Today we talk about Happy moments, a book by Machelle Shelton published with our publishing house Europe Books.
Europe Books had the pleasure of interviewing the author, Machelle Shelton, to get to know her better, what prompted her to the writing of her book Happy moments, as well as the message she would like to convey with her book.
Below you can find our interview. Take a seat and enjoy your reading!!!
- What was the moment that prompted you to the writing of your book?
There is often a gap between the way in which we perceive happenings and the reality of a given situation. For many years I have been formulating in my mind how I would like to publish children’s stories. I even did an online course years ago and later managed to publish a story in a magazine. But by being a teacher, time wanders away from you. Everything gets put on hold and the more important activities take precedence. The children become your focus and how you can help realize their vision of what they can become. One’s own ambitions come second. My awareness now is that I have retired and have more time to pursue my reveries and my ideas. My grandson, Eric, was the one who finally prompted my thoughts when we were having our usual banter on a video call. I was enjoying his company and his chit-chat when my instincts crept in, and I was watching his behavior patterns. I realized that all my children and grandchildren have their own special uniqueness and that’s what makes them special. By creating a story for each of them using these distinct behaviors I can find a commonness that we can all celebrate and enjoy.
- What can you briefly say about the main characters of your book?
Each character in my book is either based on my children or my grandchildren. And individually they have their own personality from the fun-loving children they were and are to the adults they have grown into. I can track over the years how they have grown, from being active and ambitious to being very cautious and conscientious. Their own creativity and curiosity have played a part in formulating their personalities and their logical thoughts as they grew up. How they speak, move, think, and feel all relates to how the story flows. Each can be described in their own way as either spirited, generous, helpful as well as talkative or reserved. Two of my children are deaf yet we still spend many hours reading books together and enjoying our time together. Interesting books have helped them create their own dynamic selves.
- What is the message you would like to convey?
The message I would like to convey is communication and how we can relate to not only each other but to the world as an entirety. The messages that I weave into my storylines are important. It teaches us to look at and know people as individuals. How we can relate to them and how we can enjoy their presence in our lives. In conveying my message in “Happy Moments”, I am expressing how I perceive the goodness and fun in my children by observing their own behaviors and demeanors. And in this way, I can connect with them on all levels. By observing them I can infer meaning to who they are and what they are about. Whether this be in the story or real life. By using these stories and allowing children to read them I can perhaps see what they need or expect and how they can learn from them. When reading books to the children I can communicate with them and be part of a learning process. I feel everyone who reads my stories, even if they don’t agree with them, should understand what I am saying. I’d like to think that my message is relevant to understanding the ways of life.
- How did it feel to see your book published?
A hurricane of emotions enveloped me. I couldn’t stand still. I was emotional, excited, and fearful all at the same time. I was questioning myself on whether I have done the right thing and whether someone else would read it or feel the way I do when reading the stories. I wondered whether the book and the stories would make a difference in some child’s life. Would they find it interesting. Would the presentation catch their eye. Will parents be able to buy the book in these difficult times. I was fretting about what my children would say and if they would like the presentation and graphics of the book. My husband and my son calmed me down. Then I started feeling some signs of accomplishment. I have not felt like a professional writer though, because I know there is a long journey ahead and there is a lot of work still to do. I have just begun my expedition into the world of stories, and I am looking forward to enjoying every moment of it.
- Are you working on a new writing project, and can you tell us about it?
I am working on a second set of unrelated stories for children. They are full of fun characters, and I am hoping that the children who read them will find them relaxing, playful, entertaining and that they will be able to connect them to their own daily lives. When the children read them, I want them to be able to form pictures in their minds relating to each story. I would like them to use their own creative abilities and use their imaginations. It would be wonderful if their literacy capacities developed after reading some of my stories. I am wishing that the story characters will have the ability to help the children learn about others and to find understanding and empathy for them in different ways. Reading stories to children shows them you have time for them and that they matter. It builds self-esteem. When reading my new stories, I am yearning that it will evoke many happy feelings within every child who reads them or hears them being read.
Europe Books thanks the author, Machelle Shelton, once again for taking the time and answering our questions. We are really pleased to have walked alongside her on the editorial path that led to the publication of her book Happy moments. We wish her the best of luck for her future works.
To you, my readers, I hope this book will allow you to learn new insights into how to best communicate and relate to others and how to experience happy moments with them in your everyday life.
So, my dear reader, all I have to say is to enjoy your reading!