Amazing Kids! Magazine

Amazing Kid! Interview with Jake Marcionette

By Victoria Feng, Assistant Editor and AKOM Editor


Jake Marcionette is the bestselling author of the Just Jake series. The series landed Jake on the New York Times bestsellers list, and he’s the youngest author to be featured on the list. Just Jake is part memoir and part fiction. It’s about Jake’s down-to-earth struggles, like living with his sister. Currently, Jake is working on his latest novel. He has spoken at many events and is an ambassador for Spelling Classroom.

Amazing Kids (AK): What inspired you to start writing the Just Jake series?

Jake Marcionette (JM): I thought there was room for more funny, character-driven series in the middle grade fiction space. Since I write fiction, it’s great to have my life as a blueprint onto which I can add crazy, funny, and outrageous situations. It also helps that I’ve moved around a TON, so I’ve experience multiple school settings, personalities, neighborhoods, towns, etc. In reality, my life isn’t that crazy. Fortunately, I have a good imagination, so I try to make the books as enjoyable as possible for the reader.

AK: Is there a favorite part or scene that you’ve written?

JM: All the scenes with Thunder Banks in Just Jake Camp Wild Survival. He is by far my favorite character and the most fun to incorporate in dialog.

AK: Are there any writers you look up to?

JM: Absolutely. Jeff Kinney is without question one of my major influences. I love the fact he is so real and doesn’t try to sugar coat it like some authors who write for kids.

AK: Could you describe the Kids Cards you draw?

JM: Kids Cards are basically baseball cards for your classmates and friends. When I started making them, it was out of boredom, but I soon found a creative outlet that was certainly for my eyes only. Until, of course, they got discovered.

AK: You are a New York Times bestseller. Could you describe your feelings when you found out you were one?

JM: Overwhelming and incredibly grateful to all those who had a hand in bringing my book to market. One of those moments where I’ll always remember where I was when I found out the news.

AK: What was the most challenging part of writing/publishing your books?

JM: Writing and publishing are just half the job; it is up to the author to promote and market the book as well. Thus, as a full-time writer, the most difficult part is balancing those responsibilities with school. Luckily, I’m a focused person, so I can typically get my schoolwork finished during my off days while not falling behind. But, at first, it definitely was a struggle.

AK: What are your goals for the future?

JM: Launch my new series. I can’t talk about it now, though: It’s still a secret. And continue my work with as their Novel Study Ambassador. College is also on the horizon, so like usual, I need to keep my head down and keep working hard.

AK: What advice would you give to our readers about following their dreams and making a difference?

JM: Well, if you are a writer, write about what you know. I look at what my sister used to read, and I know I could never be successful writing about vampires, gossiping mean kids, or mythical creators because I don’t know anything about those things. I love to laugh and really love being a kid. For any other pursuit, don’t wait to chase your dream—DO IT NOW! Today is a great day to start down the road toward self-fulfillment and happiness. Be ready to work; always listen to feedback, especially from subject matter experts or those with real world experience; and know you are never too young to achieve greatness.

AK: Is there anything else you would like to add?

JM: Just thank you for your time and your interest in Just Jake. Check out my novel study guides on and follow me on twitter @JakeMarcionette.