LaVonna Moore Talks About "Callie The Calico Kitty"

Today I got the exciting opportunity to interview the very talented author, LaVonna Moore, about her book, "Callie The Calico Kitty."  Don't forget to check out the book sample of "Callie The Calico Kitty" here.

WARNING: Super cute pet pics! 😍😍

Hi, LaVonna, and welcome to Hidden Gems.  We're honoured to have you here today as our first ever guest.  When looking at your book on Amazon, I noticed that "Callie The Calico Kitty" is based on a true story. Can you tell me a little bit about that, please? 

Callie's story is full of fun and adventure with her new big brother, Peanut, a black Labrador Retriever, at her new home in the country after she was adopted. Callie narrates this sweet and adorable story of her new life in Trenton, Texas. Callie's world has changed dramatically from living in the city to living in the country.

What inspired you to go from this true story to writing the book? 

I have always wanted to write a children's book. I love photography, so I was able to photograph Callie in many different outfits, hats and wigs to make the book even better.

I've noticed that you design book covers, which look amazing! How did you decide on the front cover for "Callie the Calico Kitty"?

Yes, I am also a book cover designer. Thank you for the nice compliment regarding my book covers. I have designed over 1,000 pre-made, one-of-a-kind book covers that are featured in my Gallery of Art at:

I have also just opened up a second Gallery of Art featuring book covers designed with African American models and themes at:

It was hard to decide which photograph to use for the front cover of Callie's book. She had so many adorable photographs. I thought the photograph of her in her zebra print dress would be super cute. I loved how Callie's reflection was in the glass table too.

There's a "Callie the Calico Kitty" audiobook. How did that come about? Did you always plan to do an audiobook? 

Yes, I had always planned on doing Callie's book as an audiobook. I went through ACX to do my audiobook. The software walks you through the process step by step. I wanted to choose my narrator. ACX gives you the option to choose your narrator. I searched through the narrators and found one that I loved. She was absolutely perfect and had a beautiful voice. I wanted to choose an actress because they will add more enthusiasm to your books and act them out. They can also change their voices for different characters. Having an actress narrate your children's audiobook will draw more attention to your audiobook too. I am so glad I made the decision to do Callie's book in an audiobook. I have sold more audiobooks than ebooks or paperbacks with all of my children's books.

Now, on Hidden Gems, we aim to also provide tips for aspiring authors. So, I have always wanted to write a children’s book, but it seems like an audience you either do or don’t have the ability to write for. Am I right in thinking that? 

I think that animal books and animal picture books do very well with children. I also think that it helps if the story is based on a true story. I also made Callie's book very educational so that learning would be fun for children.

Is there any advice you’d give to aspiring children’s book authors? 

I would encourage children's book authors to publish their book as an ebook, paperback and audiobook. A parent can purchase the paperback and audiobook so the child can also listen to the audiobook while looking at the pictures in the book to make the book even better.

Thank you so much for taking the time to answer our question! One last question: 
If you could say one thing about your book to everyone who reads this post, what would it be? 

Callie's book makes you feel like you are there with her and Peanut experiencing all the fun adventures in the country. Actress, Kitty Hendrix, narrates Callie's audiobook with a lot of enthusiasm using several different voices for all of the characters in the book. She did an amazing job of bringing Callie's book to life. Callie The Calico Kitty is a heartwarming adventure that will capture your heart from start to finish.

LaVonna kindly gave us two super cute photos of Callie that aren't in the book. If you love these pictures, be prepared to be overwhelmed by Callie's cuteness in the book! 😍

Callie reads the newspaper.

Callie reads a book.

Check out my review here!

Callie The Calico Kitty

Callie narrates this sweet and adorable story of her new country life after she was adopted. Features 45 color photographs of Callie wearing different outfits, hats and wigs! Callie learns all about country animals and the sounds they make. Very educational. Based on a true story.

Callie The Calico Kitty is available on Amazon as an ebook, paperback book, and audiobook. 

Callie The Calico Kitty is also featured in LaVonna Moore's collection of short stories. Children's Short Stories: Book 3  is a collection of three short stories: Run Wild, Run Free Again, Callie The Calico Kitty and My Hound Dog. It is also on Amazon available in ebook, paperback and audiobook. Actress and singer, Erika Cockerham narrates this book of short stories.

About Lavonna Moore:

LaVonna Moore is a native Oklahoman born in 1960 at the Ft. Sill Army Hospital in Lawton, Oklahoma. With her father being in the military, she was able to do a lot of traveling as a child. She has lived in many states within the U.S. and for a short time in Hanau, Germany. Her father retired from the Army while living in Del City, Oklahoma, where she graduated high school in 1978.

She has a stepson named Chance Storts. LaVonna has two brothers and three sisters.

LaVonna began working in the legal field when she was 20 years old. She was a legal secretary for 20 years.

LaVonna moved from Oklahoma to Texas about 12 years ago to start her life over after her divorce. She is living in a small town by the Gulf Coast. LaVonna loves photography, the ocean and also loves animals.



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