Hello everyone... Today we are interviewing Author Renato Rizzuti for his book "Toddy the Tomcat and Other Talesan Children's Book So, we asked Renato Rizzuti a few question about the book and himself, below are the answers:
I first realized I wanted to be a writer in high school. I had some great English teachers back then who inspired me to become an English and Drama teacher and a writer.
2. How long does it take you to write this book?
When I write intensely, I lose all track of time! I would say I am a fairly quick writer because I do most of the editing in my head so that by the time the words hit the page they are somewhat “final.”
3. What is your work schedule like when you're writing?
When I am writing, I love to wake up fairly early in the morning. I find that I am most creative at that time. I work all morning and might do some light organizational work after lunch. The morning is my most important “writing time” then I go on with the rest of the day.
4. What brought you to write this book?
I had been a children’s entertainer before writing the book. I had my own clown show which toured daycares and children’s hospitals. I also did a children’s theatre tour of a children’s participation play. I played the role of Santa Claus many times at daycare centres. These experiences were very rewarding for me. When my own daughter, Rachela Rizzuti was born, I had a new audience! Rachela used to love the bedtime stories I used to improvise for her. The sound of her laughter was music to my ears! I was inspired to write the book for her and for the other children out there.
5. How you become a published author? Any inspiration?
The best way to become a published writer is to “write, write, write” and to “read, read, read.” The next step is to get “published, published, published.” Start off by getting published in newspapers and magazines. Build a body of work that proves to others that your writing is good and that more importantly proves to yourself that your writing is good. Do not be discouraged by “rejection slips.” I mean, even J.K. Rowling collected a number of “rejection slips” before finding the right publisher who believed in her and published her first book! There is a movie about her life called “Magic Beyond Words: The JK Rowling Story” which is very inspiring! Most importantly write something that has some sort of “value” to the world audience! My book’s aim was to entertain and educate!
6. Where do you get your information or ideas for your books?
I have read a great deal of books and watched a great deal of films. Sometimes the book or film will inspire me to write something similar along the same theme. Ideas come from that magical creative space that we all have in our brains! All sorts of activities can trigger these ideas. Something like washing the dishes can trigger ideas! Make use of your every day activities that allow for creative thinking in a relaxed state of mind. Even dreaming can be a great resource for writing ideas!
One writing technique that I found useful for writing my children’s book is word association. I wanted to write in rhyme and I wanted to entertain my young audience. For example, in writing the poem “Bob the Bear” I associated “bear” with “care” and “underwear.” The words rhyme and they are funny, hence the line: “Bob the Bear does not care to ware underwear.”
7. When did you write your first book and how old were you?
When I was in high school, I filled a hard cover notebook with my poetry. I consider that my first “book.” My English teachers gave their seal of approval so that is why I consider it my first “book.”
8. What do you like to do when you're not writing?
I have been a professional cook and enjoy cooking for my family. I am a professional actor and really enjoy exploring different aspects of the craft. I also love to read all sorts of genres from online blogs to Shakespeare. I also like to go to the gym to counteract all the sitting that writing and reading involves! I am an avid movie fan and enjoy watching movies and any TV series that is well written. Spending time with my family is very important and enjoyable for me!
9. How many books have you written? Which is your favourite?
I define a “book” as a completed manuscript that you have sent out to publishers. Using that definition, I have completed three books: a book of poetry, a book on acting and my children’s book. “Toddy the Tomcat and Other Tales” is my favourite book right now! It has been published and is written for my favourite audience!
10. What's next for you? What are you working on now?
I am working on writing material for regular posting on a website that Lucky Pineapple Books and Films has set up for me. It is a website about “Italian cooking with a side order of acting and real life.” It is at: rizzutiandrisotto.com
My second children’s book is in the planning stages with my publisher. In the meantime, I am working on promoting my current children’s book.
I am also looking to have my short film script produced. The title is “Alternative Choices” and the logline is: A young couple discuss getting married and having children but their plans change when the woman reveals a secret that she has been hiding.
I invite everybody to check out my website to learn more about me. The tagline that I use on the website is: There is an old saying: “Speak so that I may know thee. I write so that you may know me.” Anybody wishing to contact me about the book, the website or my film script is cordially invited to contact me via the contact information at: rizzutiandrisotto.com
To purchase the book please CLICK here.