1. Tell us a little about your publication credits. If you have none, tell us about the genres you prefer to write, and your current projects.
Other than approximately nine hundred newspaper articles, I have no formal publication credits. I prefer to write poetry of many varieties, but the rhymes for children are my favorite.
2. How long have you been writing for children?
Most of my life, in one form or another, though up until now, it was for my children and students primarily.
3. How much time do you spend each week writing and/or revising? And how much time on other writing-related tasks such as promotion, researching markets and so on?
Presently, we are just a month away from release of Randy Kazandy, Where Are Your Glasses, so except for the time I spend teaching piano in the evenings, nearly every waking minute is filled with something to do with Randy Kazandy.
4. How much time do you spend reading children’s books? And what are you reading right now?
I don’t spend a lot of time reading children’s books now, but have read hundreds of them, many just since beginning this new career as a children’s writer. In the few spare moments I have to read for pleasure, I read Orphan Josie and Lightning, or Trouble Starts, Pane Follows, by my good friends David and Linda Broughton. I can’t wait for his next book in the Ash Pane series, Royal Pane Down Under, set in Australia.
5. What advice would you give other would-be children’s writers, or share with other professional children’s writers?
Don’t do what everyone else is doing, unless they’re having great success. To market a children’s book, you have to get them in front of both the children and more importantly the parents that buy them. Bookstores are not well suited for this task, so you must seek alternative marketing techniques.
6. What is your favourite online resource for children’s writers? Why?
I use the SCBWI site a lot, or the IBPA site, since they are associations of professionals in the field. There advice is usually sound, but remember to think out of the box, don’t march to the beat of someone else’s drum.
7. Do you have a website or blog? What else do you do to promote your published works and/or your writing skills?
Yes, though not completed entirely, the website is up, randykazandy.com. We’re doing so many promotional things, the list is too long to tell you about in this format. One of the main things I’m doing is going to schools with an oversize Randy Kazandy book, and teaching them the jingle my friend and I came up with. I also use my musical skills to promote my work at every opportunity. We also do the normal things like press releases, since we believe in leaving no stone unturned. We’re doing placemats for restaurants with a coloring page of Randy Kazandy, and many other things. Promote, promote, promote.
Thanks for joining us, Rhonda.