Today, I am interviewing Erin Lindsay Maurer-Lang, also known as E.E.Kelleman. Read how she came up with the brilliant idea of this story! The illustrations created by Yours Truly!
1. Tell me, Erin, how did you come up with this story?
I have been writing for just about as long as I can remember. When I was a kid, I loved books that had me close my eyes, drifting off to imaginary places. Creatures in the Attic was born one day when I was attempting to write a poem for my nieces and nephews. I was the kind of kid that would have wanted to dance with fuzzy, Muppet-like creatures in my attic! Hattie is a lot like me!
I love picture stories too, and yours grabbed me! But, I can be biased! ;)
2.Can you tell us briefly what the story is about?
This is a perfect bedtime story for kids about 2 to 6. It’s also great for older siblings to read to the younger ones. Creatures in the Attic is a simple story about a little girl with a big imagination. When she goes to bed at night, she hears noises coming from the attic. She’s convinced there are magical creatures having a party above her head. Before long, she goes to find out if she’s right!
3. Have you always wanted to write for children?
Yes and no. I have always wanted to WRITE (in general. period!) For the longest time, I was afraid to take the risk and publish anything. After years of building a network of self-published authors and finding some really great mentors, I took a leap. I think kids’ can explore the world through reading, and in this digital age, I’m afraid kids’ are going to lose the simple pleasure of being lost in a great book. So, that’s what drove me to write for kids.
BUT, I also write contemporary romance and New Adult sports romances. That’s why I’ve created two personalities. I publish my kids’ work under the pen name: E.E. Kelleman (chosen to honor my grandmothers), and my first romance will be published under my real name later this year.
Hmmm, this is a hard question. The story centers around Hattie. She’s essential to the story, but I think my FAVORITE character is one I didn’t create on my own. You drew this fuzzy, blue creature to be the leader of the pack and he’s just about perfect. In fact, I want to create a stuffed version of him in order to be able to hug him for real!
Do you know, he is my favourite too, next to the fairy!
5. What children’s author do you like best? Has any inspired you?
I have been reading books since I was four years old, and have been read to my entire life. I’m inspired by so many authors. The childrens’ authors I truly admire include: Shel Silverstein, Dr. Suess, Maurice Sendak and Mercer Mayer. I also really want to check out Julianne Moore’s Freckleface series.
You just have to do it. I’m definitely still trying to figure out how to market this book, how to get people interested. I was scared for A LONG TIME, but finally I realized I just needed to hit publish and figure it out as I went along. If you’re going the self-published route (no matter the genre), talk to other authors. Use social media to connect. Building a support network is the smartest thing I’ve ever done.
Folks, this is very good advice! I suggest you take up on that, if you already haven’t.
I do! I have two more written and I’m kicking around a couple of ideas for a middle grades and YA series. I’m hoping to have my next picture book, Rhinoceros Rollerskating Day, out later this year (with your help, of course!)
8.Do you have a website/blog, where your readers can reach you?
I do! I just built www.pawsandprintbooks.com as a place to connect E.E. Kelleman, Erin Lindsey Maurer & my already-existing book-review blog, Paws & Print together. Check out the kids’ corner and learn how you can win a signed-copy of Creatures in the Attic.