The Moment I Got An Idea For A Children’s Series (With A Lot Of Help From My Family): In December of 2006, when Jackie was still just six, we were visiting friends in Crested Butte, Colorado, when a great blizzard hit that closed Denver Airport. Our friends have no TV nor were there any other children around. This was fine for the originally allotted time for the trip, but when the blizzard extended our stay to 10 days, well, how many snow angels can a person make? Jackie had always been proud of my career but never able to read any of the books because they were for adults and teens. So, toward the end, to keep Jackie entertained, I asked her what kind of book she’d like. Her: A book about sisters. Me: How many sisters? Her: 8. (Trust me, she’d give a different answer today, having gotten rather used to being the center of the universe.) Me: How old should they be? Her: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8. Me: That would be interesting, but what if we made them something really rare like, say, octuplets? Before we knew it, my husband Greg got into the act. We began brainstorming an entire book about octuplets whose parents go missing one New Year’s Eve, leaving the eight girls to solve the mystery of what happened to their parents while keeping the rest of the world from realizing they’re living home alone. Our brainstorming kept us entertained through the rest of the trip and the long flight back to Connecticut on Christmas Day. Jackie named all the sisters, I named the cats, and Greg came up with all the crazy inventions like the talking refrigerator and the flying watering can. Little did we know then that something that started simply as a way to keep ourselves entertained would turn into a nine-book series from a major publisher.