Please welcome Marie Sanderlin Metroke to Kid's Korner at Books and Needlepoint today. Marie is the author of the cute holiday book - The Turkey's Treat. I look forward to reading this one with my son as we get closer to the holidays. I am holding off, as only being 4, if we start talking about Christmas now he will think it is next week!
1. Can you tell us a little about The Turkey's Treat and where the idea came from for this children's book?
The Turkey's treat introduces young Jeff Watson, who has his sight set on the perfect Christmas turkey. But that turns out to be a whole lot more difficult when he has to catch it himself!
The story starts as the Watson family prepares for the big day. There's so much to do from picking out a tree to gathering all the fixings for a Christmas feast-and they're way behind. In the grocery store, Jeff spots a real live turkey in a wire fence. He just had to pet the gobbler and that puts him and the turkey on very familiar terms.
The hilarious incidents that follow, Jeff ends up in the emergency room with a turkey bite. All-in-all, it brought the family closer together. Jeff learned the true meaning of Christmas is more about family than just the fixings.
The Turkey's Treat is a true story. Jeff, better known as as Lori, in the story loved all animals. When she (Jeff) in the story heard Mom's voice, she decided to ignore Mom and pet the turkey anyway. The turkey then bit her pinky and landed her in the emergency room. She learned a great deal that day and one she has never forgotten to this day.
Hmmm, I'm wondering if Lori is Marie's daughter? granddaughter?
2. Was there any lesson or theme that you were going for with this book?
What lesson did Jeff learn from this experience?
I emphasize the importance of listening to his parents by showing the consequences that happen that day when he didn't. Another good lesson Jeff experience was the value of family. He learned Christmas isn't just about presents under a tree or what to eat for dinner, but instead, it's being able to spend time with loved ones.
This is a great lesson to teach - especially around the holidays - any way to get commercialism out of Christmas!
3. How did you get together with your illustrator, Victor Guiza, and how important do you think that aspect of the book is? When you saw the characters, did it change your story in any way?
I met, Victor Guiza, online through the publisher, Outskirts Press. He was one of their illustrators. Outskirt's Press had about fifteen illustrator's to choose from on their pick an illustrator. I chose Victor Guiza, because of a picture he had on Outskirt's Press website. Through Victor's illustration, he brought life to my characters with large, vibrant, full-color illustrations. I am well please at his artistic abilities in art itself.
I for one think you made a great choice! I love the illustration of Jeff and the turkey after he falls into the turkey's pen!
4. Who/what are your favorite children's authors/children's books? What kind of influence do they have on your writing?
I like Clifford, We Love You by Norman Bridwell, and Bad Habit by The Berenstain Bears, and Just Go to Bed by Merger Mayer, and Crabby Gabby by Stephen Cosgrove. They are well written. They all have lessons or themes that will help children make the right choices in life.
My son has just discovered Clifford so he is a big hit with us right now. When I read your choice of Just Go to Bed, I immediately saw the cover in my head!
5. What is currently on your nightstand to read?
After writing for children, I like to take a break and around nine pm to go into my bedroom to read Nora Roberts, Heart of the Sea.
Good choice! The Irish trilogy was one of my favorites of hers. If you haven't read the Three Sisters Island trilogy (starting with Dance Upon the Air) those were good too!
6. Do you have a job outside of being an author, or if you did, what do you think you would be doing?
Being retired, I now have the time to write for children.I love children! I feel all children are our future. Being a stay at home Mom with two little daughter's, I had the opportunity to be a leader in Brownies, Missionette's, School Mom, Sunday School teacher. I am happy I was able to do this, because I am close to my girls and their classmate's. I really would not want to have another job, the one I have is just perfect. Love is giving to other children, besides your own.
It is wonderful to be able to do something that you love and have passion for!
7. Are there any other books in the works or that we should know about?
Yes. My next book will be out in 2010. It will be called, "Meet Slippery Jack at the Rodeo" by Marie Sanderlin Metroke.
I, Marie Sanderlin Metroke, have been writing for children for nearly three decades. I have taken many writing classes through the years from The Institute of Children's Literature in West Redding, CT. Both, Writing for Children and Teenagers and the advance program they offered. Also, taking classes from the Flathead College in Kalispell, MT.
I am privilege of being a member of Author of Flathead, Kalispell, MT; Children's Book Insider, Ft. Collins, CO; The Children's Writer, West Redding, CT. They have help me to become the writer I am today.
Thank you, Kristi of Books and Needlepoint, for reviewing my book. The Turkey's Treat is now available through Ingram, Baker and Tayler, Amazon.com, barnesandnoble.com, and the online bookstore of Outskirts Press, at outskirtspress.com/store.php.
Thank you Marie for joining us today! I will be watching for Meet Slippery Jack at the Rodeo!