I'm not new to talking, sharing ideas, or stating my opinion, especially stating my opinion! After all, I taught elementary school for 30 years! However, my audience has typically been smaller,just family, the classroom, or just talking to myself!

My blog has two goals: be an outlet for sharing thoughts on writing children's books and the path to publication (got my fingers crossed that I'll get there) and a place to chronicle my journey of losing my sight. Sometimes I imagine these two paths will overlap .

Monday, November 19, 2012

                  The Next Big Thing (part deux)

Author, Jo Kittinger
     I am delighted to share my space with a wonderful children's author, Jo Kittinger, who also happens to be the Co-Regional Advisor of the Southern Breeze Region of  SCBWI. 
Jo has written some FABULOUS picture books (see them listed below) and her "Next Big Thing" sounds amazing. Let me turn this over to Jo and her 10 question answers.

What is your working title of your book? 
Where did the idea come from for the book?
I was brainstorming with Tony Barash about what subject should be a follow up story to A BREATH OF HOPE, dealing with some legally related topic. We decided to go with a Post Traumatic Strees Syndrome storyline, offering help for those dealing with war-related stress. Tony is the impetus behind the series, which has been picked up by the American Bar Association.
What genre does your book fall under?  
Good question! It's a fiction picture book, but with a definite intent to educate. A page of back matter will offer information for those dealing with PTSD.
*** Wow Jo! I really respect your choice of tackling PTSD for children. There are many children of returning service men and women, I imagine, that are living with these issues in their families. How wonderful to provide them with a resource. Gail
Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition? 
I'm afraid I don't know any male child Latino actors to play my main character. For the friend's uncle who has PTSD, perhaps Eion Bailey.
What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?  
Cristian helps his friend, Brie, get help for her uncle who is suffering from PTSD.
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency? 
It will be published by the American Bar Association.
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?  
One day . . .  after weeks of thinking about it.
What other books would you compare this story to within your genre? 
I wish I could think of something other than my own book, A BREATH OF HOPE. I'm just not aware of other fictional picture books that are explicit in their purpose of teaching about a topic. I enjoy writing both fiction and nonfiction, and this blend of both satisfies both those pleasures.
*** Bravo for filling a need in children's literature. It's important tfor kids to see themselves in the stories they read. Gail
Who or what inspired you to write this book?  
Reading about the vast numbers of our servicemen and women who are struggling with PTSD was a major influence -- then, knowing one soldier and the issues he faced after returning from Afganistan, along with other individuals that deal with other mental illnesses. Individuals who return from war with physical injuries get medals, while those who live with mental injuries are often misunderstood and underserved.
What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest? 
 There are service dogs who are trained to help servicemen and women with PTSD. The dogs help the soldiers stay connected with "reality". That's pretty cool!
*** Doesn't it amaze you how many types of jobs dogs can do to help humans? Gail

Thanks for the opportunity to participate, Gail!!
Thank you, Jo. I can hardly wait to get a copy of this book!
And check over at Cathy Hall's blog to read her "Next Big Thing" post.  -

Books Jo Kittinger has authored:

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