1) Tell us a bit about yourself
I'm a Florida native, a wife, a mom, a professional singer, and a published songwriter. I was a home educator and an elementary public school educator. I currently own my own travel agency in Mt Dora, Florida, and spend time writing, traveling, and helping others reach their dreams.
2. Did you always want to be a writer?
I don't know that had aspirations of becoming a writer, but I have always written. Even when I was in elementary school, I wrote poems and songs.
3. When did you first start/get published/where
My first pieces that were published were articles that I wrote for different magazine publications. The writing industry is very difficult. The challenge as an artist/writer is to keep doing what you love even when nobody reads or wants your creations.
4. What do you love about writing fiction for kids?
I love writing fiction because of the fantasy. Anything can happen in fiction. If you want to eat a purple banana, you can. If you want your pet to be the world's longest anaconda, you can. What it boils down to is fiction equals imagination.
5. What was your inspiration behind your service dog piece for Bumples?
My inspiration for the service dog piece was my friend, Laura, who owned the dog, Rusty. He was more than an inspiration and pet to her. They had a friendship and bond that allowed them to be like family to each other. Service dogs, along with other animals really can make a difference in the lives of others.
6. What advice can you give to struggling authors?
Great question. Sometimes I struggle as an author, and I want to quit. I am even the lead for a critique group where I encourage and help others with their writing. How pathetic is that? I think struggling is part of the journey. The good news is that now with burst of social media, e-books, and online magazines (like Bumples), there are a number of growing opportunities for writers, if you just continue to write and explore. I think today's writer has to be more open to new avenues of writing. The bottom line is that good content still needs to be out there. Along with the traditional writing path, there are also new paths.
7. Do you have a blog/website etc you would love for us to check out and follow?
~ I have a weekly travel blog at; www.lifesrudder.me.
~ My website is; www.janellewoodyard.com
~ My author/fan page on FB is; www.facebook.com/
~ Educational Youtube channel is: http://www.youtube.com/
~ Pinterest: http://pinterest.
~ I also have a blog for students to blog about books they have read: http://books2blog.com/
Thank you so much again for the opportunity.
Thank you, Janelle!