KidLit Interview With Ky’la Sims (Author KMJ)

KidLit Interview With Ky’la Sims (Author KMJ)

All About KMJ

3 Little Known or Interesting Things About You

  1. I used to be in a girl group called Ordinary Things.
  2. I am a current graduate student at Purdue University.
  3. I sang on stage with my choir group at Carnegie Hall.

Hogwarts House

The Hogwarts House I was sorted into was Hufflepuff!

Camp Halfblood Cabin

I was placed into Aphrodite’s Camp Halfblood Cabin.  

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?

My most interesting writing quirk is that I either have to write at the beginning or end of the day, but never in the middle of the day. Although it sounds odd, my best writing always comes in the morning or night.

If you or one of your books was the answer on jeopardy, what do you imagine the question would be?

In this book, a character is known for his tale of going to school for the first time and making a friend named Bucky.

What is the first book that made you cry?

The first book to make me cry was To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. I read this book in high school and was moved by the theme of social injustice throughout Lee’s novel. 

Does writing energize or exhaust you?

Both. Sometimes when I have an idea for a book I end up spending hours writing out the plot and character development. Eventually, that energy dies down and I am not necessarily exhausted, but I am relaxed knowing that I have all my ideas out on paper. It is the best feeling in the world!

About KMJ’s Books

Book Title: Duck’s First Day of School (2014)

“Duck is entirely based on my life and my experiences growing up. I really took it from me and what I went through going to elementary school – being scared and having those feelings.” – Kyla Sims (Author KMJ) 

Duck’s First Day of school entails the trials and tribulations that a young boy named Duck experiences while attending school for the first time. Will Duck make new friends? Or will bullies get in his way? If you have a child that is going to school for the first time, or is special needs or is even homeschooled this delightful tale is just for them. Duck relates to everyone by showing you can conquer your fears with courage that just multiplies. In addition, children will learn to appreciate the differences of others.

Book Title: Duck’s First Day of Giving (2019)

Will be released at Barnes and Noble-Muskegon on Oct. 5th, 2019


Duck’s First Day of Giving entails Duck learning the importance of giving back to his community. Also, see what happens when a new student moves to Barnwell during giving back week. Will Duck complete his giving mission? Or will Duck’s fear of failing prevent him from giving back to his community? Finally, will the new student be welcomed with open arms? If you have a child that is going to school for the first time, or is special needs or is even homeschooled this delightful tale is just for them. Duck relates to everyone by showing you can conquer your fears with courage that just multiplies. In addition, children will learn to appreciate the differences of others and understand that there is strength found in friendship.

Book Title: Laws of Passion (2015)

           Laws of Passion is a novel that follows the life of a teenage girl named Audrey Kennedy as she mourns the death of her father and unknowingly becomes captivated by a supernatural creature who happens to have a vendetta against her family. Will she find out the truth? Or will she suffer the consequences from the sins of her family? Read it to find out more.

My Publishing Journey/Statement:

“Writing has always come naturally to me. I have been writing ever since I could get a pen and a piece of paper in my hand. The first book series that actually made a great impression on me had to have been the Junie B. Jones series written by Barbara Park. I just loved reading about a young girl who was very spunky and rambunctiously empowered. This book series really resonated with me! As I got older, more so around age 7, I began to write crazy tales about Duck as it related to my life. In a way, I felt like I was bringing myself to paper, much like Junie B. Jones. While in Middle School at Salina Intermediate I took a history course with Mr. Paul Bruce who encouraged me to express myself through writing and from there I was inspired. Writing in high school in Mrs. Kraft’s honors language arts course helped me build on my writing skills. Later, I found strength in the idea of publishing with my mom Latrice. 

I believe it is important for children to read because of how helpful reading is in aiding children to grow. Whether children use reading for more applicable purposes, such as sounding out words or for attaching meaning to things, it is such a great tool for development. More importantly, reading allows for children to transport themselves into incredible worlds that provide adventure, which allows children to learn problem-solving. Reading as a child really gave me a chance to be in someone else’s shoes and see life from a different perspective. Every child should be allowed to read and be able to access literature! It is so fundamental to a child’s education and awareness.” – Author KMJ

Favorite line or quote from one of your books.

“Remember sharing is caring,” said Bucky.

Describe the character that is most like you. 

The character that is most like me is Duck! As I got older, more so around age 7, I began to write crazy tales about Duck as he related to my life. In a way, I felt like I was bringing myself to paper. I believe Duck is relatable to everyone because of how his stories discuss first time experiences that we all have, such as going to school for the first time and being nervous. Duck is most like me because he is courageous and knows how to appreciate the differences of others. In other words, Duck is optimistically jovial! 

Advice

Do you have any suggestions to help me become a better writer? If so, what are they?

The best advice I ever received is to write every day and that is my advice to you. I believe that it is very important to be intentional about your writing. Every day find 20 minutes to just sit down somewhere and write about things that you are passionate about. Also, by focusing your writing toward things that you love you begin to understand what type of writer you are. As you write every day you will become more understanding about your strengths and weaknesses as a writer, which will help you grow. In addition, I believe you find out your identity as a writer as well. Who knows, you may be surprised to find out that you are excellent at writing poetry or conveying steampunk fiction. You never really know until you take the time out to refine your skills as a writer and eventual author.

Leave us with some wise words. What advice would you give the readers of this interview?

My advice to readers who dream of becoming an author is to prepare yourself for your dream and never give up. Often times, we believe in our dreams, but we are not as proactive as we need to be when our dreams eventually come to life. If you want to become an author someday and you have a wonderful story to tell, but you do not know which direction to go, just keep writing! Eventually, your dreams will come to pass. All you have to do is be patient and persevere. By continuously writing, not only do you grow your skills as a writer, but you have a great deal of book ideas that can be published when your dream comes true. Be sure to never give up and always believe in yourself. Have confidence in your work! My children’s books were written at the age of 7 and at 16 I became an author. Now, I am 22 and I still have a successful writing career with book signings at Barnes and Noble. If I can do it, then you can too. Just believe!

Where Can You Follow KMJ?

Facebook

Twitter

Blog

Instagram

Amazon

I am a middle school English Language Arts and Social Studies teacher.

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