Once people find out I have 11 children, they often ask, "How do you do it?" Some say, "You should write a book!"
Well, in response to both statements, I have written a story that reflects "a day in the life" of the Tuck Family, which highlights my role as a mother of 11 children and some of the antics that go along with it.
This story also preserves the wonderful memories we shared as a happy family of 13 (before losing my dear husband and friend, Joel).
We're still a happy family . . . although 12 of us now . . . but the memory of Joel lives on in our hearts.
Award-winning picture book
Published by Lee & Low Books
Illustrated by award-winning illustrator,
"This well-crafted tale would be an excellent complement to overviews of the Civil Rights Movement." (School Library Journal)
"Told from a personal viewpoint and appended with a powerful author's note, this is a story to share across generations." (Booklist)
Color Struck received the Flamingnet Top Choice Award July 28, 2011
"I wish I could've read Color
Struck by a fireplace because you escape right into the book when
"listening" to Grandma Bell tell her story. This was one of the most
emotionally-charged books I've read."
"The Tucks have brought a story of
healing and forgiving. I recommend this book for young adults. They will
get to learn a little of how African Americans struggled within their
own community. And see how far we have come and hopefully not repeat the
My Work in Progress
Mother Of Many
Click Here for a sneak peek at the
The idea for
this story came from my father’s personal experience. Belonging to a family of
civil rights activists, surrounded me with many stories of pride, oppositions,
and triumph. The inspiration to turn a snippet of my father’s story into a
picture book was initiated by my husband, Joel.
In listening to my father tell his story over and over, his determination to excel always overshadowed his oppositions. Although he mentioned his fears and his feelings of isolation, his confidence kept him from wavering. He held his own personal pep rally, by telling himself, “I can do this.” At first, I didn’t think I could give my father’s story justice as a picture book, and my husband became my personal cheerleader by telling me, “You can do it.” It’s ironic how the same willpower that enabled my father to surpass his doubts, also allowed me to surpass mine.I reluctantly took the challenge to write my father's story, submitted it to Lee & Low Books, and to my wonderful surprise, I received the New Voices Award.
What inspired me to write
I was inspired to write this novel after hearing the Cinderella-like life of our Grandma Doll. After three years of writing this novel, I hope that it will touch the hearts of the readers, just as it has touched mine. I invite you to journey with the Steele family, as they seek to find the truth behind their family's strength and truly bury the trouble that slowly creeps from the grave. Before you plunge into their lives, ask yourself these questions: Is what you see, really what you get? Is a person really on the inside what they portray on the outside? Where does a family's strength lie? All these questions, along with the revealing of a well-hidden family secret are answered within the pages of this novel...so don't delay...brace yourself, and enter into the world of the Steele Family.
What inspired me to write
THE ADVENTURE OF SHELDON,THE MUSHROOM?
I was inspired to write this story after a family night of storytelling. In an attempt to be "creative", we decided to tell stories "off the top of our heads". I listened as everyone told their "silly" stories and at last, it was my turn to take the floor. A lonely little mushroom character had already popped into my mind, but how was I going to tell his story? As I began speaking, Sheldon's story unfolded and captivated the minds of my family. After several years, Sheldon wouldn't let us rest, until others knew his story, too. With vibrant illustrations by Joann M. Alford, and lively songs to entertain children of all ages, we invite you to meet our "family friend, Sheldon"...we can almost guarantee, you'll love him as much as we do.