Thursday, June 22, 2023

Talkshow Thursday: Meet Mary Ann Hake

Talkshow Thursday: 
A Guest Post by Mary Ann Hake

Writing stories has always come easily to me. I began as a young child and used to read my tales to classmates and family. I have an overactive, creative mind and just can’t help myself. I enjoy reading, and, of course, this carries over into writing. Sometimes a book I read prompts an idea in my mind, and I take off in a different direction. I have even had dreams that prod a story’s birth. Fiction allows for creativity, and the imagination can run free. It’s also a way to explore other places and situations from the comfort of my own home. I’m sure such mental exercise should help keep my mind young.

I allow the story to flow and take me and the characters wherever it leads—similar to stream of consciousness but under the author’s control. When writing a novel (none published yet, but a middle grade one under consideration at a publisher at this time), I have a general idea of the skeleton of the tale and how it will end, but I don’t outline specifics. I love the creative exhilaration of crafting words on the page and seeing where the story takes me. It brings a thrill when the words just flow. Sometimes when I reread what I’ve written, I marvel and think, “Did I write that?” I thank God for inspiration and the gift of creativity.

The main reason I write is to encourage others. I have published hundreds of stories, articles, poems,
Pixabay/Tri Le
puzzles, devotions, curricula, and more (for both children and adults)—found in periodicals and books—plus hundreds of book reviews online. At this time, I am focusing mostly on writing for children and creating material that is both educational and enjoyable. For example, my Smells of the Seasons picture books are written in rhyme, which makes it fun to read and have colorful illustrations. These concept books share scenes from the life of a blind girl named April, who uses her sense of smell to explore her world. They offer opportunities for children to observe that she is a child just like they are and can learn empathy, plus understand that being without one sense can enhance other senses. The books fit well with STEAM topics such as weather, animals, environment, plants, senses, and so much more.

The Smell of Spring released in December 2022 and was named among the best in family-friendly media, products, and services by the Mom’s Choice Awards®. The Smell of Summer released in May, with the hardback coming soon. Both have received great reviews and will be featured on Arkansas PBS’s summer reading program, Rise and Shine. The books each contain activities using the sense of smell and I send out activities in my monthly newsletter to subscribers.


Join April, a blind girl, and explore the many smells of summer in this delightful rhyming picture book. From her garden to the county fair, to Grandpa’s farm, to camping in the forest, to a family barbecue and a holiday picnic, to visiting the animals in the zoo and enjoying the seashore, discover the joys of summer scents. The Smell of Summer helps children understand how we experience the world around us through the sense of smell. Kids will enjoy April’s interesting pets and have fun with the activities at the end of the book using their sense of smell.

“As summer thoughts stir in my mind,
I wonder what new smells I’ll find.
Since noses surely help us see,
What special scents will call to me?”

Connect with me at:
Amazon Author Page:

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