Tag Archives: author

Merrick, New York, U.S. December 20, 2019. [photo composite] KEVIN SHINICK discusses his novel during book signing for STAR WARS: FORCE COLLECTOR at North Merrick Library on Nassau County Force Collector Day. Author Shinick named home planet of Karr Nuq Sin, the main character of this canon Star Wars young adult novel, MEROKIA in honor of Merokee tribe who settled his Merrick hometown on Long Island. (© 2019 Ann Parry, AnnParry.com)

“STAR WARS: FORCE COLLECTOR”: From Merrick to Merokia

From LONG ISLAND – by Ann Parry (ann-parry.com)
December 24, 2019

Kevin Shinick’s Star Wars: Force Collector Book Signing at North Merrick Public Library

•   VIDEO 1 –  Reading Excerpt  of Ch. 13, “Star Wars: Force Collector”:

 VIDEO 2 –  Q&A  Kevin Shinick, his life, and Star Wars:

Launch time was 3 PM for the Star Wars: Force Collector Book Signing at the North Merrick Public Library on Friday, December 20th, soon after author KEVIN SHINICK‘s early afternoon presentation at his alma mater Calhoun High School, and before his evening book signing at Merrick Cinemas, where he worked as a teen.

Since children were just getting out of school around 3:00 that last day before Winter Break, few people were there at the start of the young adult novel event. But a stream of people – mostly parents with their young sons and daughters – soon started pouring into the large meeting room, with many adults standing along the walls so children could sit.

Some came mainly because of the Star Wars novel… some because Shinick’s a fellow Merrokean, a friend… and two came because he’s their son.

• KEVIN SHINICK and his mom LOUISE SHINICK:

Merrick, New York, U.S. Dec. 20, 2019. L-R, Author KEVIN SHINICK and his mother LOUISE SHINICK, both holding his novel, pose at North Merrick Public Library banner during book signing for his STAR WARS: FORCE COLLECTOR, on Nassau County Force Collector Day. (© 2019 Ann Parry/Ann-Parry.com)

Merrick, NY, U.S. Dec. 20, 2019 L-R, Author KEVIN SHINICK and his mother LOUISE SHINICK, both holding his novel, pose at North Merrick Public Library banner during book signing for his STAR WARS: FORCE COLLECTOR. (© 2019 Ann Parry/AnnParry.com)

Q&A: “Everything he says is a lesson”

    • Video 2 – Q&A:  Baby Yoda, Batman comic books; Best Star Wars Lightsaber Fight; Broadway; Fiction VS Nonfiction; Heidi Gardner; Debbie Gibson; TV Hosting; George Lucas; Eileen Meyers; Robot Chicken; Ringwood, NJ; SNL; Spiderman, Star Wars…

During his animated Q&A, Kevin Shinick talked at length about writing the official canon Star Wars YA novel, Star Wars: Force Connector.

Shinick said, “Working with George Lucas – everything he says is a lesson.”

After the project got the green light, he stayed for a month at Skywalker Ranch, the California home and workplace of GEORGE LUCAS, the film writer, director and producer who created Star Wars.

Shinick was glad he stayed at Skywalker Ranch for a month, so he had a chance to ground himself being around Lucas.

“For the first two weeks I didn’t hear anything he said. I heard wonk wonk wonk wonk [as he repeated to himself] You made Star Wars. You made Star Wars.”

“George Lucas [is] an independent experimental film maker, and he takes chances. [….] He wasn’t doing something to make us love him. He was doing something to show us something we had never seen before.”

“It’s hard as an artist not to get beaten down. You’re doing it because you set an objective and you succeed at that objective.”

“With this book [“Star Wars: Force Collector”] I can find 10 people who love it and 10 people who hate it.”

“Star Wars, too, for some reason, there’s no middle ground. You either have to love it or hate it – there’s no middle ground.”

• KEVIN SHINICK with his childhood friend, pastry chef BRIAN FISHMAN:

Merrick, New York, U.S. December 20, 2019. L-R, Author KEVIN SHINICK and his childhood friend BRIAN FISHMAN hold up cake Fishman decorated with cover of Shinick's book STAR WARS: FORCE COLLECTOR during book signing at North Merrick Library on Nassau County Force Collector Day.(© 2019 Ann Parry/Ann-Parry.com)

Merrick, NY, U.S. Dec. 20, 2019. L-R, Author KEVIN SHINICK and his childhood friend BRIAN FISHMAN hold up cake Fishman decorated with cover of Shinick’s book STAR WARS: FORCE COLLECTOR during book signing at North Merrick Public Library.(© 2019 Ann Parry/AnnParry.com)

Shinick Rules

Shinick  shared a few of his life rules, wrapped in anecdotes often a bit humorous, self-deprecating – as in his Skywalker Ranch “wonk wonk wonk wonk” saga. Three of the rules he shared:

(1)  You’ve got to keep your community. You’ve got to keep people who support you, have your best interests in heart, who challenge you. People succeed in groups.”

(2)  “You have to know who you are.”
He wanted to be like Han Solo, but it’s his lot in life to know he’s more Luke Skywalker.

(3) 1st half: “Always go to the door that opens.”
He didn’t expect to be a host of “Where in Time is Carmen Sandiago?” but he took it when offered.

     2nd half:  “Don’t be afraid to shut that door.”
After “Where in Time…,” he “got a lot of hosting gigs.” Then one day – as he was driving to a meeting about an offer to host the show Extreme Gong – he had, as he looked back on it, a rather cinematic epiphany:

“I can’t do this,” [he thought to himself] and called my agent – no more hosting.” 

“Every time I did it, something was missing, and people weren’t looking at me as other things. I have to stop this.”

He added that he wasn’t negating hosting – it just wasn’t his dream.

After the book reading and signing, the strong affection and memories Shinick shared with many there at his hometown library burst into hyperdrive, with a force evaporating the time and space since they last met.

 
• TOM SHINICK suggested capturing a photo of his son KEVIN SHINICK with JAKE LEFEBURE, 10, an enthusiastic Star Wars fan (see Video 2 – Q&A):

Merrick, New York, U.S. December 20, 2019. L-R, JAKE LEFEBURE, 10, of West Babylon, holding signed book, and author KEVIN SHINICK, 50, strike funny pose at book signing for Shinick's STAR WARS: FORCE COLLECTOR at North Merrick Library on Nassau County Force Collector Day. Author Shinick named home planet of Karr Nuq Sin, the main character of this canon Star Wars young adult novel, MEROKIA in honor of Merokee tribe who settled his Merrick hometown on Long Island. (© 2019 Ann Parry/Ann-Parry.com)

Merrick, NY, U.S. Dec. 20, 2019. L-R, JAKE LEFEBURE, 10, of West Babylon, holding signed book, and author KEVIN SHINICK, 50, strike a pose at book signing for Shinick’s STAR WARS: FORCE COLLECTOR at North Merrick Library. (© 2019 Ann Parry/AnnParry.com)

“Star Wars: Force Collector”

KARR NUQ SIN, a teen who suffers from mysterious headaches, is the main character of Star Wars: Force Collector, a canon Star Wars young adult novel published by Disney Books.

Karr leaves his planet Merokia on a quest concerning the fabled Jedi and the Force. Karr travels with his friend MAIZE RAYNSHI and his droid RZ-7 (Arzee).

  • In VIDEO 1, Shinick reads a scene from Chapter 13, when Karr and RZ-7 go to a bar in a cantina on planet Oba Diah.

Shinick named Karr’s home planet MEROKIA in honor of the Meroke tribe who settled his Merrick hometown on Long Island, New York.

That was the main reason I looked forward to covering the event, held on what Nassau County Supervisor Laura Curran officially proclaimed Nassau County Force Collector Day.

Plus, there were similarities in our orbits, including that my younger daughter Laurie was a member of the Calhoun H. S. On Tour Company, under Director SAL SALERNO, about a dozen years after Kevin Shinick was.

In a more tenuous, colorful coincidence, my mom, MARY ANN PARRY, an opera singer, gave brief voice lessons to teen DEBBIE GIBSON, Shinick’s On Tour co-star in Fiddler on the Roof in the late 1980s.

• L-R, KEVIN SHINICK, CHRIS BARRON, and ANN PARRY after Shinick signs copies of his Star Wars novel. (please CONTACT ME if you know photographer’s name):

Merrick, New York, U.S. Dec. 20, 2019. L-R, Kevin Shinick, Chris Barron, and Ann Parry strike a pose at book signing for author Shinick's STAR WARS: FORCE COLLECTOR at North Merrick Library on Nassau County Force Collector Day. (© 2019 need photographer's name)

Merrick, NY, U.S. Dec. 20, 2019 L-R, Kevin Shinick, Chris Barron, and Ann Parry strike a pose at book signing for author Shinick’s STAR WARS: FORCE COLLECTOR at North Merrick Library on Nassau County Force Collector Day. (© 2019 need photographer’s name)


BIO –  Briefly, Kevin Shinick is a Broadway actor; a voice artist; a writer – for films, plays, TV shows, a Netflix comedy, Marvel and DC Comics, a children’s book (“Star Wars: Chewie and the Porgs“), and stop-motion series “Robot Chicken,” which he won Emmy for; a host for TV shows such as “Where in Time is Carmen Sandiego?”; writer and director of Spider-Man Live!; the husband of producer Eileen Meyer; and dad of someone who isn’t (yet) a pilot.


• Baby Yoda says: “Winner You Are! Feel the Force -The Book, You Must Enjoy”:

Merrick, New York, U.S. Dec. 20, 2019. Boy holds his winning ticket, with picture of baby Yoda and'Winner You Are! Feel the Force' on it, at book signing for author Kevin Shinick's STAR WARS: FORCE COLLECTOR at North Merrick Library on Nassau County Force Collector Day. (© 2019 Ann Parry/Ann-Parry.com)

Merrick, NY, U.S. Dec. 20, 2019 Boy holds his winning ticket, with picture of baby Yoda and ‘Winner You Are! Feel the Force’ on it, at book signing for author Kevin Shinick’s STAR WARS: FORCE COLLECTOR at North Merrick Library. (© 2019 Ann Parry/AnnParry.com)


FEATURE PHOTO at top of post: Merrick, NY, U.S. Dec. 20, 2019. KEVIN SHINICK, shown in photo composite, discusses his novel during book signing for his STAR WARS: FORCE COLLECTOR at North Merrick Library on Nassau County Force Collector Day.


Kevin Shinick’s Star Wars: Force CollectorMY PHOTO GALLERY

VIDEO 1 – Reading: vimeo.com/annparry/readstarwars

VIDEO 2 – Q&A:  vimeo.com/annparry/starwarsshinick

Kevin Shinick:  facebook  •  site 

Director Sal Salerno:  site

Sweet Karma Desserts:  facebook  •  site     

CONTACT ME

Steve Israel Brings Out His BIG GUNS on Long Island

From LONG ISLAND – by Ann Parry (annparry.com)
April 22, 2018

Rep. STEVE ISRAEL – the former N.Y. Congressman now on his second literary campaign – packed Turn of the Corkscrew Books & Wine last Friday night when his new novel “Big Guns” made its Nassau County debut at the neighborhood book store/cafe bar in Rockville Centre.

Rockville Centre, New York, USA. April 20, 2018. R-L, Author STEVE ISRAEL and Moderator RITA KESTENBAUM hold Israel’s newest novel BIG GUNS at special event for the former Congressman’s book at Turn of the Corkscrew Books & Wine. (© 2018 Ann Parry/Ann-Parry.com)

Rockville Centre, New York, USA. April 20, 2018. R-L, Author Steve Israel and Moderator Rita Kestenbaum hold Israel’s newest novel BIG GUNS at event for former Congressman’s book. (© 2018 Ann Parry/AnnParry.com)

“Big Guns” is a satire about America’s 800-rounds-gorilla gun lobby, a feckless Congress, and the small fictional town of Asabogue on Long Island’s East End. 

Rockville Centre, NY, USA. April 201, 2018. L-R, Rep. STEVE ISRAEL and Hempstead Town Supervisor LAURA GILLEN pose for photo at special event for Nassau County debut of the former Congressman's (NY - Dem) newest novel BIG GUNS - a satire of the strong gun lobby, weak Congress, and a small Long Island town. Event was held at Turn of the Corkscrew Books & Wine store. (© 2018 Ann Parry/Ann-Parry.com)

Rockville Centre, NY, USA. April 201, 2018. L-R, Rep. STEVE ISRAEL and Hempstead Town Supervisor LAURA GILLEN pose for photo at special event for Nassau County debut of the former Congressman’s (NY – Dem) newest novel BIG GUNS – a satire of the strong gun lobby, weak Congress, and a small Long Island town. Event was held at Turn of the Corkscrew Books & Wine store. (© 2018 Ann Parry/AnnParry.com)

Moderator RITA KESTENBAUM – a gun-control activist, non-profit founder, and former Hempstead Town Councilwoman whose daughter was senselessly shot to death while away at college – introduced Israel after brief words from a couple of local officials, including Hempstead Town Supervisor LAURA GILLEN who told how, early in her legal career, she quit after her first day on a job when she learned the NRA was a major client of the firm.

Rockville Centre, NY, USA. April 201, 2018. Sitting facing audience, Rep. STEVE ISRAEL speaks at event for the former Congressman's newest novel BIG GUNS, at Turn of the Corkscrew Books & Wine. Left of Israel is Moderator RITA KESTENBAUM. (© 2018 Ann Parry/Ann-Parry.com)

Rockville Centre, NY, USA. April 201, 2018. Sitting facing audience, Steve Israel speaks at event for the former Congressman’s newest novel BIG GUNS, at Turn of the Corkscrew Books & Wine. Left of Israel is Moderator Rita Kestenbaum. (© 2018 Ann Parry/AnnParry.com)

With the sharp insight and wit noted in reviews of “Big Guns” and his debut novel “The Global War on Morris,” Israel shared details of his writing process and general experiences with fellow Congress members, especially while in the privacy of the Senate elevator, that helped shape the novel Congress. 

The first time I covered this event’s author and moderator together was a 2016 Panel on Preventing Gun Violence that then-Congressman Israel co-hosted with Hillary Clinton in Port Washington, with Rita Kestenbaum as one of five panelists who lost a family member due to gun violence.

Friday night, when asked if he saw a chance for more effective gun-control laws, Steve Israel mentioned – with fettered optimism I happen to share – the social media savvy Never Again movement created by teen survivors of February’s Marjory Stoneman Douglas High mass shooting. 

Rockville Centre, New York, USA. April 201, 2018. Rep. STEVE ISRAEL signs book for a fan at special event for the former Congressman's newest novel BIG GUNS, at Turn of the Corkscrew Books & Wine store. (© 2018 Ann Parry/Ann-Parry.com)

Rockville Centre, New York, USA. April 201, 2018. Steve Israel signs book for a fan at special event for the former Congressman’s newest novel BIG GUNS. (© 2018 Ann Parry/AnnParry.com)

After the Q&A, Israel signed copies of his book, with the line of “Big Guns” toting fans trailing into the bar in the next room.

CONTACT ME


Related posts:

    • 2018/08: Gov. Cuomo Endorses Liuba Grechen Shirley for Congress
    • 2018/03: Bellmore-Merrick Students Walkout to Protest Gun Violence: Déjà Vu
    • 2016/04: Hillary Clinton Panel on Gun Violence Prevention, Port Washington