Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Interview with Teen Author Rachel Yurchisin - Books - Blogcritics

Joining us today is Rachel Yurchisin, teen author of a children’s book entitled Diary of My Days in Kenya: A Naturalist’s Observations of a Lioness and Her Adopted Baby Oryx. Rachel's love of science and nature has inspired her to write her first children’s book in the hopes of passing on her passion to other young ‘budding’ naturalists. Yurchisin is a junior in high school and participates in educational programs at her city zoo and natural history museum.

Thank you for joining us today, Rachel. Can you please start us off by sharing a bit about yourself?
I have a love of science and nature that has inspired me to write my first children’s book in the hopes of passing on my passion to other young “budding” naturalists. I am currently a junior in high school residing in Cleveland, Ohio. I feed my interest in animals and the natural world by participating in educational programs at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo and the Cleveland Museum of Natural History. I enjoy competing in tennis tournaments and I play softball for my high school.

When did you first get bit by the writing bug?
I started writing little poems from a very early age, but I didn’t write my first book Diary of My Days in Kenya until fifth grade. Why did you decide to write stories for the How-to/Parenting market? It wasn’t a conscience decision; at that point in my life, I was writing a story that was designed for children my age. I do believe that if I am fortunate enough to publish any future writings, I will probably continue writing children’s stories.

What is your favorite part of writing for this group? What is the greatest challenge?
My favorite part is knowing that I am opening up the world of reading to a child and sending them off on an adventure that they may never had embarked upon had they not turned the pages of my book. The greatest challenge is to “get all my facts straight” and do the research aspect of the writing.

Can you tell us about your book? Diary of My Days in Kenya is a fictional story loosely based upon the real life occurrences of a nomadic lioness who nurtures baby oryx as if they were her own young. During a drought, a naturalists, Susan Polling, and other professionals, are sent on assignment to observe and document this special pairing. The book’s spirited protagonist, Polling, offers the reader interesting insights as to why this unique phenomenon has transpired. The story explores how the traditional relationship of predator and prey is transcended, presenting a spellbinding account of how a parental bond, even a non-traditional one, can never be broken.

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