Updated: Apr 7
This week is all about Regina Breshears, author of Even If.
Learn more about Regina and her path to become an author in our interview with her below.
Tell me about your journey to becoming a writer.
I had talked about writing a children's book since my girls were young and even had the idea and name for the book for years. My husband and I were blessed with two sets of identical twin girls four years apart so we were BUSY! Then right when they were entering the busy teen years we were blessed with our fifth daughter Kaytee. Add to that being a veterinarian and owning a busy veterinary practice, and I just never found the time to write my book. Each year at the book fair my husband would ask "How is that book coming?" Then finally when I was home-schooling my 10 year old in March when Covid hit I literally heard God whisper "What is your excuse now?" I got busy and finished the book within 2 weeks.
What was the main inspiration behind your book?
Being a Mom has always been my top priority. I have had a plaque in my kitchen for two decades that says "Being a Mom is the most important job you will ever have".
So in a sense, Motherhood and the Love I have for my girls was my inspiration. Knowing in my heart there was nothing they could ever do to change that deep unconditional Love I had for each one of them. Being a veterinarian, I wanted my book to be centered around animals and I have always loved children's books where the animals have human qualities in their movement and expression. That is how I decided on the colorful expressive characters in my book.
What kind of research did you have to do for it?
I spent a lot of time researching the different types of publishers and was deciding between traditional and self publishing. I knew I was not interested in a company that automatically accepted all manuscripts and I learned that some types of publishers can take over creative rights. I had the exact vision for each illustration of my book so that was not an option. I also needed help with Marketing so Atlantic Publishing ended up being a perfect fit for me.
What was your writing routine?
Each morning I would get Kaytee started on her assignments for the day and she sat in a desk right next to me where I was able to work on my book and still be right there if she had questions. She knew I was writing my children's book and was very excited about it. She could hardly wait to read the manuscript when I was finished.
What was the process behind the character creation?
My favorite children's book series is "The Bear Snores on" by Jane Chapman. I wanted my animal characters to truly come to life like hers do. I knew the exact "Naughty Mistakes" I wanted to use in my book and picked the best animal to get the point across. For example, I envisioned a Mother who had just cleaned her kitchen completely and a child making a mess of it. I decided a bear would be perfect and a honey jar high on a shelf would be the culprit. After choosing each animal, I then spent a lot of time making sure the illustrations where the Mommy is not happy about the mess that has been made showed that she was disappointed but not furious. The expression on her face had to be perfect. The same is true for the expression on each "Even If" page. The look of a worried child was gone and replaced with a look of complete relief and happiness to know their Mommy still loved them.
Describe your book in one sentence.
My children's book uses two simple words "Even if" to show children that no matter how naughty they are, their Mother will always love them.
Tell us about the best writing advice you’ve ever received.
I can't say that I got actual writing advice from anyone but my parents always made me believe I could accomplish anything I set my mind to and to never give up on a dream.
Do you have any upcoming events?
Our small town has an amazing drugstore with a huge selection of children's books. My book is being highlighted there and I am signing copies for local people. In January I was able to go to our local elementary school and read my book to each grade from Kindergarden to 6th grade--I am hoping to go to several surrounding bigger cities and do the same thing this spring. I will be doing a presentation at our local library this summer and plan to do book signings in surrounding BAM and Barnes and Noble bookstores in April or May.
Tell us something about you that your fans may not know or something that you want to share.
The saying "Even If" began 25 years ago, a few months after my husband and I were married and had our first argument. He apologized to me and said "I love you". I returned the words "I love you," then smiled and added the words "Even if..." We both laughed and it became a tradition in our household. To this day those two simple words instantly reaffirm to each other and our daughters that nothing can ever break the love we share. It is my wish that these two simple words will become common in households across America and bring smiles and reassurance to families just like ours!
Why should people read your book?
Boys and girls between 2-10 years old will love my colorful animal characters with funny nicknames. Children can relate to the animals' "Naughty Mistakes" and be reassured that their own mothers will always love them too. The neat thing about my children's book is that part of the target audience is the Mother's themselves. Sometimes when we read to our children we need a book to speak to us too. I am proud that my book "Even If" will touch and inspire moms across the country. It would make a great Mother's Day gift!