A bit of history
Annette wrote a colourfully illustrated children's story book about a little girl called Hollie and her cat called Figgs.
When Annette's daughter was unwell she wrote the story and asked her daughter to illustrate it. She had the idea that doing something fun and creative will help occupy her and build her confidence. She didn't plan to have the book published at that time. Annette is a psychiatric nurse by profession, but had to leave nursing due to ill health and to look after her daughter.
Annette has always encouraged her children to read stories when they were young and would often make up magical bedtime stories. She took an online course in writing for children and set to work. Hollie and Figgs story is based on Annette's daughter Holly and her cat Tiggs. When Holly was unwell Tiggs became a comfort to her, `her world`. Holly benefited from drawing and colouring in the illustrations; they looked charming and the story came together really well. Annette then had the idea to get the book published to help her daughters confidence even more.A friend who is an illustrator offered to take Holly's drawings and make them into colourful, professional book illustrations without losing their charm. Annette had no idea how to go about getting a book published, but was determined to find out and get some funding that would make it possible. She registered on an online funding platform and managed to get all the funding she needed for the publication.
In the story Hollie doesn't know that Figgs is magical and can talk at first although the reader gets an idea that Figgs is rather special. It is only when Hollie moves to a new school and cannot make new friends does Figgs come to her rescue as he doesn't like to see Hollie unhappy. He starts to talk to Hollie and takes her on a magical adventure to a land where she meets a princess who is also sad and lonely and Hollie helps her. Through all this Hollie is able to make a new friend at school. You will have to read the story to find out how that happens. It is a story with meaning and children will fall in love with the characters. It addresses issues children may face like moving to a new school, losing friendships and finding it hard to make new friends in a creative and imaginative way. It would make a delightful introduction to a classroom discussion on the themes I have mentioned.The wording, typography and images are suitable for ages 5-9 years.
Annette Sharman is a children's author from Leicester in the UK. She lives with her husband and two grown daughters and cat called Tiggs. Her family is the most important aspect of her life. Annette has a passion for art (painting). She attended Art College after she left school. Then she trained as a psychiatric nurse, and worked in the field of psychiatry for thirty years, and is now retired. She has a keen interest in complimentary therapies and strives to learn more about maintaining health through diet and positive thinking. In her twenties Annette co-wrote a paper for a psychodynamic journal and it was published. More recently Annette passed the Royal Horticulture Society Advanced Certificate in Horticulture. She loves to be creative whether in the garden, painting a picture or recently writing for children. In order to write the story of 'Holly and Figgs Magical Adventures' Annette took an online course in writing for children which she found invaluable. She enjoyed writing the story so much that she plans to make Hollie and Figgs into a series of stories. She is also working on the social media side of the project to help get young children involved and be more interactive. Annette plans to visit schools, take her cute plush characters Hollie and Figgs with her and read her stories to generate some meaningful discussion.
The release date was Tuesday 15th November
To read about the story, hear Annette talking about the project, see a trailer and be able to purchase a book visit www.hollieandfiggs.co.uk
You can also purchase the book from the publisher http://www.troubador.co.uk/