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Remember How We Felt When We Were Little

Tuula Pere Author Interview

Do You See Me at Home follows a small child that struggles with big feelings and needs the adults in their life to comfort and reassure them things will be ok. What was the inspiration for your story?

This book is one of three belonging to “Do You See Me? Series.” I wrote the books because I believe my experiences as a mother of three can be helpful for young families.

I have always been sensitive to observing everyday situations between young children and their parents. I often notice that adults somehow look past the children even when a little attention is needed.

It is often a matter of small things that grow into big problems unless they are dealt with compassion right away. In many situations, we can choose to behave kindly and smoothly to make everyone do better. I don’t mean that we should accept all requests or whims of the child. On the contrary, we must help children find their place and limits safely and learn to trust that they receive support when needed.

I want to remind the reading adults that you have to listen to your child, even in the middle of a rush. Creating a sense of security is one of the most important things. It is also easier for the child to face strange and scary things in such an atmosphere.

Children must make their voices heard, even when they cannot express themselves adequately. An observant adult can sense what is going on, even without words. We have to empathize and remember how we felt when we were little.

How do you use social media as an author?

I admit that I am a beginner as a social media user. Our publishing company, Wickwick, has a lot of online activity in marketing and sales. For my part, I connect with all my stakeholders by participating in producing the publishing company’s material.

In addition, I have both the Tuula Pere Author and the personal Tuula Pere Facebook pages. My friends and readers there include very different people interested in children’s literature — readers, writers, illustrators, publishers, and many of my dear old supporters. I also use LinkedIn to talk about books and writing internationally. I try to find a suitable way to meet people on each channel. They are different depending on the media and have different expectations.

I’m also quite active in the Publishers without Borders group, an engaging Facebook community born during the pandemic. It’s incredible how fast such networks can spread! There are about 4,500 people from the book industry in this community, and I have already met some at the international book fairs and publishing fellowship programs.

And I recommend my Warm Values Blog to you! I write there on a more general level on topics that I consider essential and exciting – such as Author’s Voice, Parenthood, Society, and Inspiration. My purpose is to get my readers to ponder various societal themes with an empathetic approach. I may reflect on recent events around us, or go back in history, describe observations from my travels, and thoughts behind my books.

In Warm Values Blog, I sometimes open my personal experiences of family life, being a mother and child, or layered memories of my family’s many generations. – My modest and ordinary grandparents would have been amazed reading about how much they have influenced my thinking and writing!

If you could spend a day with another popular author, whom would you choose?

When I answer questions like this, I often choose some past writer. My companion would now be Mika Waltari (1908¬–1979), a versatile Finnish writer who was a professional writer for almost every kind of literary assignment. In addition to the smooth pen, he had a broad knowledge base and studies that gave depth to his social reflections.

He was so productive and successful that many people in the book industry and literature field envied him. He seemed to be capable of writing anything and adapting his gifts to very different uses and audiences. He wrote great historical novels, film scripts, crime novels, plays, essays, poems, and rhymed texts for newspaper comics. And was well-paid, too!

I chose to spend my imaginary day with Waltari, as I am a great admirer of his most famous novel worldwide, The Egyptian. But as a writer of many travel stories, he would undoubtedly be an expert as a traveling companion, preferably on a train.

I traveled alone by train around Europe for a month at a young age. I made a lot of observations about different regions, people and their habits and languages, and history, too. There was a lot for a young traveler to ponder and melt together. Young Waltari did the same thing and wrote a novel about that. No doubt, we would have a lot to discuss about our findings on the way – at least for one day together!

Have you ever traveled as research for your book?

I enjoy traveling a lot because it helps me understand life more broadly. The goal of my travels is simply to see and experience, perhaps learn something new and connect it to my previous experiences and knowledge. All this belongs to refining one’s personality.

As I walk around and explore things and meet people, I get new ideas, and old ones develop further. Everything gathers deep in my mind, where it matures – hopefully even into a story worth telling others. I guess I don’t travel to collect material but gain life experience and clarify and refresh my thinking.

In my children’s books, the stories travel around the world. In this way, I want to connect children across all borders – visible or invisible. The ingredients in these stories come from somewhere deeper than my travels. They come from the journeys my brain and heart have made.

But who knows if the more concrete “mental souvenirs” from my journeys could later be used in books for adults? The caches of my memory are already quite packed at this age.

So far, I’ve not written much for adults – mainly non-fiction. But I have published one collection of my short stories for adults in Finnish. And in some of them, I have put a few extraordinary situations and events from my travels abroad.

Maybe it’s soon time to start writing about this lifelong journey for adults. But it takes a new kind of courage!

Author Links: Facebook | Website

What should you do when your playing time is cut short or news reports are scary? What if no one has time to listen to you when you come home?
Many ordinary situations can be difficult for young people, and that’s when you need a grown-up’s support. With a warm heart and playful mind, families can fin

Do You See Me at Home

Do You See Me at Home written by Tuula Pere is a picture book that feels like you are looking into the mind of a child. This story is written from the perspective of a child’s thoughts and their parent’s responses to their feelings. All the interactions are everyday occurrences that parents and children can identify happening in their own lives at one point or another. Things like excitement and wanting to share their day, being scared by something they see on the TV or computer, things too loud, or having to stop playing in the middle of an adventure are experiences children have all the time.

My first thought when reading this realistic children’s book was, I have been here with my own children. I could identify with almost every situation the child and parents were experiencing. This would have been a wonderful book to have had to read to my own children when they were in preschool and young elementary kids. I can see how this expressive picture book would allow children to see their feelings are valid and normal.

The illustrations done by Majigsuren Enkhbat are vivid and bold. There are strong colors that work well together, helping to portray the child’s mood from page to page. When the child is scared by something on TV there is a mostly black page with an angry red fire. When the parents are comforting the child it is bright white with a sky blue and yellow that is soothing.

Do You See Me at Home is a beautifully written picture book that teaches children that their feelings and emotions are normal and ok to have. It is ok for big situations to be difficult for small children and parents and family are there to help them through. This is an ideal children’s book for preschoolers and kindergarten-age kids.

Pages: 32 | ASIN : B09JMDTFRC

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