Meet Mrs.Tymika Payne, author and educator, and the mom contributing to bringing multicultural books to our homes.
Q:If you could tell your younger writing self anything, what would it be? A:I would tell my younger writing self to never be afraid to try something new, even if it seems scary in the beginning. Always believe in yourself and never allow anyone to discourage you from achieving your goals and dreams. Q:How did publishing your first book change your process of writing?
A: Writing my first book changed how I approached life. It made me pay more attention to detail and to seek out second and third looks from reputable colleagues that are experts in their fields (English teachers). Q:What was the best money you ever spent as a writer? A:Before you spend your first dime, find a publisher/illustrator that is worth every dollar you plan to spend. Ask questions and ask more questions, realizing that this project will help to shape you and mold you as an author and storyteller. Q:What does literary success look like to you? A:In my mind, literary success is a vision of constant learning, development, and evolving into becoming a well-informed individual. Learning NEVER stops. Q:How do you select the names of your characters? A:Because my books focus on multiculturalism, I select names that represent that culture in a simplistic way.I also take names of family and friends and change them around a little to represent the culture I am focusing on in that particular book. Q:What is your favorite childhood book? A:One of my favorite childhood books is "Harry the Dirty Dog" by Gene Zion. My father used to read that book to me when I was a child every night before going to bed. Q:What does "Representation" mean to you? A:As it relates to literature and books, representation means to have publications and books that best display the character and mood of what you are trying to portray in your writings. In my book, I wanted to show how toddlers can progress from dependence to independence. Q:Where can our readers find your book(s)? A:My book "I Can Do It By Myself: GO POTTY" can be found on Amazon.com, barnesandnoble.com, and WomenandChildrenFirst.com. I will also be at the Soulful Chicago Book Fair in July.