ADAM JAY EPSTEIN spent his childhood in Great Neck, New York, while ANDREW JACOBSON grew up in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, but the two met in a parking garage out in Los Angeles. They have been writing for film and television together ever since. This is their first book.
One day, Adam asked Andrew, ďAre you familiar with what a familiar is?Ē And from that simple question, Vastia was born, a fantastical world filled with the authorsí shared love of animals and magic. They wrote every word, sentence, and page together, sitting opposite each other.
Adam Jay Epstein lives in Los Angeles with his wife, Jane, their daughters, Penny and Olive, and a black-and-white alley cat who hangs out in their backyard. Andrew Jacobson lives with his wife, Ashley, and their dog, Elvis, four traffic lights away.
BURNING QUESTIONS THE AUTHORS HAVE FOR EACH OTHER
- Andrew: I know youíre a pretty serious gamer. X-box, Play Station, or Wii?
- Adam: Well, letís see. Iíve got a NES, SuperNintendo, N64, Play Station, PS2, Game Cube, Wii, and X-box 360. But if I had to pick one, Iíd say the X-box 360 right now.
- Andrew: I have met few guys who know less about sports than Adam. Adam, can you tell people how many points a touchdown is worth?
- Adam: Oh, I know that! Thatís 6 points plus the extra point for the field goal.
- Andrew: That may be the greatest answer ever.
- Andrew: Be honest. Whenís the last time you played a role playing game?
- Adam: About 8th grade. I'd make my brothers play with me. They were still in elemetary school at the time and they already knew it wasn't cool.
- Andrew: Who is a famous person or celebrity that people tell you you look like?
- Adam: I used to get Ben Savage, the kid from ďBoy Meets World.Ē
- Andrew: For your semester abroad in college, you went on Semester at Sea (a ship cruise around the world). What was the wildest part of the trip?
- Adam: I canoed down the Amazon and went on an African safari, climbed the Great Wall of China and ate crocodile in South Africa. But none of that was as wild as being stuck on a boat with 400 college students.
- Andrew: I have to ask. If you were one of the familiars from our book, which would you be?
- Adam: The teleporting wombat. I like the idea of being able to go any place at any time.
- Adam: Same question to you. If you were one of the familiars from our book, which would you be?
- Andrew: Iíd go with a chameleon crab. Iíd be able to disappear and be a fly on the wall anywhere.
- Adam: Tell people about something you were afraid of when you were younger.
- Andrew: My bedroom closet, which led to the upstairs attic. One time, my older brother and I were having a heart-to-heart in my room, and the door Ė which I always kept closed - swung open on its own. We walked over to shut it, and when we turned around, it swung back open again. I ran screaming down the hall to my parentís bedroom.
- Adam: And how old were you when that happened.
- Andrew: UmÖ 15.
- Adam: Most kids say middle school is pretty hard for them, but you say you peaked in the 8th grade. What happened after that?
- Andrew: I was the new kid who threw the awesome Bar Mitzvah party in 7th grade, and that carried a lot of good will all the way Ďtil middle school graduation. But then freshmen girls started dating upperclassmen, and I quickly got stuck in the ďfriendĒ zone. I didnít really get my mojo back until my mid-twenties, and now things are better than ever.
- Adam: I know you were a great tennis player growing up. But I seem to remember it getting in the way of your junior prom. What happened again?
- Andrew: Yes, thatís true. Prom was the same day as our Conference Tennis Tournament. I played three matches that day in 80 degree sun. Probably should have put on some sun screen. In my prom pictures, Iím the guy who looks like a cherry tomato. But my doubles partner and I did win the Conference Title.
- Adam: Favorite action figure growing up? And do you still have him?
- Andrew: Wow. Thatís a tough one. Iíd have to say my Han Solo from Star Wars, in the black vest, and white shirt. Iím pretty sure my 3 year old nephew has inherited him.
- Adam: Mineís easy. Star Wars Hammerhead. Still have him in my Star Wars carrying case along with 40 other figures.
- Adam: Some people have said you are an unusually picky eaterÖ and by people, I mean myself. Iíve even seen you go so far as to discard pretzels deemed too funny looking. Please walk me through your thought process.
- Andrew: I just choose to leave some pretzels that are grossly misshapen in the bag for some later time to eat.
- Adam: i.e. never.