Gar­den life in­spires new chil­dren’s book

Waipa Post - - News - BY BETHANY ROLSTON

Liv­ing on a small slice of par­adise in Wharepapa South is what in­spires chil­dren’s au­thor and il­lus­tra­tor Deb­o­rah Hinde.

Deb­o­rah works from her home stu­dio and gath­ers ideas for sto­ries and il­lus­tra­tions from the an­i­mals that wan­der through her gar­den.

Watch­ing a hedge­hog “trun­dle, snuf­fle and sniff” through the gar­den one day formed the main char­ac­ter for Deb­o­rah’s lat­est pic­ture book.

Holly­bee Hope Wants a Prickly Coat is the story of a hedge­hog with a prickly prob­lem — she doesn’t have any spines.

Holly­bee Hope wants to look like a real hedge­hog, and one morn­ing when she finds a brush in a bucket she de­cides to take mat­ters into her own hands.

Deb­o­rah says the theme of the story is self-ac­cep­tance.

“It’s also about learn­ing that be­ing dif­fer­ent has its ad­van­tages.”

“I chose a hedge­hog as a main char­ac­ter be­cause they are cute and loved by par­ents and chil­dren,” Deb­o­rah says.

“We of­ten see them pass­ing through the gar­den — along with hares, rab­bits and pheas­ants.”

“I be­gan de­vel­op­ing the story by ex­plor­ing prob­lems a hedge­hog could have. That’s when I came up with the no spines idea. Then I came up with cre­ative ways a wee hedge­hog along with her friends could solve her prob­lem.”

Holly­bee Hope Wants a Prickly Coat is the sec­ond book Deb­o­rah has writ­ten, il­lus­trated and pub­lished, fol­low­ing Hare, which was re­leased in 2016.

Deb­o­rah has il­lus­trated more than 70 books — fic­tion and non­fic­tion — for dif­fer­ent pub­lish­ers in New Zealand and over­seas.

Her break into il­lus­trat­ing pic­ture books came when she signed with Scholas­tic for the best-sell­ing

A Kiwi Night Be­fore Christ­mas,

re­leased in 2003.

Other pic­ture books she has il­lus­trated in­clude Moo and Moo and the Lit­tle Calf Too, 10 Kooky Kiwi and the re­cently-re­leased A Kiwi Day Be­fore Christ­mas.

Deb­o­rah be­gan work­ing on her own sto­ries in 2014 and found she had the skills to pro­duce a book and put it on the shelves of book­stores.

Along­side graphic de­sign, print­ing, writ­ing and il­lus­trat­ing, Deb­o­rah also knows how to de­sign books and pre­pare files for print­ing off­shore.

This year Deb­o­rah and her part­ner Mark set up a com­pany called The Book De­part­ment for the whole­sale sup­ply and dis­tri­bu­tion of Deb­o­rah’s books.

“Sell­ing the books our­selves is re­ward­ing,” she says.

“We’re in con­tact with peo­ple that are pas­sion­ate about chil­dren’s books and are sup­port­ive of New Zealand au­thors.”

Deb­o­rah and Mark have a reg­u­lar spot at the monthly Tama­here Coun­try Mar­ket to sell her books and art prints.

“Peo­ple are of­ten sur­prised — and de­lighted — when they re­alise it’s the au­thor/il­lus­tra­tor sell­ing them the book,” Deb­o­rah says.

“They are buy­ing it straight from the hands that cre­ated it.” Deb­o­rah also sells signed copies of books and prints from www.pic­ture­

■ Deb­o­rah Hinde will cel­e­brate the re­lease of her new book at Te Awa­mutu Pa­per Plus on Book Shop Day, Satur­day, Oc­to­ber 27 11am-2pm.

Photo / Bethany Rolston

Wharepapa South au­thor and il­lus­tra­tor Deb­o­rah Hinde works from her home stu­dio in Wharepapa South.

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