UM: For those who may not know, please share with our audience a little bit about your background and what initially inspired you to become an author?
VA: I am a creative with a business background. I graduated from Winthrop University with a degree in Business Administration. Throughout my years in corporate I always enjoyed volunteering my time with organizations that helped children to dream big and educate them to be successful. My passion is to inspire children to continue learning, be unique and creative. With this passion, educational background, and experiences I created the character, children’s book series, and brand Buddy the Bear.
UM: Tell us about Buddy The Bear?
VA: Buddy the Bear is all about education, imagination, and adventure! Buddy the Bear started out as one children’s book and is now an imaginative children’s book series that continues to evolve. Children are now able to have their own Buddy the Bear to go along with their books. The purpose of Buddy the Bear books are to create an imaginative learning experience for children!
UM: What important lessons will kids learn from Buddy The Bear?
VA: When you use your imagination, you can go anywhere! Challenges will come. Buddy has one in every story! However, he uses his preparation and imagination to succeed. Kids will learn about bedtime routines, how to help others on the first day of school and more!
UM: What advice would you give to aspiring authors?
VA: Where do I start? I’ll create a short list. No particular order.
1.Start writing, keep writing and stay true to who you are! Your audience will love you for that.
2. It is not easy, but always take time to enjoy your accomplishments and have fun along the way.
3. Continue to read and educate yourself.
4. Surround yourself with a passionate team. You are only one person and you can’t be great at everything. We all need support and it is okay. Sometimes I’m tired but a new sketch will come from my illustrator which gives me a boost to get back on my grind. Sometimes I may have a tough day, but my PR calls me about a school that’s excited about their author visit which makes me excited! Start building your team! With the right team, you’ll go far.
5. Be honest with yourself. Are you putting in the work or not? Nobody can understand and believe in your product more than you! Own it! Love it! Work for it!
UM: Do you have any other projects or events in the works geared towards the youth?
VA: Yes! Buddy the Bear books will be going into the classrooms and leading guided lessons to promote literacy and creativity to inspire the youth to focus and achieve their dreams.
UM: Where can our audience go to stay up to date with everything you have coming up?
VA: Visit buddythebearbooks.com. Follow Buddy the Bear on Instagram and Facebook @buddythebearbooks and follow Victoria Allen on IG @thecreatorvictoria