When did you become a children’s book author?
I published my first children’s book in November 2022.
Do you have a writing background?
Not formally, but I have always enjoyed writing ever since I was young.
How did you come up with the story?
Adventures with Coco is inspired by my longing to capture a sliver of my children’s childhood.
How did you come up with the character? How do you select names for your characters?
They were inspired by my three children and my mother-in-law’s Yorkie, our occasional border.
Did you hire an illustrator or do the illustrations yourself?
I hired Yulia Zolotova, a talented artist based in Canada. I fell in love with her portfolio and it was her or no one else.
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?
I would say about two months. I wrote the story in one day and quickly assembled my dream team. We had to rush to publish everything by Christmas because I wanted to surprise my daughters on Christmas day with the first printed proof copy!
What made you want to publish a children's book?
One of the activities I enjoy doing most with my kids is reading to them at bedtime, and I thought it would be really special to create a story about them and for them.
What is the best reaction from a reader, so far?
It has been well received so far! The readers really like how I portrayed the relationship between kids and pets.
Where do you get ideas for your stories?
Inspiration comes to me in different forms and at the most random times. It could be an impactful line in a book, experiencing an act of kindness, witnessing beautiful scenery, etc. which will suddenly spur me to write.
What's your writing process like?
There is no rigidity in my writing process. Whenever I feel inspired, I simply write.
Do you have any other books in the works?
Yes, I am working on a follow-up story about the girls and how it is like growing up together and sometimes… apart.
What does literary success look like to you?
Being able to effectively touch others through the power of my stories.
Do you read all of the book reviews you receive?
I do, especially in the beginning. I’m genuinely curious as to how others will perceive my book.
What is your favorite children's book(s) of all time?
Shel Silverstein’s The Giving Tree. A classic!