Tuesday, September 11, 2018 | By: The Write Way Cafe

Tuesday Special: Lily in the Loft by Carol MacKay

Carol MacKay

Some writers move towards publication later in life, while others find their way to literary expression as children, encouraged by others and given a platform for their creations. I joined a children’s newspaper writing club when I was eight years old. The club, established by the women’s editor of a farm newspaper in the 1920s, encouraged children to send in their poems, stories, and letters for publication. Members could also be elected to leadership positions which presented the unique opportunity to review and award credits to the best pieces appearing in the newspaper each month.

All of the professional writers I’ve spoken with over the years, who were also members of this newspaper club, have said the experience provided them with early training for their vocation. As children, we learned how to submit our work and how to constructively accept the inevitable rejections. We were encouraged to critique the work of others honestly, but never unkindly, and learned that a community of writers is a wonderful place to develop lasting friendships.

By writing a children’s picture book about a vulnerable young poet who wants to share her words I was able to present this unique history to young readers who are the same age as the children who wrote for the club. LILY IN THE LOFT speaks directly to the creative child about perseverance and patience, but perhaps more importantly, to any child who has wondered, “Am I good enough to do this?”

by Carol L. MacKayFrances loves to write, especially in her favourite spot—the barn loft. She sends a poem to The Western Producer, hoping it will be chosen for the YC pages—a section of the newspaper just for young writers like her. And she waits ... and she waits. Will the newspaper editor ever print her poem?

by Carol MacKay
Illustrated by Val Moker
Published by Your Nickel’s Worth Publishing, 2017 (Regina). 
ISBN 9781927756911, 32 p. $14.95. Available online at Amazon, Chapters/Indigo, and McNally Robinson or through your local library or bookstore.

About the Author:
Carol MacKay is a writer and poet whose work has appeared in children’s magazines, including Ladybug, Babybug, Cricket, Highlights for Children, Boys’ Quest, Skipping Stones, and Fun for Kidz. She has two early readers coming out in 2018 with an educational publisher, and her colouring book story, MAXINE’S MARKERS, was published by Warner Press in 2017. LILY IN THE LOFT is her first picture book.


Angela Adams said...

Carol, your book sounds like a great read for encouraging young writers. Thanks for sharing!

Carol MacKay said...

Thanks so much, Angela! I've really enjoyed sharing the book with young writers and students. They totally 'get' what a vulnerable thing it is to share something you've created with others.