I Played With Food For a Living

Ali Manning Author Interview

Can I Play With My Food? follows two sisters as they learn where Food comes from and how Food is used in science. What was the inspiration for the setup of your story?

The book began as a passion project and a way to reconnect to some of the artistic things I’ve loved to do since childhood. I also used to tell people I “played with food for a living,” so I thought the title was perfect because what better way to learn than through play. I was inspired to create a character loosely based on my sister Alexis, who has Down’s Syndrome because I wanted to create an inclusive book where children who aren’t typically represented in literature can see themselves.

The art in this book is fantastic. What was the art collaboration process like with illustrator Taylor Bou?

Taylor was able to bring my vision to life by creating relatable characters who represent individuals in all of our lives. The collaboration was effortless because he confidently believed in the messaging and what this book means for BIPOC children and those with special needs.

What were some ideas that were important for you to share in this book?

It’s essential for BIPOC children, especially those with special needs, to see themselves and see what’s possible. The book also provides information about food sources and exposes children to the concept of food science as a career path.

What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?

Yes! I have a few other books in mind that feature more BIPOC children with Downs and share other elements of my life and career.

Date: TBD (I’m just basking in the moment of my first publication.)

Author Links: GoodReads | Amazon

Posted on March 17, 2022, in Interviews and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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