Friday, June 24, 2011

Ten Questions with VS Grenier

Today's interview is with VS Grenier, author of the children's picture book, Babysitting SugarPaw.

Hi, Virginia.  Could you tell us a little about yourself?

I’m a mother of three beautiful children and lucky enough to be able to stay home with them. I live in the middle of the desert of Southern Utah, however, I am from Southern California and its coastline. How I miss the beach and the mild weather the ocean brings.

 I never thought of myself as being a writer. In fact, I use to work in stores as a buyer. Now I’m an award-winning children's author, founder & owner of Stories for Children Publishing, LLC., chief editor for Halo Publishing, Int., and also, the host of the blog talk radio shows Stories for Children, SFC Magazine News and The Writing Mama

When I’m not busy talking with authors and illustrators on my radio shows, working for Stories for Children or Halo Publishing and spending time with children, then I’m busy writing new adventures in the World of Ink. 

Could you describe your desk/workspace?

Right now it’s a big mess. I have an ‘L’ shaped desk with lots of books surrounding me. I also have posters of books like “Fablehaven” written by Brandon Mull. I’m lucky to have my working space in the same room where my children gather to play and watch TV. I find I work better when they are near me.

What is the best advice you've ever received?

Don’t write how you talk or how real life is. This may be why I love Tom Clancy’s saying. Reading real dialogue (how people really speak) or how things really happen in life would bore a reader out of their mind. That’s why there are copyeditors in this world. They delete out all the unnecessary details from our story lines.

If you could have coffee with anyone (living or dead, real or fictional), who would it be and why?

Real: I would love to have a conversation with Stephen King. He has always fascinated me as a reader. There really isn’t a children’s author I can think of to chat with. I’ve met a lot of my favorites already.

What are your top three favorite books and why?

Harry Potter – I’m not really sure why. All I know is I picked the book up at a time I really need to get my mind off what was happening in my real life and it did just that. I would go to bed at night after reading and dream about walking the hall of Hogwarts.

Lord of the Rings – I love all the hidden life lessons within its pages. Tolken did a great job mixing action, a love story, adventure and friendship all into one saga. I true classic of literature.

Picking a third book is hard. There are so many I like at this point. Well I’m going to say the “Giving Tree”. I love this book and reading it to my children.

What was your favorite book as a child and why?

I don’t think I had one as a child. I really don’t remember one anyway. I hate to say it, but I don’t really remember my parents reading to me much or even having many books. I did like reading ‘twas the Night before Christmas though. I do remember that.

What would you say is your most interesting writing quirk?

I talk aloud to my characters. I don’t mean I talk about them or say what they are about to say in my story. I actually ask them questions and have conversations with them out loud. My kids think it’s funny.

What are your current marketing strategies for “Babysitting SugarPaw”?

Sharing my book with parents and places where children who are left with babysitters or maybe taking a class on becoming a babysitter. I also do a lot of marketing online like doing this World of Ink Tour.

I also talk about “Babysitting SugarPaw” when I’m out shopping or at the playground and I meet someone.

Could you share about any current writing projects?

I have two picture books I’m trying to finish up so I can send them out for review by publishers. I’ve decided to put my two novels on hold until school starts back up. With the kids home it is harder to write and focus.

I’m also going to be teaching writing to adults and children come Fall at my local state college. I’m really forward to that, so I’m busy getting all my workshop lessons in order.

Is there anything else you'd like to share?

 Keep reading and writing. If you want to write in a certain genre, make sure to read lots of books from it.

Thanks Susanne for having me today. It’s been great.

Title of Book: Babysitting SugarPaw

Author: VS Grenier

Illustrator: Kevin Collier

Publisher: Halo Publishing, Int. 

Genre: picture book, now available as an eBook

ISBN: 978-193526806-2 (softcover)

Publication Dates: July 2009 (softcover); June 2011 (eBook)

Available for purchase at:

Halo Bookstore


Autographed copies available at author's website for $10.95


Jennifer Shirk said...

Oh my goodness she works in the same room as her children AND talks out loud? I'm impressed! LOL
Great interview!

Laura Marcella said...

Great interview! Babysitting SugarPaw looks like a fun read. Those are terrific ideas for marketing it, too! I have a bunch of nieces and nephews who'd like this book for sure.

I talk aloud about my characters too, but only when I'm alone. But sometimes I get so used to it that I forget when I'm with people and start talking out loud. Hahaha! Awkward but really funny!

Joylene Butler said...

Wonderful interview, Susanne and VS. I never get tired of hearing how other writers came to be. Thanks for sharing.

Virginia S Grenier said...

Thanks everyone for stopping by and leaving a comment. I also want to share...

SugarPaw hopes to get rid of his babysitter, Bonnie Whiskers. Anyone who has ever done babysitting will be able to empathize with Bonnie Whiskers and her plight.

Come follow along during my June 2011 World of Ink Tour and one lucky Blog Hopper will Win a FREE autographed copy of my book "Babysitting SugarPaw."

The rules are easy. Leave a comment and your name will be put into a random drawing. The more blogs you visit and comments you leave, the more your name will be entered.

One comment per blog equals One Entry!

If you ask a question at a blog, I'll give you a bonus entry.

Good luck! Contest ends June 30th.

So you have all been entered!

Thanks Susanne for hosting me on your blog. You're the greatest!

Margot Finke said...

Love this book. That cover begs to be bought!!

Margot’s Magic Carpet
Books With a WOW Factor

Karen Cioffi said...

Wonderful interview. I like how you talk to your characters, Virginia. I haven't tried that yet, but will next time I'm stuck.

And, my grandsons loved Babysitting SugarPaw!

Karen Cioffi Writing and Marketing

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Good interview! I have an L shaped desk, too. I work hard to keep it clear though.

Stephen Tremp said...

Like VS Grenier, I like Harry Potter. I only recently read the first book The Sorcerers Stone and picked up the next two and am almost finished with number two Secret Chambers. I have to say this is one of the best series I've ever read.

Cher Green said...

Great interview. Is there anything particular reason you chose children books as your writing direction? Of all the titles you hold which would be your favorite? (Professional. I'm sure MOM would be your favorite, lol.)

Best wishes,

terri.forehand said...

I love reading about how other authors do it, and how fun it must be to be right where all the action is too. Awesome.


Virginia S Grenier said...

Popping on over to see if there were any more comments and questions and Cher you not only asked one but two!

1st, I choose to write for children because I didn't start reading books until I was much I love reading adult genre books, but I find when I really want to escape my everyday life...children's books are where I do that best.

2nd, I'm a mom first and everything after that. I love my kids and I love being a mom.

Great questions.


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