WHY I WROTE THE RHYME & REASON SERIES
I'm often asked what inspired me to write, The Rhyme And Reason Series. The truth is, it was all a complete surprise--at least to me! I wasn't a writer before, have no journalism degree or any other "qualifying" experience.
The simple truth is, my mother-in-law had invited me to join her in BSF (Bible Study Fellowship) and since I rarely tell my mother-in-law "no," I went. We spent nine months studying the book of Genesis that year. On the last day of class, they always have what is called, "Share Day" where anyone can share the way the study had impacted their lives. There was a microphone involved, and since I've never met a microphone I didn't like, I knew I'd have something to say!
As I lay in bed unable to sleep and contemplating what I wanted to share the next morning, a couplet came to mind: This is the one true story of how it everything began, because of love our God began to formulate a plan." I though that was kind of clever, so I got up and wrote it down, then went back to bed. Two more came, so I got up and wrote them down and
went back to bed. They kept coming! So I decided I'd stay up until they quit coming to mind. By the time the sun came up, I'd put the entire book of Genesis to rhyme. I ran to class and read what I had written in the night. This rather stoic group of women burst into spontaneous applause and afterwards they mobbed me and begged me to send copies to them. One woman said, "Have you ever thought about making that into a children's book?" I replied, "I hadn't thought of any of it until 3:00 this morning." But that got the wheels turning.
I joined a local Christian writer's group and learned what a query letter was, and other aspects of getting published. I searched for an agent until I finally found one. (This was over 25 years ago, so before self-publishing was a seriously viable option.) The agent connected me with a publisher, but I didn't like their in-house artist's work, so I spent thee years on a coast-to-coast search for someone who could bring the books to life with humor as well as accuracy. I ended up finding David Wilson, aka Mr. Sketches, a mere 15- minute drive from my house. Isn't God hilarious? Yes. Yes, He is. And He's also never in a hurry!
I published Genesis and then Matthew with a traditional publisher. By this time self-publishing was becoming more mainstream, so I connected with a woman who became and remains my publicist. Together, along with the rest of the team, we publish each new title in the series.
As I've continued to write and publish, it's become quite clear that God is using the books in several ways: to build Biblical literacy; to help parents establish a foundation of understanding the books of the Bible in a fun and memorable way; and to establish chronology. Most children's Bible books only tell the highlights. In Genesis, for example, I wanted children to understand what God's intention was in creation and what happened in the Fall. Why the Fall led to the flood, why the flood led to the Tower of Babel, etc. So the stories are linked together by content and context, rather than just random stories plucked out of a particular book of the Bible.
I hope that you have found them to be valuable learning tools for the children in your life.