An Interview with Children’s Author; Judy Lyons Kuehnel:
Brought to you by Concept House Marketing
We here at Concept House were contacted in the hopes to help someone with something we’ve never attempted before…PUBLISHING A BOOK! Obviously we never say no to trying something new or challenging, so we ran with the idea and put all our effort into making it a success. Recently the book was completed and came out better than we ever could have hoped. The book was titled “Timmy and The Great Big Hole”, written and illustrated by children’s author Judy Lyons Kuehnel and this was her third published book. Since we loved the process so much, we wanted to take the time and sit down with our very first author and talk to her a bit about writing, reading, and why she loves it so much.
CH: “So Judy, first and foremost why don’t you tell us a little bit about your newly published book, Timmy and The Great Big Hole, and how you came up with the idea?”
Judy: “”Timmy and the Great Big Hole” was actually written many years ago. It was put aside until my husband, Bob, encouraged me to finish the illustrations. Thanks to the hard work of you both [John and Rodrigo] at Concept House it was finally published. The character, “Timmy” is based on my real-life brother, Tim Lyons. It’s about a little boy who finds himself with nothing to do and decided to dig a hole. Written in verse, “Timmy” eventually finds that he has dug right through the Earth and ends up in China.”
CH: “Sounds great! I’m glad we could help bring your story to life. As a children’s author yourself who would you say is your favorite children’s author?”
Judy: “My favorite children’s book author is Tomie DePaola. Tomie and I grew up in the same town, Meriden, Connecticut. He and his sister, Maureen, and I graduated from high school together. I often used Tomie’s stories when I was teaching elementary school.”
CH: “We’ll have to check out some of Tomie’s work now, so what would you say got you into writing?”
Judy: “I’ve always loved writing and, years ago, wrote a column called “Growing Up Together” for a newspaper. My first love, however is painting. Writing and illustrating children’s books (my teaching backround!) has successfully melded my two hobbies together.”
CH: “Wow, your talent has definitely taken you far in life that’s awesome. I know you’ve written other children’s book, why don’t you tell us a little bit about your past work”
Judy: “”Timmy and the Great Big Hole” is my third children’s book. The other two are “The Autumn of Aunt Charlotte” and “Archie and Abigail: Living Dinosaurs of the Everglades.” The inspiration for each book has come from some real life experience.
“The Autumn of Aunt Charlotte” is loosely based on my own relationship with my great aunt. It’s about the very special relationship between twelve year old Karen and her Aunt Charlotte and is set in historic Wethersfield, Conn. The two main characters are in different stages of life and each striving for independence.
“Archie and Abigail: Living Dinosaurs of the Everglades” was written after my encounter on a nature walk with three hissing alligators in Florida. It was only after I was safely away from them that I found out the “hissing” is a warning to not come any closer. Archie and Abigail, the alligators in my story, are much more tolerant of humans.”
CH: “Rodrigo and I will definitely have to pick up some copies of the rest of your work for the office. Do you think you’ll continue writing in the future or have anything on the horizon?”
Judy: “I have two other children’s books in the works. When my grandchildren were little I hung prisms in the kitchen window which created colorful images on the walls when the sun shined. We called them “fairies” and the kids delighted in touching the prisms and making the “fairies” dance along the walls. “Ruthie’s Fairy” is about a fairy captured in a shoebox and about the little girl who helped the fairy return to the land of fairies.
“Uncle Asa’s House” is based on a true story about a family who purchased a house and the original tenant refused to leave. The family allowed him to stay on and “Uncle Asa” happily lived with the family until his death some 20 years later. The story came to my attention when one of the children in the family was in my second grade classroom. The story is presently on my website, “penandpaintcreatives.com” and is in short story format.”
CH: “We can can’t wait to read them when they come out…and maybe even be able to work on them in the process! Before we wrap this up we wanted to ask one more question, what would you say has been one of your most rewarding experiences as an author?”
Judy: “That’s a great question. The monetary gain has certainly not been a motivation. For some years I did enjoy serving as an “Artist in Residence” at a number of Connecticut schools, however the greatest satisfaction comes from being able to see the stories enjoyed by friends and strangers alike. The books are in the libraries at a number of schools and have been available for purchase through my website, “penandpaintcreatives.com” or through Amazon.“
CH: “That’s fantastic, well thank you not only for sitting down with us and answering a few question, but also for letting Concept House help make this latest book possible. We hope to continue to see you write and paint in the future and look forward to your future work (and hope we can be a part of it).”