Monday, November 17, 2014

Interview with author Ali Maier- Mom Made Us Write This in the Summer

I don't often interview children's authors but tis the season and all and I was really impressed with this journal style book that really gets kids involved, not just reading but inputting also. And well yes it's the perfect stocking stuffer!
So here's Ali!

  • ISBN-13: 9780989375504
  • Publisher: Erie Island Media, LLC
  • Publication date: 10/3/2013
  • Pages: 208


A sister and brother, forced to write in the summer, and share ONE journal?
This is exactly what happens to 10-year-old twins Maggie and Max Pruitt.
When Mom comes up with a plan for them to keep a summer journal, Maggie and Max can t believe it. Worse yet, they have to share!
Through their writing, Maggie and Max find out they have very different (and hilarious) views about growing up, family and life a conclusion they only discovered because, as Max and Maggie say, Mom Made Us Write This.

Hi Ali, welcome to The Reading Frenzy! Tell my readers and me about Mom Made Us Write This In The Summer.
 Mom Made Us Write This In The Summer is a funny, he-said/she-said peek into the lives of 10-year-old twin siblings.  It’s a fun, family friendly book, written in the journal-style that my kids loved!  Kids will enjoy the laughs and the “me-too!” connection with twins, Maggie and Max.  Parents will welcome the emphasis on strong family relationships, and teachers will appreciate the classroom extension opportunities.

This is the first book in your Max and Maggie series. Are there a definite number that you'll be writing?
 I don’t have an exact number of books planned.  Right now, I am working on a “During School” book, where the twins journal about heading back to school after summer break.  The relationship between siblings is always so fun and interesting – I have a million ideas for the book series!  As long as kids are enjoying it, I plan to  keep writing.

Are these books mainly for individual reading or more for an educational setting?
 I wrote the books for individual reading.  When my kids were growing up, they were always looking for new, fun things to read. As a mom, I sometimes struggled to find them fun books that I felt were family friendly and appropriate.  I wrote the books originally as something fun for my own kids to read on their own. 

While independent reading was my original goal, I have found that teachers are loving the book in their classrooms.  Teachers are using the book to introduce shared journaling, point of view, writing as conflict resolution, and so much more.  I am always impressed by the creative ways that teachers are using the book in the classroom!

What ages are these books appropriate for? 
The books are targeted at ages 8-12, but people of all ages have told me how much they enjoyed it.  

Ali I understand you do have two children but they are not twins and they are older than Max and Maggie. What led to your writing this series?
I have a son and daughter that are a year and a half apart in age, and I grew up with a sister who is 1 year older than me.  It always made me laugh to watch my kids have the same conversations and disagreements that I had with my sister when we were kids.  I love how siblings love each other one minute, and the next minute drive each other crazy.   It’s such a fun dynamic. 

When I started writing about the characters Max  and Maggie, they were absolutely based on the personalities and quirks of my own kids.  I decided to make the characters twins, because I always wished that my sister and I were twins when I was little!

Ali your first book in the series and it has received some very nice accolades including the 2014 International Book Awards recognition as the winner in Children’s Fiction. Congratulations!! Was being an author something that you always wanted or was it more of an accident? 
 It was very much an accident!  I always loved writing, but was very nervous and uncomfortable about sharing my writing with other people.  My family loved my Maggie and Max stories, and pushed me to share them.  I am glad they did.  It’s been so much fun.  I don’t teach anymore, and I miss it.  I love going to schools and talking to kids, and my books give me that opportunity! 

Ali what’s your next project?
 My next project- More Maggie and Max Books! J  I have so many ideas, and not enough hours in the day to spend writing.  I’m working on Mom Made Us Write This During School, and I have a Mom Made Us Write This book about a fun family vacation in the works, too!

Thanks Ali for answering these questions. Congratulations again on the wonderful awards and reviews. These books would make wonderful Holiday gifts. Are they available in all bookstores? 
The books are available on Amazon and at your local bookstore. If the bookstore doesn’t have it in stock, they should be able to order it!

 Other Max & Maggie Books 

Connect with Ali - Goodreads

Max & Maggie creator Ali Maier knows a great story. As an avid volunteer, hands-on mom and former teacher, Ali has spent years working with children, experiencing their life stories and crafting her own.
Ali grew up in Pennsylvania with her parents and an older sister. Separated by only 17 months, Ali and her sister experienced many of the same events, teachers and friends, as well as all of the fun and challenges that come with sibling relationships.
Today, Ali and her husband have two children who are close in age and share the same kind of close relationship (and the same kind of challenges!).
The most important part of Ali's life is her family. She is blessed with a loving husband, children, parents and extended family that are a constant source of love and laughter.
Mom Made Us Write This shows a unique and funny understanding of the loving (and not-so-loving) relationship between close siblings and their family.

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A collection for kid's gifts
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