A few days ago (October 16) we become richer with one new book from Melissa Stoller – Scarlet’s magic paintbrush. On this book Melissa had an incredible coworkers, like illustrator Sandie Sonke, publisher Callie Metler-Smith and her inspiration was one of the Monet’s paintings. We will ask Melissa to tell us when did she realized that she wants to write about young Scarlet and her ability to paint with her magic brush.
You can read text on Serbian by clicking on a link: NOVA KNJIGA MELISSE STOLLER: Scarlet i magična četkica.
Melissa Stoller is the author of The Enchanted Snow Globe Collection Series, two picture books: Scarlet’s Magic Paintbrush and Ready, Set, GOrilla!, the family book club guide The Parent-Child Book Club: Connecting With Your Kids Through Reading (HorizonLine Publishing, 2009), and many parenting articles.
Melissa is an active member of SCBWI, a volunteer with SCBWI Metro-NY, a Regional Ambassador for The Chapter Book Challenge, an Admin for the Debut Picture Book Study Group, an Assistant for the Children’s Book Academy, and a member of the 12 x 12 Picture Book Writing Challenge.
Melissa, Hi! Please, before I ask to tell me something about your new book, can you tell the audience how you become a writer, especially an author for children’s books. Is it hard to write for kids and what is the difference between young and adult content?
Hi Ana! Thank you very much for inviting me to be a part of your blog! I’m happy to chat with you about writing.
SCARLET’S MAGIC PAINTBRUSH is my debut picture book about a young girl, Scarlet, who paints perfect pictures with her magic paintbrush until she loses the brush, and she worries that she’ll never be able to paint again. The book is about letting go of perfection and finding one’s own creativity.
I started writing for children in 1997. My oldest daughter was one year old, and I joined the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. I got a ton of rejections on my manuscripts at that time, and I put writing for children aside and concentrated on writing parenting articles. I also wrote a parent resource guide book about starting a family book club. About five years ago, I decided to pursue my dream again and I’m so happy that my debut picture book is out in the world!
I spend a great deal of time working on writing. I take KidLit classes and attend conferences. And I read many children’s books to see what works well in writing. I also have wonderful critique partners. Their support is really helpful along the way. I’m thrilled that after a long journey, I’m a published children’s book author.
It is very interesting that your inspiration for your new book about Scarlet is one of the Monet’s painting – can you tell us what painting is that actually and what was the feeling that moved you to do all the future steps and write a book?
I love the Monet collection at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. Some of my favorites include Terrace at Saint-Adresse, The Water Lilies, La Grenouillere, and The Parc Monceau. I visit The Met Museum quite often. One day, I was standing in front of these beautiful Monet paintings, and wondered what it would be like to paint like Monet. I thought about a girl holding a magic paintbrush and painting perfect pictures. From there, the story just continued. My amazing illustrator, Sandie Sonke, brought the story to life with her beautiful artwork.
Scarlet has a magic brush – and she paints beautifully until her brush is gone. Now, before we continue to read more, we are asking ourselves – will Scarlet be able to paint without her magic brush? Is there some deep sense that we can talk about it today, and is brush related disappearance connected to child and it’s self-esteem – how can parent influence on her/his child to grow up into healthy individual?
Yes, those are the big themes in this story. I was thinking about how children like to do everything perfectly, and what happens when they can’t be perfect. I always tell my three girls they they don’t need to be perfect, they just need to do their best. Finding your own creativity is a big part of life, and nourishing your self-esteem is so important. These are some of the big ideas I wanted to explore as I wrote this story.
And, now if you want to support Melissa, here you can find all the link she provides:
Thank you so much for featuring me on your blog, Ana! You asked great questions and I really appreciate your interest in SCARLET’S MAGIC PAINTBRUSH. For further information, your readers can connect with me at: