Interview with Author Kathy Stemke
Kathy Stemke has a passion for writing, the arts and all things creative. She has a B.S. from Southern Connecticut State University and Covenant Life Seminary, as well as graduate coursework from New York Institute of Technology and Columbia University. Hanging her hat in the North Georgia mountains she has been a dancer, choreographer, teacher, tutor, writer and an antiques dealer for many years.
As a freelance writer Kathy has published several articles. She is a contributing editor for The National Writing for Children’s Center. Ms. Stemke’s first e-book is available on her education blog. Sign up for her free monthly “Movement and Rhythm Newsletter.” http://educationtipster.blogspot.com Kathy’s next two children’s books are slated to come out in 2010! “Trouble on Earth Day” and “Sh, Sh, Sh, Will the Baby Sleep?”
Kathy has recently joined the staff of DKV Writing 4 U. DKV Writing 4 U is a writing service that includes ghostwriting, copywriting, editing, proofreading, critiquing, media releases, and much more.
She has been known to marry her photography and poetry together in book form. She loves to write about dance, personal finance, family relationships, health and fitness, education, antiques, biographical personalities, children’s picture books, literature, and biological sciences. This writers favorite activity is spending time with her family and friends. http://www.educationtipster.blogspot.com/
Interview with Kathy Stemke author of Sh Sh Sh Let the Baby Sleep.
I want to thank you for being my guest here on Mymcbooks Blog
What is the last book you read? I’ve been reading YA Historical fiction novels recently because I’m writing one myself. The Lucky Baseball by Suzanne Lieurance was a heartfelt story about the Japanese internment during WWII. Charlie Skedaddle by Patricia Beatty was set inGeorgia during the Civil War. Both books were well written, enjoyable to read, and a great learning experience.
What were your earliest memories of writing? In Junior High and High school I wrote poetry.
Were you encouraged to write or was it something that came natural? It came natural and from a need to express my feelings.
Are you working on a new book? Yes, I’m writing a YA historical fiction based on my mother’s life inBirkenhead,Englandduring WWII. Her younger siblings were among the one million children evacuated. She spent many years searching for them while working in the Women’s Land Army. It’s a wonderful story and very fulfilling to write-sort of a family history.
What do you do when you’re not writing or promoting your books? I work with the children in my church and tutor some homeschoolers. I teach adults dance at church as well. I enjoy photography and antiques.
How did you come up with each characters? Zachary is a combination of many of the little boys I’ve taught over the years. He’s a little jealous of his new baby sister and imagines that he has super powers when he wears his black glasses. Layla, the baby, just wants to sleep and be safe.
Have you ever suffered from writer’s block? No, I often suffer from too many stories trying to get onto the paper. I have to decide which project I want to finish first.
What is the most difficult part of writing? Editing, and rewriting over and over again until the story is perfect. Sometimes it’s difficult to find the right publishing company fit for your work.
How do you react to a bad review? I take it as a learning experience and balance it with all the good reviews I get. There’s always room for improvement.
Who are some of your favorite authors you would love to dine with? I love Cornelia Funke’s books. Her descriptions are scrumptious and her plots are extremely interesting.
What discipline do you impose on yourself regarding schedules, goals, etc.? Because I ghostwrite for DKV Writing 4U, I always have hard deadlines to meet for our clients as well as my monthly newsletter and articles for The National Writing forChildrenCenter. I make sure I get these things done a few days ahead of schedule.
Being part of Bridging the Gap critique group, I must submit my writing for review once a month and critique others work the other three weeks. These obligations keep me writing every day.
What advice would you give parents on selecting the right books for their children to read?
- Research the internet which is overflowing with reading lists and reviews of children’s books.
- Seek books in the areas of interest that will motivate your children to read.
- Look at some of the smaller publishing companies for unusual books that sometimes go under the radar.
- For reluctant readers, interactive books where they can choose alternate endings can be fun and exciting.
What advice you would give to new writers?
- Read, read, read.
- Join a good critique group.
- Take advantage of the many free workshops on line and learn your craft.
- Network with other writers, editors and publishers through blogs and social networks.
- Pay it forward. Support other writers. When you need help, others will be there for you.
- Follow your dreams. Never give up. The only way you can lose, is if you quit.
- Research publishing companies to find the right one for your work.
Is there anything else you would like to share with our readers? Please sign up for my free monthly newsletter, Movement and Rhythm, on my blog: http://educationtipster.blogspot.com. It’s full of book reviews, songs, games, information, worksheets, coloring pages, and movement exploration activities for young children.
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My name is Ella Johnson. I started Mymcbooks to promote reading. As a former teacher, I know that making basic education fundamentals interesting to children can be challenging. Education can be fun, exciting and captivating for children with the right learning tools. So my goal is to “make learning interesting and fun” for the children while they learn, by introducing them to fun books with colorful and captivating illustrations.
In 2009, I start the giveaway program giving away free school supplies at random to 2 winners each year. I also started a monthly free giveaways for books and gifts.
August 2010, I extended the free school supplies from 2 to 5 winners at random on my blog and also give away 20 bags full of school supplies to familes in need at Chick-fil-A in Brandon, Florida during their family nights. And in 2012, I beat my that number and gave away a lot of school supplies to needy families. Hopefully, I can continue to do this each year.
In 2011, I started writing reviews on children’s books then giving these books away free on Mymcbooks Blog. I increase the number of books we giveaway free to help support parent. My goal is to give away as many as I can each year. This is also a great way to introduce parents to new books.
Mymcbooks blog is always looking for other ways to give kids free books. So I started Mymcbooks Birthday Library http://mymcbooksbirthdaylibrary.wordpress.com/
My goal is to giveaway at least 300 books to children each year.
Books Given in 2011: 315
Books Given in 2012: 380
Books Given in 2013: 330
Books Given in 2014: 257
Books Given in 2015: – 127
Read Interview about Ella Johnson, http://melangeofcultures.wordpress.com/2011/07/31/interview-with-ella-johnson-founder-of-memorable-children-books-gifts/ Interviewer: Nicole Weaver
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