Today, Paul’s Fantasy Writings has the honour of an interview with author Faith Goldstein, who has written the delightful and very funny children’s book, Gorillas’ Night Out. Of late, I have speaking to Faith on Instagram and she agreed to do an interview with this blog.
Where do you come from and has this place influenced your writings?
I was born and raised in Buffalo Grove, Illinois. Currently, I live there with my husband and two children. I would say one of the biggest influences (if not the biggest) on my writing was teaching Kindergarten for many years.
Teaching provided me with the opportunity to observe and gain insight into children’s reading habits and preferences, which really helped me to determine what kind of stories children like to read. One thing I learned from the children was that they loved reading humorous stories; for them, the sillier the better! Knowing this, when I write Gorillas’ Night Out, I aimed to make the story as humorous and silly as possible.
This blogger: That is an amazing observation, and no doubt a very truthful one. My teachers at school (modestly) used to say that they learned more from us than we learned from them. You have given that sentence a whole new light for me. I am absolutely certain that you have used your experience in teaching to create a book that will make children laugh for years to come.
You are a children’s author. What made you decide to write children’s books?
When I was in First Grade, we had an author visit our school. She shared her book with us and discussed the whole book publishing process. I thought that getting a book published sounded like the neatest thing ever, and I decided there and then that I was going to write children’s books too, one day.
In addition, ever since I was a young child, I have loved picture books. Growing up, my favorite authors were James Marshall and Harry Allard; I devoured their books and read them over and over again.
Your book, Gorilla’s Night Out, sounds like a lot fun and very funny. What was the spark that made you write it? How did you come up with the idea?
A few years ago, my sons and I visited Brookfield Zoo. On the car ride home, we talked about what happens at the zoo at night, once everyone has left for the day. We imagined all of the outlandish things that could happen, such as the monkeys going to the ice cream shop and eating up all of the ice cream, and the gorillas having a dance competition with the chimpanzees, and so on. As we were talking, I thought that this could be a really fun idea for a book. And from that moment on, Gorillas’ Night Out was born!
This blogger: (*Chuckles*.) I can imagine that. That is a wonderful spark, and it just goes to show that inspiration for a great idea can come from anywhere, from anyone, and at any time.
Go on, please tell us a little bit about the story?
Gorillas’ Night Out is the story of four gorillas named Pete, Skeet, Treat, and Little Marguerite, who escape from the zoo one night in search of the ultimate night out in New York City. Their adventure finds them causing mischief at the finest clothing stores, eating massive amounts of ice cream, and taking part in a whole lot of “monkey business.” This is a humorous tale about just how far a gorilla will go in pursuit of the ultimate night out on the town.
This blogger: (*Laughs hard*.) That is so funny and sounds like a lovely tale. I think that when parents read Gorillas’ Night Out to their children, it will be the parents who enjoy the story more than the kids!
Is there a ‘mummy gorilla’ in the story that may (or may not) be like you?
There is a mummy-like gorilla in the story named Treat, but the character that I most relate to is Little Marguerite. She reminds me of myself when I was a young child. She is inquisitive and curious, and all about having fun. She also likes to dance in butterfly wings, which was something I used to do when I was a young child!
What message would you like readers to take away from the book?
Ultimately, I want to show all the readers out there (especially the reluctant ones) that reading can be a fun and pleasurable activity. I want them to experience the joy that comes from reading a good book.
This blogger: That’s a great message. No doubt, everyone who reads Gorillas’ Night Out will experience joy, laughter and a good time!
What is your writing Kryptonite?
Query letters and cover letters! They stress me out line no other!
This blogger: Haha, I think they are the bane of most people’s lives, whether they are for books or jobs lol.
If you could give your younger self some advice about the writing process, what would it be?
To believe in myself, and to have more confidence in myself and my abilities. Instead of constantly questioning myself about everything, just go with my gut and intuition.
How has writing changed you?
It has made me more confident in myself and my abilities. Writing a picture book and actually getting it published was truly a dream come true. In my wildest dreams, I never thought it would truly happen. When it did, it showed me that you can accomplish anything when you put your mind to it.
Now, my favorite quote to live by is – “If you can dream it, you can do it,” by Walt Disney because it is so true!
This blogger: It’s a great motto and mindset. It’s probably why Walt was so successful.
Have your friends and relatives read Gorilla’s Night Out to their kids? What do they think of the story, and how do you feel when they talk about it with you?
Yes! All of my friends and relatives have read the book to their children! They love the book, and they have been so incredibly amazing and supportive. They shared my book, attended book readings, and helped in any way they can to get it out there. They are the best cheerleaders, and I am so grateful for them!
This blogger: That is truly wonderful. They sound like amazing people. When they read this interview, I hope they see how appreciative you are of them, too.
Are you writing another novel currently? If so, could you give us a sneak-peek please?
Yes, I am currently working on sequels to Gorillas’ Night Out. The sequels feature the lovable gorillas on the loose once again, embarking on more midnight escapades through different cities and states. One of the sequels features my hometown – sweet home Chicago! I am really excited about them!
This blogger: (*Smiles*.) You are going to make a lot of people very happy when the sequels come out. Keep at it. Keep doing it!
Lastly, what do you like to do when you are not writing?
I love spending time with my two sons, ages six and eleven, as well as engaging in my other passion aside from writing, which is shopping!
End of Interview
That brings our interview with author Faith Goldstein to an end. I would like to thank her for his time, and to say that it has been delightful getting to know her. I wish her all the best in her future writings, her family, and shopping ventures.
You can purchase Faith’s book on Amazon. If you have kids, get it now as they (and you) will find Gorillas’ Night Out hilarious.
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