Today I have the pleasure of welcoming American author Beuna Batiste and her fun book, The Chicken and The Egg. The book is written by Beuna and illustrated by her sister Kennice. They publish under the pen name Beatrice Ann.
Synopsis: Did you ever hear the story about the chicken and the egg, and the chicken and the egg are standing in line, and they don’t know which one goes first? Well THIS is THAT story. Who can decide between The Chicken and The Egg? Much to the surprise of everyone, Chicken and Egg plead not their own, but each other’s cases in this modern spin on a classical dilemma– the debut tale in The Chicken and The Egg series. You are invited along on this journey not with a map, but with a lighthearted challenge to think critically and find your own way. Just watch out! Someone might get hurt! It all comes down to one epic face off in…The Chicken and The Egg.
The sisters who comprise Beatrice Ann grew up on sixteen pastoral acres in rural Louisiana with their parents, three siblings, ten dogs, six cows, one bull, two cats, one iguana, and one horse. Buena Batiste (author) moved to New York City at 17 to attend Columbia University with a degree in Music and Anthropology. Kenniece studied Art & Design at Iowa State. Currently Buena lives in Brooklyn and Kenniece resides in Louisiana.
READ ON TO LEARN MORE ABOUT THIS AUTHOR.
About your novel:
1. Describe your book in five words or less.
Chicken or Egg? You decide.
2. How did the ideas for your book come to you?
It all began as a prank. My sister, who is the illustrator, was working in the Children’s section of a library when I called her up and requested a book in a disguised voice. I asked: Do you have that book about the chicken and the egg, and the chicken and the egg are standing in line and they can’t decide which one should go first? Since my disguise was so awesome, she did not recognize me and asked me repeat myself. I laughed and once I repeated the request, her only response was: You should write that book. I did and here we are.
3. Is there a message in your book that you want readers to grasp?
The Chicken and the Egg dilemma is more about questions than answers. I want kids to be able to recognize there is more that one way to frame an argument and also to consider things from another perspective. When we are young we are constantly looking for answers. Where is that? Who is that? Is that good? Can I go here? The point of the book is to provide the recognition that every question does not supply a readily accessible answer. Complexity is very much so a part of the world we inhabit.
4. Does the life of your main character parallel with yours in any way?
In some ways, yes. Even while I explain the genesis of the book, I find myself asking whether it was my joke that began the book or was it my sister’s suggestion that I write it. That said, I think it parallels the lives of most people. I think in many ways we are always asking ourselves: How did I get here… to this place…right now? When did this begin? How did this happen? Why?
5. Did you submit your manuscript to many publishers before you had an offer to publish?
Not really. We submitted to fewer than ten before I decided I wanted to just forge ahead and put it out myself. I didn’t want to visit “The Waiting Place…. where everyone is just waiting…”
6. Can you tell me about the main character and what you like/dislike about him/her?
I LOVE them both. They are both curious about each other, curious about the world. I think curiosity about others and the world is what drive progress in the world, so perhaps progress is another theme I am exploring in this book.
1. Who is your favourite author and why?
In terms of children’s books, my favorite author is Dr. Seuss. What I admire most is that one does not outgrow his books they grow with you. As a kid you fall in love with the imagery. As I get older and reread his books I have even greater appreciation for what I could not grasp when I was younger.
2 What is your greatest joy in writing?
Seeing the completed project is the greatest joy. You begin with the seed of an idea. You nurture it. You watch it grow. And then one day it is all complete. It feels like magic–even though you know that in the end it is a lot of work. But seeing it come to fruition is truly priceless.
3. What’s next for you? Are you currently working on or have plans for future projects?
Yes. I have completed the next in The Chicken and The Egg series and have three ideas for future projects after that.
4. What are the greatest obstacles you’ve experienced on your writing journey?
With a picture book, the most difficult thing is articulating a vision that the illustrator can understand. What is unique about my relationship with my illustrator is that we are sisters. So it is probably a lot easier given that we have similar frames of references and life experiences.
5. What five words best sum you up?
Only one life to live.
We wish you the best of luck with this fun book.