Author Spotlight: Carole Lindstrom
Feb. 28, 2020
Today we are excited to feature author Carole Lindstrom and her new picture book, WE ARE WATER PROTECTORS, illustrated by Michaela Goade (Roaring Brook Press, March 17, 2020).Tell us about yourself and how you came to write for children.
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I spent a great deal of time at the library as a child. It was down the street from my house and I practically lived there on Saturday. Sunday I would spend in my room reading the books. I loved books. I knew in my heart I would write books one day. As a Native American child, I never saw myself in books. Just shameful and embarrassing portrayals of me. I couldn’t find the kids that looked like me. So, I decided I would write children’s books that more accurately shows the world that I wanted to see it as a child. It’s important for Indigenous children to see themselves in books. And just as important for non-Indigenous children to see us in the world through books.
Congrats on your forthcoming picture book, WE ARE WATER PROTECTORS. Tell us about the story & what inspired you.
Miigwech. This story was inspired by Standing Rock and all Indigenous Peoples’ fight for clean water. I felt so helpless at the time that Standing Rock was happening. I couldn’t make it there. I didn’t know how I could help, other than sharing the events on social media. Then I thought I would write a book. I’ve been writing for a long time, I thought I could put my words to paper and tell a story that could help to educate young people about these issues.
|© Michaela Goade
Was your road to publication long and winding, short and sweet, or something in between?
Long and winding. I’ve been working on the craft of children’s writing since 2008. I began by taking courses through the Institute of Children’s Literature. I also joined SCBWI and went to as many conferences as I could, attending workshops and consistently working to hone my craft. When I first began publishing it was much more difficult to find publishers willing to publish Native American characters.
My first published book, GIRLS DANCE, BOYS FIDDLE, found a home with a small Canadian press, Pemmican Publishers in 2013. I thought at that point I was on my way – and that finding an agent and/or another publisher for future work would be easier. But it wasn’t. So I kept at it. Writing and learning, querying, rejections and moving on. Then I had the idea for WE ARE WATER PROTECTORS. It originally began as a young adult novel, but because I knew it was going to take a lot more time than a picture book, I decided to write it as a picture book. Just to get the word out faster. I felt it was so important! This is the story that I got my agent with. She saw what I saw and I am so grateful for her vision and friendship throughout the writing process. She makes it so much easier. If writing can be easier. 😊
What projects are you working on now?
Lots of fun things on the horizon. I’m working on a couple of picture books, a middle grade nonfiction novel and a young adult nonfiction novel. I have some MG/YA fantasy on swirling around in my brain as well.
What advice would you give to other aspiring authors?
Do not EVER give up! EVER! And keep working to hone your craft and make your writing the best it can be. Always looking to grow and improve as a writer.
What is one thing most people don't know about you?
I make handmade handstitched leather handbags. I learned when I lived in South Africa.
Where can people find you online?
Carole Lindstrom is an Anishinaabe/Métis author, who is an enrolled member of the Turtle Mountain Band of Ojibwe Indians. She writes books for children and young adults.
Carole studied writing at The Institute of Children’s Literature.
Her debut picture book, Girls Dance, Boys Fiddle, based on Métis culture, was published with Pemmican Publishers in 2013.
Her poem, Drops of Gratitude, is included in the anthology, Thank U: Poems of Gratitude, edited by Miranda Paul and Illustrated by Marlena Myles, (Lerner/Millbrook - Fall 2019).
Her picture book, WE ARE WATER PROTECTORS, inspired by Standing Rock, and all Indigenous Peoples’ fight for clean water – illustrated by Michaela Goade, (Roaring Brook Press – March 2020).
She is represented by Andrea Brown Literary Agency.
She lives with her family in Maryland. Learn more about her at her website www.carolelindstrom.com.
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