December 22nd, 2010 12:45 EST
Steve Tiller, Author of Santa's Red Nose Rocket chats with Judyth Piazza
Santa`s Red Nose Rocket is a great children`s story. I love Christmas and have always thought that Santa got a bad rap in the last few years. Santa never interfered with my understandng of Christmas as a celebration of the birth of Christ. Rob actually started this picture book. The cover of the children`s book was originally a Christmas Card that Rob made to send to his friends. It must be great to have such a talent as an artist that you can design your own birthday cards and Christmas cards for people you know. Rob came to me and explained the image and asked if I could do a book about the artwork showing Santa in a rocket sharing the Good News of Christmas.
When I am writing something sometimes the ideas take a while to percoloate up in my brain. So sometime later, maybe even a year or two, I kept thinking about this image Rob had designed and eventually a rhyme started in my head. I alway loved Christmas, Santa and the original rhyme The Night Before Christmas. I used the same rhyming pattern in this new rhyme about Santa and Christmas gifts that was used in The Night Before Christmas. By using the same rhyme two things happened. I could give a `tip of the hat` or my way of giving honor to the old poem and at the same time anyone reading the poem would know how the rhyme went because it would already be familiar. I also changed but used a few images in the new rhyme. For instance "light on the breast of new fallen snow" became " shed the luster of daylight to objects in snow". "What to my wondering eye should appear but a sleigh with eight tiny reindeer" became "Then. what to his wondering eye should appear, but a crash landing spaceship and alien in head gear."
I love message books and this is one of my favorites. It allows me to tell the story of Christmas using Santa and the Elves. When the UFO crash lands at the North Pole and the Elves find out that Pinky the Space Alien does not know the story of Christmas they get to tell her the story of the birth of Jesus. I love the story because it gives Santa`s reason for giving the gifts to children.
It was a finalist for Georgia Author of the Year. Parents love this book. I have had people buy entire cases of these books to give out to their friends and family as Christmas gifts. Like Mikey says "Try it - you`ll like it!"
Rob and I both would like to "Thank - You!" for buying our books.