Q: First tell us something about yourself?
Well, I am a youth care worker with a degree in child and youth care from the University of the Fraser Valley. I graduated back in 2017 and have been in the field since. I have a BEAUTIFUL emotional support dog that improves my quality of life as I’m someone that struggle with severe Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.
Q: How and when did your journey start as a writer?
Over the summer I was off work, since I work for my local school district and school was obviously not in session. I’ve always loved anything creative, but I was honestly laying in bed one night and my mind was flooded with about 3-5 solid ideas for children’s books. One of my best friends calls them “divine downloads” from the universe. I immediately starting jotting everything down and the words just flowed out of me! I came up with character names, story outlines, and so much more all at once. I spent the next few weeks going through everything I had written with a fine toothed comb and reached out for some editing help.
Q: When did you write your first story? Is it published or not?
I had completed the manuscript and found an illustrator for TWO of my books very quickly, and had them both self-published by August 2021!
Q: Tell us something more about your books?
Both books are based on my own personal experience and teach something valuable. “Ophelia Clementine Delarose has Obsessive Compulsive Disorder” is what it feels like to have OCD expressed in illustration, and the story is an example of Exposure Therapy. “Happy Harlow: The Tail of an Emotional Support Dog” is essential what my life with Harlow is like and explains the basics of an ESA Support K-9’s role. Fun fact, a lot of images in that book are based of real pictures I’ve taken of Harlow! Both book titles also include a play on words, did you catch that?
Q: Why do you choose kids as your reader ? is there any specific reason?
As someone who works closely in education with children and youth, it was very clear to me that I needed my ideas to be presented in easily understandable ways and were available for young kids and their families.
Q: How did these stories and characters come to your mind?
Harlow from “Happy Harlow” is my support dog and she is just so special that I knew I had to write about her. As soon as I told my mom I was writing, she immediately said “WRITE ABOUT HARLOW!” Again, the stories come from my personal experience, as well as subject matter I’m passionate about, and the characters came to me like magic!
Q: Do you want to leave any message for your readers?
Without promoting my books too much here, I do want to encourage everyone to grab a copy of both books! Share with family, friends, schools, libraries, etc. Both stories are incredibly important to have out in the world and I believe could really help people.