Interview with Carole P. Roman

Interview with Award-Winning Author Carole P. Roman

Today I'm excited to interview Carole P. Roman, author of the Captain No Beard series!

How did you decide to become a writer?

I was going though a very tough time after I lost my mom. My sons dared me to write a book. I wrote the first Captain No Beard and together we found a wonderful illustrator. I never thought I would do another, no less a whole new series. When Captain No Beard was named a Kirkus Best in 2012, I realized that I found something I really enjoyed. I then created the non-fiction If You Were Me and Lived in… series that introduces kids to customs and cultures around the world. And here I am, 26 books later.


What are some other jobs/careers you’ve had besides being a writer?

I have been a social studies teacher. I left that 40 years ago to help my husband build his one car operation into a very large transportation company. We are global and service five hundred cities worldwide. 


What serves as inspiration for your stories?

My children, grandchildren, just life as it happens. Each one of the Captain No Beards is based on incidents that happened in my family. Captain No Beard was created in homage to games I play with each of them. 

Pepper Parrot's Problem with Patience deals with a parrot's difficulty in telling her right side from left—that's my issue. Stuck in the Doldrums deals with cooperation and was a reflection on one of my family members who was having a hard time working with others. Strangers on the High Seas introduces my new granddaughter to the crew and helps the older children find a spot for her. Captain No Beard and the Aurora Borealis was sparked by my grandson's desire to steal the natural wonder from the sky. Each story is born from an experience of everyday life.


What is your creative process like in terms of writing a book from start to finish?

A story comes to me as simply as seeing the beautiful sunrise on my way to work. I sit down at my computer and just write until it's finished. Then I read it to my brother. Next, I contact Bonnie Lemaire and we collaborate the illustrations through emails. An editor is hired to smooth out the rough edges … so from start to finish, within three months, I have a new Captain No Beard.  The same goes for my culture books. I choose a country and go though my routines of research. Lastly, I find someone from that country to go over the information. Finally I contact Kelsea Weinrenga to do the illustrations. We go back and forth for about a month and somehow these books take a little longer.


What are some other interests or things you like to do in your spare time?

I read all the time—usually a book each night. I spend as much time as I can with my kids and grandkids. I love the ballet, opera, and Broadway shows, but sadly I don't go as much as I would like now. My mom was my partner for that and I haven't found someone who shares that passion with me as she did. I do yoga twice a week and love it. We do travel for business a bit. Currently, I love reviewing books on Amazon and Goodreads. It's become a sort of hobby.


What were some of your favorite books as a child?

I started with the usual fairy tale books. I have one that was my mother's when she was a child, so it's close to 80 years old. I loved Nancy Drew and read every one of the books in one summer when I was about eight. There were no YA books when I was young, so I went right into adult literature. My mother encouraged me to read and I did all the time—whatever was popular at the time. I remember once when I was in seventh grade, I took one of the books to school. I don't remember what it was, maybe Tropic of Cancer, something not especially suitable. The teacher called my mother and my mom replied that she was fine with me reading anything, as long as I was reading. I read anything from Sidney Shellaberger's swashbucklers to Frank Yerby's religious dramas. I now read a wide variety from straight up history books, popular novels, to self-help. I read every chance I get. I'll read a cereal box.


About Carole P. Roman

Named to Kirkus Reviews’ Best of 2012 for her first book, award-winning author Carole P. Roman started writing as a dare from one of her sons. Using an imaginary game she played with her grandson as a base, Captain No Beard was born. She lives on Long Island with her husband and very near her children and grandchildren—the inspiration for her books. | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Pinterest

About the Captain No Beard Series

Captain No Beard sets sail on 9 separate voyages of the imagination with his fearless crew aboard his pirate ship The Flying Dragon.

When a young boy named Alexander, his cousin Hallie, and some stuffed animals, board his bed their world is transformed into a magical vessel, sailing the seven seas on dangerous and exciting adventures! Captain No Beard: An Imaginary Tale of a Pirate's Life was named to Kirkus Reviews' BEST OF 2012 for Children's Indie Books, and garnered the Kirkus Star of Exceptional Merit, as was Captain No Beard and the Aurora Borealis. In addition to many other merits awarded to the series, The Foreword review gave "Five Star" reviews to Pepper Parrot's Problem with Patience: A Captain No Beard Story and A Flag for the Flying Dragon: A Captain No Beard Story.

Captain No Beard Series Giveaway

Enter to win a complete autographed set of the Captain No Beard series, by award-winning author Carole P. Roman; plus the PLAYMOBIL Red Serpent Pirate Ship. Enter to win here »

Giveaway begins September 1, 2015, at 12:01 A.M. PST and ends September 30, 2015, at 11:59 P.M. PST.


start creative studio doodle books

Every once in a while, it’s interesting to set some sort of restrictions or confines on a creative task.  This act can take your pen in a different direction.  This can be as simple as giving yourself a round piece of paper for drawing.  Because the shape is not what you’re used to, you’ll automatically produce something different than what you would normally do given a regular piece of paper.  If you were given a piece of graph paper, the grid might inspire you to draw something more geometric in nature with many corners or angles.  

Doodle books from Start Creative Studio are kind of like that.  Each page has a line, squiggle or shape that serves as a creative starter or prompt and inspires you to consider it and imagine how it initiates your drawing, or how it becomes a component of the thing you end up depicting.  The prompts in Doodle Books tap different aspects of creativity—maybe what you’re not used to (in a good way).  It’s great to switch things up every once in a while.  Something new and brilliant might just come of it.

Many thanks to Start Creative Studio for sending us some of their engaging doodle books!  All opinions stated are my own.


outer space game night

We're making family game night more fun over at Honest to Nod today!


little lit book series

I’m excited to announce a new series I’m starting with a group of other amazing readers on Instagram.  It’s entitled #littlelitbookseries and every month we’ll be sharing favorite books that we are reading that month.  This month’s theme is children’s travel books since we are coming off the heels of summer, a season of trips and travel adventures. Please join us for our monthly book series and you’ll be sure to discover new titles as well as revisit old favorites. Here’s my pick for the month:

The Dodsworth series is by Tim Egan, is a collections of travelogues about Dodsworth and his duck companion. The duck has a droll sense of humor, which actually made me laugh out loud a few times.  Dodsworth and the duck do the usual in each visit--see the sights, partake in local cuisine and mix with locals in each city they visit.  Their trips are not complete without comical mishaps, mostly attributed to the duck's mischief.  Dodsworth is hilarious to read aloud. The independent reading level is for ages 7-8.

Please check out everyone else's favorite travel books in the #littlelitbookseries!


sam's sandwich

Sam's Sandwich, by David Pelham, is a lift-the-flap book that is gross and icky in the funniest way.  Sam, a doting brother, offers to make a sandwich for his sister Samantha.  Thoughtful, right?  What she doesn’t know is that he places a slimy, not-so-delectable surprise in each layer.  The hilarious rhyming text gives clues as to what each surprise entails, and children will have a ton of fun guessing what is hidden in each layer.  This book will have children talking!  

We have an older edition published by Penguin Books, however, Candlewick Press has just published a 25th Anniversary Edition of Sam’s Sandwich.  Click here to watch a preview of the book.