Children's Book Author Interview with Muzna Kazim of Around the World with Moby - My First Trip
When did you become a children’s book author?
I acquired my Doctor of Dental Surgery from Pakistan in 2008 and completed my Master’s in Public Health from National University, San Diego, in 2016. I majored in Health Promotion with a comprehensive research study in Autism Spectrum. I also worked as a Behavior Interventionist for kids on the spectrum. Being an autism mom of an 11-year-old handsome boy, I feel passionate about autism. For a while, I had been thinking about sharing my knowledge and interventions that my husband and I had implemented for our son. I wanted to help parents by introducing our successful interventions in the form of a wholesome story with eye-catching images and an engaging plot. So last August 2022, I finally decided to roll-up my sleeves and created my first story of Moby series.
Do you have a writing background?
I wrote quite a few research papers during my graduate years, but writing a children’s book is my first experience.
How did you come up with the story?
The story is very close to my heart as it is inspired by a personal experience with my son who had travel anxiety.
Travel anxiety can be very challenging for kids on the spectrum. Lights, sounds, people, changes in the schedule, and unpredictability can all be overwhelming for them. They dislike changes in his daily routine and find comfort in repeating the same activities at home day in and day out. I highlighted the challenge of fixation-to-one-schedule in my story. In addition, I also discussed strategies that we implemented with our son to help manage his fear and anxiety. He is now an avid traveler who likes to explore new places.
Are you self-published or published through a publishing company?
I am a self-published author through Amazon. Around the World with Moby- My First Trip will be available on Amazon, November 25. 2022.
However, the Ebook is already available on Amazon Kindle Unlimited, link: Around The World with Moby: My First Trip - Kindle edition by Kazim, Muzna , Barman, Rabindra. N.. Children Kindle eBooks @ Amazon.com.
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?
This is my Passion Project. The idea had been in my mind since forever, but it wasn't until 4 months ago that I decided to act upon it. The book has my heart & soul in it.
What made you want to publish a children's book?
The Center of Disease and Control Prevention (CDC) estimates that about 1 in 44, eight-year-old children were identified with ASD in the United States in 2018 with a progressive rise. This widespread escalation led me to create Moby so that my child and other kids on the spectrum find inspiration through a character with whom they can relate. In addition, I would like to share the challenges that our son had and the coping strategies we came up with to overcome those challenges. Not to mention, provide brilliant images of the real places in Minneapolis, MN to inspire kiddos to want to explore and visit.
What is one thing you wish you knew before beginning your book publishing journey?
The book-creating journey was very organic for me. Starting from nowhere to creating an actual passion-book for the first time, the entire process was very pleasurable. However, one thing that I took away from my experience is that the promotion of the book actually starts way early in the process, even before you pick up a pen to begin writing. I will keep that in mind for my future books.
What is the best reaction from a reader, so far?
I can delightfully tell you that I have received professional recognition from one of the best Clinical Psychologists in San Diego, Dr. Susan Goh from Cortica. It is posted on my website. In addition, I have also received 5 star reviews on amazon, Reedsy, and Goodreads from Kid’’s Picture Book. My book is also featured on BookLife and am waiting for their reviews to arrive.
Please check the links:
Around the World with Moby Children's Book - Kid's Picture Book Review (kidspicturebookreview.com)
Around The World with Moby- My First Trip! by Muzna Kazim - Reviewed by Kameron Brook | Reedsy Discovery
Around the World with Moby by Muzna Kazim | BookLife
What is something you’d like people to take away from your book(s)?
I advocate inclusivity and equal opportunities for kids on the spectrum. I believe that by tailoring our way of teaching according to their individual needs, we can help them Learn, Leap, and Grow.
Although focused on kids on the autism spectrum, this book can be beneficial to both Neurodiverse or Neurotypical children who suffer from travel anxiety.
Where do you get ideas for your stories?
Moby is my first story based on a personal experience with my son and the children I have worked with as a Behavior Interventionist. Going forward I intend to take inspiration from both.
Do you have any other books in the works?
Yes, I am working on book-2 of the Moby series. This book will also discuss one of the most common challenges with kids on the spectrum in a fun and engaging plot.
What does literary success look like to you?
Success is very subjective. With autism being on the rise, literary success to me would mean being able to reach out to as many parents/caregivers through my books as possible, share knowledge/awareness about autism, suggest possible interventions to deal with a specific challenge; all through engaging books with relatable characters. I believe that Moby is going to serve this purpose very well.
Do you read all of the book reviews you receive?
Absolutely! I look forward to knowing what professionals and caregivers have to say about my work.
What is your favorite children's book(s) of all time?
I grew up reading Roald Dahl books, including Matilda and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Also, Charlotte’s Web is my all time favorite children’s book even today.
What is your style of writing?
I like to create simple, uplifting stories with beautiful images. Stories that provide strategies and tools to address a specific challenge through a character Moby, an eight-year-old-boy with autism.
Why did you create Moby?
Being on the autism spectrum, my son has interests quite different from those of his peers. He is fascinated by elevators and recycling trucks and prefers to have a daily routine to stay organized. This inspired me to create a fun-loving and spirited character who had similar interests as my son and also faced similar challenges. Moby is a character my son can identify with, reassuring him that it's okay to be different. Reading about a jovial and spirited character that my son and hopefully other kids on the spectrum can identify with, will help them feel inclusive and reassure them that it's ok to be different!
I hope other kids on the spectrum can also identify with Moby, and the parents can find strategies described in this book to address Moby's specific needs handy.
Facebook: Moby's Book Club | Facebook
Author: Muzna Kazim
Illustrator: Rabindra. N. Barman
Paperback Launch Date: November 25.2022
Kindle Unlimited: Available
Link to website or book page: www.mobysbookclub.com
Trailer: Books and Trailer – Moby's Book Club (mobysbookclub.com)
12/4/2022 07:32:24 pm
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