of their respective theories share similar roots.)
About the Author
What surprised me most after writing the first Emma Burns book was how much I enjoyed the process of writing a children story. I have always loved writing since I first started keeping a diary while backpacking after university, but up until earlier this year, most of my writing involved consisted of short stories writing, poetry and my novel. What I quickly realized was that writing children’s books (for this age level at least) could still offer much of the imagination it takes to develop an adult novel, but without a many of the plot complexities, and aggravations that come with scripting a full length novel that is ready to be submitted to an agent or publisher.
While I prepare Cloud 10 before I begin my search for agency representation, my plan is to continue to add and refine the Emma Burns series. As I do, I will consciously continue to increase the length of each book as well as raise the level of vocabulary, so that as the age of the reader grows with the series, the level of the sophistication of each book will as well.
Jason Meller resides in Toronto, Canada.