- Four published books since 2003: 3 non-fiction, 1 fiction
- Title of Ms. Maryland Senior America 2003
- Recipient of the Fulbright Fellowship Seminars Abroad award to South Africa, 1996
- Volunteer internship during the 2005 Maryland legislative session as a Legacy Leadership Institute graduate
- Lead facilitator for the Alternatives to Violence Project in prison and community workshops on conflict resolution for ten years
- Former State representative for the National Family Caregivers Association’s caregiver community action network 2006-2008
- Former Advisory board member: MD, Healthcare Commission and the Interagency Commission for Aging Services: Maryland Dept. of Aging
- Hospice volunteer: AIDS patients & veterans
- Volunteer for Warm Nights homeless shelter
- Coordinator for the Good Samaritan Project at her church
- World traveler – all 7 continents.
Why did you pick to write books for Children/Middle Grade?
Writing for children never was my first choice. I think that with all my writing, the impetus for me has been living my philosophy of life: find a need and fill it.
What types of books do you like to read?
I like to read spiritual and self-help books, but when it comes to fiction, I’ve enjoyed authors Paul Coelho, Carolyn Chute, Rebecca Wells, and so many others. Currently, I have been reading Melissa Foster’s novels as well.
When you are not writing, what do you like to do?
I am quite engaged in volunteer work with the Good Samaritan Project, hospice with our dying veterans, and helping at a homeless shelter. I also like working out at Planet fitness, traveling, and learning something new.
Tell us about The Girl Who Did Not Like Her Name, and how the story came to be.
As a teacher I met students who didn’t like their names . After I wrote the first draft, I actually used it to help a little girl who was having trouble with her name. I put the manuscript aside because I couldn’t find an illustrator that I liked and went on to other writing projects. Last year, however, I found the illustrator whom I could work with. So that is how The Girl Who Did Not Like Her Name came to be.
Sneak peak at The Girl Who Did Not Like Her Name:
Alessandra Theresa Petrucci doesn’t like her name one bit. When she was little, grown-ups would say, “My! My! Such a BIG name for such a little girl.”
Her mother insisted on calling her Alessandra. “Sandra or Sandy just isn’t right for you,” she would say. “No, Alessandra is just fine!” Her mother insisted that everyone else call her that too.
Last year when she had started first grade and learned to print her name, she couldn’t fit her full name across the paper. Her letters were too big and clumsy yet.
“You have a lovely name,” her teacher had said. “When your printing gets better, you’ll be able to write smaller. Maybe you could leave out your middle name for now.”
“My name is almost as long as the whole alphabet!” Alessandra Theresa wailed. Her teacher gives her permission to use her initials and last name when using the computer. It doesn’t completely solve her problem but she is somewhat relieved. It even gives her an idea for another solution and young readers will howl with laughter at her friend Mary Jane’s reaction to the idea.
She knows that she was named after her great-great grandmother but her response to that is “I think that’s dumb! Why do I have to have the name of somebody who’s dead? She wasn’t even famous!”
Alessandra spends a lot of time trying to figure out how to change her name or at least shorten it but when she visits her grandmother during summer vacation, something unexpected and wonderful happens!
Young readers will be delighted and fascinated with what Alessandra Theresa discovers when she climbs up to the attic of her grandmother’s house. Later, when her grandmother asks her to tell her about the problem she has been having, she matter-of-factly replies, “Oh, that –it’s not a problem anymore!”
What makes Alessandra Theresa Petrucci change her mind about her name? Read The Girl Who Did Not Like Her Name and learn what happens.
Have you written other books? If so, tell us a bit about them.
I have 3 adult books on the market as well. Two are non-fiction and one is fiction. The novel won the Bronze Award in the Readers Favorite competition for 2012 and has been written into a screenplay by screenwriter Don MacNab. Readers can find detailed information about my books on my web site: www.chloejonpaul.com.
What’s next for your writing? Are you working on a new story?
It will be my memoirs and mostly blog post articles. I have another book ready for publication but it requires extensive artwork. The title is The Untold Story of the Alphabet. It is a blend of linguistics and phonics for someone who has trouble learning to read.
What advice do you have for other authors?
Follow my COPD plan of action: consistency, optimism, perseverance, and determination.
Where can readers find you and your books?
My books are on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books a Million and on my web site where buyers can take advantage of promo codes and save money.
Anything else you want readers to know?
I would love to hear from readers. They can leave comments at my web site. I would also appreciate reader reviews on Amazon.