Monday, June 28, 2010

Guest Blogger, Author Kathy Stemke!

I am happy to be hosting Kathy Stemke as a guest blogger today. Instead of my ramblings, you will get to hear from a fabulous author like Kathy who has not only been published, but also has a passion for writing, the arts and all things creative. I have asked Kathy to share her story about becoming a children’s writer. You are sure to be inspired to keep on the road to publication. Besides writing, Kathy has been a dancer, choreographer, teacher, tutor, and an antiques dealer for many years. She is also a contributing editor for The National Writing for Children's Center.

Hi, Virginia. Thanks for hosting me on your blog today. Here’s the story of how my blog lead to several children’s books, and a monthly newsletter.

After I retired from teaching, I dabbled in article writing on Helium. I even sold several articles through their marketplace feature. Since I had taught for many years, I naturally wrote several education articles. I got lots of feedback and questions from other teachers. This made me realize that I had the wisdom and experience to help other teachers. I also needed an outlet for the lesson plans and activities I had created through the years. So my blog, Educationtipster, was born.

Since my background was in physical education, dance, and early childhood education, I used many movement activities in my kindergarten classes. I found that movement helped the kids to learn quicker and retain more. In fact, I found numerous studies on the subject to support my experiences. My blog posts include many practical, fun, movement activities, as well as author interviews, classroom control tips, and motivational tips for parents and teachers.

I joined several teacher groups that share activities with each other, and kept them informed about the information and articles on my blog. When I did a post about the days of the week, some teachers asked if I knew of a book that taught children how to spell the days. Since I didn’t, I decided to write one myself that included activity pages in the back. This rhyming e-book, available on Lulu, is titled, Moving Through All Seven Days.

The response was so fantastic that I decided to write more. I now have two other books under contract with publishers titled, Trouble on Earth Day and Sh, Sh, Sh, Will the Baby Sleep? Hopefully they will be released in 2010. You can also find my monthly teaching tips article on The National Writing for Children Center website.

Because the teachers couldn’t get enough of my songs, rhymes, and activities, I introduced my free monthly newsletter, Movement and Rhythm. I include movement exploration, action songs, poetry that inspires movement, games from around the world, book reviews, classroom management and behavior tips, dances, and the latest information that links movement to increasing cognitive skills. In about a year’s time, I have 375 subscribers! You can sign up for this newsletter on my blog: I’m thrilled to help others and have an outlet for my creativity.

Recently, I joined the DKV Writing 4 U team as an editor and freelance writer. DKV is a writing service that includes ghostwriting, copywriting, editing, proofreading, critiquing, media releases, and much more. Along with Karen Coiffi and Lea Schizas, we also offer website and blog development too. We plan to add book tour and book trailer services soon.

I have many WIP and can’t wait to see what God has in store for me next!

Thank you so much Kathy for sharing your road to publication. Your books sound wonderful and ones I'll be putting on my list to buy. With a five-year-old and new baby, I know I'll get a lot of use out of them.

Kathy’s first children’s e-book, Moving Through All Seven Days, is now available on Lulu. Kathy's second children's book, Trouble on Earth Day and Sh, Sh, Sh, Will the Baby Sleep? are slated to come out soon!

Don’t forget to sign up for her FREE monthly newsletter, “MOVEMENT AND RHYTHM” on her blog. You’ll find great teaching tips, movement activities, and children’s book reviews.

Kathy Stemke's websites: Moving Through all Seven Days:


  1. You're welcome Kathy. It's a pleasure to have you as a guest blogger. You're story is a lot of writers can relate to. I know so many people who are blogging that want to write a book. I know your story will help inspire them to make the next jump down the road to publication.

  2. Kathy certainly has a lot of accomplishments under her belt. I've had the privilege of reading Kathy's books in their early stages and she is a wonderfully talented writer. I'm thrilled that she's on board at DKV.

    Thanks, Virginia, for sharing this with us.

  3. Kathy you are an inspiration for sure. Great interview.

  4. Great guest blog post. I enjoyed reading it. Thanks for sharing.

  5. Thanks for sharing all this, Kathy! Your teaching background is a great plus in children's writing.

    Congrats on all your accomplishments!

  6. Amazing how one idea can blossom!

  7. Hey, Kathy and Virginia,

    I think teachers make natural children's book authors. And Kathy is a great teacher in addition to being a great writer! She's been my guest on Book Bites for Kids and we've had fun talking about her books. She's also a member of the Children's Writers' Coaching Club, and she contributes teaching tips articles to the National Writing for Children Center. So, as you can see, Kathy is a good example of how to manage to get loads of things done and still have fun in the process!

    Good luck with all your books, Kathy. Keep 'em coming!


  8. What a great story, Kathy. Thanks for sharing and thanks for hosting her, Virginia. -Kai Strand

  9. What a good example of how past interests can snowball into a whole new career. Wishing you continued success.

  10. Thank you everyone for stopping by. Yes, it is amazing how an idea or interest can snowball into so many other areas. I've seen this happen in my own writing career.

    Kathy, we all look forward to seeing what other avenues in writing and books you'll be sharing with us in the upcoming years.

    Thank you so much for being such a great guest here on The Writing Mama.

  11. I enjoyed your post, Kathy. You're an interesting person.

    Virginia, you did well.

  12. Loved what you're doing on Helium. It's great to connect with other teachers.

    Great article. It's always fun to learn more about Kathy's achievements.

  13. Great post! Kathy is so energetic and inspiring!

  14. What an interesting road to publication, Kathy. Thanks for sharing with us.

  15. I had no idea you had such an extensive education background, Kathy. Sounds like you've found a very nice niche for yourself and your writing. Congratulations!

  16. This was a great guest post. With your background in education, the books must seem like a natural progression of your writing. Wonderful ideas!

  17. Kathy,
    I'm sooooooooooo jealous of your teaching background. It must come in handy when you write.
    J.Aday Kennedy
    The Differently-Abled Writer
    Children's Book Author & Inspirational Spokesperson
    Klutzy Kantor & Marta Gargantuan Wings

  18. Thank you everyone for your kind comments. I love teaching. Books open the minds and imagination of children.