Thursday, November 8, 2012

Author Interview: Carrie A Pearson


A Warm Winter Tail
by Carrie A Pearson

This week we are featuring the NEW Titles from Sylvan Dell Publishing & especially one author in particular. Carrie A Pearson is a NEW author to the Children's Book genre. She is a former elementary school teacher, active member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) and is the winner of the coveted SCBWI-Michigan Picture Book Mentorship Award. Her nonfiction work has appeared in Michigan History Magazine. Currently she is working on several picture book manuscripts as well as an historical novel for middle grade readers set in an abandoned orphanage (I am really looking forward to this one!).

After I read A Warm Winter Tail I had a few questions for Carrie & I thought you might be interested in the answers....

1. Tell me about your book. How did you come up with that (story, angle, idea)?

A Warm Winter Tail is a nature story about how animals adapt to cold. The science information is true, but it is told in a style more in keeping with fiction. There are rhyming elements, alliterations, and images that I hope are unique – mostly because it is told from the animals’ perspective. The idea came to me on a snowshoe hike in the woods. It was a very cold day and I was bundled from nose to toes. I noticed a deer watching me and the look in her eyes wasn’t fear, it was curiosity. I decided I must look strange to her and that’s when I thought of the idea of animals wondering how humans stay warm in the winter.

2. What should a parent keep in mind when they are choosing books for their children?

I let their interests drive my search. Children are fun because they get completely absorbed in a topic and want to live and breathe it. When that happens, they are open to many different kinds of information on that topic. It could be animals or machinery or pyramids; whatever the interest is, we explore it every way possible (fiction, nonfiction, poetry, museum exhibits, visual media, etc.) As you know, this multi-dimensional exploration is the intention of the Common Core Standards.

3. What kind of research did you do for this book? Did you do any?

Research was a crucial aspect of this book. I wanted the facts about each animal’s adaptation to be accurate so I spent a lot of time on research-oriented and nature-based websites and in the library reading nature books. The depth of research on the topic was extensive. The harder part was finding the right words to tell an accurate story in a more rhythmic, narrative way. Sylvan Dell Publishing is a stickler for accuracy and vets each book with experts. I am happy to say we had only one minor change to make in this manuscript.

4. How did you get interested in writing this particular genre?

I’ve always been and will always be a nature geek. People around me can tell when I haven’t been able to get out in the woods – and it’s not pretty! Writing about it was second nature. Pun intended.

5. What’s the best thing about being an author?

It is hard to pinpoint the best thing about being an author. I love when I find the right words to tell the story I have in my head. I love sharing a new image with readers --particularly children -- because I can see their minds expand. And, I love the independence of a profession where I can work anywhere and mostly on my timeline. This fits my busy life as a wife and mom of three teenaged daughters and two enthusiastic dogs.

6. What are you working on now?

Sylvan Dell Publishing just purchased a new manuscript as a companion to A Warm Winter Tail. This time, we are telling the story of how animals adapt to heat and I am waiting to hear about any necessary revisions. I’ve completed a middle grade historical novel and am submitting it now. I’ve started research on two additional nature-oriented picture books including one about what happens to animals after death. It wouldn’t be a spiritual treatment of the topic, but rather a scientific look at decomposition and the role this process plays in keeping environments healthy. Wish me luck on that one!

Thanks so much Carrie -

I was wondering how you would research a book like this. I found it interesting that you did so much research and in different ways to get your facts ~ and that you got all but one tiny part accurate from the start is amazing! You are a very gifted writer and I'm looking forward to reading your other books & featuring them on CCB!

Now that book on decomposition should be interesting. Can't you just see all the little boys (and a few girls) pouring over that book, wrinkling their noses, checking out all the little bugs and how they aid in decomposing? Might be a good time to start up a compost pile - it's not quite the same thing but they would still learn about decomposition! I most definitely wish you luck on that one ~ hopefully you won't have to touch to many dead things!

Enter the Giveaway for 1 of 3 copies of 
Long Winters Tail by Carrie A Pearson!

Tomorrow come back for a FUN activity for you to do with your kids based on the book "A Warm Winters Tail" by Carrie A Pearson. I promise it's going to be a lot of fun and your kids are going to love it!


  1. This sounds like a great read for kids! I really like how Carrie Pearson is a nature-bum and shares it through her writing. I think my girls would enjoy this one!

    1. @Jessica - thanks for stopping by! I bet your girls would love this book - both of my kids loved it!