I’m pleased to introduce Stephanie Campisi, an Australian-born, Washington-based picture book author who lives in a self-described haunted house in a haunted town – creepy! Stephanie is a copywriter by day; think 9am-5pm (and beyond) writing ads and labels for every day products. Her latest picture book, Luis and Tabitha, is about two star-crossed cat lovers. She has two more picture books coming out in 2019, holds an honors degree in linguistics from the University of Melbourne, and keeps busy in the gym or tending to various animals on her property.
What a joy it is to be able to glean experience from successfully and prolific author Lisa Wheeler. She grew up near Pittsburgh, PA but has been in Michigan since she was almost 16. Though she has written all her life, Lisa didn’t attempt publication until the age of 32. (See, YOU are in good company!) After nearly 4 years and about 225 rejections, she sold her first book. She credits the support and encouragement of her husband, Glen, for taking those first baby steps and never looking back. Lisa totally loves the world of children’s books and says she “cannot imagine any other life”.
It’s a terrifying moment when you’ve spent time pouring your heart out on the pages and wonder who you should share it with. Will they understand you? Will they laugh at you? Will they give you helpful or hurtful feedback? Are you as good as you think or worse than you thought? Writing is a vulnerable business that demands courage at every turn. It takes courage to start and more courage to finish. So when, exactly, do you share your manuscript with someone else?
Someone may have asked you what some good writing strategies for authors are. Perhaps you’ve asked this yourself. Writing has been around for thousands of years and unlike new technology industries, we know what works for writers and what doesn’t. You could call these good strategies for authors the basics or fundamentals for strong writing. Try not to see yourself as too good not to be reminded of the basics. Everyone needs these basic strategies. It’s those with experience that stray from these strategies and test out new, unproven methods. Revisiting the basics will help get you back on course with your writing progress.
Today, we have the incredibly talented Valeria Wicker here sharing insights and advice from her journey as an illustrator. She was born in Rome, Italy and graduated from art school with the intent of becoming a fashion designer. After moving to the United States, her passion evolved into writing and illustrating children’s books. She has illustrated picture books for independent authors and embraced the children’s literature community through the Society of Children’s Books Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI). With English as her second language, she works restlessly to hone her writing skills.
I am pleased to introduce illustrator Steve Brown! He is a freelance children’s illustrator from the Romney Marsh in Kent, England and has been drawing for as long as he can remember. His animation style is heavily influenced by the cartoons of the 70’s, 80’s, and 90’s which he considers “the best”. Steve is most often in his home studio scribbling away on his Wacom Cintiq, located at the bottom of his garden that overlooks fields and trees. His passion is for character design and story telling through illustration. Steve “likes to use humor” in his illustrations to “make it more fun for children and adults.” Secretly, he sneaks in lots of subtle details that take a careful eye to spot. Follow Steve’s incredible art on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and at his website, Steve Brown Illustration.