I would like to take this opportunity to thank Jennifer for hosting me on her site for this blog blitz.
Really appreciate that, Jennifer!
Barbara Ann Mojica is a historian and retired educator living in New York State. She holds a Bachelor’s and Master’s Degree in History. Barbara spent more than 40 years teaching in NYC and holds New York State teacher certifications in Elementary, Special Education, and Administration. She also spent several years as a Special Education Administrator and principal of a special education preschool for developmentally delayed children. Barbara, although retired from teaching, is staying busy: along with her forthcoming series of Little Miss History travel books she writes historical pieces for The Columbia Insider, Pat Fisher and Ed Pollack Editors, under the banner “Passages.”
Little Miss History Travels to Mount Rushmore is the first in a series of books using the Little Miss History character as a guide. She looks like a wannabe park ranger with pig tails and hiking boots three sizes too big. With her as your child’s guide learning about people and places of historical importance will be fun and educational. The aim of these books is to whet your child’s appetite to learn more about history and perhaps even visit these landmarks with you. Little Miss History presents information in a whimsical and factual way while amusing your child. I hope you will invite her into your home and enjoy this first adventure, and those to follow, with your loved ones.
What are you working on right now / or most recent work?
I am always working on my next historical article for the Columbia Insider news magazine which comes out biweekly. Each issue has a theme. I try to stick to this, but sometimes finding history to match is a challenge. For instance, a recent theme was Snuggle, Warm and Cozy! So I researched how people in the early colonies stayed warm. At the same time I am constantly rereading my Little Miss History manuscripts for new books in the series. (I have already written four more books awaiting illustration.)
How much research do you do? How do you go about it?
I mostly use the internet for historical articles. For my children’s books, I combine research on the internet with my own knowledge of history and travel.
What inspired you to create this book?
I am now retired from teaching and school administration so I have time to go back to reseaching and writing, which I have always loved. As a history/english/classics student in college, I spent lots of time researching and writing. So I got back to that by writing historical pieces. I wanted to marry that with my love of teaching and children, so that naturally led me back to writing for children. A new core curriculum recently adopted in the United States now emphasizes the use of nonfiction over fiction. So I thought why not introduce a whimsical character to make learning history fun. My husband, who is an artist, designed a character based on my appearance as a young woman.
In a nutshell, what’s the key message you’d like readers to take away?
I want children to be inspired to learn about historic, people, places and events but more importantly to have fun while doing it. Maybe they will even convince their parents to journey with them to visit some of them!
What was the most difficult thing about writing this book?
Getting the right balance between information and fun. I want children to enjoy learning. The illustrations and Little Miss History character have a lot to do with that.
The most rewarding?
The most rewarding thing was getting that first copy back from the printer. Just seeing my vision come to life!
Does this book stand alone, or is it part of a broader offering, such as web/television etc?
I would love to see Little Miss History as a cartoon character on the web or in a television series. As I mentioned, the book will be made into an ebook for those who want to take her with them when they leave home or school.
How much dialogue do you have with your readers? Do they influence your plans for future work?
I presented the book to children aged two through ten and was pleased that children of all ages were interested on different levels. Younger children appreciate the beautiful illustrations and older children got immersed in content as well.
What kind of support groups do you have to help get the book across the line?
I am retired and a new author so that makes things a little rough. I have reached out to my editors at The Columbia Insider for advertising. I make phone calls and visit local bookstores to market my book. Of course, I love attending children’s book festivals where we can interact directly and have already scheduled a few of those.
Do you work with an editor? If so, how much input do they have?
My husband, who is also an author and my talented illustrator, share the ediitng of each other’s work. He has lots of experience and I was an English minor so that works out well for us.
Do you have any tips or useful resources on marketing or branding?
Take the time to meet and greet people personally and use all the resources of social media. We are no longer isolated. Your biggest fans may live across the world.
If this books is part of a series, a little about the series overall?
The entire series will use Little Miss History to teach in an amusing and fun way. As I mentioned, I saw the need for children in elementary school who will be using the new core curriculum with more nonfiction to have an opportunity to learn more because they will see it as a fun experience.
Do you have a strategy for finding reviewers?
I ask friends to leave reviews after reading the book. But mostly I use social media to connect with like minded authors and publishers. I read and learn from their works and comment on their blogs, Facebook, or Twitter. Linked in and Google Plus groups with similar interests can also lend support.
What are you working on next?
I am currently doing final editing on my Little Miss History Travels to the Statue of Liberty in preparation for illustration. It will be out in a few months. My historical articles are an ongoing project as is my marketing.
Do you also write fiction? If so, a little about your work?
I have never attempted to write fiction, but if I did it would be a historical fiction novel on a particularly interesting obscure historical character.
How do you relax?
Snugging with my husband on the couch watching a good movie. When I have extra time, I like to read a good novel.
How can readers discover more about you and you work?
AMAZON SALES LINK
(The easiest place to buy my book!)
There are many reviews on Amazon, Goodreads and my blog.
SOCIAL NETWORKING SITES
Author website: http://www.littlemisshistory.com
Author blog: http://bamauthor.wordpress.com