This month I have the honor to present you a special person, the author Crystalee Calderwood!
Enjoy her interview!
Interview with Crystalee Calderwood , the author of Angeline Jellybean
Tell us about yourself first.
I am a 25-year-old poet and children's writer. I've been writing nearly all my life and reading even longer. Writing for children was just a natural step for me.
When did you start writing?
My earliest memories of writing were in first grade, when we had to write short stories based on picture prompts. I haven't stopped since.
What genres have you written?
I started out as a poet. In fact, I originally went to grad school to study poetry. I have also dabbled in non-fiction and flash fiction. I like exercising my writing muscles and trying new things with my writing. Right now, I am focusing on writing for children and teens. I am in the process of revising several picture books, as well as a young adult novel.
Is Angeline your first book?
Yes. I was not the first picture book that I wrote, but it was the first I had published.
Tell us about your book. What is it about?
Angeline is a little girl who wants to eat nothing but jellybeans. Readers follow Angeline through an entire year of holidays- from Easter to Christmas- where Angeline requests jellybeans. In the end, she gets her wish and learns that sometimes there can be too much of a good thing!
What inspired you to write this book?
I was taking a class in writing picture books and my instructor had only one specification: our books had to be under 500 words. Angeline Jellybean was a story that came to me when I sat down to write, rhymes and all.
How long did it take you to write it?
Not very long. Like I said, it just sorta came out of me pretty close to the form it's in now.
Who is the publisher of your book?
The book was published by 4RV Publishing out of Oklahoma. Vivian Zabel is the president and founder of the company.
Where is it on sale?
Tell us about your other books/work.
Right now I am working on a contemporary Young Adult novel that takes place in Pittsburgh. I am in the revision stages and hope to have accepted for publication when the time is right.
What are the major challenges that you have faced in your career?
Publishing with a small press has meant that I've had to take most of the promotion into my own hands. It is always up to a writer to promote their own work and network with fellow writers, but even more so when you publish with a small press. I have had quite a few boundaries to overcome because most bookstores wont carry my book and therefore are sometimes reluctant to allow me to appear for book signings and readings.
Has the Internet helped you in your writing career?
Yes. Probably about 75% of my promotion takes place online. The internet allows me to reach a larger audience than I could locally through newspapers and flyers. It also allows me to connect with writers all over the world, share my experiences and ask questions about the writing industry.
What do you advise new writers to do?
Write, write, write! Read, read, read! Read everything you can get your hands on, especially in your chosen genre. Network with writers of all kinds. Join a critique group and form a thick skin. Revise, revise, revise. Repeat.
Title: Angeline Jellybean
Author: Crystalee Calderwood
Illustrator: Stephen Macquignon
Category: Picture Book
Publisher: 4RV Publishing LLC
Pub Date: December 2008
ISBN 10: 0979751381
ISBN 13: 978-0979751387
Author e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Author website: http://crystaleecalderwood.bravehost.com
Author blog: http://crystaleecalderwood.blogspot.com
Book available at: Amazon.com and http://www.4rvpublishingllc.com/Store-Books.html