Sarah Speedie joins for an interview
Join us for an interview with Sarah Speedie. Sarah lives in Melbourne. Her debut picture book illustrated by Rebel Challenger has just been released. I’m super excited to have Sarah joining us on the blog today!
Andrew: Hi Sarah, let’s kick off by getting to know you. Tell us a bit about yourself.
Sarah: I am the mother of two wonderful children (a teen and a tween) and a gorgeous Aussie bulldog named Dutch. Dutch, the bulldog, loves the water. She regularly goes stand up paddle-boarding and loves swimming (with a life jacket of course, bulldogs aren’t built to float!). If you head on to my website you will actually find a picture of Dutch on the water!
I always loved writing as a child, but ended up with a career in IT and finance, before finding my way back to writing in 2019, and I haven’t looked back! I love to travel (before recent times of course), and I can’t wait to get back to it. There are so many amazing and interesting countries, cultures and people around the world, with so much to see and experience.
As much as I enjoy living near the beach in Melbourne, my ideal home would be in the middle of a forest somewhere surrounded by trees, a bubbling stream and nature. That is my idea of heaven. Maybe one day…
Andrew: On your website, there are some very interesting facts about you. Your favourite movie is The Sound of Music and you love to sing but your family doesn’t always fully appreciate you belting out tunes around the house. I’m going to put you on the spot here… Would you be willing to sing your favourite line from The Sound of Music for us here on the blog in text format?
Sarah: Well, If you insist Andrew. Just count yourself lucky that I’m singing in text format only! My favourite song in The Sound of Music, one that always brings a tear to my eye is…
Ev’ry morning you greet me
Small and white
Clean and bright
You look happy to meet me…
Would you like me to continue? Hahaha…
Sarah Speedie’s Debut Picture Book
Andrew: Wow! That was epic. I can’t believe your family doesn’t beg you to sing for them ALL THE TIME. Mozzies Vs Flies, your debut picture book is out now. What triggered the idea for the story and what’s it about?
Sarah: Well, my husband and I like to take the kids and the dog and go bush walking every few weeks. There wouldn’t be a dog friendly hiking track in and around Melbourne that we haven’t visited. Often on these bush walks I throw story ideas around with my family. The idea for Mozzies Vs Flies came to me on one of these walks, as you can imagine we do come across quite a number of both mozzies and flies on our trails! I thought there has to be a story in there somewhere, and that night when we got home from the walk, I started writing! Then, approximately two months later, on a different bush walk, I received the call from James Layton at Larrikin House saying that he wanted to publish it!
Andrew: That’s awesome! Who is Mozzies Vs Flies perfect for?
Sarah: Mozzies Vs Flies is a picture book perfect for children aged 3 – 8 years. I am a strong believer in humour in kid’s books and this story is packed with humour. So, any child (and adult) who enjoys a good giggle, will enjoy it.
Andrew: What was your favourite part of the book creation process and why?
Sarah: Oh gee, that’s a tough question! Do I really have to pick only one? I have thoroughly enjoyed the whole process, Larrikin House have been amazing to work with. But aside from receiving the phone call from James Layton saying that he wanted to sign the story (which is a moment I will never forget), I would have to say seeing the colour illustrations for the first time was a massive highlight. When I received the email with the illustrations I ran straight to put them up on the big TV screen. It was amazing seeing my little story brought to life by Rebel Challenger’s wonderfully fun illustrations.
Andrew: What were your thoughts as you flipped through your book for the first time?
Wow, wow, wow…
would sum my thoughts up pretty accurately I think!
Andrew: How can people get a copy of Mozzies Vs Flies so they can share with their kids or grandkids?
Sarah: Mozzies Vs Flies is now available through all good bookstores Australia wide, and from early 2022 it will start popping up in various overseas bookstores also.
Andrew: It was great to have you on the blog, Sarah. Best wishes for Mozzies Vs Flies and no doubt next time we’re at a barbeque swishing flies and mozzies, we’ll think of your new picture book!
Sarah: Thank you for inviting me on Andrew, it was a fun chat! I just hope that my singing hasn’t scarred you too much!