Interview with Sybrina Durant about Cleo Can Tie A Bow By Book Pleasures welcomes as our guest, Award winning author,Sybrina Durant. She is the author of The Rabbit and The Fox Learn To Tie Series of Books which include Learn To Tie A Neck Tie With The Rabbit and the Fox in English, Spanish and Tagalog; Ned Can Knot A Neck Tie; Nellie Can Knot A Neck Scarf and the newest addition, Cleo Can Tie  A Bow. She also the author of The Blue Unicorn’ Series of books and has an online book store which features, unicorns, rabbits, foxes, and how to tie books plus gift items related to those things plus lots of bow-themed gifts.

Good day Sybrina and thanks for participating in our interview.

Bee: Please tell us something about Cleo Can Tie a Bow that is not in the summary. 

Sybrina: I’ve wanted to figure out a way to write a how to tie a bow book for a very long time. It was easy for me to write the previously published companion books for learning to tie a necktie because the instruction steps mimicked the moves of a very quick chase through a forest. When it came to imagining a book about bows, no matter how hard I tried, I could not get past the concept that the rabbit and the fox had to run around and over and under things in order for the instructions to work out. 

I knew using that method to tie a bow could get exceptionally long and complicated because there are so many more steps. I just couldn’t visualize it. Just when I’d finally made up my mind that I’d never come up with a good way to write a how to tie a bow book, the idea for this story suddenly presented itself to me. Luckily, I immediately came across Pumudi Gardiyawasam. She was able to bring life to all of my ideas with her beautiful artwork and accurate how-to illustrations. 

Something that I took out of the book was the idea that the fox is a vegetarian.  I had included a line about it, that seemed so humorous to me plus it seemed like such a good reason for the rabbit not to be afraid of the fox. But several beta readers said that their children could never accept a fox who was not a meat eater so, with great sadness, I removed it from the story. My sadness did not last long because that removal brought in three new characters whose sole purpose was to assure the bunny that the fox could be trusted. One of them, a snail, happens to be a real favorite with readers.

Bee: How did you come up with the name Cleo for your main character?  Do you know someone with that name? 

Read the answer this question and others at Book Pleasures blog.

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