Author Spotlight: Ana Siqueira
July 9, 2021
We are thrilled to feature author Ana Siqueira and her debut picture book, BELLA'S RECIPE FOR SUCCESS illustrated by Geraldine Rodriguez (Beaming Books, July 13, 2021) Enter to win a copy!
Tell us about yourself and how you came to write for children.
When I was a little girl, I loved to tell very loooong stories. My mother said I would tell her a never-ending story when hiking. I also loved telling scary stories to my siblings.
Congrats on your debut picture book, Bella's Recipe for Success! Tell us about it and what inspired you.
My daughter Karina inspired me. She was a gifted girl who wanted to be the best in everything or she would quit. So, when reading about growth mindset, I discovered this is a common problem among gifted children. It’s hard for them to persevere because they expect to learn quickly and not make mistakes. It’s a lot of pressure we, parents, put on them without noticing.
Was your road to publication long and winding, short and sweet, or something in between?
My road was a combination of hard work and luck. I got two books published in Brazil a looong time ago. But after I moved here, I stopped writing. But in 2019 I wrote and sold my book El Pato Quiere Uvas to the educational market. This book, published by Teacher’s Discovery, was requested by my second-grader students after they watched the viral video “The Duck Song.”
After that, I felt motivated to restart writing picture books. So after ten months of studying, reading, working with critique partners and editors, I got a like at a pitmad event from Naomi Krueger-Beaming Books and one month later an offer and my agent Andrea Walker. And in 2020, we sold my book If Your Babysitter is a Bruja and Abuela's Super Capa in a two-book deal auction.
What projects are you working on now?
I’m learning to write chapter books and biographies. But I still write one new picture book manuscript per month.
What advice would you give to your younger self? Is this the same you'd give to aspiring authors?
Take the first year to learn about the craft, watch webinars, read a lot of books, connect with the writing community, and critique partners. Don’t rush to query. I did submit to a few agents and publishers too early.
What is one thing most people don't know about you?
I was dyslexic and had serious coordination problems because my mom made me write with my right hand when I was supposed to be a lefty. I still have a hard time with some letters, left and right, and abbreviations. I can’t say SCBWI, hahaha.
Where can people find you online?
Ana Siqueira is a Spanish-language elementary teacher, an award-winning Brazilian children’s author, and a published author in the Foreign Language educational market - EL PATO QUIERE UVAS. Her forthcoming picture books include BELLA’S RECIPE FOR DISASTER/SUCCESS (Beaming Books, 2021) and IF YOUR BABYSITTER IS A BRUJA/ CUANDO TU NIÑERA ES UNA BRUJA (SimonKids,2022), ABUELA’S SUPER CAPA (HarperCollins 2023), and another book TBA. Ana is a member of SCBWI, Las Musas Book, and co-founder of LatinxPitch. Besides writing, Ana loves to read, teach, and play with her Cuban-Brazilian-American grandchildren.a Rafflecopter giveaway