It scares me to see this. Another death! Just proves how Peanut Allergic children are not safe eating anywhere. Even in what we consider "safe restaurants" there is a chance of cross contamination. This is something I worry about every day with Amanda.
How did you come up with the idea for your first book, I Spy a Dragonfly?
In the Spring of 2007 we had a tremendous amount of rain here in San Antonio. Soon after the rain stopped there were hundreds of dragonflies everywhere. They were so abundant that they would hit my windshield as I drove into the driveway. They were everywhere! Big, small, fat, blue, green, skinny - I just couldn't get enough of them and became fascinated by them. I took my son, who was 4 years old, out back to see the dragonflies. I told him to hold out his arm and that maybe one would land on him. Sure enough and skinny, blue dragonfly landed on his arm and he thought that was the coolest thing. I decided to write down that experience for a keepsake but ended up turning it into a children's book.
What was your favorite book as a child? I love reading as a child, and my favorites were Dr. Suess and Mother Goose.
How many books have you written?
I have written two children's books. My second book is called My name may be Peanuts, but I say Nay to PB&J. It's about a little girl who suffers from peanut and tree nut allergies. It is an educational book for all children who have food allergies.
I Spy a Dragonfly was awarded the 2011 Christian Literacy Award. What does that mean to you as an author?Winning the 2011 Christian Literary Award meant the world to me. I had worked so hard for a several years just writing the book and getting it out. I really felt humbled and honored.
What do you hope children will learn from your books?
With I Spy a Dragonfly, I hope children learn about nature and dragonflies which are very mysterious creatures because they can even fly backwards!
With My name may be Peanuts, but I say Nay to PB&J, I hope children learn how to accept a child who has to read every label before eating it which can sometimes lead to bullying. I hope children learn become of aware of the terrible allergy and become more sensitive to the fact that not every child is alike.
Children's authors don't always get to choose who illustrates their books. Are you happy with how your illustrations turned out? Are the characters as you imagined them?I had a wonderful illustrator and am very happy with how the illustrations turned out. The are actually exactly how I described my characters and scenes to her. I feel very blessed that I worked with her.
Are you working on any other books?
I am working on a third book about children with disabilities and special needs and how therapy horses can help them become stronger physically and mentally.