Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Interview with Children's Book Author Tela Kayne @telakayne

As the daughter of a librarian, Tela Kayne grew up reading countless literary works of all genres in quiet corners of the local library. She developed the love of writing at an early age, penning theatrical productions that were performed in the family living room for an audience of loved ones. She officially began her creative career as a young actress in Atlanta, having appeared on stage in a variety of roles including Puck of Midsummer Night’s Dream and Alice in Alice in Wonderland.

After graduating college Summa Cum Laude from the University of Georgia with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology and working a short stint in the “real world,” she moved to Los Angeles to pursue a career in film. After securing her Screen Actor’s Guild membership through appearances on television shows like G vs E, The Parkers and Get Real as well as films like Down to You, Almost Famous, and Disney’s The Kid, she decided to garner more behind-the-camera experience. She secured internships at Scott Rudin Productions, one of Hollywood’s most prolific and demanding producers and Mostow Lieberman Productions (U-571) at Universal Studios. She soon accepted a paid position with executive producer Chris Sievernich and discovered her love of screenplay development, running the coverage department for Kinowelt USA and assisting in the development of projects like Nurse Betty, The Wedding Planner and Welcome to Collinwood. After several years of working in Hollywood, she returned home to Atlanta in 2001 to focus on a career in strategic marketing.

As president and founder of The Virtue Agency, an integrated content development and marketing agency, Tela has spent the last fifteen years writing content and maximizing brand exposure and engagement for clients. She has authored articles that appear on MarketWatch (WSJ), Yahoo! Finance, MNN.com, EWG.org, and HealthyChild.org. She is also entering into the literary world with the release of LaLa Feels Blah-La, Book 1 of her debut children’s series, LaLa’s World.



About the Book:

Author: Tela Kayne
Publisher: The Virtue Agency
Pages: 30
Genre: Children’s Picture Book

Welcome to LaLa's World: Where kids learn how to be the change!

In this newly released children's book, "LaLa Feels Blah-La," a young girl and her stuffed bear wake up feeling blah for no apparent reason. LaLa's mom teaches her to be mindful of her feelings and turn her mood around with the flip of a coin. Perfect for young readers, LaLa Feels Blah-La , teaches children to be more mindful of their feelings and manage their mood swings.


Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Thanks for this interview, Tela.  I’ve always wanted to write children’s books.  When did you determine that writing for children was for you?

I have four young daughters, and we’ve read thousands of bedtime stories. I love the magic that lives behind the cover of a great children’s story. My best times as a mom are when I get to snuggle the girls as we get lost in the imagination of the author’s inner child. I love a childlike perspective and find the simplicity of children’s book writing refreshing.

What was the inspiration behind your children’s book, LaLa Feels Blah-La?

The idea of LaLa’s World was born soon after the arrival of my second daughter. From birth, she had a hard time adjusting to her environment and could not self soothe. As she grew into a young girl, her frustration with lights that were too bright or food with funny textures grew into arguments with her sisters over things that simply could not be controlled. That coupled with a spiritual journey of my own, made me realize that my daughter could benefit from understanding her power within…that while she couldn’t always control what happened to her, she could control how she responded to it.

How do you get into the mind of a child to create a fun reading experience?  Are you around kids?  Are you a kid at heart?

Both! Did I mention I have FOUR young daughters? They all have big imaginations and inspire me to play every day. They make it easy for me to find my inner child and write about it. 

What was your favorite book as a child?

I had four that are still my favorites: The Giving Tree, Green Eggs and Ham, Go Dog Go and Good Night Moon

What kind of advice would you give writers who would like to write children’s books?

Don’t over-edit yourself! Let the words flow as outrageous or simple they may be and just let the story flow out of you. 

What are your goals for the future?  More children’s books?

I plan to continue the LaLa’s World Series. I’ve already written the second book and have plans for a third. I’m also writing a novel which is in an ambitious narrative and complex format. The sweet simplicity of “LaLa Feels Blah-La” was a much needed break!

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