Hello, dear readers!
Once again, the Kitlit Oasis has summoned you because it's the place to refresh your spirits, recharge your creativity, and get a literary mood boost!
Now, as you're getting ready to enjoy our next interview, stretch your smiles wide and get comfy and cozy for a lovely chitchat because today we have another awesome creative on the Chitchat series... Children's author Sharon Giltrow is here to share some wisdom, insight, and inspiration with us! Plus, check out the giveaway and my new workshop with Random House Editor, Frances Gilbert, at the end of this interview.
Welcome, Sharon, and Happy Book Birthday! Thank you for joining us on the blog. Please briefly describe your journey to publication.
A: My debut picture book BEDTIME DADDY’s, book birthday is today. Yay!
Thank you, Rosie, for interviewing me on this very special day!
BEDTIME DADDY’S road to publication was quite long. The ideawas sparked through Tara Lazar’s writing challenge – Storystorm. In June 2017, I took that idea and wrote my first draft of BEDTIME DADDY. Then with the help of my fantastic critique groups, I revised the story. In November 2017 I started submitting BEDTIME DADDY. After receiving a number of rejections, I decided that the story wasn’t quite ready. So, with more help from my critique groups and a publisher’s critique I started submitting again. In June 2018, I submitted it to EK Books and two weeks later,I received ‘the email’. I signed the publishing deal with EK Books in August 2018.
My Publisherthen matched my story with the amazing illustrator Katrin Dreiling. EK Books, shared the entire publishing process with me and Katrin, and were very open to any suggestions, changes or ideas that we had. Twenty-one months after signing the contract BEDTIME DADDY was released.
Q: What do you find most challenging in this business, either on the creative or publishing side of things? What do you find most rewarding? What helps you stay motivated?
A: The biggest challenge for me was at the beginning, when I was trying to think of myself as a ‘writer’. However, once I started calling myself a writer and telling my family and friends that I was a writer, it became easier. Not surprisingly, after this I also became more serious about being a writer. Although, it wasn’t until I signed the publishing deal for BEDTIME DADDY that I started calling myself an author. One of my most rewarding moment was when my family and friends started calling me this too.
Another challenge I found was marketing. This was something that I had to learn but with the help of my debut group 2020 Debut Crew, I learnt these new skills and fast 😊. My most rewarding marketing moment was when my daughter and I produced the book trailer for BEDTIME DADDY.
My next challenge will be getting book number two published. I have a number of picture book manuscripts that I am currently submitting. I hope I will have some more good news soon.
As all writers do, sometimes I question why I am putting in all this hard work, especially after I receive rejections. But, for me it is impossible not to write. I have an inner desire to write stories for children, which can’t be ignored. My greatest reward is seeing BEDTIME DADDY being read and enjoyed by children and adults 😊.
Q: Could you share any craft tools or techniques that you find most helpful to you when working on a project? What does your revision process look like?
A: The most helpful thing for me as a writer, is being a member of a critique group. BEDTIME DADDY would not have been published without the help of my critique partners. They helped me to take a very rough first draft and through many, many, many revisions turn it into a polished manuscript.
Here is how, with their help, the beginning of BEDTIME DADDY changed from version one to the final version ten.
Q: What's coming up for you next? Please tell us about any new releases, exciting news, upcoming events or anything else you'd like to share with our readers?
A: My debut picture book BEDTIME DADDY is releasing worldwide TODAY! Available through EK Books and all good ONLINE bookstores.
I have a blog tour happening in May. This blog is part of the tour.
Finally, as many schools around the world are now closed due to the Corona virus, I would like to share the links to BEDTIME DADDY’S teaching notes, for parents and educators. They can be found on EK Books and SCBWI – Australia West websites. In the near future I will also be recording and sharing short videos of some of these activities.
Great chatting with you, Sharon! Thanks for sharing your journey with us and the behind-the-scene of how your manuscript changed from its first draft to published book -- that's very helpful and I think writers will appreciate this example.
Readers, please support our featured authors/illustrators by following them on Twitter, requesting their book through your local library, posting reviews on Amazon and Goodreads, and of course, purchasing their books.
I hope you enjoyed this post — comments and shares are appreciated. Thank you!
Connect with Sharon Giltrow:
Sharon Giltrow grew up in South Australia, the youngest of eight children, surrounded by pet sheep and fields of barley. She now lives in Perth, WA with her husband, two children and a tiny dog. When not writing, Sharon works with children with Developmental Language Disorder. Sharon was awarded the Paper Bird Fellowship in 2019. Her debut PB Bedtime Daddy, released May 2020 through EK books.
G I V E A W A Y!
Sharon is giving a way a picture book critique to one lucky winner. Leave a comment by midnight on Monday 5/18/20 to enter the giveaway. Winner announced next week.
Don't miss this amazing workshop!
Click on the picture to get all the details and make sure you invite your writer friends to check it out, too!
Hope to see you there.
5/14/2020 08:26:38 pm
I like how you showed a bit of draft 1 vs. draft 10.
5/16/2020 03:33:58 am
Thank you Linda. I'm glad you found the revisions helpful :-). Also thank you for your lovely comments.
5/17/2020 01:25:22 pm
Congratulations, Sharon, on your new book! So excited for you. My favorite part of this interview was your sharing draft 1 and draft 10. Thanks for helping me see that I should never give up on a good idea. Your book sounds like lots of fun!
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About Rosie J. Pova
Rosie J. Pova is a multi-published, award-winning children's author and kid lit Writing Coach. She's the creator of Picture Book Mastery System™ that is proven to help emerging children's writers advance their career and get closer to their publishing goals.
Rosie's latest picture book, Sunday Rain, was featured in The New York Times and recommended by Parents magazine. Her upcoming picture book, The School of Failure: A Story About Success will be released in the spring of 2022 in both China and the USA.
Rosie also loves to visit schools and her interactive workshops empower students to unleash their creativity and grow in confidence through reading, writing, and creating. Teachers and librarians love Rosie for her bubbly, upbeat personality which captures students' attention, encourages them to think creatively, and motivates them to pursue big dreams.
She has been featured on TV, radio, podcasts, and print media, and also speaks on women's and moms’ topics, sharing her journey from a Bulgarian immigrant to a published author.
Find out more about Rosie's online courses, mentorships, and her work by visiting her website: RosieJPova.com
Check out her Critique Services here, her Workshops here, and her school visits page here.
Rosie is represented by Jennifer Herrington of Harvey Klinger Literary.