I’m delighted to introduce you to two talented ladies belonging to the Daly family – young 9-year old Alexandria, who not only has her own blog, but she also co-authored the story of an unusual friendship between a snake and a little girl – and her mother, Margaret.
It’s not a daily occurrence for me, in any event, to interview someone as young as yourself, Alexandria Daly! Your first book is about a young girl and her pet snake.
I wrote this fun story for children. A little girl meets her new best friend, Sapphire, a snake. They spend the day together, learning about each other and planning a grand adventure.
Your story certainly has an unusual plot, which young and old will enjoy, but tell me more about your interests.
I love to read especially about snakes, but really any animal. I often visit the library at my school. I have a plan.
This sounds very intriguing. Tell us more . . .
My plan is to learn as much as I can about every animal there is. So, when I go to the library, I pick an animal. Then I’ll read every book the library has on that animal in the order that they appear on the shelf. It really messes with me when they move things around.
I fully understand what you mean! Serious bookworms don’t like their turf turned upside down and having worked in a library myself, I like the books to be in their assigned places. But what do you want to do when you’re grown up?
When I grow up I want to work with animals and my mommy says I need to learn about more than just snakes in order to work with all animals.
How come you write about snakes?
I just always liked snakes and thought too many people are scared of them. Thought if I wrote a book maybe they wouldn’t be so scared anymore.
That is an excellent way to help other children to trust snakes and actually like them. So, I assume that you have a real pet snake?
Yes, I do have a snake. Her name is actually Saturn, not Sapphire, like my book.
Wow! That’s amazing, but what really fascinates you about your pet snake, Saturn?
I think its really cool when I hold Saturn and she coils up around my head like she is a hat. In reality, she is just searching out heat.
Now that sounds freaky! I heard that you like drawing, but who helps you with your illustrations?
Yes, I love drawing and I’ve done some of the illustrations. My entire family pitches in with drawing. Some pictures don’t have anything to do with the story though.
It’s lovely when you have the whole family helping you, but what about school. What do you like and which are your favourite subjects?
I like most everything about school really, but my favorite is music. I am in chorus and band.
That’s wonderful. I used to sing in the school choir too and took piano lessons. You are such an interesting young girl. Do you have any encouraging messages for other young readers and/or writers?
If you have a story, write it down. If you need help, ask. If your parents can’t help, ask a teacher, ask a librarian, or another author. But always make sure you get your parents permission to be safe.
Very good advice, Alexandria! I assume that you are also referring to being safe while using the Internet. All the best with your endeavours to read more and especially your interest in writing. I’m sure your mom will always help where she can.
Here is a copy of my review: I downloaded this little story quite a while ago for my grandson who is 6 and he loved it. This is a lovely story helping young children to see that they can have all sorts of friends. Having an orphaned snake as a friend makes the book special. The illustrations are done by a young child and young ones will love them and want to sketch their own as well. There are a few different little adventures taking place and therefore I recommend this book being used as a bed time reader, one story a night!
Even though a young writer is responsible for the story, I would still encourage the use of the correct punctuation rather than add all the sentences together by means of commas. (Although having said that, I notice that my grandchildren do the same, because their heads are so filled with all sorts of imaginings that punctuation is not featured high on their list of priorities). Yet, this might be an obstacle for the overall success of the book, which I feel has a great future with a little bit of trimming here and there. Thank you for sharing this delightful story with us!
“Coming of Age” Fantasy Fiction Author Margaret A. Daly
Margaret, you are primarily a Fantasy Fiction, Coming of Age Writer, but tell us a bit about yourself?
I’m a woman of many hats, but by far my favorite hat to wear is the mommy hat. I don’t hold a typical job, so I am blessed with being able to be home for my children. That doesn’t mean I don’t do anything all day though, which is a common misconception to a lot of people. On top of being a mommy and handling all the issues that come along with being a mom, I am a wife and I run the house. Which anyone that does this will know is no small feat in itself. The house doesn’t run itself, the bills don’t pay themselves, the groceries don’t just show up magically… That is just the tip of the iceberg with household stuff.
I often wonder how you manage to run a household with four children and a husband, but you’re also employed by Rukia Publishing. Tell us a bit more about that side of your life.
I work with Rukia Publishing as a marketing and campaign manager (publicist). On top of setting up marketing campaigns for authors I make book covers, book trailers, advertise books for all genre types, as well as design author branding images and set up author platforms for many authors.
You are really extremely busy, but how do you deal with the writer in you?
I know, I know, where do I find time to write? It is small amounts of stolen time from other aspects of life, unfortunately. My husband is the one that suffers the most here…I’ve spent many a late nights where he has fallen asleep on the couch waiting for me… Sorry hubby…!
Poor hubby! But we love them all the more, because they cope most of the time living with a creative person or persons, but I’m particularly interested in your new Coming of Age novel. What is it’s inspiration?
My new coming of age story is coming along nicely. I don’t feel the story is appropriate for anyone younger than 16. The inspiration behind the story comes from life and there are some disturbing parts to my story. Everyone’s life has it’s ups and downs. Mine just happened to have some pretty heavy downs when I was younger. But now that I am older, I don’t blame people for everything that happened. I chalk it up to simple stuff. Wrong place, wrong time… my inherited ability to make the wrong choices during my youth is the biggest culprit. Some things were beyond my control, but I have let go of those. And I have my writing to thank for that.
Often writing about such traumatic experiences is the best way of dealing with the past. I will definitely invite you for an interview on my marethmbotha website when the book is done. You’ve been a constant pillar of strength, helping authors these past two years. One of your New Year Resolutions is to open a branch of Rukia Publishing in your home town. How are your aspirations to do so progressing?
I am still looking forward to opening a physical branch of Rukia here in my hometown. We have a good amount of authors around here and they could use a support system! It may take me a while to have an office open here, well open for people to come in to, but I am helping local authors already with Rukia.
And I know you assist and encourage Alexandria. What about your other children?
I encourage all of my children to express their creativity. Alexandria is my writer. That much is unmistakable. Each one of my four children have their own specialty and I want them to express it.
Well, just having such a wonderful, busy life and a loving family to surround you, must give you much inspiration?
Yes, I try to find inspiration all around me. Thank you Maretha! This was fun. Unfortunately, I don’t have any copies of our books on hand.
Thank you, Margaret, but I’ll keep reminding you to let me have one as soon as you’re ready. Thank you to Alexandria.
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