Tell us about your latest picture book, what formats is it available in and where it can be bought?
I have four picture books coming out over the next year and a half which will be available just about everywhere that e-books are sold.
What makes your picture book “special” or “sizzle”?
Though they each include something serious, something worth learning, all of my upcoming titles go about it in a fairly cheeky manner. Hopefully, that makes them a little more entertaining than they might be otherwise.
What marketing methods are you using to promote your book?
I am the WORST marketer on earth. I’ve never gotten the hang of it and it’s starting to look like I never will! The idea of shoving ads in people’s faces has always bothered me, so I tend to rely on the kindness of strangers to spread the word. It’s probably as ineffective as a marketing campaign can possibly be, but I get to tour the internet and blogosphere, talking to awesome people like you. It’s rewarding in and of itself.
Where and how do you get your ideas?
Everywhere and anywhere, in every manner.
Do you ever get writers block and what do you do to overcome it?
Yuck, writer’s block is never any fun, is it? I don’t usually struggle with it in the first draft, but when it comes to subsequent drafts, I get caught up in the minutiae and tend to lose my way. Visuals really help me out in situations like this. I keep a whiteboard and a drafting table in my office and when I get stuck on a problematic scene, I use them to draw the characters or storyboard the situation. The images are usually all it takes to snap me back into the setting and realize where I need to go with it.
What advice do you have for other writers?
Writers as a rule tend to be filled with self doubt. I’d like them to know that — contrary to popular belief — they don’t have to believe they can do it. They just have to sit down and do it. Action over assurance. That’s what matters in the long run.
What were some of your favourite books as a kid?
We lost a colony of bees over the winter. (Not the funny part, I swear. Don’t laugh.) After prepping the hive to receive a new batch of honey makers, we found a few thousand robber bees stripping the hive of its comb and food stores. The scene played out a little like this:
Me (ever the “expert”): Nah, this isn’t their hive. Since they’re only foraging and have nothing to protect, they shouldn’t get too feisty.
Husband: They certain sound feisty.
Me: You’re too cautious. It’s fine.
Husband: I’ll take your word for it. I’ll just be over here. Watching you get stung.
Me: I won’t get stung.
Husband: You say that now.
Me: Will you relax? I won’t get stung. The buzzing before they sting is very different. It’s a faster sound. *Faster buzzing begins.*
Husband: You mean, like that faster sound?
Me (Oblivious): Like what faster sou — YEOWCH!!
Husband: You got stung, didn’t you?
Me: I got stung.
I now have a burning, itching, red-as-a-stopsign football on my arm. This is what comes from overconfidence, kids.
Where can people find out more about you and your writing?
Readers can find me on my blog: http://viviennemathews.
On Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/
On Amazon: www.amazon.com/Vivienne-
Or on my YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/
My money is on Sarah Simmons to win The Voice this season. Very important stuff, that.