10 Questions with Dana Stoica

The importance of raising generous and kindhearted children does not escape most parents today and those searching for tools to reinforce those values need not look further than to Dana Stoica’s Generosity Book Collection. Her books talk about the importance of generosity in our life and include a parents’ corner that talks about the most important gifts that parents can give to their young ones: the gift of dreaming big, the gift of believing in yourself, the gift of joy.

In addition to being a great resource for families, Stoica has pledged that a majority portion of book royalties be donated to Saint Jude’s Children Research Hospital.

After reviewing these wonderful books, I wanted to learn a little bit more about Stoica so I caught up to her and asked her to answer 10 author questions.

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1.What books have had the biggest influence on your life?

Some of the most powerful reading memories of my life are:  The Secret Garden- Frances Hodgson Burnett. I was captivated by the imagination, compassion, and touch of fantasy that this book awakened in me as a child.

Another iconic book was Great Expectations – Charles Dickens. I felt a strong bond with the book character, with his dedication to pursue his dreams, overcome weaknesses and treat others with respect no matter of the circumstances.

Recently I got extremely inspired by “The Power of Now” – Eckhart Tolle, an extraordinary reading that gets you connected to the indestructible essence of being in the moment.

2. How long does it take you to write a book?

Writing a children book does not necessary take a lot of time. What takes time though is coming up with a meaningful and relevant book concept and message that can have a positive impact in the reader’s life.

3. What kind of research do you do, and how long do you spend researching before beginning a book?

The “Generosity Book Collection” has a very specific and clear thematic and it aims to create an organic platform that gives children and parents the opportunity to talk about the importance of giving and kindness. I did not do any research per say for this collection. It is my perpetual intention to promote life values that raise awareness about how we can make a positive difference in our own life and in the life of others.

4. How many hours a day do you write?

I write every time the inspiration and the creativity flow in. It can be anywhere from 5 minutes to a couple of hours, days…

5. What is the most difficult part of your artistic process?

I intend to give a dual purpose to my books. The stories are dedicated to the children while the parents will also have an exclusive message as a take away. What I like to spend a lot of time on is on how to create the synergy between the children story and the message for the parents in order to ensure that this unique reading experience has a significant meaning and it can make a positive difference.

6. What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your books?

I was pleasantly surprised by how the power of illustrations can give words a completely different dimension. It was also extremely interesting to see through my daughters’ eyes and understand how they perceive my stories and the message that hides behind them.

7. How do you define success?

For me success is the equivalent of happiness, well-being, wisdom, wonder, and giving.

8. What other authors are you friends with, and how do they help you become a better writer?

One of my best author friend was my grandmother who inspired me and encouraged me to write from an early age. She understood from the first minute that for me writing is like breathing: it comes very natural and it reflects my way to communicate with the world.

9. What do you like to do when you’re not writing?

I love spending time with my family and creating meaningful memories. I also love horses and exploring the world.

10. What message do you have for young artists and writers who are following in your footsteps?

I recently read Elisabeth Gilbert’s book: Big Magic – Creative living beyond fear. She describes in a very realistic way the challenges that young authors have to face nowadays.

I strongly believe that if your passion is writing, you should pursue it all the way up to the end while maintaining a pragmatic approach to the everyday life.

This week in school libraries: FAME 2018

The Florida Association of Media in Education (FAME) is hosting it’s 46th Annual FAME Conference at the Orlando Hilton Lake Buena Vista- Disney Springs. As an advocacy group for school libraries at the local, state, and national level, FAME supports not just school libraries but the dedicated librarians and library professionals who man them. FAME provides top-notch professional development and keeps school library professionals abreast of emerging trends.

This years conference promises to be just as informative and inspiring as conferences years past.  The opening keynote speaker is Elizabeth Acevedo, author of The Poet X. Dominican-American poet and author, she is the 2018 National Book Award for Young People’s Literature recipient. In addition to Acevedo, various other authors, including James Ponti, Neal Shusterman, and Bridgid Kemmerer will hold book signings and author sessions. Conference goers can attend numerous informative workshops and gather information regarding books, furniture, makerspaces, equipment, and new technology. Additionally, Jennifer Lagarde, popularly known on Twitter as, “Library Girl” will deliver the closing keynote.

For those not able to attend in person, there are still two ways to participate. FAME will be going LIVE on their website Friday. Those interested in this event may also keep informed by searching @FloridaMediaEd and #FAME18 on Twitter.


Author & Illustrator Feature: Nancy M. Berrios

Eric Carle, Dr. Seuss, Beatrix Potter… all famous children’s book illustrators who prove that style and creativity matter. While you may have grown up with these author/illustrators’ works on your shelves, the name Nancy M. Berrios may be new to you. An indie publisher and creator of Visibly Present Imagery,  Berrios’s books are a refreshing and unique take on children’s illustrating. Bright, bold colors combined with inspiring scenes make her collection a must for young readers everywhere.

A former educator and life-long Christ follower,Berrios’s stories focus on either biblical principles or character development. In addition to stand-alone stories, many of her books have companion workbooks useful for home-education or bible school settings. She is also developing a line of digital interactive books to engage young digital citizens.

If you haven’t checked out her books, I highly recommend that you do!cumq2qdwwaaao66