I am going off the beaten path today to present to you a children’s book, The Scary Dragon. With me today, I have the authors/illustrators of this vibrant and entertaining book, Nick Arnold and Rachel Weaver, who were so nice to offer an interview! Please enjoy, and enter the contest below to have the chance to win an autographed hardback copy of The Scary Dragon.
First off, thank you, Nick and Rachel for joining me on my blog today. Please introduce yourselves to everybody so we can get to know you better.
Hi, I’m Rachel. I like to draw and play music with my best friend Nick. My favorite color is green. I like teddy bears and scary movies, and I want to be an artist when I grow up.
My name is Nick. I like video games and pizza. Sometimes I play games past my bedtime and I get in trouble! I have brown hair and brown eyes. I play music with my friend Rachel too. When I grow up, I’m gonna be a rock star!
A rock star is very ambitious, as is your book! It’s no easy feat to imagine up ideas, put artwork to them, and create a whole story. What was your inspiration?
The book idea was actually sort of spontaneous. Rachel is currently in her last year as a graphic design major at Arcadia university. One of her assignments was to illustrate an existing children’s book. When she started rattling ideas off with me, we decided that we wanted to write our own children’s book instead for the project. I’ve always loved writing, and she’s always loved art and drawing. We’ve both been creators our whole lives separately, so we decided to combine our talents and create our own tale. -N
So, why choose a dragon as your main character? Why not a a platypus or a crazy monkey?
Don’t get me wrong. Monkeys and platypi are awesome and all, but I’ve always been nuts about magic, fantasy, science fiction – all that sort of thing. I’m a huge gamer, and one of my favorites is Skyrim, a game revolving around just that. While our dragon might not be as fearsome as the ones in Skyrim, he’s certainly just as awesome, and twice as loveable! -N
Why not a dragon? They’re awesome. That, and I don’t have any clue how to draw a platypus. -R
The Skyrim dragons are definitely scary, and I don’t think they’d be up for interviews. What does your dragon have to say about himself, I wonder?
I’m Dragon! I really love to have fun and play games, and I love to use my imagination. I don’t have any brothers or sisters though, so it can get lonely by myself in the cave. I’m always looking for friends to play with. I’m very outgoing, but I can be a bit clumsy, and I have bad allergies.
What lessons would you like your little readers to take away from your book? What can their parents and older siblings help them to learn after reading it?
It doesn’t matter what you look like or sound like, whether you’re big or small. It may sound cliché, but the message here is don’t judge a book by its cover. The dragon may be a lot bigger and look frightening to animals such as bunnies and squirrels, but when they take a second look with more than just their eyes, a new and special friendship is formed. -N
Take time to get to know people instead of immediately judging them. Pay attention to actions, not looks. -R
Now, I write young adult fiction, and usually I like to find out what books YA authors like, and which are their favorites. So, Nick and Rachel, what is your favorite children’s book?
I know it might be slightly above our book’s grade level, but I would have to go with The Adventures of Captain Underpants. I’ve always loved that kind of silly potty humor, and the Captain Underpants series has it all, including literal potty humor. -N
I’m gonna have to go with Goodnight Moon. It was one of my favorite kids’ books when I was little, and I wouldn’t mind a nice bedtime story under the stars every night. -R
As a mother of a one year old, I can say with confidence that I might be one of the only people on the planet who just doesn’t understand the appeal of Goodnight Moon, but yet, we have two copies of it in our house. Go figure!
Back to the interview, though! Inquiring minds would like to know what your favorite food is. Do you have one?
Pizza. Does pizza count as a snack? Of course it does. Pizza. -N
Yup. Pizza. -R
Mmm. Pizza! Definitely a favorite of mine. On a serious note, though, as a teacher, I see bullying in action quite often, and I am always striving to teach my students to recognize it, be more aware of others and their feelings, and to speak up if they witness bullying or are a victim of bullying. I also watch them struggle with their self-image and acceptance. What is your advice to the little ones out there when it comes to these?
Don’t give up, be yourself, and don’t ever let someone bring you down. For every person who would rather pass judgment than have an open mind, there are hundreds of people out there waiting to accept you and love you for who you are. You’re never alone. -N
Don’t be afraid to speak up. There’s nothing wrong with speaking your mind and saying how you feel. Don’t let anyone tell you how you feel is stupid or not okay, or make you feel bad for it. -R
Great advice! Thank you both for stopping by my blog, and remember, everyone, to enter the Rafflecopter contest below for your chance to win this great book!
This article was written by Stephanie