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
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:
Autographed copies available at author's website for $10.95