Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Interview with children's author Robert James Parfett

Children’s author Robert James Parfett is sitting across from me today and we’re talking a little bit about his picture book with humorous rhyme, The Not So Wise Owl.

Welcome, Robert. Please tell us a little bit about yourself.
I am an English language teacher and father of two boys. My stories are aimed at 4 to 7 year olds, the education age group I know best. 

My writing uses rhyme which stimulates children's sense of humour and fun, making learning more enjoyable.

Thanks go to my two boys who are my strongest supporters and critics! 

Please tell us a little bit about your book, The Not So Wise Owl.
The book was released last August and was quite a hit at the beginning, but as you know without a big publisher behind me and someone to promote the book it has been selling very slowly recently.

I have been writing children's stories for the last 5 or 6 years. I started sending stories to a children’s story website. They eventually gave me my own slot as I was writing so regularly and the stories were well received. It was through them that The Not So Wise Owl was published.

What inspired you to write this book?
In my family the owl is a creature that we all love and forms part of the decoration of our house! For this reason, and also because it was everyone's favorite, I decided to publish this particular story.

It is a story about an owl who is far from wise due to all the animals asking his advice day and night. As a consequence, he doesn't sleep properly and starts to lose the plot!

Excerpt from The Not So Wise Owl:
"The other oak dwellers at first couldn't see what was wrong with the funny old owl in the tree."

Do you write full-time? If so, what's your work day like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?
I would love to dedicate all my time to writing and I am working on another book which is similar in style, but deals with quite serious issues concerning the state of the oceans. Something I feel particularly strongly about.

I am a full time English teacher in a French school in Spain!! Yes, exactly!!! So I have a lot of experience with what children do and do not like. Plus I have two boys of my own who are my biggest support and critics! They inspire me to write whenever I have free moment.

My writing has been compared to Dr. Seuss for its quirky rhymes and humor. I hope this is true, but I certainly try and make my stories funny for both kids and parents alike.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I wanted to be an actor. Who knows. It may still come true!!

Anything else to share with the readers?

Thank you for being here today, Robert. All the best with your writing!

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