A very kind write up in the local School District's news letter....
"O’Neill Secretary Regina Houlihan McCutcheon has always loved reading and creative writing. During her 12 years as an elementary librarian, she gleaned a keen sense of the types of books children most enjoy. At the top of that list? Cute, anthropomorphic animals and insects.
Regina’s sister, Patricia, is a talented artist. Over the years, the two would chat about co-authoring a children’s book, but it wasn’t until two years ago when these discussions grew deeper and turned into a reality.
Using Regina’s librarian background, the duo decided to write a book about a lovable, mischievous cricket. “Since crickets are nocturnal bugs, our protagonist would come out at night and wreak mayhem in the dark,” Regina said.
With this concept set, Regina took out her legal pad and pen and let her creative juices run. She thoughtfully hand-wrote draft after draft of the book, each time tweaking the rhyme and meter. “I’m most comfortable writing with pen and paper,” she remarked. “I like being able to scratch out words that don’t fit, yet easily revisit them if I need to later.”
When the text looked just right, the sisters began planning the book’s artwork. After they created an artistic outline, Patricia took over, designing beautiful images and backdrops to make the story come alive.
They published the final product, called “A Cricket’s Good Night” as an e-book on Amazon in early fall 2016. The e-book began selling very quickly, and soon customers were requesting a print version. “We did not intend to publish a print copy at first, but demand grew, so we made that option available,” Regina said. “It’s rewarding to see our work in print, and it’s hard to believe that so many people are interested in it. It’s been a pleasant and unexpected surprise!”
Regina and her sister are already brainstorming ideas for their second book. When asked what advice she could impart to aspiring writers, Regina shared, “First, know that you CAN write. Second, start writing things down on paper. Brainstorm ideas and write them down. Don’t get discouraged. Know that you will rewrite and redo your work several times. It’s just part of the process and it will make you a better writer in the end!”
Thanks District 58!