Have you Joined The Goodreads Author Program Yet?

A.S. Chung B&WPosted by A.S. Chung.
Award-wining author of children’s picture books A Brand New Day: about divorce and Wishful Wedding: about LGBT equality and same gender families. Creator of Pigeonhole Books and blogs about self-publishing, writing, online book marketing, peer bloggers and illustrators.

HAVE YOU JOINED THE GOODREADS AUTHOR PROGRAM YET?
ONLINE BOOK MARKETING TIP
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Goodreads Otis Chandler

Otis Chandler Goodreads Founder by Christopher Michel

As an author, I am sure you have joined Goodreads as part of your online marketing strategy. Known as the Facebook for book lovers, it is an extremely  large digital library that every author should be a part of.

Now that you have navigated your way through the website, please venture your way to the bottom of the page and click on Author Program. If you haven’t already set this up, please take some time to do so. As it is a site which is dedicated to all things books, it is an invaluable tool to take advantage of it. It is completely free so you have absolutely no excuse!

It is important because under all the books listed on Goodreads, there is an option to click on the name of the author to find out more about you. You need to make sure you give them a dynamic snapshot of you so that curious readers can get to know you.

Features available in the Author Program:

  • Create a profile by adding a photo of yourself that best reflects you as an author. I suggest a fairly professional looking image and not one that is cropped from a family photo.
  • Write a compelling bio about yourself. Only limited by your imagination!
  • This feature enables you to share with your fans what you are currently reading. Makes for a good conversation piece.
  • This feature also allows you to list your favourite books.  Avid readers can form opinions about your personality just by the books you read.
  • You can advertise any upcoming events such as book launches, readings or book signings.
  • You can share a small excerpt of your book to entice readers.
  • If you maintain a blog, you can add it to your profile for greater exposure. All posts on your blog will automatically be uploaded on your profile so no additional work required.
  • You can add the Goodreads Author Widget to your website or blog to showcase all your hard earned reviews.
  • Promote your books by participating in discussions that may be relevant to the book genre or topic.

A.S. Chung Goodreads Author Page

There is no harm in joining this program. According to Goodreads, they are the world’s largest site for book readers and book recommendations. With over 20 million users and now acquired by Amazon, it is a truly useful site to be a part of.

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Author Interview: Hazel Edwards

SLEUTH ASTRID; LOST VOICE OF THE GRAND FINAL BY HAZEL EDWARDS Sleuth Astrid - Lost Voice of The Grand Final by Hazel Edwards

1) Please provide a short excerpt of what your children’s book is about.
Sleuth Astrid, a hi-tech, mind-reading chook rides a Harley, plays e-games and finds lost things. Illustrated (with visual clues) by Jane Connory, this e-version of the original popular print book includes a new story The Lost Voice of the Grand Final.

In Book 1, The Mind Reading Chook, the Magician has lost his sense of humour. Astrid must find that before the 3pm show.

In Book 2, The Lost Voice of the Grand Final, Astrid has to find the Voice of the Coach in time for the Saturday Grand Final. Was the Voice captured in the TV ‘Footy’ studio? Lost down his throat? Was a Voice Coach any use? What about the Speakeasy? or the Voice-over on the TV Footy panel or on Talk-back? And then there’s the Bird Wedding of the Year. Carrot was supposed to be the MC (Master of Ceremonies) As usual, Sleuth Astrid the Mind-Reading Chook, solves the problem.

2) What inspired you to write this book?
When staying at Varuna, the writers’ retreat in the Blue Mountains, I was introduced to a ‘chook’ who used to belong to a stage magician. They said the chook could mind-read and was part of the magician’s act. I believe in observation, not mind reading,so thought the chook could become a very observant sleuth. So Astrid has unusual things to find, like a lost sense of humour.

3) What do you hope children will take away with them after reading your book?
That it’s ok to see things differently. Use your imagination.

4) With your picture books, how do you ensure the message of your book is conveyed succinctly through to the illustrations and how do you ensure it is a smooth and productive collaboration?
I choose an illustrator like Jane Connory, who has a quirky sense of humour. I don’t always have a ‘message’ but I like to encourage unusual problem-solving. Creativity depends upon putting together things which have not been in that combination before.

5) Tell us about some of your extra challenges you have experienced in pitching controversial subjects for junior books.
f2m;the boy within the YA novel about coming of age and transitioning gender from female to male has been the most controversial for the subject, not the way we wrote the book. Check out the Youtube clip which interviews us as co-authors. Ryan Kennedy, my co-author is an ftm. And a family friend.

Currently I’m writing a junior chapter series Hijabi Girl , with a Muslim children’s librarian Ozge. Our character is s feisty 8 year old girl who wears a hijab and starts an Aussie Rules girls team. Plus there’s Rastus Rastus the Reading rat, soccer-mad Zac and the new girl who cartoons everybody. Just a fun school-based  story.

Feymouse about a large and clumsy cat born into a family of highly talented mice is a different way of showing how to cope with being different. Now a picture book app on Itunes but previously a rock pop musical and a print book.

6) What is the most fulfilling thing about being an author?
That your book may go into the lives of readers and let them be a little more tolerant of others who are coping successfully with being different. PLUS be an enjoyable read.

7) Tell us about your adventure to Casey Station in the Antarctic and how that inspired you into writing your YA books.
As an expeditioner with the Australian Antarctic Division, I became beset in the polar ice when our ship got stuck en route to Casey Station. So lucky to be with some of the greatest experts on Antarctica who all wanted to talk to me and helped me plot the YA novel Antarctica’s Frozen Chosen and the other plays and books. We did get rescued after several weeks. Check out the ‘cool’ Antarctic stories here.

8) What are you working on now? 
My memoir ; Not Just a Piece of Cake: Being an Author

THHazel EdwardsANK YOU FOR LETTING US GETTING TO KNOW YOU!
Should you wish to know more about Hazel Edwards and would like to purchase her book, here are all her pertinent details.

Website: Hazel Edwards
Where to purchase her book: Hazel Edwards and Port Campbell Press
Hazel’s social media connections:

social-facebook-box-blue-icon social-twitter-box-blue-icon Linked-In-icon 

A Brand New Day Review: by Joss Rodillo

A Brand New Day receives a 5 STAR review from book review blogger, Joss Radillo of Chapter 5. Thank you Joss for your wonderful and insightful review!

Here is what she had to say:
“Aww this is such a cute bedtime or day time reading for little kids and for some oldies like me. I feel really touched with this short story. Love how this little girl embraced the fact that their parents were separated and instead of let that take over her. She enjoyed her time with her daddy, her mum and her little step brother and all the activities they do together. She feels so loved and cherished from both of them. I think this kind of stories are able to help kids during their parents split and make them embrace this situations and have fun with it.

My mom and dad were separate when I was little and really had a hard time dealing with it, more when my step dad came to my lives but at some point I felt blessed because now I have 2 Daddies. So I totally can relate to this book and feel a bond with it, which is excited and amazing totally a gain.

Overall, I’ll highly recommend A brand new day by A.S Chung and I’ll definitely will keep an eye on her. From the cover design, the catchy title ,the fast paced story and the beautiful illustrations in this book make it a must have on your kids shelf.”

A Brand New Day: Goodreads Giveaway!

Pigeonhole Books is giving away a free copy of award-winning book A Brand New Day! Click here to enter!

Page 2 & 3 for upload

A Brand New Day: A Banana Split Story is a children’s picture book about divorce. It tells the story of a little girl who has to split her time between two homes so that she can spend time with her mother and father throughout the week. The book is written in gentle rhyme accompanied by beautiful artwork with a muted colour palette.

The story also introduced the concept of a blended family as the little girl inherits a step brother. The story never once mentions the word “divorce” and presents this life challenge in a positive light. The book was written to demonstrate that despite being in divorce family, the child can still create special moments with each parent and still be very loved.

A Brand New Day has recently won awards in the 2015 National Indie Excellence Awards, Purple Dragonfly Book Award and the 2015 Readers’ Favorite Award Contest.

Pigeonhole Books creates children’s picture books for blended, divorced, multicultural and same-sex families. It is a gentle resource that aims to deal with life’s challenges through beautiful illustrations and loving words.

Author Interview: Rich Okun

THE SUN, THE MOON, THE STARS AND MAYA BY RICH OKUN The Sun, The Moon, The Stars, and Maya by Rich Okun

1) Please provide a short excerpt of what your children’s book is about.
Our lives are bombarded with things that take us away from the special connections we are capable of. Each of us has the ability to demonstrate love, compassion, gratitude and generosity. We can choose to live our lives by the golden rule. We can make time to appreciate the exquisite construction of our planet, and experience the joy of nature. We can look towards the star spangled heavens, appreciate the velvet silence, and draw peace from spirituality. We have the ability to find beauty in simplicity, and we can marvel at the complexity of what at first glance, appeared deceptively simple. Many of us have just forgotten how.  My intention is to help connect and expand the most meaningful of relationships, that of parent and child.

In today’s busy, electronics oriented world, dominated by distractions, special effects, and noisy shoot ’em ups, simple earth based spiritual / moral issues have been all but forgotten, effectively obscured from view, buried in the smoky haze of the fiery explosion of Computer Generated Images. We conceptualize creation rather than competition as a means to engage and grow relationships. We offer alternative perspectives that are meant to evoke awe and wonder in all things and capture the imagination of the child and the child within the parent. With illustrations of Maya, my puppy muse, in complementary settings, accompany bits of wisdom relating to spiritual and moral issues. Notable quotations are the inspiration for Maya’s simple-language lyrical interpretations. Maya represents a reassuring presence, a gentle guide who leads by example. She helps encourage and pave the way for a rewarding dialogue with children, teaching them to appreciate the earth, and to follow the golden rule.

2) What inspired you to write this book?
As part of my spiritual journey, I want to contribute whatever I can through creative expression of spiritually impactful messages in words and pictures. I was inspired to this format and genre during meditation where I felt my inner voice move me to action while on a nature walk with my puppy. Although I am an unlikely children’s book author not having written or read children’s books throughout my life or even when I was a child.

I would post these on my website and social media pages and they became very popular with over 110 countries and tens of thousands of viewers monthly. I then decided to self-publish this book to use as a platform to help Parents and Children to be able to discuss these important matters instead of ignoring them. I use simple language so that all ages can understand, but they express very big ideas. I was picked up by a traditional publisher after a few months and have since published 2 additional books and about to release the fourth.  I use my pets (puppy and cats as well as other animals) not in an anthropomorphic way but recognizing that all living beings have a spirit that speaks the same language. It doesn’t matter whether it is a cat, dog, or wild beast, we all are the same if we can see with spiritual eyes. I want to contribute to this and help awareness to spark a change in the way we have operated on this planet. To help the golden rule to emerge as the way of being – going forward.

3) How did you come up with the title or series of your book?
Maya is my puppy’s name and this series is a compendium of different spiritual topics such as love, compassion, paths, fear, happiness etc. Part of my spiritual practices embrace Native American philosophies that honour the directions, the sky and earth the elements and all things with spirit. The Sun, the moon, the stars and Maya seemed to fit that bill.

The second book is titled Earth, Wind, Fire and Maya along the same lines. The third book is titled Embrace every step; life is a dance, which had more themed poems in life path so it wasn’t as broad in topics. My soon to be released fourth book is all about one specific topic and uses my cat as the main character.

4) As a child, your parents didn’t read you books and you didn’t read any either. Why then have you decided to become a children’s author? Why did you pick this genre?
I want to help. I want to contribute to a positive world and use whatever life experiences and talents I have to that end. Although I have always been a seeker, I became more engaged in my spiritual journey when I turned 47, and I didn’t want children to have to wait until they were that age to discover the magic in everyday life with the right set of eyes. However, I see that todays busy, hectic, two working parent households, time and energy are extremely challenged. Everybody is so tired and there are so many things to worry about. Technology furthers this distance in the family. Everyone has their heads down, surfing the internet on their smartphones, or texting in short meaningless sound-bites, or watching reality TV. Family time is limited and nobody has dinner table discussions anymore.

Spiritual matters are important, but complex, and parents have a difficult time bringing them up in a way that could engage their children. The traditional children’s stories are longer and attentions spans are shorter. I wanted to provide a medium to be a way that parents could discuss and expand upon these issues with their children through colour, language, words and pictures, using my little puppy as a centrepiece to engage.

5) How did you use your illustrations to convey your message? How does the colour palette complement your book?
I was the youngest member of the Art Student’s League of New York, across the street from Carnegie Hall at 6 years old, but I was afraid of color and using it so everything I did was in Black and White. However, when I started this effort, I used color openly and with courage, and vividly as another source of expression and to capture the child’s eye (and the child in you) and draw attention. I found that my fears of the past were unwarranted and that I could approach color with confidence.

The use of color represents the vibrancy of life and stimulates a sense of beauty.

6) What is the most fulfilling thing about being an author?
When I know that something that I contributed to, helped someone. There are many reviews of this book, but this one touched my heart and answers your question best – an excerpt is quoted here:

“I read several of these vignettes to my son at bedtime, and instead of lulling to sleep we ended up having a full discussion about fear and how to deal with it. It allowed him to reveal that he was being bullied in school but he never felt that he could bring it up to anybody without feeling ashamed. But it seems that Maya, has some magical tricks up her sleeve and made it okay for him to tell us before something tragic happened. I am going to buy this book for every parent I know as a Christmas gift. Buy This Book!”

This is why I do it. What I am now trying to do is get some corporate support to be able to give my book away to children’s hospitals, hospices, senior centers, and other places where spiritual voids can be lifted. I would love to take Maya with me and be able to bring some smiles.

7) What do you hope children will take away with them after reading your book?
I want children and adults to gain insight to how they feel about spiritual matters.  Most of us, most of the time do not have or devote time to thinking about things that are not immediately on our plates. We are constantly entertained, distracted, diverted, working, busy, marketed to and, and, and ….. The reasons we are here, the way to be, the things that are more spiritual and ethereal are not something that our society has valued. For too long, society is manipulated into believing that life is a job you hate, that you are the sum of your material objects, and many end up living a life that’s meaningless and the really big questions are replaced by “how am I going to pay my bills this week, what job will pay me the most, what will others think, etc.?”

Religion tries to answer these questions, but spirituality begs the questions. I prefer questions to answers that have a particular point of view. I want to help children to become more self-aware of things the ancients knew, but have been suppressed by our way of life. I would like to give them choices as to how to live their life, and to pursue their dreams, rather than take what they feel is good enough.

8) What are you working on now?
I just submitted the draft for my fourth book, to my publisher. It is titled, ‘Annie and me, a shared journey home.’  This is a different book than the Maya series, which was a collection of various topics.  Annie was my elder cat who was diagnosed with terminal cancer in February.  I decided to journal her progression in my words and pictures format. My intent in doing this was to identify my own feelings and observations about the process of death, dying, grief and loss through the eyes of love and palliative care.

My mother died when I was too young of cancer – I was not able (or willing) to provide the kind of care that I know she needed. For the past 50 years I regretted this as well had unknowingly formed fears, angers and many other hurtful inner feelings surrounding this subject – We all will die, we all have loved ones that die around us at some time in our lives. I wanted to see if I could sensitize to this important event and tell this story. What happened during this sacred journey was that I started to heal, the fears and angers simply fell away from me. I feel that this body of work is my best to date. I want to offer this healing to all.

THRich OkunANK YOU FOR LETTING US GETTING TO KNOW YOU!
Should you wish to know more about Rich Okun and would like to purchase his book, here are all his pertinent details.

Website: Rich Okun
Where to purchase his book: Amazon, Balboa and Barnes & Noble
Rich’s social media connections:

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A Brand New Day Review: by Tony Jerris

Tony Jerris is an accomplished playwright, author, and screenwriter. His off-Broadway play TELL VERONICA! ran in New York City before premiering in Los Angeles. As an author, Tony created a trilogy of children’s books. The first in the series, The Littlest Spruce, was featured on Good Morning America. The third book, The Littlest Witch, he adapted into a musical that is being licensed by Steele Spring Licensing. His book, “Marilyn Monroe: My Little Secret,” has been featured on Extra-TV and The Reelz Channel. His current ventures include several film projects, including a new stop-motion feature called The Potters with JenKev Productions. Tony currently lives in Los Angeles and is excited to be working with up-and-coming artist, Oliver Batin.

Taking the time out of his hectic career, Tony has kindly reviewed A Brand New Day:

A Brand New Day – A Banana Split Story, is a charming read, written in rhyme, that doesn’t get preachy about children of divorce (or separation). The author, A.S. Chung, doesn’t focus on the negatives of a child whose parents are divorced, rather, she conveys a positive message of how a child can continue to spend time with “both” parents (not to mention a step brother). Along with Paula Bossio’s delightful illustrations, A Brand New Day – A Banana Split Story is simple enough for young readers, yet entertaining enough for adults. Ultimately, this would be a great book for parents who are divorced to read along with their children. I look forward to reading more from this author.”

4 Social Media Platforms Every Author Must Have

A.S. ChungPosted by A.S. Chung.
Award-wining author of children’s picture books A Brand New Day: about divorce and Wishful Wedding: about LGBT equality and same gender families. Creator of Pigeonhole Books and blogs about self-publishing, writing, online book marketing, peer bloggers and illustrators.

4 SOCIAL MEDIA PLATFORMS EVERY AUTHOR MUST HAVE
ONLINE BOOK MARKETING TIP 
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Picture1Did you know that there are over 200 social media platforms? 200!

It is impossible to be consistently active on even 10% of what is available. I am sure I don’t need to tell you that marketing your indie book without social media is online suicide. Whether you are savvy with the computer or not, it is a necessary evil. I am also sure most of you know which are the top players in the market and would presume that most indie authors are already participating in some of these platforms.

If however you are not and wish to start, or perhaps only use 1 or 2, I would like to highlight, what I believe to be the big 4 social media platform must haves for all indie authors. To make the offer even more enticing, they are all FREE.

FACEBOOK PAGE
I have come across many indie authors who don’t have a Facebook page. When asked for their Facebook link, more often than not, I get a link to their personal Facebook profile. I don’t want to be their friend for social purposes. I am not interested in what they ate for lunch. I want to connect with them as an esteemed colleague and to be informed about their book ventures.

Facebook is still by far, the most popular means for connecting people. Facebook pages are specifically designed for businesses, brands and authors to share their stories and connect with people. These pages may be customised to suit your needs and you get to control the content. People who like your page and their friends can get updates in news feed and more importantly, they can share news worthy posts and help you spread the word.

TWITTER
Welcome to the world of microblogging!  This is a platform where you only have 140 characters to convey your message. I am sure for most writers; this is a nightmare but nonetheless a brilliant exercise in using your words effectively. All good things come in small packages.

What is a tweet anyway? According to Twitter it is “an expression of a moment or idea. It can contain text, photos, and videos. Millions of Tweets are shared in real time, every day.” This is particularly prevalent in a society where our attention spans are dwindling. It is quite the art form to be able to express your message with so few words. Twitter enables you to be as candid or as business like as you wish and with full accessibility on our smart phones, you can tweet on the run!

LINKEDIN
LinkedIn is a social media website that specifically targets the professional business community. It is an excellent online networking platform. Through LinkedIn, you can chronologically list your books, list your qualifications and/or experience as an indie author and also send through professional updates pertaining to your writing.

No, you won’t get readers to buy your books but you will gain industry peers and business insights. You will also get some great ideas and strategies of how to market your book and learn any new trends in the world of self-publishing.

GOODREADS
An entire website dedicated to book lovers! It is a site whereby you can connect socially with readers and authors, look at what everyone is reading, read their reviews and look at their book ratings. Goodreads also has a comprehensive author program dedicated to people like you and me.

They also have a very active group discussion format as well as giveaway options and the ability to include your books on Listopia.

This is a site where people are genuinely interested in books and the authors who wrote them. It is also a great way to meet other authors and writers who can help you with anything from writing conundrums to communication strategies. Well worth considering if you haven’t already joined.

I have no doubt there are many others to explore, which have worked well for many indie authors. If you are about to embark on your social media journey and find this overwhelming, you are not alone. At a minimum, get your Facebook page up and running and once you get the hang of it and can navigate through it comfortably, move onto the next platform. You will at some point have to learn to juggle them all but I promise that it gets easier and before you know it, it will become a natural extension of your work. Besides, it’s all about writing!

Wishful Wedding – AVAILABLE NOW!

Wishful Wedding by A.S. ChungPigeonhole Books is pleased to announce that its second book Wishful Wedding is now available! We are proud to present our first LGBTQ children’s picture book and contribute to much needed diverse books. Wishful Wedding is suitable for children ages 3-6 years and delves into the topic of same gender families and marriage equality.

SYNOPSIS OF THE BOOK:
Papa’s sister is getting married today! Daddy and I get ready, a flower girl I am. We witness in delight and giggle with glee but deep down in our hearts, we’re sad you see? When will my fathers be able to wed? I can only hope for change, in the future ahead.

Here are some of the sites you would be able to obtain a copy from. We shall update this list constantly as the book surfaces across the different websites.

HARD COVER

Alibris      Amazon      Books A Million     Barnes & Noble     Book Falcon

Book Depository     Book Manager     Booktopia     Fishpond

PAPERBACK

Alibris     Amazon     Barnes & Noble     Books A Million      Book Manager     Booktopia

Fishpond     Kent Bookstore    superbookshop

EBOOK

Amazon     Barnes & Noble     bol.com     booklikes    bokus.com     Collins Booksellers

Hugendubel     Infibeam      eBookmall     Feedbooks     Kobo     Rakuten

Author Interview: Roopa Weber

MESSY PENNY BY ROOPA WEBER Messy Penny by Roopa Weber

1) Please provide a short excerpt of what your children’s picture book is about
Messy Penny® is a story about a lovable peacock who discovers that beauty is not about how you look, it’s all about how you feel.  Penny wakes up with excitement only to be disappointed when she does not look beautiful—her hair is a mess, her feathers are all rumpled and her face is missing that special glow.  When Penny focuses on the happiness in her heart, not even her messiness can stop her from feeling beautiful.

2) What inspired you to write this book?
My husband and I began reading to our daughter at a very early age and so I thought a lot about the messages in the books we were reading and what I wanted to teach her as she grew up.  One of the most important qualities I wanted her to possess was self-confidence.  I truly believe when one can fully embrace who they are – differences, uniqueness, quirks, imperfections and all – true happiness is realized.  It brought me to think about my own mother and how she was able to instil confidence in me by valuing kindness, respecting myself and others, having humility, accepting and being grateful for what you have.  I wanted to find an avenue to instil my mother’s wisdom in my own daughter and carry the message forward generationally. And, so I wrote.

I chose a peacock because when I was growing up, the peacock feather was a good luck symbol.  I thought it would be lovely to start with a little luck and so Penny was born.

3) How did you come up with the title or series of your book?
In the spirit of luck, I always pick up a penny for good luck.  When I was visualizing the character, I always just referred to her as Penny.  I thought it was a sweet name and it conjures up goodness and simplicity to me.  It just seemed to fit so the Penny the Peacock® series came to life.

4) Why did you pick this genre?
I adore children and almost became a grade school teacher, but I followed a path in the financial industry and have been writing on the side.  That said, I have always been a big proponent of early childhood education/development and truly believe those early years are critical in defining who you may become.  Kids (and adults) are shaped by how they are treated and the love they feel around them.  If you can give a child a sense of security, safety, love and understanding early on, they will look at the world differently, and hopefully with a sense of optimism. I hope this book brings joy and invites acceptance and appreciation of the simple things.  In the end, if you feel good about yourself, you will treat others well—kindness brings great things.

5) How do the illustrations complement your book? What was important to you as an author?
The illustrations bring Penny to life.  Manda, my illustrator, did an incredible job and I am so fortunate to have had her dedication and care with this project.  I wanted the book to be colourful and upbeat.  My hope is that the message allows all of us to embrace ourselves and be grateful for the simple pleasures.  As an author, I want Penny to be a character that readers connect with and want to see more of.  If that happens, I will keep writing and spreading Penny’s goodness.

6) As a child, what books and/or authors influenced you the most and why?
I loved Charlotte’s Web, Corduroy and the Berenstain Bears because they brought back wonderful memories of my childhood.  I have re-read them with my daughter, which was pure magic when I saw the wonder, kindness and excitement in her eyes with the very books I adored.  Today, I think Mo Willems is ingenious and advante garde in his story telling, approach and use of imagery.  I can still hear my daughter’s giggles every time she picks up his books.

7) What is the most fulfilling thing about being an author?
I love being able to make a difference in a child’s life.  If a kid smiles because they love the pictures of Penny, or talks to their loved ones about their feelings, or ask questions, we are creating a love of books and making progress by opening up a dialogue.  I think it’s important to introduce the concept of self-esteem much earlier in a child’s life on a proactive (versus reactive) basis.  Instilling positive messages at a young age shapes a child’s view of the world.  As an author, I have also met so many fantastic families and I feel such gratitude about the support and encouragement I have received.

8) What do you hope children will take away with them after reading your book?
I hope children and parents alike will be kinder, more accepting, and less judgmental of themselves and others.  I place great value on being a good person above all else and try to impart that on my daughter every day.  You can certainly work on yourself and strive for the best, but at the end of the day, you must find a place of peace and happiness with who you are and what you have.

9) Who is/are your favourite author/s as an adult and why?
I read a little bit of everything and wish I had time to read a little more.  I think Khaled Hosseini, who wrote the Kite Runner is an incredible and captivating story teller.  On my nightstand is his other book, And the Mountains Echoed as well as Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn.

10) What are you working on now?
I have written two other Penny books and am hoping to get them illustrated if there is success and traction with Messy Penny®.  My goal is to make the Penny the Peacock® series a staple for all young children.  I hope I can make a difference, remind people about what matters most, and bring a smile to someone’s day.  What a joy…what a joy that would be to continue on this journey.

Roopa WeberTHANK YOU FOR LETTING US GETTING TO KNOW YOU!
Should you wish to know more about Roopa Weber and would like to purchase her book, here are all her pertinent details.

Website: Roopa Weber
Where to purchase her book: Roopa Weber
Roopa’s social media connections:

 social-facebook-box-blue-icon social-twitter-box-blue-icon  Goodreads-icon

A Brand New Day: Review by Optimistic Divorcees

A Brand New Day receives an amazing review from divorce bloggers The Optimistic Divorcees. Created by Cheryce Thompson and Shari Anderson, The Optimistic Divorcees was created as a way to share their experiences surrounding their marriages and divorces in an effort to encourage, support and relate to those who are experiencing separation or divorce. They realize that this transition is not easy and often times one may feel alone or believe no one understands. They do. It is their hope that this blog connects with those who need to know that there is a light at the end of the tunnel, life goes on and there’s reason to remain optimistic.

Thank you Cheryce and Shari for such a well thought out review of the book. You have articulated the exact intention of the book and we certainly hope it will be of some help to young children going through divorce.

“Times have changed and more resources have become available since I went through my transition from 2 parent, 2 income household to divorced, single parent. Back then I felt like there was no help and that I just had to find my way in the dark, on my own. If there were books, support groups, movies, etc available, I didn’t know anything about them. Today with an overload of information readily available at our fingertips via our ever-present smartphones, tablets, and even smart TVs, I’m more aware and always coming across various helpful blogs, periodicals, podcasts, books, etc that are beneficial to the successful navigation of this major life change.

As a result of a connection we’ve made via this outlet, we were introduced to a children’s book by A.S. Chung called A Brand New Day. This book is written from a child’s viewpoint as she deals with her every day life with her parents after their divorce. In the book the child talks about what she likes on the days she is with her dad and what she likes on the days she is with her mom. She expresses how much she loves her parents and the love that she feels from both her parents, even though they are apart. The book even addresses children dealing with a possible new family, as the character had a little step-brother.

My heart was warmed as I went through this picture book. Though simple, it was so REAL! It was a great depiction of how arrangements can be when a divorced couple share custody of a child. The story was parallel to some of my own experiences as my son went back and forth between us when he was younger. I’m confident that my son felt the love from his father and I, but it would have been great to have a book like this handy! I highly recommend this book if you have children and are divorced/separated and share custody. It could possibly help them to better understand the love that you all have for them and let them know that they are not alone and that other children are having the same experience.”