Welcome to SCBWI-MI's NEW Book Birthday Blog!
Where we celebrate new books by Michigan's children's book authors and illustrators
BIG congratulations to Lisa Rose on the release of her new series, STAR POWERS!
How did you come up with the idea for your book?
I actually didn’t come up with the idea for Star Powers—the editor asked me to write about a second grade girl who wants to be an astronaut and also uses a wheelchair. However, when I created Star Powers, I knew exactly who to model her after: My daughter!
My daughter doesn’t use a wheelchair, but she is visually-impaired and uses a cane to help her know where objects are around her. My daughter never lets her mobility challenge stop her. I wanted Star Powers to be that way too. Sometimes, if a person has a special need, people believe that the person can’t do anything. People are always amazed when my daughter can spell a word, swim, and even do gymnastics. Everywhere she goes she teaches others that she is just like everyone else and can do so many things. I wanted Star Powers to do the same. I didn’t want Star’s disability to define her. I wanted her to be brave and teach not only herself but every child and adult around that she was capable of achieving anything—even being an astronaut!
What was the most difficult part of writing these books?
I had to keep the story to a specific word count. There is a lot I wanted my characters to say and do. I had to tell the best story with a limited amount of words.
In the voice of your main character, tell us what you hope readers will experience or learn while reading your books.
I hope that kids and adults learn that people in wheelchairs can do anything—even go into space!
Who is your author idol and how have they influenced your work?
It’s hard to pick just one “author idol.” I have always been in love with Judy Blume. She wrote funny kid stories that always had a lot of heart. So many kids could relate to characters. As an adult I’m admired Jacqueline Woodson. Her stories deal with tough issues in a tenderness that scrapes your soul. I can see how Star Powersis sprinkled with both of them.
What are the marketing plans for your books? Where can we find them?
Unlike my other book, Star Powers was made for the school and library market. This means that it mostly sold directly to schools and libraries. As a “recovering” first grade teacher nothing makes me happier than knowing my book will use in classrooms to help inspire beginning readers. Also, each book contains back matter about the science topics described in the book. Each book contains additional non-fiction information and science experiments. For example, kids can build rockets just like Star Powers and her friends. Buy all six books at www.rourkeeducationalmedia.com
A little bit about the books: Star Powers is a wheelchair-bound second-grader and aspiring astronaut obsessed with all things space including black holes, aliens, and the latest findings from NASA. Oh and she's convinced her big brother is from another planet. Each book features Star navigating her daily life while chasing her dreams and reaching for the sky.
A little bit about Lisa:
Lisa Rose lives in Detroit, Michigan with her husband and daughter. She likes to swim, practice yoga, and eat ice cream but not at the same time. She is the author of SHMULIK PAINTS THE TOWN and
Please see her website www.LisaRoseWrites.com and her author program video. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cGQ3QMG1CIk to learn more about her.