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Wednesday, July 12, 2017

AUTHORS TO WATCH: MIRI LESHEM-PELLY AUTHOR OF SCRIBBLE & AUTHOR




Miri Leshem-Pelly is the author-illustrator of 14 children’s books. She’s also illustrated 14 books for other writers. When Miri isn’t writing she can be found speaking at schools, kindergartens and libraries. She is invited to do more than 200 presentations with her books per year. Miri is also a Regional Advisor for SCBWI (Society of Children’s book writers & illustrators).

Miri is represented by Olswanger Literary Agency.

Miri’s works have won awards and her illustrations have been shown on several exhibitions.
Miri lives in Israel with her husband and two children, and loves reading books and going on nature hikes.

Her latest book is Scribble & Author.

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Title: SCRIBBLE & AUTHOR          
Author: Miri Leshem-Pelly
Publisher: Kane Miller Books
Pages: 32
Genre: Picture Book for Authors

Scribble & Author is written as a dialogue between the main character, Scribble, and the author who created her. 
Scribble's journey starts on a peaceful shore called THE BEGINNING, continues to the rough, adventurous MIDDLE, and leads finally to the gate of THE ENDING, but it’s not at all what Scribble expected… Scribble is a scribble and Author is an author, but who really gets to tell the tale?
A picture book about finding your own voice, making your own decisions, and writing your own story.
Watch the book trailer at Vimeo.

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We welcome you to My Bookish Pleasures! Can you tell us how you got started writing fiction?

I started writing at a very young age. As a child I loved books so much and as soon as I learned to write at first grade, I started writing and illustrating my own stories. Luckily, my mother kept those childhood notebooks and it is a lot of fun to read them and see the kind of stories and poems I wrote back then.

Can you tell us about your most recent release?

My new book is Scribble & Author. It is a picture book for children, about a character named Scribble, who is a little scribble on the page. Scribble is created by Author, who is also a character in this book… Author creates the land of story for Scribble to live in and explore, and the two of them talk and interact and in fact, they end up creating the story together. The story shows that authors don’t really have full control over their stories, and characters can also change the plot sometimes!

How did you get the idea for the book?

I was thinking about myself as an author, and about my characters and wondered how would it be if I could have a conversation with one of my characters? And what could happen if this character doesn’t like the story he/she are in? Or wants to change it? The idea seemed very interesting to me, so I decided to write it and see what could really happen if I let an author interact with his character.

What was the most challenging aspect of writing your book?

I had the idea of creating a dialogue between the author and his character for quite some time, but it took me a very long time to figure out how to create a story out of it… I had many ideas for interesting scenes, but I wasn’t sure how to tie them all together into a plot. I made many sketches and created several illustrated dummies, in each one I sent my character Scribble into a different adventure: She dug for a treasure, sailed in sea, explored a dark cave and more, but non of these stories worked good enough. Until I realized what Scribble is really looking for, what is her motivation in the story: she is lonely and she wants a friend! Once I realized that, the story began to unfold quickly and all the parts fell into place, leading to a satisfying and surprising ending.

What advice would you offer to new or aspiring fiction authors?

I would highly recommend joining a critique group for writers. I’m a member in such a group for several years now and I find it very helpful. You get to hear comments and suggestions that you wouldn’t have thought about and you can improve your story and revise it much better and faster than if you do it alone. And when you give your critiques to the other group members, you learn many things too, because it is easier sometimes to see the problems on other people’s work. So if you want to become more professional in your writing - join a critique group.


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