As an author, one of the best groups that I belong to is the Christian Author's Guild and I was excited to learn that the author/speaker for last Monday evening's meeting was Margie Carroll. For more than 30 years, Margie was a media/technology specialist for Cherokee County, Georgia. When she retired from that profession, she followed her passion for photography and began transforming her images into engaging, clever and gorgeous children's books.
An authentic and energizing speaker, Margie began by sharing her mission statement for her books:
- Nothing bad happens in her books
- Photographs should tell a story rather than be simply informational
An inspiration to other authors to follow their heart, Margie talked about the gift of an idea that insists on being born. Her innovative idea was a children's book that told a story through photographs rather than being simply informative. Margie had been an avid photographer for years but until she retired she didn't put her expertise to work. She had thousands of photographs of animals she had taken over the years. She had traveled throughout the United States taking pictures and meeting other photographers on photo shoots. One of the photographers that she has become fast friends with is Daniel J. Cox who has photographed for National Geographic among other publications.
He collaborated with Margie on one of my favorite books, Portia Polar Bear Makes A Birthday Wish. As a school counselor, I particularly recommend this book as it makes a great classroom lesson on the importance of being yourself and not listening to the criticism of others. It is the story of a polar bear who discovers she is pigeon toed and tries to correct this problem... until she discovers that all polar bears are pigeon toed and she is perfect just the way she is! As in all Margie's books, there is a page of vocabulary words and a page of facts about the animals in the back of the book.
Margie is a character in herself. She describes being an author as something like being pregnant, not that she has ever birthed any children herself. Maybe that's why she says she "didn't realize that after you birth a book, like children you have to raise them" which has resulted in her currently spending most of her time promoting and selling her books. She pours herself and her energy into her passion. "I have horrible clothes and horrible furniture and great camera equipment," she jokes with her audience who were enthralled with her story.
She leaves us all with some very savvy advice, "Just say yes to your passion" she encourages her audience. "You never know the people you will meet and the journey you will find yourself on." Certainly her example is an inspiration to us all!
You can find Margie's books on her website: Margie Carroll's website
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