Clarbojahn Presents! Author Susanna Leonard Hill’s Interview: Part Two and Give Away

Punxsutawney Phyllis book cover

Punxsutawney Phyllis book cover

Hello Readers,

Last week we had part one of Susanna’s interview and  learned about her favorite book, her writing process and her road toward publication. Thanks for tuning in today as we find out what she has planned for 2012 and more.

[Clarike] Susanna, who are your favorite authors and what are you currently reading?

[Susanna] Oh, gosh!  You with the hard questions!  I have way too many favorite authors to list, but among them are Peggy Rathmann, Kevin Henkes, Tammi Sauer, Suzanne Collins, Veronica Roth, Ally Condie, Ken Follett, Jean Auel… OK that’s enough.  I am currently reading Possession by Elana Johnson.

[Clarike]  Essentially, what do you hope the reader will take away from reading your books?

[Susanna]  Well, the message may be a little different from book to book, but essentially I hope to entertain, encourage, educate, comfort, reassure, and/or delight my young readers.  I hope to encourage a love of reading in them, let them know they’re not alone in the things they feel and experience, and help them understand a little bit about the world and their place in it.

[Clarike] What prompted you to start writing picture books? Did you have a specific inspiration in mind? Were you influenced by a certain author or work that inspired you to add your voice to this genre? Besides the boatloads of fame and money, what motivated you to write picture books?

[Susanna]  I’ve always loved to write – ever since I learned how.  But when my first child was about 18 months old, and I was reading picture books to her all the time, I thought to myself, this is what I want to write!  I write because I love to.  I write because I hope my stories will be enjoyed somewhere by someone and maybe make their day a little brighter.  I’m still waiting for the boatloads 🙂

[Clarike]  Are you working on anything now? What do you have planned for 2012?

[Susanna]  I am always working on something!  Several something’s, usually!  For 2012, I have planned that I will sell a new manuscript and win the Crystal Kite Ward for April Fool, Phyllis!  I’m not sure if the people in charge have that planned, but it would work for me 🙂

[Clarike] Where can readers obtain a copy of your books for them to enjoy? How can they contact you with any thoughts or questions?

[Susanna]  My books are all available from independent bookstores, all the major online chains, the publishers – all over the place, really.  I will certainly check in here if people have thoughts or questions to leave in the comments.  They can also contact me through my website or blog or at susanna [at] susannahill [dot] com.

[Clarike] You also have a blog where readers have quite a bit of fun. Can you tell us a little bit about that? And can you give us the link?

[Susanna]  My blog is located at http://susannahill.blogspot.com  Weekly features include Would You Read It Wednesdays – an opportunity for children’s writers to try out their pitches and get feedback; Perfect Picture Book Fridays – which you participate in! – where highly recommended picture books are presented along with resources to expand their use at home and in the classroom; and a couple of new things I’m playing around with… Tune in to see!

[Clarike] Thanks so much, Susanna for appearing here to do this interview. And is there anything else you wish to add for our readers?

Thank you so much for having me, Clar.  I really appreciate the opportunity to visit your blog.  And if anyone would like to visit, you can find me at my website http://www.susannahill.com, on my blog as mentioned above, or on Face Book at  http://www.facebook.com/pages/Susanna-Leonard-Hill/246146107330 

You are so welcome, Susanna. It has been a pleasure to feature you here on my blog. I look on with interest as you go forward with your writing career and will continue to enjoy your blog. For those knowledgeable about Perfect Picture Book Fridays, I recently won a copy of Freight Train Trip, one of Susanna’s first board books. It is a darling lift the flap book inviting little hands to lift the flaps while a freight train makes its way down the track all in perfect rhyme. It goes in my collection of signed children’s books. I used to give these away to my wonderful grandson but I have a sneaking suspicion that I may treasure them more myself.

What thoughts do you have about Susanna’s interview? Are there any questions you wish I’d asked? If so maybe she will answer them in the comments below.

And yes, as you know from the title there is a give away. Susanna has agreed to mail a copy of Punxsutawney Phyllis to one of my followers who also leaves a comment before 11:59 PM. EST.  Thursday, January 26, 2012. It will be especially nice to have a copy of that by Ground Hog Day. I will announce the winner on Tuesday, January 31, 2012.

If you enjoyed reading this post and would like to receive future postings, Please enter your email address and click the Sign Up button at the top right of this page. Or click the follow button and the next time I post you will automatically get a copy. Thank you for reading!

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About ClaraBowmanJahn

Journal writer. Author of "Annie's Special Day" And coauthor of Edmund Pickle Chin, A Donkey Rescue Story." Proud mother and grandmother of wonderful kids. Wife of brilliant husband. Servant of two cats. Member of Pennwriters and SCBWI.
This entry was posted in Clara Bowman-Jahn, Clarike Bowman-Jahn, interview and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

53 Responses to Clarbojahn Presents! Author Susanna Leonard Hill’s Interview: Part Two and Give Away

  1. Thanks again for having me, Clar! It’s been a real pleasure. And I will try to check in over the day in case anyone has questions 🙂

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  2. Enjoyed Part 2 of the interview with Susanna. Would love to know what you’re writing about — but understand. Can you give us a hint, another part of your series…animals? Susasanna, I wish you much success this in your witing endeavors this year. A Crystal Kite Award would be great! Will hold that thought with you.

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  3. Cathe Olson says:

    My students get such a kick out of twisted tales. I would love to have this for Groundhog Day. Good luck with the Crystal Kite Award . . . I will look for your name next year 🙂

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  4. I hope you get the Crystal Kite Award. That seems like a perfect plan to me! Enzo continues to enjoy his adventures with Captain Bright! Thank you both for this interview. (Something unexpected happened on Monday, so I am late in dropping by).

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  5. Love your interview and good luck with the Crystal Kite Award!

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  6. Joanna says:

    Almost missed part two! You go girl. I’m right behind you for a book sale and an award!! Gotta think big! So maybe you have two princess stories there? I just hope we can meet in person at some conference soon! I have just added three of your books to our school library acquisition list. It’s one of the bonuses of being buddy, buddy with the librarian!

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  7. Oh, you are so nice, Joanna! Thank you. Alas, the book sale isn’t looking too promising. Got one of those really hard rejections today 😦 But onward and upward!

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  8. I so enjoyed reading both parts of the interview with Susanna! (But since I recently won a signed copy of one of Susanna’s books, please don’t include me in the draw — give someone else a chance!)

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  9. I, too, gave many signed picture books to my grandchildren. 🙂 And the thought has crossed my mind as well, that perhaps I should hold on to any others I get for my story programs.
    What a lovely interview…Susannah, it was a pleasure meeting you here, as well as on your own blog…you are a very popular lady, I can see…which is no surprise. 🙂

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  10. Another fabulous interview and such a fun giveaway. Susanna is amazing, generous and so much fun! 🙂

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  11. Darlene says:

    Great interview. Punxsutawney Phyllis looks fabulous and I know just the little person who would love it! Hope I win. It is just fun to say the name. Happy writing Susanna!

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  12. Susanna, we’re interested in many of the same books. I’ve been wanting to read Under the Never Sky by Veronica Roth.

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    • Totally! I LOVED Divergent and can’t wait for the sequel, and Under the Never Sky is next up on my reading list – but now I’m in the middle of 11/22/63 by Stephen King which is really good too! Thanks so much for coming by, Theresa!

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  13. Best of luck with your writing Susanna and good luck getting the Crystal Kite Ward!!!

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  14. Wonderful interview! Thanks for sharing, Susanna! Always great to hear about other writers’ process. Your’s is not too off from mine. 🙂 Best to you both in 2012!

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  15. I have really enjoyed getting to know more about Susanna. Punxsutawney Phyllis is an adorable book. I checked it out when I started following Susanna’s blog. Thanks to Clarike & Susanna for giving your time for the interview.

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    • clarbojahn says:

      Thank you, Penny for the kind words. I also so appreciate Susanna’s time in giving me this interview. I really enjoyed it and following the comments. 🙂

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  16. Great interview of a really wonderful person. I’ve just “met” Susanna recently, but she’s always been right there answering my brain-picking emails with her generous advice. Wishing all your 2012 goals come to fruition, Susanna! 🙂

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  17. Jane Buttery says:

    Susanna Hill has such enthusiasm as she speaks. I am so glad I found her and discovered her willingness to support other authors. Just reading this interview and Susanna’s blogs enlarge my horizon. Thank you for a delightful read here.

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  18. For those wondering, I looked it up!

    The Crystal Kite Awards are given by the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators each year to recognize great books from the 70 SCBWI regions around the world. Along with the SCBWI Golden Kite Awards, the Crystal Kite Awards are chosen by other children’s book writers and illustrators, making them the only peer-given awards in publishing for young readers. Each member of SCBWI is allowed to vote for their favorite book from a nominated author in their region that was published in the previous calendar year.

    Wish I were in the New York region to give Phyllis my vote!

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    • clarbojahn says:

      Thanks, Cathy. I’ll pass the good words on to Susanna. Are you a member of SCBWI? It is highly recommended if you are interested in writing for children. There are a great many benefits even online.

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting. 🙂

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    • I think you and Beth could run a small country 🙂 You’re always on the case about looking things up and getting information out to everyone! Thanks for the vote wish 🙂

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      • You made me laugh with this comment, Susanna! Research is one of my middle names (it fights for supremacy with “Just One More Chapter”.

        I, too, wish I was in the right neck of the woods to vote for you!

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  19. I really liked learning more about Ms. Hill in your interview Ms. Bowman-Jahn! I would like to know if she get to say what the illustrations look like? You don’t have to put me in the drawing, I already have a copy of Punxsutawney Phyllis (and it is GREAT!) and someone else should have a chance to win 🙂
    Thanks!
    Erik

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    • Erik, you ask a great question. In fact, I do not get ANY say in the illustrations. My editor chooses an illustrator based on her experience and her vision for the book. The illustrator paints the book. When it’s all done and at the proof stage, that’s when I get to see it – too late to make any changes 🙂 The only time I got to see the illustrations sooner was with Can’t Sleep Without Sheep. But I’ve been very lucky to get editors with great vision and illustrators who really get my stories and paint them so incredibly that I’ve been thrilled!

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  20. Great questions and interesting answers. Funny about Groundhog Day. We live in San Diego and don’t have TV so I just realized my kids have no idea some people stay out of a groundhound’s hole once a year to see its shadow. Now that’s something to talk about when the date comes up on the calendar!

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  21. clarbojahn says:

    I don’t know if your calendar shows it or not but it’s February second which is next Thursday! Where has the time gone. I’m still wondering what happened to 1984. That used to be the big baddy when I was in high school. I think because of a sci fi book that was required reading. (Forgot the title of it). It may have been called that date.

    Anyway, thank for stopping to say hi. Hope your kids understand the term and who knows, you may win a copy of “Phyllis” so that would explain the whole idea for your kids. Or cause more discussion. lol.

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  22. Julie says:

    I love your 2012 goals Susanna! The Crystal Kite powers-that-be should be taking notice! 🙂

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