Amanda Rose didn’t set out to write a children's book about her family. Not at first, anyway. The Marion, Iowa-based mother of two began with a story about pen pals. When an editor told her that, although she was on the right track, the story lacked heart, it hit her. “My grandma was pen pals with my great-grandma, and that's how she met my grandpa, they fell in love through letters. I went back the next day and I'm like, ‘I found the heart to the story,’ and I wrote it that night. I've been working on it ever since and it's finally here, finally published,” Rose said.
The entire process took around nine months. During that time Rose was able to find German artist, Anne Rikta, to illustrate. “I knew I wanted to highlight Berlin and where my grandma came from. I wanted that German heritage to come out. The only way to do it, in my opinion, is I really wanted an illustrator that was German. Then I thought how cool would it be if she was actually from Germany?”
Also during those nine months, Rose met with her grandmother, Lydia-Maria, whose story the book chronicles. “She put her hand on me and there was just a glimmer in her eye. I could see that it was swelling up with tears and she goes, it was a wonderful story. I was like I have to call it that. Essentially my grandma named this book with that meeting we had.”
It is this generational connection that It’s A Wonderful Story explores. Rose explains, “I really hope that happens and that this book was not only written for my grandma, but it's also a gift to the generations before me that molded the women that we are today and for my kids and the kids that they have, and they have, so the generations after me. It's a great family token to leave behind.”
It is in this spirit that the dedication reads:
‘For my grandma, Lydia-Maria, may we continue to pass down the stories of our ancestors from one generation to the next.’
Watch the full interview with Amanda Rose here.
It’s A Wonderful Story, a #1 New Release, is available on Amazon and on Rose’s website https://amandarosewrites.com/. You can follow her @inspiredbylit on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
To find illustrator, Anne Rikta, go to her website https://www.rikta-illustrationen.de/. You can also find her on Instagram @anne_rikta_illustrationen.
To find the book’s publisher, Miriam Laundry Publishing Company, visit https://miriamlaundry.com/
Article by AMIDST Editorial Staff