Have you ever wished upon a star? I remember lying on the dock at the cabin with my sisters when we were kids, watching for shooting stars. I don’t remember what I wished for back then, but I remember the excitement and wonder we all felt. Now my children and I watch for shooting stars- and yes, I still wish upon them.
Originally from Brazil, Andrea now resides in Florida with her seven-year-old daughter and husband. Along with being an author, Andrea is a psychologist and currently teaches Portuguese to bilingual children.
The idea for The Shooting Star came about while Andrea was putting her daughter to bed one night.
Andrea’s daughter likes to choose a character and subject for Andrea to create a story around at bedtime. One day she asked for a story about a little girl who had found a star on the ground. She loved the story Andrea created and asked for a book for her dad to read to her at bedtime. She also wanted to share the message with her friends. The Shooting Star was born!
An interview with Andrea:
When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
I have always worked with kids and invented stories for them. After my daughter was born, my imagination was nurtured by new feelings and experiences and I felt compelled to start writing for children to help them understand and build values for life.
What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I believe it is the simplicity of my writing and illustrations. They connect very well with children.
What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
I love playing and doing arts and crafts with my daughter, hiking, going to the beach, gardening and reading.
What does your family think of your writing?
They think my stories touch on important topics that can help and inspire other families. My 102 year old grandma, mom, husband and daughter are very supportive. I feel blessed to have them.
Do you ever hear from your readers?
Yes! School visits and events provide me with excellent opportunities to get direct feedback from my audience. They tell me my book brings hope and that it’s message teaches children about perseverance and to believe in and pursue their dreams.
What do you think makes a good story?
A good story involves the reader and leads them to some sort of reflection.
As a child, what did you want to do when you grew up?
I always wanted to be a teacher.
What is your favorite part about being an author?
Getting to see the reaction of children when I read my book, the sparkle in their eyes and the interesting questions they ask. The realization that my book and it’s message is touching so many little hearts is priceless.
Tell us something interesting or surprising about yourself that many people don’t know.
I used to volunteer at a Children’s Cancer Hospital in Brazil telling stories and doing art projects with the children. It was a very enriching and rewarding experience, which provided me with life long memories.
What are you working on now?
I’m finishing a poetry book that aims to help children and parents reflect on a key topic of modern society. Stay tuned!
Andrea is also affiliated with the AOTP – American Organization of Teachers of Portuguese. She presented a paper in 2017 at the VI Worldwide Conference on Teaching of Portuguese. In 2018 she was also selected amongst teachers from all over the United States to attend a Portuguese Teacher Training at Boston University.
Check out Andrea’s Facebook page My Creative Little Caterpillar. She created it to inspire other moms to play and learn with their children through art and nature.