Friday, January 18, 2013

Interview with Author & Illustrator J.D. Holiday



J.D. Holiday is the author and illustrator of four children's books. Picture books: JANOOSE THE GOOSE, THE SPY GAME, and Matt Shelley's Halloween Misadventure with Award-winning author, Christy Condoleo, and the chapter book for 6 to 8 year olds, THE GREAT SNOWBALL ESCAPADE. J.D. Holiday is a co-host on It's Story Time, Gather 'Round with Christy Condoleo on Blog Talk Radio's World Of Ink Network:

Tell us about your current book. Give a short summary.
In The Spy Game, a boy, Eddie would love to have a puppy to play with.  A puppy would pull on a rope. Catch a ball and lick your face. But his Uncle brings Eddie an older dog named about a famous spy.

What can you do with an old dog? It probably couldn't learn new tricks, and the only thing this dog did was stare.  It's what they find to do together that makes them the best of friends.

I thought showing children that somethings they don't want might not be all that bad to have after all. 

Can you tell us about your publisher and how the process worked in getting published? I publish my own books using my own publishing company, Book Garden Publishing. After years of submitting to publishers, I decide I was my publisher.  Up to that point, though, I had some short stories and a Chapbook published, and had some editors’ interest in my stories, and I even had an agent for a time, but none of my children’s books in print.

How did you get the idea for this book?
My brother, Ike's, dog Sheeba had puppies. He asked me to take this one puppy he named, Sidney Reilly after a spy series he and I watched together.  At the time I had a dog and didn't think my older dog, Snoopy would be happy with a new addition.

My brother felt sure this dog was for me and he kept it with that in mind. When the puppy was 11 months old, my brother, Ike died of a heart attack. AND Sidney came to me.

I was wrong to think that my dog, Snoopy and Sidney would not get along. They did in their own way. 

What is a typical writing day like for you?
When I wake up, first I have breakfast. Then I straighten up the house, do dishes and maybe start a load of laundry. Then I turn on the computer and sit down to write or paint whichever is what I have planned to do the night before.

No matter what time I start, I always stop around 2:30 to 3:00 Pm to cook dinner.

What do you enjoy most about writing?
Creating characters and putting a story in order to make it a good story.

What is the most difficult part of writing?
I consider editing to be the most difficult part. I have to have someone follow it up and edit after I finish a story.

How has publishing a book changed your life?
It really hasn't changed my life much. What it has done, is given me a renew sense of confidence in myself.

If your book is based on true events, how has that affected those around you or why made you choose to use historical events?
My stories might have a ring of truth or be based on an event I know about but it is never all there is in the story. I love to create and change events to how I would have liked an event to have turned out or how I want things to work out for my characters. 

What are your plans now?
I have a collection of short stories I've written and will publish titled: Short Stories and Other Imaginings For The Reading Spot. Also, I am working on a sequel to my first children's picture book, JANOOSE THE GOOSE, called The Fall Feather Fair, which I wrote with my grandson when he was 6 years old.

What is your best tip for aspiring authors?
Edit, edit and re-edit. This advice I got from many sources over the years.  It is one piece of advice a writer must take seriously and never overlook its importance.

Is there anything else you would like to share with our readership?
Though this did not happen in real live, in The Spy Game, I have my brother bring Sidney to my character's house to live.  

Do you have a website? If so, please give the URL. If not, where can readers go online to learn more about your book(s) and to order?
Yes, my website is: http://www.thebookgarden.net and my blog is: http://jdswritersblog.blogspot.com

My childrens reading show, It's Story Time site is: http://itsstorytimeforkids.blogspot.com

You can find out more about J.D. Holiday, her books and World of Ink Author/Book Tour at http://tinyurl.com/bzwlprd

Follow J.D. Holiday at
Twitter: @JDHoliday

Publisher Website: http://www.thebookgarden.net

To learn more about the World of Ink Tours visit http://worldofinknetwork.com  

5 comments:

  1. Hello JD: Your note about editing and more editing rings true. Thanks for reminding us, all the other writers out here, that the craft matters.

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  2. Hi Jack,
    Thank you for stopping by! Yes, I need to remind myself my story isn't done until the editing is. :D

    Best Wishes,
    JD

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  3. I find revising to be the hardest part of writing. Enjoyed this interview!

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