Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Behind the Book...with Sharon Chriscoe!

Today in the Cottage, we're thrilled to welcome Sharon Criscoe, who writes for children of all ages. From very young picture books to upper middle grade novels, Sharon is passionate about creating lively worlds for children to grow and learn in. Her latest book is RACE CAR DREAMS, a picture book we're "wheely" excited about!

Tell us a little bit about RACE CAR DREAMS, Sharon!


First, thanks so much for having me, Mr. Pig. I love your blog!

RACE CAR DREAMS is a rhyming bedtime story about a little race car getting ready for bed. After his high octane filled day at the track, he washes his rims at the Tickle-and-Wash, fills his tummy with oil at Guzzle-and-Gulp, and chooses a book from the Speedy-Reads Library that’s all about speed. Then, once toasty and warm, he drifts off to sleep, shifts into gear . . . and dreams of the race!

What inspired you to write the story?
A couple years ago while I was reading the super-talented Jane Yolen’s How Do Dinosaurs Say Goodnight? for around the tenth time, I found myself wanting my very own unique twist on a bedtime story. After much brainstorming, and some trial and error, it hit me . . . full throttle! A race car! Kids love race cars and I had never read about a race car getting ready for bed. I spent the next few weeks in my mobile office drafting those first words.

Yep. That’s right, my office is not only mobile but it’s the passenger seat of a bread truck in which I work alongside my super supportive husband on our bread route.

It took almost another year of tweaking the story, revision after revision, draft after draft (nearly 50 in total!) before Race Car became a book that was submission worthy. And I am so thankful to my wonderful critique partners and the SCBWI Blueboard members who encouraged me and helped me to get him all polished and shined.   

If you were a CAR, what make and model would you be?
VERY cool question! Let’s see, if I were a CAR, I’d be a 427 Chevrolet Corvette! And I’d be a convertible so that way when the weather is perfect, I could vroom around town with the sun shining down on me.

What do you love to do when not writing zippy bedtime tales and other stories?
I don’t think there’s anything in the world that can top spending time with my family. So that will always be first on my list. And of course, if we can have some of that quality time together while at the beach, it’s that much sweeter! I love the ocean and I’d spend the entire summer there if I could.

For our teachers and librarian readers: which titles would you pair RACE CAR DREAMS with for a car (or bedtime) themed story hour?
Oh! A car (or bedtime themed) story hour would be so much fun! If I were in charge of creating this story hour (how awesome would that be!) I’d definitely bring along Goodnight Lightning (Pixar Cars); Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site; Goodnight Moon; Bedtime in the Meadow; and Where Do Diggers Sleep at Night?

What’s up next for you?
Thank you so much for asking! My next book is a companion book to RACE CAR DREAMS titled BULLDOZER DREAMS. It was actually my wonderful editor and publisher’s idea. Julie, my editor, said she and my publisher had a fun discussion about what types of vehicles would make for a great book two, and construction vehicles was an instant thought. Julie sent the BULLDOZER DREAMS title to me along with an optional one they had discussed. When I read the email, my thoughts were “A Bulldozer! YES! I want to do that!” Now BULLDOZER DREAMS is with John Joven, the illustrator — I’ve recently seen the proofs and they are so adorable!

Thanks so much for visiting, Sharon!

About the Book

by Sharon Chriscoe
illustrated by Dave Mottram
Running Press (September 2016)
ISBN 978-0762459643

After a day at the track of zipping and zooming, a race car is tired and ready for bed. He washes his rims, fills his tummy with oil, and chooses a book that is all about speed. All toasty and warm, he drifts off to sleep, he shifts into gear . . . and dreams of the race!

About the Author

Sharon Chriscoe may not vroom around a race track, but she does zip and zoom around in a bread truck with her husband, Ricky. Fueled with fresh bread, snacks, and writing tools, Sharon has made this her mobile office! She and her husband live in Pilot Mountain, North Carolina. They have three children and one grandchild on the way, as well as an assortment of dogs, cats, bunnies and occasionally a groundhog. In addition to RACE CAR DREAMS, she is the author of BULLDOZER DREAMS (a companion book to RACE CAR DREAMS, Running Press Kids, 2017), and The Sparrow and the Trees (Arbordale Publishing, 2015). She is also a contributor to several magazines such as Highlights High Five, Highlights Hello, and The Old Farmer’s Almanac for Kids. She is a member of The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators and is a graduate of The Institute of Children’s Literature. She is represented by Jessica Sinsheimer of the Sarah Jane Freymann Literary Agency. To learn more about Sharon, her books, and future events, visit her website:

Watch the Trailer!


  1. Thank you so much for having me on your wonderful blog, Mr. Pig!

  2. Congrats to you, Sharon! This looks like such a fun book & I know a few car-loving kids that will love this one!

  3. I enjoyed the interview, Sharon and Mr. Pig!! Thank you! And congrats to you, Sharon, on an awesome book.