Q & A with Author of PAWS and THINK! Books, A Children’s Series with South Baltimore Roots

| July 25, 2017 | 0 Comments

Meet Miranda Mittleman, the author of PAWS and THINK! Books, a series of children’s stories inspired by walks around the South Baltimore neighborhood with her husband Michael and their dog Weaver.

Tell us about PAWS and THINK! Books.

PAWS and THINK! is a children’s book series about a mutt named Weaver who lives in the city. Each book is a poem that teaches a valuable life lesson through the eyes of a dog. They are perfect for children up to six years old but teach valuable lessons that we can all take to heart.

Where did you get the idea for these books and stories?

My husband and I rescued a puppy right after we got married in 2015. We named him Weaver and he quickly became the center of our world. I would always wonder what Weaver was thinking and what he would say if he could talk to us. Knowing that I would never truly find that out, I decided to write the words for him. As I began writing, I gave Weaver the personality that I truly thought he had; Kind, curious, playful and smart. He was a happy puppy who loved meeting everyone and learning about the world around him. I knew children could easily relate to Weaver as he learned valuable lessons through his short adventures.

What are some of your experiences walking Weaver around South Baltimore that inspired pages in the book?

When we lived in South Baltimore, our house was just a couple blocks away from Riverside Park where Weaver played every day (sometimes a few times a day!) Each day when we got home from work, he always ran around with his doggy crew on the hill overlooking the baseball/kickball fields. There must have been at least ten different breeds of dogs playing together at any given time. That is what inspired my book “We Are All Different”.

Our house was also just two blocks from the Federation for the Blind so we would see many service/guide dogs helping people get around. Living in South Baltimore, it was not uncommon to see police dogs as well. All of these dogs with different “jobs” gave me inspiration for my second book, “I Am Important”.

What is your background in writing?

I do not consider myself a “writer” but I have always enjoyed poetry from the time I was very young. As a child, my favorite books were always the rhyming ones (usually Dr. Seuss) and I still remember the songs/jingles that rhymed from even before I learned to read. Over the years, I’ve found myself writing poems for friends and family for all sorts of occasions. I guess I would call myself a “social poet”. Never did I expect to become a published author. However, after quite a few pushes from my supportive husband, Michael, I finally started thinking I may have some good material with the PAWS and THINK! series.

Tell us about the process of getting published.

The process of getting published was fun but a lot of work. I’ve never done anything like this before, so I was too nervous to try to self-publish. I also did not want to attempt publishing with a big traditional publisher because not only can it take months (and sometimes years) to hear back from them, but they really take over your project and I’d be giving up creative control. I wanted to find something in-between; a publisher that helped me every step of the way but that also allowed me to have complete creative control. After a lot of research, I found Mascot Books. They loved my stories and I’ve been working with them for the past 6 months to make my books come to life.

Where can people find We Are All Different and I Am Important?

I am currently running a pre-launch special on my website, www.pawsandthinkbooks.com ($5 off when you purchase both books!) All books will be shipped right after the launch party on August 12th (at Greetings & Readings in Hunt Valley). The books will be available on Amazon shortly, as well as the e-book version. They will also be available at Barnes & Noble, Books-A-Million, and some local bookstores like The Book Escape on Light Street.

Make sure to purchase from my website directly to receive the best specials!

Tells us about the Charity of the Quarter.

I created the Charity of the Quarter program because I want to give back to my community. A portion of the proceeds from every book sold will go to a different charity or non-profit organization every quarter. I’ve chosen the Baltimore Humane Society to kick off my program. They are a wonderful organization founded to protect the region’s pets and to address their suffering. I’m excited to give back to such a great cause and I look forward to donating to many other charities as well.

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About the Author:

Founder and Publisher of SouthBmore.com, longtime resident of South Baltimore, and a graduate of Towson University. Diehard Ravens and O's fan, father of three, amateur pizza chef, skateboarder, and "bar food" foodie. Email me at Kevin@InceptMM.com and follow me on Twitter at @SoBoKevin.