Hello there, well I’m a mother of 2 young children. I’m originally from Washington, DC, but I went to Hong Kong when I was 7 years old. I lived in Hong Kong for almost the rest of my childhood and early adult life. I speak fluent Cantonese and conversational Mandarin.
What’s your favorite book?
I will go with what first came to mind – It’s CLICK, CLACK, MOO Cows That Type by Doreen Cronin. This author is simply brilliant! Her story is so funny and the whole story came to live.
Who is your favorite author?
My favorite author is J.K. Rowling.
What inspired you to want to write your book?
Negative criticisms about my writing, and a dream that I had since I was little girl that one day I would love to become a magazine publisher. Yup, I always dreamt about what article, artwork, or even what the cover would look like of my imaginary magazine/book. That image or idea stuck with me for a very long time. As for the criticisms part of things also stuck with me for a very long time. I grew up in a country where the Chinese and English language collides, and it’s not the easiest thing to do to actually pen down something.
I remembered I dread composition classes (Chinese and English) in school, and I don’t like writing at all. I felt that I’m really bad at this, and it’s quite hard for me when my brain function in both languages. One time my journalism instructor in college came to me with my project in hand and told me “Antonette, this is really bad, look at all the grammar, this is really bad work you need to take a grammar class”.
My heart was pounding filled with embarrassment, that comment was never forgotten. To be honest, it hurt my feelings it really did, and that D graded project I wrote for my journalism class was a sight of sore eyes; but it pushed me to a different level. I kept writing and kept getting criticisms and I kept it moving. Don’t get me wrong there’s good and bad criticisms, and I was praised plenty about my creative ideas and attitude towards my writing. Eventually, I decided to take a class to improve my writing. It was a choice between Children stories or Business writing. It was an easy choice, it was a Nope! To boring business writing, and Yippie Yes!! To fun Children stories.
Why do you like writing children’s stories?
Because it’s fun and takes me back to the past when I was a little girl. I can use my creative ideas in writing, and it truly makes me happy.
Tell us a bit about your current writing projects.
Well, there’s no secret I still write and scribble here and there, but it will be a surprise. Stay tuned
Do you have more books in the works? Tell us a bit about them.
I do have another story that I am still working on, and trying to map the bits and pieces together, and a little more research. (I am sure having a writer’s block moment) This time I would like to add a little friendly creature into it, because being a mother I learned a lot more from my children and their friends – they are truly teachers to children writers.
What can readers expect to get from this book?
My goal is for parents to feel they can enjoy and relate to it, so it will not only be suitable for children but also any ages.
Any tips for aspiring writers?
I am an aspiring writer myself, but this was once said to me
from a friend of a friend as an encouragement, she wrote,
“Ignore all the naysayers. Lots of things are better said
than done. You do what makes you happy. If it
doesn't work out in the end, at least you'll know you
It was that one tip and support that I needed. I forever
thank her for this comment.
Any last words?
It’s all about practice – “Go for it!”