Books by Ellwyn: Chris Kringle’s Cops The First Mission, Kamyla Chung and the Creepy-Crawlies, Kamyla Chung and the Classroom Bully, Teddy Bear Tea, Summer Alphabet Scrapbook, Autumn Alphabet Scrapbook, Winter Alphabet Scrapbook, December Alphabet Scrapbook A Multi-Cultural Holiday Celebration, Spring Alphabet Scrapbook, Back To School Alphabet Scrapbook, Captain Hook: Villain or Victim?
Checkout Ellwyn's website
When did you become an author?
I started writing when I was seven years old but didn’t become serious about it until high school.
Do you have a writing background?
I don’t have a degree in English or creative writing yet, but I’ve independently published many books, written for various online publications, and manage two blogs: Lemon Drop Literary and my personal blog through my website.
How do you come up with a story?
Most times I don’t go looking for a story, they find me.
How do you come up with the characters?
Most times the initial character just comes to me without thinking. Developing their personality is another matter. I’ve started using Robin Woods’ Prompt Me Books, the Myers-Briggs personality test, and Zodiac signs to really get to know them better.
How do you select names for your characters?
Each story has a different process: sometimes they just pop into my head, other times I use names from a list I constantly add to, and finally sometimes I search for names that have significant meaning for the character.
Did you hire an illustrator or do the illustrations yourself?
I hired an illustrator.
Are you self-published or published through a publishing company?
From the day you came up with the idea for the story until you were holding your published book in your hand, how long did it take you to complete this book?
For my very first published book, Chris Kringle’s Cops The First Mission, it took 14 years.
What made you want to publish a children's book?
I love children’s books. I have a vast collection and want to contribute to a child’s joy of reading.
What is one thing you wish you knew before beginning your book publishing journey?
How difficult it is to effectively spread the word about your work. Once you write your book you must market it which requires a whole other skill set that constantly changes.
Any tips for future children’s book authors?
Yes, write what you know, join a writer’s group, and read, read, read! You must read the type of literature you want to write. Amelia Griggs has designed wonderful resources for authors that will help you maneuver your way through this ever-changing platform.
What is the best reaction from a reader, so far?
The letters I receive from children after I’ve done a classroom visit are the most fulfilling. I write for kids, so it’s nice to see their excitement about my books and know I’ve help spread a love of literacy.
Where do you get ideas for your stories?
From the news, dreams, conversations, observing kids, and other stories I’ve read.
What's your writing process like?
It varies, for some stories I write elaborate outlines; for others I simply write what comes to me in the moment.
Do you have any other books in the works?
Yes, I do. It's titled A Fish Named Fancy. I don’t have a definitive release date yet. Everything’s been pushed back because of Covid.
What does literary success look like to you?
Making children happy when they listen to a read aloud of one of my books.
Do you read all the book reviews you receive?
Yes, and I offer respectful replies whenever possible. If someone has taken the time to read and review my work, I feel it’s only polite to acknowledge their time and effort. I really appreciate reader reviews, even the negative ones.
What is the hardest thing about getting your book published?
Funding the cost.
What's your favorite(s) children's book of all time?
This is a hard one to answer. I have so many favorites. Here’s a few: Charlotte’s Web, Gingerbread Baby, My Mouth is a Volcano, and The Harry Potter Series.