Thursday, October 6, 2022

Q&A with Valerie Bolling




Valerie Bolling is the author of the new children's picture book Ride, Roll, Run: Time for Fun!. Her other books include Together We Ride. She is a longtime classroom teacher and an educational coach in Greenwich, Connecticut.


Q: What inspired you to write Ride, Roll, Run?


A: I got the idea for this book thinking about activities children enjoy doing outside. By the way, I enjoyed these activities myself as a child. I wanted to demonstrate that you don’t have to go outside of your neighborhood, and you don’t need expensive equipment or electronics to have a good time.


Ride, Roll, Run: Time for Fun! focuses on the joy that children experience as they engage in activities with their friends, creating a sense of community.


Q: The Kirkus Review of the book calls it “Pure joy.” What do you think of that description, and how did you create the joyful feeling in the book?


A: I love that Kirkus described Ride, Roll, Run as “pure joy” because that’s what I wanted to evoke. Writing about children playing, naturally creates a joyful feeling. Fortunately, Sab’s [illustrator Sabrena Khadija's] vibrant, energetic illustrations are instrumental in conveying that joy.

Q: What do you hope kids take away from the book?


A: I hope young readers will go outside and play with their friends; I want them to have fun! I also hope they realize all of the games and activities they can do outside, whether it’s playing basketball, jumping rope, or even drawing on the sidewalk with chalk. Maybe they’ll discover a new activity they want to try after reading the book.


Q: What are you working on now?


A: Currently, I’m working on a picture book biography. Next, I hope to return to my early chapter book that I need to revise.


Q: Anything else we should know?


A: In 2023 you can look forward to the sequel to Ride, Roll, Run: Time for Fun!, which is about a musical block party and titled Bing, Bop, Bam: Time to Jam! In addition, Together We Swim (check out 2022’s Together We Ride, if you haven’t done so yet), and my Scholastic Acorn early reader series, Rainbow Days, will also be published in 2023.


--Interview with Deborah Kalb. Here's a previous Q&A with Valerie Bolling.

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