A new children's book writer's dream come true
Children's books reviewed by the children they are written for — if only.
I just started writing and self-publishing children's books in March and the first became available on Amazon in July 2015. It may seem a bit odd that I now have four books. The reason is simple. I wrote and produced initially without plans for publishing. It was a combination of therapy and something to share with my grand babies. It wasn't until I met an author who looked at my books and encouraged me to publish them. So I did.
After a personal loss I moved to Nevada to help care for my grand babies. It turns out that they helped care for me. You see, I have always believed in reading to children often and from an early age. This helps nurture the joy of reading, and from a selfish perspective, I love to watch their reactions as the characters from the story come to life. Something happened as a result. My grand babies ended up helping to care for me as my passion, creativity and imagination came back to life. It seemed only natural to funnel this new found passion into something I always wanted to do -- writing children's books.
I had several goals for the books, including (1) promoting literacy by helping to nurture the joy of reading through fun, humorous story telling, (2) providing a message of love and friendship, not just for others but for the children reading the books as well, and (3) igniting the young readers' natural curiosity for the world, the environment and the creatures that inhabit it.
My Basset Hound, Silly Willy Winston, is the perfect muse and unlikely hero for the books. He has the biggest ears ever, a stout frame, huge paws and a super large snout. He trips over his ears and paws often, which makes him a bit of a clown. Rather than bothering him he views people's laughter as an invitation to make friends. If you ask me he is a perfect example of self-acceptance and empowerment. My Basset Hound's traits and the way he accepts and uses them to his advantage also make him an ideal character to help children understand, face and protect themselves against bullying.
His story can be used to start a conversation regarding bullying with young children. Parents and other loved ones can ask if a child ever feels that they are different like Silly Willy Winston, what makes them different, how they feel about it and what special powers or unique gifts they gain from their differences. Whether or not they feel different parents and loved ones might want to ask if there is any one they know that is different, why and what unique qualities those children have. Both of these open up the conversation that some children can pick on other children. From there parents and loved ones are able to do what they do, be the good parents and caregivers they are and prepare children to protection themselves, and others, against bullying through awareness, confidence, calm and respect.
Each book contains natural mysteries, rare animals and little known facts to stimulate curiosity and inspire a love of learning along the way. My hope is that young readers have so much fun with the stories that the messages blend seamlessly with the humor.