Join me in welcoming talented picture book author, Amy Houts, whose brand new picture book, GOD’S PROTECTION COVERS ME (Beaming Books), debuts TODAY! This charming faith-based story is a soothing read, and a great conversation starter with little ones about God’s protective care. With sparse text and clever rhymes, it’s a delight. I can’t wait to share it with my Sunday School kids! And now for the interview with my questions in bold.
1.Thanks so much for joining us today, Amy, and congratulations your newest faith-based picture book. Is it true that this is your 70th published book! Tell us a little bit about yourself and your prolific journey into the world of children’s book writing.
Thank you, Laura, for having me. Yes, it’s true that I have over authored over 70 children’s books. Most of them were written on assignment for educational publishers. They often ask for a series of books on a specific topic or featuring a specific character. For example, I wrote four books about pets (dog, cat, rabbit, and goldfish) for a South Korean publisher, Compass Publishing. I was asked to write five books featuring the cartoon character, Dora the Explorer. So, it adds up! Plus, I’ve been writing for many years beginning when I was at home with my baby girl, Emily. Now Emily is a busy mother of three young children.While I love writing on assignment, a book based on my own, original idea, such as God’s Protection Covers Me, means so much.
2. GOD’S PROTECTION COVERS ME charmingly depicts God’s constant care over, not just children, but all creation. What inspired you to write GOD’S PROTECTION COVERS ME using animal homes as your concrete visual?
I was inspired to write this book because of the concern I feel as a mother and grandmother. I’m a worrier! But I longed to feel calmer. Looking to God for strength, knowing that He protects us, heart and soul and spirit, gave me comfort. Often, writing helps me work through my feelings. The comparison of an umbrella keeping the rain off and a roof overhead seemed to me to be the perfect symbol to explain to a child (and to myself) how God’s protection works. The text is soothing and reassuring.
3. David Creighton-Pester’s illustrations are delightfully concrete and colorful to match your simple, yet comforting, text. Can you tell us a little bit about him? What was it like seeing your text come to full color with illustrations? Do you have a favorite spread?
David Creighton-Pester is an illustrator and graphic designer from Hamilton, New Zealand, where he lives with his wife and two young children. His website https://wanderingbert.com/ states that his interest in art started early: “Inspired as a child by picture books, animation, and all things arty, David spent endless hours drawing crazy characters and coming up with silly stories.”
I’m overjoyed that my editor at Beaming Books paired my text with David’s artwork. The first time I saw the cover and interior spread, I couldn’t help smiling. David gave life to my words. His child-like style and vibrant colors welcome the reader in.
My favorite spread shows mother and son under the umbrella—nearly home as rain pours down—while the dog and a mouse watch from their protective covering. The rhythm and rhyme of the text is how I began writing the book: “Like a roof protects a house or a crawl space for a mouse…”
4. Besides reading wonderful picture books such as this, what advice would you give parents and caregivers who want to share their faith with their kids?
Start with something kids know or are familiar with (like an umbrella) and move to something unfamiliar or harder to explain (like God’s protection). Similies and comparisons help to illustrate a concept. Focus on a feeling, like peace, comfort, or safety, and how that relates to something physical like drinking hot cocoa, being wrapped in a blanket, or watching the rain out the window.
5. Finally, what’s next? Are there more picture books in the pipeline? Also, where can interested readers find your books?
I’m always working on picture book manuscripts in all stages of development from a few lines, to a first draft, to polishing, to submission. Upcoming in 2020, four books written on assignment for educational publisher, Rubicon/Pearson, will be released. You can also read and act out my Bible fingerplays in each 2019 issue of Children’s Ministry Magazine. My books are sold through amazon.com, christianbook.com, barnesandnoble.com, and more. Visit my website http://amyhouts.com to find out more about my work.
Thank you so much for stopping by and for writing this delightful book! (And readers, don’t forget to enter the giveaway below.)
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Amy Houts is an award-winning author of over 70 children’s books, cookbooks, and board games that feature family themes of love and friendship, holiday celebrations, and early learning concepts. Her books include The Giant Book of Bible Fingerplays for Preschoolers(Group Publishing), which features 101 fingerplays, Bible stories, and Scripture verses. It’s a joy for Amy to share Bible truths and God’s love with young children through her writing. Amy and her husband, Steve, live in rural Northwest Missouri,an hour from Steve’s family farm. They are the parents of two grown daughters and three grandchildren.
Twitter: @AmyHouts Instagram: @AmyHouts
And now for the giveaway! (Thank you, Amy!)
If you’d like a chance to win a FREE copy of GOD’S PROTECTION COVERS ME written by Amy Houts and illustrated by David Creighton-Pester, let me know in a comment below. (NOTE: Must have U.S. address and at least 18 years old to enter.) The giveaway ends Tuesday 5/28/19 at 12:01 am EST. The winner will be announced that day! THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW OVER. TO SEE WHO WON PRESS HERE.
Facebook: Author Amy Houts
27 thoughts on “Happy Book Birthday! GOD’S PROTECTION COVERS ME: An Interview with Author Amy Houts and a GIVEAWAY!”
Great interview! Amy, did I tell u I also wrote for Compass–those same 4 animals but on a lower level. I see you’re from NW MO. I’m from central IA, originally. Anyway, congrats on this cute book!
Wow! Small world!
Thanks, Tina! I didn’t know that you wrote for Compass, too, and the same animals. Fun! I ended up writing 11 titles for them. We were practically neighbors. Yes, small world!
I look forward to reading this book! ❤️
Thanks, Keely! I’m going to bring it to our critique session next week!
We would love to win this book!
I look forward to getting a copy of Amy’s newest book, please enter my name in your drawing. Such a great topic to discuss with my grandchildren.
Yes, the book serves as a fun conversation starter.
Brenda, how fun to see you posting here! With your farm animals, this book would fit right in.
What a great interview, Amy. I am so happy for you! Your book is one to treasure. Please add my name to the giveaway.
Thanks, Teresa! How sweet, especially from someone who has already seen the book.
Wonderful interview!!! And just today I was reading John 14: Peace I give to you… Let not your hearts be troubled. So fitting! Congratulations Amy!!!
Thanks, Vijaya! Laura asked great questions. I love that Bible verse. It goes right along with the theme.
Congratulations on 70 books! This looks like a real beauty. Such a simple but important message!
Thanks, Annette! I think you would like it!
I would love to win a free copy of God’s Protection Over Me. I work at a bible based childcare center and this would be a great book to read to our children. My own 2 boys as well!
Thank you, Jessica! It sounds like this book would be perfect for your center and for your boys. I want to tell everyone, “I hope you win!”
This seems so beautiful. Unfortunately, I saw this post on Wednes morning. Keep up the good work!
You can still enter, Sherry. The giveaway doesn’t end until next Tuesday.
Thanks, Sherry! It’s not too late–you are entered!
Congratulations to my special friend/author Amy on yet another amazing child’s book (and that it’s your 70th total!!) written with your heart and soul!! It’s also my favorite from your collection!! What a blessing your words are to many….here’s to your continued successful future!!
Oh, Sharman! Your words mean so much! THANK YOU!
Looks like a beautiful book!
I have two grandsons, five and six years old who would love this book !
Perfect ages for this book! I have twin grandsons age five as well. My fave age to write for. Thanks, Patsie!