Author Evangeline Denmark connected with FamilyFiction to tell us all about the sequel to The Dragon and the Turtle, which leads the duo on a new adventure!
Q: How did The Dragon and the Turtle Go on Safari
A: In doing a sequel to The Dragon and the Turtle we
wanted to continue building our theme of friendship and offer a book that
mimics pretend play with clues on each page that feed the reader’s imagination.
In The Dragon and the Turtle Go on Safari Roger the
Turtle and Padraig the Dragon’s friendship is tested when they decide to camp
out. The boys are really sleeping in their backyard, but thanks to overactive
imaginations they find themselves on safari and manage to scare each other
Q: The Dragon and the Turtle books are co-written by you and
your mother, Donita K. Paul. How did you two collaborate on these stories?
A: One of us comes up with a plot idea and shares it with
the other. We brainstorm for a while then one of us writes the first draft. The
story then bounces back and forth between our laptops as we tweak things. When
we’ve got it in good shape we read it aloud to each other several times and
continue to polish it.
Q: What do you think kids will enjoy most about the book?
A: Seeing ordinary neighborhood animals transform into
mutant half-safari beasts thanks to Roger and Padraig’s imaginations and
Vincent Nguyen’s amazing illustrations.
Q: Speaking of artwork, can you tell us anything about the
process of choosing an artist?
A: A lot of people think that the author plays a big role in
finding an artist, but that usually isn’t the case. The publisher finds the
artist. We were fortunate to be able to voice our preferences. Our editor
loaned us a sample book filled with different artists’ work. Talk about talent!
We had so much fun thumbing through those illustrations. We marked a few that
we felt matched our concept of how we wanted the books to look, then the
publisher went about finding artists who fit the bill. Those artists submitted
sketches, and again we were lucky to be able to weigh in on the final choice.
Q: What is your favorite thing about writing children’s
A: Talking over ideas with my kids. There’s no better
Q: Do you write in other genres?
A: Yes, I’ve written supernatural romance novels, but
recently I followed in my mother’s steps and wrote a Young Adult fantasy. I
fell in love with writing YA so I plan to stay in that category for a while.
Q: Where can we find out more about The Dragon and the
Turtle Go on Safari?
For those of you participating in the 31 Author Scavenger Hunt and looking for the next clue or perhaps your first clue, here it is: “Christmas.” Be sure to continue on to Evangeline Denmark's blog for your next interview and clue click HERE.
Of course if you’re lost or if you’ve finished collecting all the clues you can go HERE to enter the full mystery phrase and bring your scavenger hunt to a close.