Laura Hockley - Interview (November 2019)
Why do you want to be a published author/illustrator?
Growing up books were always such a special thing to me. I was a shy kid, and so reading stories of different people, grand adventures, allowed me to experience things that I otherwise might not have. From the time I started to read a lot I would write my own stories, make up characters and stories about who I wished I could be or where I wished I could go, adventures I wished I could go on. I still do that, and I really enjoy sharing these things with others. Being able to share with a wider audience, and give kids the same feelings that books gave me growing up would just be the most amazing thing.
How long have you been writing/drawing?
I've been writing for as long as I can remember. I started writing more seriously again after a long period about three years ago. And I started wanting to learn to illustrate after I released my first self published title in 2017 and paid someone else to do it. I wanted to be the one who brought my words to life on the page.
How will/did you celebrate your first publication?
I didn't really celebrate a lot, other than many many readings of my book with my children. I think my first traditional publication will definitely have much more fanfare when that comes around.
How would you describe your writing/illustrating style?
Writing for me is a process that has a lot of layers. I like to write in a way that puts the reader in the story, draws them into worlds. I probably use way too many adjectives and descriptions for some, but I like rich, deeply imaginative texts. My illustration style is fairly simple, I like simple lines and lots of colour.
How has Creative Kids Tales assisted you on your journey to publication?
Being a part of the CKT Critique group has been invaluable for me, allowing me to have my work read and critiqued by other writers, getting fresh perspectives on my texts when I get a little too precious with words. The CKT Festival has also provided excellent networking opportunities for me to meet other writers, to have a manuscript assessment with a publisher, and to hear experts speak about their journeys and provide advice on the children's book industry and writing and publishing. I am also excited to be able to take part in the CKT Story Anthology releasing this October.