Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Because of A Book with Shelly Nicholson

Sorry to have missed posting last week, but I was waiting on this week to post a particular author, and I didn't have another person ready to post last week.  So, that being said, if you'd like to be featured here next week or another Tuesday, please contact me.  You don't have to be an author.

This week, I bring you another author.  Please allow me to introduce Shelly Nicholson, author of Jake the Snake and the Stupid Time Out Chair.  I will be reviewing Shelly's book later this week, but until then, let her tell you her story, Because of a Book.

I am the author of "Jake the Snake and the Stupid Time-Out Chair," and my soon to be released 2nd book "A Stinky Surprise for Jake the Snake," two laugh out loud early chapter books for children ages 5-8. Visit me at www.booksbyshelly.com...besides being a children's author, I am also the mother of four, 3 sons and a daughter. I enjoy freelance writing for children's magazines, reading, shopping, skiing, running and hanging out with my kids...hope you will visit my website and meet Jake the Snake and other characters from my book!

You can find Shelly at Book Blogs, JacketFlap, and Books by Shelly

A Simpler Time
By: Shelly Faith Nicholson

My childhood happened during the 1970s and 1980s and like any other girl who grew up in that era, I was in love with Greg Brady. I spent my Saturday mornings watching the Smurfs. My favorite movie was Grease. My favorite super hero was Wonder Woman. I collected dolls and Lisa Frank stickers that I placed just so in my Lisa Frank sticker album. And my favorite series of books was Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Little House on the Prairie.

I was the youngest of 5 children. And there was a 10 year gap between me and my next youngest sibling. Growing up on a dairy farm, I always had lots of room to play, ride my bike, fly my kite, and I always had a pet (usually cats, dogs, rabbits, and lots of cows that weren’t really pets). My cousins were my favorite playmates, because they were my age. Every Sunday we would get together for a big family dinner and my cousins and I would play board games, put on musical concerts (we all played some sort of instrument: me, the piano), ride our Big Wheels, swim, or jump on the trampoline (that didn‘t have a safety net and was cemented into the ground). We even created a secret club where our motto was “No Boys Allowed!” and we put on plays for family members to raise money for our “club events.”

Back then there were no fancy video games. Only Atari with bad graphics and 2 games that I remember, Donkey Kong and Pac-Man. There were no DVD players. Only VCRs that you had to rent from the video rental store (if you were lucky). Nobody owned a VCR in the 80’s because I’m pretty sure they were priced upwards of $500. Nobody owned a cell phone. There was no text messaging or internet. I don’t even think computers existed, unless you were a gazillionaire. The closest thing I had to a computer was my electronic game, Simon, which was high tech back then! Times were simpler. Kids had more fun creating things to do. And more time for reading! I have to admit I was a book worm. I loved to read, read, read. Books from my childhood that have stuck in my mind are the Little House on the Prairie series, Anne of Green Gables, Where the Red Fern Grows, Charlotte’s Web, The Chronicles of Narnia, Little Women, and the Babysitter’s Club.

I always loved to read. And I always loved to write and make up stories. When I was in 5th grade I wrote a story about a lollipop forest where unicorns dwelled. I remember getting the paper back with a star on top and a note from my teacher that said, “You should be an author someday.”

That idea stuck in my mind all those years. After I grew up and had four children of my own, I began making up stories for them. Each of my children has given me inspiration for every story I’ve written. Whether it is a story for a magazine, a story just for fun, or my “Jake the Snake” series. My kids are my inspiration!

I graduated twice from the Institute of Children’s Literature, first from their Writing for Children and Teen’s course and then from their Beyond the Basics course. My Jake the Snake and the Stupid Time-Out Chair manuscript was the last assignment for my first course. After much revising, editing, and submitting, the book finally came into print in May 2009. And now I have a second book in the series A Stinky Surpise for Jake the Snake being released early in 2010! If you enjoy the first two books there will be at least one more book in the series, as I have my manuscript for the third book well underway!

In my writing, it is my intention to get early readers interested in reading through laugh-out-loud humor, while instilling a valuable lesson in the plot. Today, kids are so much more advanced than we were back in the 80’s. So much more is expected out of kids. Reading is not always fun or a favorite pastime. Especially for boys. That’s why I like to make my stories super funny and relatable to young readers. And that is why my Jake the Snake series is written in the voice of a young boy who is full of mischief and possesses a candid voice, but who is also very endearing with a big heart.

I hope that your child will laugh when they read my books, but will also learn a great lesson in the end. Jake the Snake and the Stupid Time-Out Chair deals with thinking of others first. A classic lesson for everybody, whether young or old, male or female, born in the 1970s or in the new millennium!

Happy Reading! And Happy Writing! :) Shelly Faith Nicholson

About Little House on the Prairie:  They were howling in the moonlight - enormous, and so close Laura could almost see their glittering eyes. "Pa," she whispered, turning from the window, "the wolves have made a circle around the whole house. What will we do?"

Buy it at Amazon

Buy it at Powell's

About Jake the Snake and the Stupid Time Out Chair:  Jake the Snake is a rambunctious kindergartner who is always getting into mischief! And when that happens, he is sent to the “stupid time-out chair.” Jake the Snake is scared Santa Claus is watching and will bring a stupid lump of coal for Christmas ’cause Christmas isn’t far away! When Jake the Snake drowns his brother’s pet lizard in chocolate sauce, he is really afraid. But things only get worse when Jake the Snake goes to the mall to visit Santa and barfs in the mall elf’s hat! Will Jake the Snake get a stupid lump of coal for Christmas? Or will Santa forgive him for all the naughty things he’s done all year?

Buy it at Amazon
Buy it at Powells

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