Dawn Cherie Walker (1964- ) was born in Massachusetts. As a small child, she spent many days on her Nana's 'farm' in Ashfield, MA. Her nana raised show dogs, the wire haired terrier. Dawn's first pet was Scamp, a little scamp of a terrier. There were barn cats and one of Dawn's favorites was DC Kitty. There was momma cat and hoards of baby cats. As the show dogs littered, her nana would set up a for sale sign by the mailbox and little two year old Dawn Cherie could be seen "selling" puppies, even trying to convince those that had two children that they really needed to buy two dogs so that the one wouldn't be lonely.
Years went by, life changes us all. She woke up one morning and the story of Kit Kat was just there in her head. At work it took her four hours to type it out on the computer screen; we didn't have thumb drives or computers at home to email the digital copy, so she held on tightly to the only printed copy she had. Eventually, she retyped it and saved it to her thumb drive. In 2016, she found a local publisher and they set to work and soon there after Dawn Cherie had her first printed and published book, The Adventures of Kit Kat.
Residing outside of Charleston, SC with her husband, whom she met there, they have two cats, Cat Mandu and Bella; and a string of strays that find her home more appealing than their own. Dawn Cherie loves them all, feeds them and loves on them as if they were her own. So, with all this activity taking place around their little home, it is a wonder a new adventure for Kit Kat hasn't just emerged again...
Though it took only 21 years for her to finally get published, she has also suffered from prolonged writers block. She is taking notes and arranging a new children's adventure with Kit Kat and should have it completed sometime in 2017. So, stay tuned for future developments!
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The Adventures of Kit Katby Dawn WalkerPublish: Apr 24, 2016Children's
I was born in MA, lived with my nana for about 5-6 yrs, then my aunt and uncle adopted me and we ended up living in a different city and state until I reached 7th grade when we relocated back to MA. Which is where I graduated high school.What are some aims or aspirations you had as a child? What kind of role did your parents play in you becoming a writer?
I really don’t remember my childhood. I can’t recall every having a thought of what I would be or do as an adult. When I was 15 yrs old, I wanted to be the first female President…my life took a different turn. At 17 I signed up to go into the Navy, again my life took another turn. I went to FL got married and had a family.Do you remember the first book or piece of writing that really stood out to you and showed you the true power of words and literature?
I still have a cloth bound book that was handed down to me about Simba the lion cub…that is the first book I can remember. Later in my teen yrs I read Judy Bloom books. In high school it was the Crucible that I loved.How many weeks in a month did you spend at your Nana's farm?
I lived at my nana’s for 5-6 yrs of my life.What were your chores on this farm? Chores? What are chores?
LOL!! She used to show wire haired terriers. I would go with her sometimes to the shows. When the dogs had puppies, I was the salesman, telling people they should buy two puppies so that they wouldn’t be lonely. I don’t think it worked, but the buyers sure thought I was a cutey!What inspired "The Adventures of Kit Kat"?
I think that my life at the time inspired Kit Kat. I just woke up one morning and the whole story was right there in my head. Of course,Jezabel was sleeping beside me, so I like to attribute the story to her.Are there any other animals on your Nana's farm that you hope to create stories out of in the coming future?
Nothing from the farm. There may have been many cats and dogs and my cousins dairy farm down the road with pigs and of course dairy cows, but they didn’t play a part in Kit Kat coming to fruition.Does the story of Kit Kat's journey have a moral? What kind of message did you hope to spread with this book and do you think you accomplished that?
So, the moral wasn’t a thought to me as I put pen to paper, BUT, since then, I always thought the moral was to not judge a book by its cover. That even the scariest of people can have a heart of gold and be the one to help you reach your goal. I’ve read the reviews from some readers and one thought that it touches on the moral code of diversity.Why do you think it is so important to introduce books and literature into a child's life early on? What books were your favourites growing up?
My Aunt taught us kids to read at a rather young age. She was a teacher, so it came natural to her to want to teach us. Reading was fun, I could be anyone and do anything when I was lost in the movie playing in my mind from a story book. I still get like that. I only remember reading Judy Bloom and of course I got ahold of a Jacqueline (can’t remember her last name) book, a little risqué for a teen girl, but I loved it!Who did the illustrations for your book? What kind of role do illustrations play in a book?
Mark Brayer did the illustrations for this book. He was introduced to me through the vanity publisher that I hired. I had no idea how to get aillustrator at the time and had no clue how to publish by myself. I know a lot more now! Illustrations can bring the story to life! It will grab the attention of the reader and if the story is good enough, the pictures will help the child to imagine it all as real. The illustrations must encompass the story, have to make it all seem so alive. In achildren’s book, if there are no illustrations, your young reader will be bored and not show an interest as they haven’t been able to get their brain to be imaginative yet.Why do you write? Is it more of a hobby or something with a deeper sense of purpose?
It was a one time deal I think. I wrote it 23 yrs ago and published it 2 yrs ago. Since then I have written another book A Bully Rescue, another Kit Kat adventure, but I don’t have funding for an illustrator and the book needs some serious revamping!How do normally get reviews? Which was has been your favorite so far? Reviews? What are those?
LOL! I have a few on Amazon. Really that is how I get them. That and when friends purchase the book, I ask them to go to Amazon and my facebook page to leave a review.What are some of your goals as a writer for the next five to ten years?
I hope to be able to afford an illustrator for the A Bully Rescue; there are so many stories of adventure for Kit Kat, that I could write 6 a year, if I could afford an illustrator! So, if I only get one done in my lifetime, that is ok, I’ll have left a legacy for my grandbabies.Do you plan on experimenting with other genres in the future or will you stick to writing your fantastic children's stories?
Well, some of my best writing has been on a very risqué level, not something I want to share… (sheepish grin) As for other genre’s no, I think I will stick to children’s books. I like Kit Kat and she has many years of adventures left in her. Heck I could write a new story every month and Kit Kat never has to grow up. I like that!Lastly, when it comes to getting a book published, what are some common traps to avoid based on your experience?
OMG! I was so lost when it came to publishing Kit Kat! I saw an ad on LinkedIn for a local publishing group, but at the time I didn’t know what a vanity publisher was, or that you should NEVER EVER pay someone to publish your book! To get abook published one has to enter the contests, send manuscripts to publishers and beat on doors until someone says, YES! We will publish your book! To find an illustrator just go to fivver or some other freelance service and hire one for cheap. I think that if you can avoid paying a high price for illustrations, you are way ahead of me!
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