How did a boy that hated to read and write end up putting all of his passion into writing? That’s the story of Tom Tancin
Tom didn’t live the typical life of a writer. He HATED to write---and read---throughout elementary and middle school. He never imagined growing up to spend every waking minute thinking about writing or devouring the latest young adult novel. And it wasn’t due to lack of effort on his parents’ part. His mother was avid reader and read to Tom every chance she had. But he wouldn’t have any of it. That’s not to say that Tom didn’t have a vivid imagination--he most certainly did, he just didn’t want to use it to write.
In 1997, when Tom was thirteen years old, he read “Where the Red Fern Grows” in English class and was given the task to do a project based on the book. Tom and his best friend wrote a play based on the book and then a group of their friends performed it for their English class. Their teacher enjoyed it and told Tom and his friend that they should try to write a book. It was the challenge that would change Tom’s life forever.
The two boys spent every afternoon homeroom period working on their very first book. At the same time, Tom’s father was diagnosed with stage 4 sarcoidosis--a severely damaging lung disease--and given three years to live without a transplant. As their family dealt with the ramifications of waiting for the call that would save his dad’s life, Tom found himself getting lost in worlds and befriending characters that he created. It didn’t take long for writing stories to become a passion for Tom. In 2000, when Tom was 16, his dad received the lung that saved his life.
By the time he graduated high school, Tom had written three books in the Time Warriors Legacy with his best friend Chris Wolf. And while he attended college to become a biology teacher, Tom spent time writing the fourth book in the Time Warriors Legacy and branched out to write a science-fiction novel for adults--Perfection. Even at that point in time, Tom still didn’t enjoy reading for pleasure. But one weekend in the middle of his college years, Tom picked up a suspense book by Erica Spindler. By the end of the weekend, he finished the book and went in search of others by the author. Quickly reading all of her books, Tom looked for other authors and ended up finding the work of James Patterson and other suspense writers.
With his new fascination with suspense books, Tom set out to write one of his own. The product was The Man in the Moon--the first Lindsey Scott Thrillstery. First published in 2007, The Man in the Moon was a sem-finalist in the 2008 Allbooksreview contest. Tom then continued the Lindsey Scott series with a short story, Once Upon a Midnight, and the second book in the series, Watched (2008).
In June 2009, Tom released the first book he wrote, Time Warriors: Induction. But during that summer, Tom’s father grew severely ill from sarcoidosis--the lung disease he’d been battling for many years. His father lost his battle in September 2009 and Tom stopped all writing and publishing ventures with no immediate plans to return.
Luckily, a seed had already been planted. The very early ideas for The Atlantis Revolution were coming together before Tom’s dad died and he stopped writing. Within a year, Tom returned with Hippocampus (The First Book of the Atlantis Revolution)--which he posted on Textnovel, Inkpop, and Authonomy to get feedback. Throughout the rest of 2010 and 2011, Hippocampus garnered acclaim and awards. It was a Textnovel Editor’s Choice and the Semi-finalist in the 2010 Textnovel Contest. The early draft of the book also made it into the top 150 of Inkpop (now Figment). And it received dozens of positive reviews from readers and writers everywhere.
With all of the positive support behind the work, Tom decided to venture back to publishing and, in April 2012, Hippocampus made it to the world. In September of that year, Hippocampus went international with publication in Indonesia. Following up on the success of the first book, Tom published Echinodea in April 2013 and Medousa, the third and final book, in October 2015.
Right around the time that Medousa was published, Tom's mom was diagnosed with esophageal cancer. The cancer had already spread to other parts of her body. In May 2016, his mom lost her battle with the disease. Tom hasn't published a book since, instead spending a lot of time with family and healing. However, he is currently writing his 11th book, a YA political thriller, Jericho.
Tom has over twenty years of writing experience, over ten years of publishing experience, multiple accolades, and his work has been translated and sold into another language--and he’s only 34 years old. One can only imagine what’s in store for Tom and his work in the next twenty years.
In addition to writing, Tom is a 9th grade biology teacher. He enjoys hiking, biking, and just geing outside. He likes almost a variety of music, loves to read young adult books, and watches action/adventure, sci-fi, and fantasy movies. He calls Pennsylvania home.
Current Work in Progress:
Jericho- YA Political Thriller
The Boy Who Stopped Speaking- Adult Mystery/Suspense
Praise for Tom
"Tom Tancin is really an awesome writer who came up with such a great idea for a book. His writing style really fits into this young adult genre and the world that he has created is just fantastic. It is like he has taken many different elements and weaved them together to create an amazing fast paced book." -Michael, The Bookshelf Review
"Tancin's writing just gets better and better and I can't wait to see what else will come from his novels and career." -Michael, The Bookshelf Review
"Tom Tancin has a very visual writing style which suits this adventure story perfectly." -Treasured Tales for Young Adults
"Kudos to Tom Tancin for writing a book that hits on a reading population that may be getting overlooked in the current YA trends." Monique Morgan, Author
Tom Tancin is one of our best new writers. His writing technique and attention to detail is what makes this book a Number 1 Best Seller. Thank you for doing what you do and doing it so well. Keep writing Please you have a real gift! -Patti (MySpace Friend)
Tom definitely knows how to write and keep his readers happy. Tom Tancin is one of the best authors.......his books are awesome -Tammie, a Reader
You are very talented but to say the least that doesn't surprise me." -Meghan, former classmate
"You are a wonderful writer with a unique storytelling voice and style. I haven't read a novel like yours in a long time! It's definitely well-written. Continue to write. It is a true talent of yours." -Serene, a Reader
"Tom Tancin is a young man who has managed to write an enthralling novel that is equally worthy of comparison of skill to many older authors in the same field. the use of turn of phrase excellent yet keeping the story flowing and a gripping storyline are putting Tom at the top part of my 'must read' list each time. -Kymm, a Reader