I’m so please to introduce you to a special author friend of mine! I know you hear me talk about her and the wonderful books she has written for young readers! Two of her books are written for ages 10 and up. Please welcome Rhonda Paglia (also known as "Grammy Pags") of “Grammy Pags Stories for Kids.”
Hi Miss Rosie, Thank you so much for inviting me to participate in your back to school blog!! I’m now a retired, but I was an elementary teacher for 26 years. One of the most challenging things I remember was the time it took for kids (and teachers) to transition from summer vacation mode to the back-to-school mode.
Every family and family schedule is unique, but here are a few suggestions to help kids transition:
Make sure your children get some down time after their long school day. Kids should have time to play outside, read for fun, work on hobbies, take a nap, or just have a little time to focus on their own interests.
Make sure there is enough time to complete homework assignments.
When my own kids were young, homework time was right after dinner. After assignments were complete, the rest of their time, until bedtime, was “free time.” This schedule seemed to work for us. I know a lot of kids participate in after school activities, so scheduling time for homework can be a challenge, but it’s so important that it is completed before bedtime.
Finally, make sure your kids get proper nutrition and plenty of rest to keep their batteries charged and ready for success. Have a great year, kids and parents!!
2. Tell us how many books you currently have available to readers and a little bit about them.
Thanks so much for asking! Currently I have independently published 12 books. They are available in soft cover and for Kindle. Ten are fiction books for kids ages Pre-K to grade 3. Two are non-fiction for kids ages 10 to adult. Here’s a little summary for each of my books:
Rosie, here are a few suggestions, but I am still learning!!
1. Writing books for kids is not for the fainthearted! It is a journey – so be patient, pace yourself, and become your own best cheerleader and promoter.
2. There are two routes to an author can pursue: traditional publishing, through a publishing agency, or self-publishing, where you publish your book yourself.
a. If you decide to pursue the traditional publishing route, be very careful. There are many ‘predatory’ book companies out there that will happily take your money. These are the “pay to publish” sites – stay far, far away from them.
b. If you decide to independently self-publish, be prepared to spend most of your time on marketing and promotion. Marketing and promotion often takes more time than the writing, editing, and creation process.
3. Find your niche groups and build your communities. Social media groups like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, plus your personal blogs and websites are where you will find your supporters. When you become established, your “groups” will help you share and promote your books.
4. A few other suggestions:
a. If you decide to go the self-published route, have your work professionally edited. My author friends and I can look over our manuscripts 100+ times, but we still sometimes miss those darn little mistakes. Of course we don’t find them until AFTER our books are published – and the mistakes just pop off the page! Yikes! So I would suggest hiring a professional editor – it’s worth every penny!
b. Your cover also needs to shout “professional!” (I’m working on this!) If you cannot create a professional looking cover, then hire someone to help you!
c. Finally – readers DO judge a book by its cover, especially the BACK cover! I read that readers will give the back cover a 30 second scan. That 30 seconds will make or break a purchase. The back cover is the place for your “hook.” Professionals recommend that the text be no more than 150 words - or less! So every word must count!! (I’m learning this too!) Good luck!
Oh gosh – I would love for my young readers and fans to know the following:
* I hope you enjoy my stories. Some of my characters are a little whacky, but fun! I hope my stories and characters make you smile and laugh and stir up your imaginations!
*I would certainly encourage kids to read and read a lot! Reading will make you smart and empower you!
*Read a variety of genre – include both fiction and non-fiction. Read about what you are curious about and topics that you enjoy.
· I also would encourage kids to write! There are times throughout our lives that we need to write. So practice! The more we practice, the better we become.
Finally, this is a little off topic, but it’s important to me. We all must remember that every person has unique gifts and talents. We need to use our gifts and talents to do good things at home and in our communities. We also need to recognize the gifts and talents in others and support them too. When we do good things - we help lift up our whole world and make it a better place for everyone. In my book, “The Little Lambs and the Very Special Mission” – the little lambs ask that we follow their special “BE messages!” (BE kind, BE a friend, BE a leader, etc.) So please follow the BEs!
To read more about Grammy Pags Stories for Kids – here are some links:
Amazon Author page: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B00G5X3WO2
Barnes and Noble Author page: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/Rhonda+Paglia?_requestid=169762
PS – I’m working on a NEW project - “The KINDNESS KIDS Project!” Watch for details!!