Debbie: Jordan, please tell us a little about yourself.
Jordan: This past April I received my M.A. in Children’s Literature from Eastern Michigan University. I also studied for my undergraduate degree in Ypsilanti, majoring in Children’s Literature and Theater for the Young, with a Minor in Communications. I originally wanted to go to EMU to do Forensics (Competitive Speech). I did it all through high school, and ended up doing it for a little over three years in college. That background allowed me to be extremely comfortable with talking to people - something that has really helped me during signing events, school visits, and talking with people within the field. Also, I’m a huge wrestling and video game fan. I actually did ‘backyard wrestling’ in high school with some friends and thought about pursuing it as a full-time thing at one point, but, then I remembered I’m not a fan of pain haha.
Debbie: And, of course, we want to know all about your book.
Jordan: Might-E is my debut children’s book, and it follows a preschool girl named Emma. She suffers from social anxiety, and a general fear of being around other people. In order to help her overcome her fears she transforms from Emma into Might-E, the bravest, strongest, and mightiest superhero on the planet.
I really wanted to create something that would not only entertain, but inspire and help children (and adults alike) grow. I think this is something that most children’s authors want to do, so I suppose it isn’t that unique. But I felt that combining the aspects of the superhero genre as well as comics, I would be able to create a more desirable book. My illustrator Caitlyn Notaro (formerly Knepka – she got married! Yay!) is incredible and perfectly captured what I wanted visually. While I think my story is good enough to stand on its own, I know that Caitlyn’s ability really raised up, and elevated Might-E to another level.
Debbie: Other books or projects on the horizon?
Jordan: I’m brainstorming a few ideas, while playing with some picture book manuscripts. I’m also exploring the world of YA literature. While exploring new ideas, and new stories, I am also sending out queries to agents. I want to extend the reach of my stories to more regions, and continue to push my story out, and inspire more kids.
Debbie: Upcoming appearances?
Jordan: Yes! December 3rd at the Barnes and Noble in Brighton, December 10th at the Barnes and Noble in Grandville, and January 14th at the Barnes and Noble in Lansing. My book's Facebook page (facebook.com/MightEBook) as well as my website (www.jordanjscavone.com) have a constantly updating list of events.
I’m also lucky enough to be doing a school visit to an Ann Arbor elementary school this December. School visits are some of my favorite events; I’ve only done a few, but they are beyond fun, and really show me that what I’m doing is worthwhile.
Debbie: Do you have a favorite Michigan bookstore? And/or a favorite Michigan library?
Jordan: I love the Dawn Treader in Ann Arbor. If you’ve never been it is wonderful. It is a deep literal treasure trove of books. Burgess Meredith would love it there. That’s a Twilight Zone joke. As for my favorite library, that would be the Wixom Library. Though I’ve only been there a couple times, it features a beautiful fountain area where my wife and I got our wedding pictures taken!
Debbie: How about a favorite place in Michigan?
Jordan: The Sterling Heights Nature Center (across the street from where I grew up) is certainly one of my favorite places in Michigan. I spent a lot of time there, and it was where my wife and I took our first date. I also really really really like Mackinaw Island. I went once my senior year of High School and if I could afford it I’d go back yearly.
Debbie: Do you have a Michigan event or happening that you love to attend?
Jordan: I’d like to one day go to the Traverse City Children’s Book Festival. I’ve heard it’s really fun, and I’ve also never been to Traverse City, so win win!
Debbie: A few fun Michigan people we should all know about?
Jordan: Earlier this year I met Cori McCarthy. She is a Michigan Author out of Big Rapids. We picked up each other's books (her books for myself and Might-E for her little one). She was then gracious enough to do a review and blurb for Might-E. I’d encourage anyone to pick up Breaking Sky and You Were Here. They are stellar reads.
Debbie: Something you'd like a non-Michigander to know about Michigan?
Jordan: Some of us do not care about the feud between Michigan and Ohio schools. I’ll go fortify my doors and windows now.
Debbie: Last question. Some folks in Michigan refer to themselves as Michiganders, others as Michiganians. For our ongoing vote tally: are you a Michigander or a Michiganian?
Jordan: Michigander for life!