Author Interview with Angela Halgrimson
Today, I present an interview with Angela Halgrimson, award-winning author of Lenny the Crow and Nobody Likes A Booger.
1. First, tell me a bit about yourself. What would you like readers to know about you?
Oh, boy.. let me think… lol! Well, I’m very proud to say that I have won some awards for my books. I’ve won a Mom’s Choice Award along with an IPPY Award for my “Lenny the Crow” book. And I’ve also won a Mom’s Choice Award and a Benjamin Franklin Award for my “Nobody Likes A Booger” book. Also, I think I would like readers to know, that I try to find happiness & joy and I like to do something silly every day, because life is too short to be so serious all the time.
2. What are you working on these days? Can you tell me about your current project?
I’m working on the manuscript of my 3rd children’s book! I’m also, traveling around doing school visits and I’m going to be starting up a book tour starting in May!
3. What are some unique challenges and opportunities that come with writing children’s books? How do you balance telling a fun story with incorporating some kind of lesson?
I think the challenges with writing children’s books, is that the market is saturated with them and you need to find a way to stand out from all the rest. When I was a kid, I always used to gravitate towards the stories that had meaning. And as a parent, I would always gravitate towards those stories of a lesson learned. I think it’s important to teach children manners, which both of my books are about, but yet in a silly way, so they don’t feel that they’re being bombarded with rules.
4. What’s your process for working with your illustrator to make sure the words and images both line up to tell the story that you envision?
It’s really strange with Brian and me, it’s as if he and I have the same silly sense of humor and everything I think about, he pulls from my mind and draws it on paper. I also don’t like to restrain his creativity by setting too many expectations, I love to see what he comes up with and we go from there.
5. Where do you find inspiration for the stories you create?
Every day life! It’s funny because so far every story that I’ve written, I’ve dreamt about and I’ve had to hurry up and write down the story, before I forget it.
6. How do you feel you’ve evolved as a writer as you’ve progressed in your career?
I think all writers are ever evolving in their careers. And anyone who thinks that they don’t need to continue to grow in their writing abilities, probably isn’t selling many books. I’ve interviewed many best-selling author and every single one of them has said, that their writing careers and their writing abilities have grown immensely during their career, they only get better, and I think it’s so true! Life is ever involving and so our stories should be too.
7. Do you have a process for developing your characters and how they should appear in the illustrations?
When Brian gets my manuscript, we usually have a chat and a giggle on the phone about the different ways on how to portray the story, and he takes it from there and starts drawing out what he sees in his mind after we’ve talked about it.
8. How did you discover your love of writing?
Heartbreak. I was in 8th grade feeling the crush of being a nerdy girl and having the cool guy ignore me, so I started writing poems and short stories, and it made me feel better. I think also, I have always been in love with reading. When I was young, A lot of the times when I was reading a book I would wish that a storyline would’ve ended different, and would write down different endings of how I thought the story should be.
9. What is your favorite part of being a writer?
Right now, I think my favorite part is listening to kids giggle. Reaching out to kids and making them feel special. Every time I do a school visit, I make sure to make eye contact with each and every kid, and let them know how special each one of them is. I’ve suffered two brain injuries and even with my disability, I have been able to overcome and succeed when others told me I wouldn’t be able to, so I try to really make kids understand that we are all made different and even if they have disabilities, there isn’t anything they Can’t do or become.
10. What is your greatest challenge as a writer?
To stay in that creative place. I’m a mom and I have a very busy lifestyle, so sometimes it’s hard to be pulled out of that creative mindset, to clean the house… go grocery shopping… drive the kids around, etc.
11. How do you find inspiration and motivation to write when you feel stuck?
I pick up a book and start reading! It gets my creative juices flowing again so I can finish what I’ve started!
12. What’s your favorite way to take a break from writing?
I guess I don’t really have one, because I tend to be so busy, it’s always a treat to have the chance to sit and write.
13. What’s one piece of advice that you would give to aspiring or new authors?
Close the door, glue your butt to the chair, turn off your phone… and finish what you started!
To learn more about Angela and her work, you can check out the links below: