Welcome to #TheQuickSixInterview with Stephanie Ward!
We are excited to welcome author Stephanie Ward to our blog for this interview! Stephanie will be releasing her debut picture book into the world shortly, and it sounds absolutely heart-warming and utterly magical! Thanks, Stephanie, for introducing us to Arabella and the Magic Pencil! 🙂
About the Author
Stephanie Ward is the author of picture book Arabella and the Magic Pencil illustrated by Shaney Hyde and published by EK Books. After many years in marketing, she now spends her time writing sweet, silly and side-splitting stories for children. Too old to blame it on youth, she still hasn’t settled down and currently can be found in London, England with her husband and young son.
What is it called and what is it about?
Arabella and the Magic Pencil is the story of a beloved only child who has a picture-perfect life until her baby brother arrives. While she loves Avery, it’s sometimes hard to like him. She spends her days creating marvelous things with her magic pencil and ignoring him. When Avery spoils a proper tea party, Arabella erases him from her life. But nothing seems right without him, so Arabella must figure out how to get Avery back.
When is its release / launch date?
Arabella and the Magic Pencil will be released in Australia, New Zealand, the US, Canada and the UK in September 2019.
Where did the inspiration for this book come from?
The story evolved from an assignment in my eighth grade English class decades dozens several years ago. We were instructed to write a creative story, but I had no idea what to write about. I looked down at the pencil on my desk and decided to write about a magical pencil and a misguided eraser. At the time, I was 13 years old and had recently become a big sister to a little brother who was then about two years old. I’m sure I was channeling my annoyance at having a toddler messing up all of my important teenage stuff when I decided to write about a girl who could erase things at will.
Why is this book meaningful to you and why would its message resonate with readers?
This book means a lot to me because it happened to me! Not the erasing of my brother part, but the part about learning how to be a big sister. I hope the story resonates with families who are welcoming a new child. It’s hard for children to identify what they are feeling about a new sibling, especially when emotions can change frequently. I wanted to write a story about all of those feelings.
How have you promoted this book and how can we find it?
The most exciting part of the launch has been the exhibition of Shaney Hyde’s beautiful watercolour illustrations at Antipodes Bookshop & Gallery in Sorrento, Victoria. Her original artwork has been displayed in the gallery along with story times and craft activities including a wonderful paper doll activity featuring Arabella and Avery. It’s also been such fun to (finally!) be able to contribute articles and interviews to children’s book blogs and websites that I have been reading for years.
Thank you, Romi and Just Write for Kids, for your support of all things kidlit!
It’s only a pleasure to be able to discover and showcase wonderful talent like you, Stephanie! x
Find Arabella and the Magic Pencil at EK Books and at your local book shop.
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