Meet Jenna Hinkel, Author of Pepper Jo Senses Snow the new exciting children’s picture book Released on May 5, 2020.
-Now, Jenna, I understand your novel is both a printed book and an ebook. Tell us more about yourself and your book
I am a lifelong reader and lover of children’s books. Pepper Jo is my first published book and has I am beyond thankful to be on this journey. Readers will follow Pepper Jo as he ventures out of his cozy igloo to discover one of Mother Nature’s most amazing experiences. This rhythmic story follows an adventurous, young penguin who uses his five senses to explore outside. Each page focuses on one of our five senses and children are encouraged to jot down their findings along the way. It is a short story with bold and unique illustrations. Our main audience is children from babies to kindergarten age.
-That’s amazing! What inspired you to write this book?
I live in the heart of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado in the USA. We are surrounded by snow nine months out of the year. I am always entranced by the smallest details of a single snowflake to the vast beauty of a wintery mountain view. I wanted to write a book that encouraged kids to go outside and explore the world around them.
-That is a noble and beautiful message to be delivered through a children’s book! What was the main challenge you faced when creating your book?
It has always been a dream of mine to publish a children’s book. The feeling of the unknown was daunting. I had my story. I had my illustrations. Now I had to get it out into the world. I hired a publishing service to guide me and baby step after baby step we made it to the publication date and released Pepper Jo into the world. For a long time, I lingered on the final details of the illustrations because I was afraid to feel the vulnerability of releasing my book to readers. I am so glad I braved forward! Now I am hooked and I plan to publish many more in the future.
-That’s good to hear, keep up the good work, it always pays off at the end! How do you stand out from your competition?
Pepper Jo Senses Snow and forthcoming books in my Sensing the Seasons Series, focus on science for very young readers. As adults, using our senses is something we do every day without much thought. As children, this can be an exciting way to focus on and learn about something new or something we never gave much attention to. Parents can use these books to hone in on details in their child’s world and truly explore Mother Earth. I have included bonus pages at the end of Pepper Jo called Exploring the Snow Together. These pages are full of fun activities that parents or teachers can use with the kiddos in their lives to explore the snow even further. Once this mindset is opened, adults and children can follow this framework to learn about many of the wonders around them.
-That is very smart and insightful, I am sure many parents would find this method highly effective. Are you a huge reader yourself? And what do you usually read? Any favorites?
Yes! I have always enjoyed a quiet moment with a great book. Even as a young adult, I have found myself in books stores, at libraries sales, thrift shops and garage sales searching for and stashing children’s books. I have always loved the simplicity yet strong messages that children’s books often offer. I would sit and thumb through the stories and illustrations for as long as possible. Now that I have my own children, reading on the couch is a daily practice. We will call it “research” for this amazing journey I am now on. I do squeeze in the spare minute to read mostly uplifting and inspiring books as well.
-That’s an awesome family tradition, all homes should do that! Tell us, what is your next step as an author?
I am in the process of completing the second book of my Sensing the Seasons Series. Readers will be able to follow a new character who also uses her five senses to discover another fantastic wonder of the Earth. I am thrilled to continue this series and look forward to writing and illustrating more in the near future.
-That sounds very exciting! Do you have any tips or advice for other aspiring indie authors?
My best advice would be to just keep going. Keep taking the small steps forward. You will look back and see just how much they all add up over time. Use the amazing resources in your community and beyond to get your book in the hands of readers. Stand behind what you have written and be really proud of it. That pride and passion for your work will propel you forward.
That’s awesome, thank you Jenna Hinkel for those great insights! We all wish you the best of luck, and we look forward to seeing your next piece of work.
Pepper Jo Senses Snow is available now on Amazon at only $3.99 for ebook, $9.99 for paperback and 14.99 for hardcover, check it out: