Shae Millward is the author of The Rabbit’s Magician, Koalas Like To and A Boy and a Dog. Shae is based in Hervey Bay, Queensland and has four children. She has a number of picture books and a middle-grade novel in progress. She also enjoys writing inspirational quotes, poetry and song lyrics.
Interview with Children’s Author, Shae Millward
Andrew: Hi Shae, great to have you on the blog. Let’s start off with a fun one. Tell us about something crazy that you’ve done.
Shae: Once upon a time I let the fear of what other people might think stop me from pursuing my dreams.
Andrew: Wow. That is crazy. When you’re not writing for children, you enjoy writing inspirational quotes, poetry and song lyrics. Can you share one of your favourite quotes, section of poetry or song lyrics and explain how you hope it will resonate with the reader?
Shae: I’m gonna go with a humorous one. An inspirational quote that kind of ties in with the previous question.
“Why dance as if nobody’s watching?Shae Millward
Dance as if everyone’s watching and give ‘em all a jolly good show!”
It’s a good reminder to not worry so much about what others might think. A self-confidence booster that can apply to many different scenarios.
You wanna do that thing?Shae Millward
Go for it!
Be your amazing self!
Dance, baby, dance!
You tripped, you stumbled, you fell on your butt?
Nah, that was just part of your brilliant choreography!
Andrew: They’re great messages! I’d like people to get a feel for your published books. I already have a copy of A Boy and a Dog that I’ve enjoyed with my son many times. Can you tell everyone what A Boy and a Dog is about and what inspired you to write it?
A Boy And A Dog
Shae: A Boy and A Dog tells the timeless tale of a lonely boy and a lonesome dog who find each other and discover true friendship. This story celebrates the special bond that can form between children and animals, with a focus on kid-canine companionship. It contains the universal themes of trust, connection and belonging. But at its heart, it’s a story about love.
The inspiration came in the form of the first four lines popping into my mind:
There once was a dog who just wanted to play,A Boy and a Dog
But his owner was busy, ‘No! Go away!’
And there was a boy who just wanted to play,
But the kids at school shouted, ‘No! Go away!’
And, well, I couldn’t just leave it there now, could I? No, I was much too curious to discover how their story would turn out!
Koalas Like To…
Andrew: That’s awesome! Let’s chat about your book, Koala’s Like To … Now, I’m guessing the book is filled with Koalas sleeping in trees and not doing anything remotely interesting, am I right? And what can children learn about koalas by reading the story and the facts at the end of the book?
Shae: True, koalas spend most of their time a) sleeping in trees, and b) eating gum leaves. However, Koalas Like To is a humorous picture book featuring fun rhyme and repetition along with a cast of cute koala characters and their quirky capers.
Koalas like to sleep in trees.Koalas Like To . . .
Koalas like to eat gum leaves.
They also like to try on wigs.
And roll around in mud with pigs.
You’ll be surprised what these koalas get up to!
Amid the wacky antics, children can learn that koalas have two “thumbs” on each front paw; they eat YOO-KAH-LIP-TUS leaves; their bottoms have extra thick fur which provides padding for the many hours they spend sitting in trees… and more!
The Rabbit’s Magician
Andrew: That sounds like tons of fun and educational, too! Your latest book as of this blog post is The Rabbit’s Magician. Who is this book best suited to and what behind-the-scenes info can you share about it?
Shae: The Rabbit’s Magician is a story of love, loss and comfort. It is inspired by a scientific principle and fundamental law of nature called The Law of Conservation of Energy, which states: Energy cannot be created or destroyed, but it can change from one form into another.
This gentle but powerful picture book offers solace to the heart of anyone who has lost a loved one. The story’s layered meaning and intertwining themes – including the universe, nature, the moon and its phases, reminders of loved ones, and the power of love – enable it to be interpreted in your own special way.
“Everything in the universe is made of energy, including us – therefore, those who can no longer be touched by our hand can still be felt by our heart.” – SM
Behind the scenes: I had put it out there into the universe that I was ready to write a new story. No grand ritual, just a thought within my own mind, an acknowledgement that I had finished up a bunch projects and was now excited to welcome a new idea.
Usually, my stories start with a spark of an idea – it could be anything: a set of rhyming lines, a character, a title, a situation, a basic concept or an image – which I then have to work at to flesh out.
I never intentionally set out to write a story about loss – it was certainly not a subject I would have chosen to tackle. But a scene appeared in my mind of a rabbit looking up at the moon. I sensed he was waiting for something. The moon phases changed, and still, he waited. What are you waiting for? I wondered. And then, he told his tale. In a matter of moments, the whole story of The Rabbit’s Magician suddenly existed, like a neatly wrapped gift. No tackling involved.
There was some hesitancy on my part in regards to the potentially sensitive subject matter, but because of the blessed way in which the story came into being – the way it presented itself – I felt it had come as not only a gift for me but for anyone who might need it.
Andrew: Do you have anything in the works that you can tease us with?
Shae: I always have a bunch of ideas for picture book stories floating around, and the middle-grade novel I’m working on continues to progress nicely. I’m also creating a range of t-shirt designs – some are autism-championing (I’m on the autism spec(trum)tacular myself!) and others are geared towards writerly folk, I guess you could call it ‘writer wear’ or ‘author apparel’ – it’s fun!
Andrew: Thanks for coming on the blog, Shae. Your books are a lovely mix of positive messages and fun. I’m sure people will love sharing them with their family and friends.
Buy Shae Millward Books
I hope you enjoyed this Shae Millward intervew. If one of Shae’s books would be perfect for a special child in your life, grab one of these links (Amazon and Booktopia are affiliate links) or from your favourite online or local bookshop.
More reviews and Interviews
For more interviews and children’s book reviews, head over to my kids’ book blog. Have a great day!