Odette’s Alphabet: Interview and Giveaway

Posted April 20, 2023 by shooting in Author Interview, Giveaway / 12 Comments

This post is sponsored by Sandrine Marlier. The review and opinions expressed in this post are based on my personal view.

Before entering the fun giveaway below, please check out the interview I did with the author.

Author Interview: Sandrine Marlier

Each letter of the alphabet has an activity that includes ways to deal with various emotions. How did you decide which advice to use in the book?

I first ran wild with spontaneous ideas/advice that seemed essential to me, like life lessons I would want my child to receive. The process was similar to a big, creative brainstorming session. I naturally narrowed it down so the ideas wouldn’t repeat but build upon each other. For instance, we start with D for Differences and later revisit the concept through U for Unique, which is more specific and complex.

The main character, Odette, is an ant. What made you choose an ant for her?

Ha. It was fortuitous. I was on a photoshoot in Atlanta, sitting in the makeup chair, when I noticed a little ant crawling along the windowsill. She looked so cute and also so brave.

As I had started taking a drawing class, I drew her.

She was the first thing I drew when I completed my meditation teacher training. When the idea came to write a children’s book, the choice was obvious.

What made you want to include the alphabet in the story, along with the activities and overall story?

They sort of all happened at the same time, each part helping another, helping give sense to the story. The separate activities came once the full story was done but were initially present in the story. Every element was mixed up in my head and on paper. Separating them really helped me have clarity on the direction Odette was going.

I kept the alphabet because it’s the first lesson we teach kids. And as mindfulness, to me, should be the first skill to teach kids, the two were a perfect pair.

What is your favorite way to meditate?

As spring is coming, I’m loving my walking meditation in the park. Walking slowly, noticing the sound and movement my body makes, the rhythm of my presence, the external sounds. It might sound chaotic at first and always ends like a beautiful symphony.
I also like to add a sound mantra as I ease into the flow.

How do you think kids can benefit from learning about meditation techniques?

One of the first spiritual lessons I received was to know myself. I didn’t know what that meant or why it was important. As it turned out, it was huge! As I discovered who I was, and learned to appreciate myself, I could better understand my reactions. I could SEE my reactions. Only once I was aware, could I change my actions, or even my environment.
Meditation and moments of mindfulness through they day help us slow down so we can notice all that’s going inside ourselves. This gives us the opportunity to observe and change behaviors that are not benefiting us.

How did Leonardo Schiavina end up being the illustrator of your book?

It was a miracle to discover him! He’s the best.

I was running a crowd-funding campaign for Odette. The person in charge, Julia, showed me 3 illustrators’ work. I fell in love immediately with Leo’s. He had never done anything for kids. I loved the minimalist forms and blocks of color. As it turned out, Leo is Julia’s boyfriend 🙂 Even better, I thought!


Enter the giveaway below for the chance to win a paperback copy of Odette’s Alphabet and a $25 Amazon gift card!

One (1) grand prize winner receives:

A copy of Odette’s Alphabet

A $25 Amazon Gift Card

Two (2) winners receive:

A copy of Odette’s Alphabet

Odette’s Alphabet Book Giveaway

12 responses to “Odette’s Alphabet: Interview and Giveaway

  1. Hey shootingstarmag,

    Thanks for sharing this insightful interview with the author of Odette’s Alphabet. The giveaway is a great opportunity for readers to delve deeper into the book and its themes.


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