1. Tell us about yourself, your background, and/or your credentials and degrees.
I noticed about five years into my teaching career that I wanted to become a children’s author primarily due to the lack of reading amongst most inner city students. It took about six years to write and edit my first novel, Broccoli Chronicles. Since then, it has won two awards – the National Indie Excellence Award and the Foreword Reviews’ IndieFab Book of the Year Award. As it relates to my educational background, I have two Master’s degrees – one from Chapman University and the other one from National University. I worked with the award-winning Lynn Hightower through UCLA Extension Writer’s Program where I learned how to hone my craft. I have written over 60 articles on my blog, in which two of them have been published in IBPA’s Independent Magazine.
2. Tell us about the process of writing and publishing a novel. What inspired you?
I started writing children’s books sometime around 2007, halfway into my teaching career. At that time, I noticed the decline in graduation rates and the scarce number of children that read. I wanted to create a book series that not only motivated them to read more, but also encourage them to find their voice and true potential in life.
3. Tell us a little about your first and latest book.
My first book, Broccoli Chronicles, follows Myrtle Beckle and her quest to cure cancer through broccoli. It is educational, humorous, and very inspiring. It’s awesome to know that even a ten-year-old girl can actually change the world. My latest book, Little Kids, Big Voices Math Workbook, Grades 1-3 is a workbook that covers arithmetic, fractions, and decimals. It’s a great resource for beginning learners.
4. What insight would you give to aspiring writers who are interested in publishing?
First of all, stay true to yourself, your vision, and your craft. Second, try to create characters that are unforgettable. Next, spend valuable time on marketing and building your platform as an author. Last, have fun!
5. Is there anything else you’d like to share with us?
The sky is not the limit – reach higher!