Well, boys and girls, today’s history lesson features Barbara Ann Mojica, who has written a fun and fascinating book. She’s here to answer questions, so let us proceed. Me first–it’s my blog. 😛
Glad you stopped by, Barbara. My first question is fairly general in nature: What influenced you to write this book?
I am now retired from teaching and school administration so I have time to go back to researching and writing which I have always loved. My academic background includes undergraduate and graduate degrees in history. So I got back to that by writing biweekly historical pieces for a local news magazine, The Columbia Insider. I wanted to marry that with my love of teaching and children so I decided to write books for children. A new core curriculum recently adopted in the US now emphasizes the use of nonfiction over fiction in the schools. I love history and travel. So I thought about how to make learning history fun. My husband, who is an artist, designed a whimsical character named Miss History based on my appearance as a young woman.
That is so cool! So you looked like that as a kid. Love it!
As a retired historian, do you use what you already know to write, or do you still find yourself doing research? (That’s sort of answered in the previous question, but perhaps you would like to expound on it a little?)
I have spent many years studying history so I do have an extensive background. Over my lifetime, I have visited thirty countries and more than half the states in the US. Today I do most of the research online for my historical articles and double check all my facts. One must do constant research to keep up with the latest developments.
I imagine the interpretation of history changes with what we learn as a society. You have certainly done a lot of traveling! Bet you have a fascinating passport record. All those different, creative country stamps…
Speaking of art–I love the illustrations. Can you tell us a little about your artist?
My husband is a talented cartoonist, children’s book author and illustrator, as well as a science fiction writer. We work closely together editing, critiquing and sharing ideas. He creates the images for the text that will best convey the exact meaning of my story. The images are hand drawn using mixed media though my husband is savvy in using the computer to enhance his art. Sometimes that process might take several days for one page. Children’s books rely heavily on pictures. That is where the majority of time on all my books is spent. We want to make sure that we get it right! The illustrations are the heart and soul of this series.
I can see where that is true. For kids, books without pictures is about as exciting as oatmeal. And the art is very painstaking–and the talent certainly shows. Computer art is never as easy as it looks.
Do you have any other books in progress, or that you plan to write?
The second book with Miss History visiting the Statue of Liberty is being illustrated right now. I have written three more books in the series and am working on another. I write the books and then constantly go back to rewrite and edit before they are ready for illustration. As I said before, the drawing and coloring takes a lot of time. Long term plans include putting together my local history research to write a book on Columbia County, New York.
I’ve not been to the Statue of Liberty, so this book will definitely be of interest. Your books are just as entertaining and informative to adults as they are to kids–that’s what I really appreciate about them.
What do you like to do outside of writing?
In the evening, I enjoy snuggling on the couch with my husband watching a good movie. During the warmer weather I like boating and spending time outdoors. When I have extra time, I like reading thrillers and historical fiction. Right now I spend most of my time writing and reading children’s books for my blog and marketing for my husband and myself. Then again I always find time to keep up with six grandchildren who are all age three and under!
That is known as a busy life. Six grandkids! Must be fun. I’m still looking forward to the day I have grandkids.
Do you have a particularly favorite era or character in history?
My first love is ancient history, but lately I have been focusing on American history due to my writing about local history. I live in an area blessed with lots of historical sites and belong to local historical associations.
I’ve recently been to the East Coast–so much history! And all so close together, really. The Pacific Northwest has its history, but we came in a lot later.
Do you see Little Miss History traveling to other countries in the future?
The books that have already been written for Miss History do not include traveling to other countries. Others have also asked me that question and I am definitely planning for Miss History to travel outside the US in the future.
Fertile fields–and a lot of research!
Well, those are my questions. We invite everyone to write in and ask their own questions or leave comments. However, before we say good-bye–Barbara, is there anything of interest/importance I might have missed?
I love watching the faces of children when they look at Miss History. The pictures appeal to children as young as age two. The older children are really interested in learning more about history. To be able to accomplish my aim to make learning fun is my greatest reward. Another joy for me is connecting to other writers, parents and bloggers. There are so many wonderful people around the world that the online network brings to our doorstep!
Thank you Kathy for allowing me the opportunity to talk with you and your followers today!
Only too happy to have you onboard. Please let us know where we can contact you.
SOCIAL NETWORKING SITES:
1. Author website: http://www.littlemisshistory.com
2. Author blog: http://bamauthor.wordpress.com
3. Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Littlemisshistorycom?ref=hl
4. Twitter: https://twitter.com/bamauthor
6. Linked in: http://www.linkedin.com/home?trk=hb_tab_home_top
7. Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/bamauthor/
9. Google + : https://plus.google.com/u/0/112118587425339968389