Welcome to Following the Whispers blog

Thank you so much for taking the time to visit. Hope you enjoy your stay. I blog here whenever I feel the need. This blog was created at the time my memoir came out, in February, 2009. Its motto was: creating a life of inner peace and self-acceptance from the depths of despair. Now, my focus is sharing this journey we call life.

“Only one thing is more frightening than speaking your truth, and that is not speaking it.” Naomi Wolf

“We are called human beings, not human doings.” Wes Nisker, Buddhist teacher

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs…(And) if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.” Theodore Roosevelt

Monday, February 22, 2016

Please welcome Stephanie Faris today

Dogs in Children’s Books
by Stephanie Faris

When you’re writing for children, you start to notice a few trends in their books. Among other things, young readers love candy, cupcakes, and puppies. Incorporate one or more of those elements in your book and your cover will get their attention.

For decades, dogs have been a popular theme in children’s books and movies. Sometimes the dog is a main character in the story, especially in coming-of-age stories like Marley and Me. Sometimes the dog is just added in for comic relief or to make the reader smile from time to time. I added a dog to Piper’s story in book two, while she and her mom were staying at her nanna’s house. Together, the dog and Nanna help give Piper stability while her mom moves from one exciting job to another.

Why do kids love dogs so much? Maybe it’s the fact that dogs are always there for you, even when everyone at school is being mean to you and your parents are mad that you didn’t eat your lima beans at dinner. Maybe it’s the fact that dogs are lower on the chain of command in a family than children. At a time in their lives when they are constantly being told what to do, it’s nice to be able to tell someone else what to do, even if that “someone” is just an animal.

Mostly, though, I think it’s just that dogs, especially puppies, are so adorable. How could anyone resist them? In fact, I think grown-up movies and books should have more dogs in them.

And here's what you need to know about Stephanie's release, due out August, 2016.

Piper Morgan Joins the Circus
By Stephanie Faris

Piper helps some four-legged friends find the perfect home in the third book of the brand-new Piper Morgan series.

Piper is super excited to help out at Bark Street, a local animal shelter in town. Who wouldn’t want to be surrounded by adorable puppies and dogs all day? And when Piper sees Taffy, the cutest dog she has ever seen, Piper is determined to find a way to bring Taffy home. But it won’t be easy—especially when she finds out someone else wants to make Taffy a part of their family, too!

About Stephanie:

Stephanie Faris knew she wanted to be an author from a very young age. In fact, her mother often told her to stop reading so much and go outside and play with the other kids. After graduating from Middle Tennessee State University with a Bachelor of Science in broadcast journalism, she somehow found herself working in information technology. But she never stopped writing.

Stephanie is the Simon & Schuster author of 30 Days of No Gossip and 25 Roses, as well as the upcoming Piper Morgan series. When she isn’t crafting fiction, she writes for a variety of online websites on the topics of business, technology, and her favorite subject of all—fashion. She lives in Nashville with her husband, a sales executive. 



Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Dogs also have a ton of energy and can handle rough kids.
Congratulations on another upcoming release, Stephanie.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

You can tell a cat what to do but they'll just ignore you.

That is a really cute cover, Stephanie.

Elizabeth Spann Craig said...

I think dogs and kids have a lot in common! Congratulations to you, Stephanie, on the release. Cool cover, too!

Karen Walker said...

Yeah,Stephanie. So happy to have you here today. Alex, there's an adorable commercial on TV now with a mommy dog driving its puppy in a car so it will sleep. I love doggies.
Diane, yup cats are so so different.
Elizabeth, I agree

Arlee Bird said...

I can remember reading many books and stories with dogs in them or as the main characters. One of my earliest memories along this line is Spot in the Dick and Jane learning to read series. Kids love dogs usually.

Best of success on the book, especially since it's about the circus. Are there any jugglers in the story? A circus has to have jugglers.

Arlee Bird
A to Z Challenge Co-host
Tossing It Out

Julie Flanders said...

When I was a kid all of my favorite stories had animals - dogs, cats, bears, rabbits, you name it. I still love reading books with animals. Congratulations to Stephanie!

Stephanie Faris said...

Alex--Haha, so true! Although they do tend to wear my old dog out!

L. Diane--Same with my dog, actually. She's a bit cat-like sometimes. We wonder if it's because she was around a lot of cats when she was a puppy. Maybe she learned a few mannerisms from them?

Elizabeth--I agree...both just want to eat, play, and sleep!

Karen--Thank you so much for having me! I tweeted this out, but I don't think you're on Twitter...

Arlee--Jugglers, clowns, and elephants!

Julie--True...sweet animals are always popular in kids' books. Even not-so-sweet animals like bears are sweetened up to be lovable and not dangerous.

Karen Walker said...

You're right, Stephanie. I'm not on Twitter.

Jack said...

Congratulations! As someone who has gotten rather attached to a dog, I've started to really enjoy dog stories. Will have to look this one up

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Karen - what a great guest .. Stephanie seems to have it taped - dogs or horses or cats - all beloved pets ... make wonderful stories ... good luck with the Piper Morgan series .. cheers to you both - Hilary

Mason Canyon said...

Dogs are adorable and show so much love maybe that's why they work so well in children's books. Congrats on the new book Stephanie.

Hi Karen :)