Warm welcome to Joan Y. Edwards, author, illustrator and motivational speaker

It’s my great pleasure to welcome author, illustrator, and motivational speaker Joan Y. Edwards to Celtic Connexions.

joan y. edwards

I’m dying to know, when were you first bitten by the writing bug?

When I was five years old, My parents bought the 12 book collection called MY BOOK HOUSE edited by Olive Beaupre Miller and a Grimm’s Fairy Tales Book. Mother read me stories. Babysitters told me stories. I made up stories. I started reading these stories at four years old. I made up a folktale about a little duck, Flip Flap Floodle, who never gives up on his song. I told it to everyone who would listen: my sister, my baby brother in the crib, my cousins, and neighbours.

Flip Flap Floodle came to fruition. Can you tell us about it?

In 1967, when I was married and expecting my first child, I wrote the story down I tried for many years to get publishers to publish this book, but it didn’t happen. When I retired from teaching in 1998, I promised myself that I would illustrate Flip Flap Floodle and publish it in five years if no one said, “Yes. We will publish your book.”  So, in 2004, I self-published Flip Flap Floodle.

Flip Flap Floodle is a little duck who is on his way to play a song on his new flute for his grandmother. His mother warns him to watch out for Mr. Fox. Flip believes his song will keep him safe from Mr. Fox. However, when Mr. Fox doesn’t even like his song, Flip finds himself in deep trouble.

joan y. edwards

What prompted you to write your elder care guide?

When I started taking care of my Mother in 1995, there were no books and the only local resource was Social Services in the county where we lived in North Carolina. I learned through personal experience that the most essential thing for a caregiver is to have time away from caregiving responsibility. With that, it is doubly essential to leave plans for the person taking your place. They must know what the usual routine is and what your elder can and cannot do. Before Mother died in 2009, I thought maybe other people would like to have resources to help them take care of their elder and take care of themselves, too.

joan y. edwards

Was it difficult to make the jump from writing a picture book to a non-fiction guide for adults?

Going from 1,000 words to more than 150,000 words was very different. There were many subjects and many words and many ways to organize them.  Karen Cioffi-Ventrice, the second-editor 4RV Publishing assigned to me, helped me immensely with organizing it into a very helpful resource for caregivers.

Are you working on a book now? Can you tell us about it?

I am working on the second of a series of three Gospel-based crossword puzzles books to use with Children’s Liturgy, Children’s Church, Sunday School, or Home Bible Study. I am working on the illustrations for a chapter book, Larry, the Terrifying Turkey. I am reformatting a screenplay comedy, The Perfect Couple.

What advice do you have for writers beginning their author journe

My advice for beginning writers:

Read 100 books in your favourite genre.
Make note of your 10 favourite first lines.
Make note of your 10 favourite ending paragraphs.
Make note of 10 of the best setups and payoffs authors used to create a need for change in the main character.

In September 2018, I published the first of three Gospel-Based Crossword Puzzle books to use with Children’s Liturgy, Children’s Church, Sunday School, or Home Bible Study.

Anything else you care to share about Joan Y. Edwards that isn’t already included in your bio?

I worked one year and two summers for the Department of the Army at the Pentagon in Washington, D.C. to earn money to pay my tuition for my last 3 years of college. I had a job as a typist. My boss, Lt. Col. Solossi, said you aren’t sweet enough to call you, “Sugar.” You’re not sour enough to call you, “Sour.” You are a little spicy, so we’ll call you, “Ginger.”

I received the Best Character Actress at Western Carolina University in 1961 for my role as Mommy in the Sandbox by Edward Albee.

Joan Y. Edwards is a motivational speaker, author, and illustrator who informs, inspires, and helps others to laugh and never give up. Her blog, joanyedwards.com/ has more than 521,000 views. She is the author of three books: Flip Flap Floodle, Joan’s Elder Care Guide and 80 Gospel-Based Crossword Puzzles for Year B

Edwards has a Master of Arts in Education. She is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI), and the Charlotte Writers Club. She and her husband, Carl enjoy humorous mysteries, like Columbo and Monk. They love being with family and friends at home, in the mountains, and on the beach.

I had the pleasure of reading and reviewing Joan’s Elder Care Guide. This is my review.

Must have resource!

An invaluable resource for anyone who finds themselves looking after an elder. I wish it were available when I looked after my mother. While specifically written for a US audience, the same principles apply anywhere, maybe even some of the organizations exist in other countries – just under a different name.

24 thoughts on “Warm welcome to Joan Y. Edwards, author, illustrator and motivational speaker”

  1. Hi Joan and Melanie,
    Joan, I didn’t realize your Flip Flap Foodle goes back that far! Not many four year olds have their book eventually published.
    Keep up the good work!
    🙂
    Bob

  2. Great interview, Joan and Melanie. Well done! I even learned something I didn’t know and Joan and I have been good friends since 2005.

    Wishing you both all the best.

  3. Dear Bob,
    Thanks for stopping by. It’s always fun to see you. I was very excited to have the story I’d told since I was a little child published. It still gives me great joy to sing Flip’s song and to tell the story to others.

    Thanks for being there to cheer me on.

    Never Give Up
    Joan

  4. Dear Linda,
    Thank you for visiting Melanie and me here on her blog. I’m glad you liked the interview and even learned something about me you didn’t know.

    Never Give Up
    Joan

  5. Great interview! I love learning the history of Flip Flap Foodle. It’s such a sweet, charming book.

    And Joan’s Elder Care Guide is a much-needed resource for anyone taking care of an older loved one. I didn’t realize you wrote it, Joan, because you found so few sources to help you when you needed it. That is how my first book, “Stepping into a New Role, Stories from Stepmoms,” came to be as well.

    As a new stepmom, I needed some advice, support, and encouragement, and found very little online or in books to help. Now, twelve years later, there are all kinds of sites and books! But I tell myself that’s it’s good I found nothing back then or I would have never written my book! Lol Hopefully, 4RV will get it released later this year. They tell me it’s in line for formatting…

    I also appreciate your tips for beginning writers. Since I’m still fairly new to writing, they are helpful. Thank you!

  6. Dear Shawn,
    You are delightful. Thanks for stopping by to see Melanie and me. She’s an RV Published author, too. Thank you for sharing that we had similar paths before writing our books. I am very happy that you wrote your book. Remember to let me know when it’s going to be released so I can interview you on my blog ahead of time. I can hardly wait to see it. I’m glad that my writing hints helped you a little.

    Do something fun for you before midnight!
    Never Give Up
    Joan

  7. Melanie, I really enjoyed your interview post with Joan.Not only is she a talented author, but a lovely,inspiring person I’m blessed to call a friend. I loved learning some new things about her!

  8. Great interview of Joan Edwards. I too learned new things about her that I didn’t know after years of friendship.

  9. Thanks, Sandra. I’ve not known Joan as long as you by the sounds of things, but I’m enjoying discovering things about her.

  10. Dear Kathleen,
    Than k you for stopping by to visit with Melanie and me. I’m honored to know you and to be your friend. You inspire me with your amazing self. I’m glad you learned new things about me here. Enjoy your day being your sweet self.

    Never Give Up
    Joan

  11. Dear Linda Phillips,
    Thank you for stopping by to visit with Melanie and me. Thank you for saying that I am an encourager. I love encouraging others. It is an honor to be your friend. Have a great day. Do something fun before midnight.

    Never Give Up
    Joan

  12. Dear Sandra,
    Thank you for stopping by to visit with Melanie and me. I’m glad that you enjoyed the interview and learned something new about me. Enjoy being you. Do something fun before midnight.

    Never Give Up
    Joan

  13. Hi Melanie,
    Yes, Joany is an inspiration to me as well as others. Joany interviewed me I agreed with my friends & family she did a marvelous and didn’t miss a thing reporting me as an new author.
    Melanie, You pointed out things I didnt know about joan and I am the better for knowing. Thanks for such a through & educational interview,
    Violette

  14. Dear Violette,
    Thank you for reading Melanie’s interview with me. How sweet of you! I’m glad you learned new things about me!

    Do something fun before midnight!

    Never Give Up
    Joan

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