Sunday, October 19, 2008

My first Children's book makes the criticas list!





My first kid’s book makes the Criticas’ list for recommended books! Category: Writing and Poetry


I put my heart into this, my first children's book. While I graduated from UM with a screenwriting for motion pictures degree, I had the wonderful opportunity to write a children's book with my mother who happens to be the fabulously eloquent and touching, Doctora Isabel Gomez-Bassols. Since she had the fame and I had the creativity, she pushed me to write this story so she could speak to her young audience (she has a national radio show on Univision Radio moving soon to FM). We got together and brainstormed on what we should write to her audience and at the time there was a horrible mud slide in Guatemala where thousands lost their homes and hundreds were buried under the mud. Hurricane Katrina had just hit New Orleans, so needless to say a lot of my mother's callers were asking how do i speak to my children about "natural disasters"? I came up with the idea of empowering children instead of reinforcing the terrifying possibilities of any natural disaster. I wanted to give these children a tool to use whenever they were afraid of anything (natural disasters, emigrating to the US, being afraid of first day of school, etc.) I created a song for Gabriela to sing, a sort of buddhist mantra but without any religion tied to it so it would have universal appeal and functionality. I used to pray the Hail Mary over and over whenever i was scared in my bed at night, until it calmed or wore me out enough to fall asleep. I wanted to give that same tool to children of any religious or non-religious belief. I think I was succesful. At several book signings I've had kids come up to me and tell me that they liked the story. That means more to me than whether or not the publisher believes my numbers are profitable enough. To have at least been able to touch some young souls out there and influence them in a positive, enriching way.


La cancion de Gabriela is on Criticas' list or recommended books for Hispanic Heritage month! http://www.criticasmagazine.com/, follow the link on the left about Hispanic Heritage month.
NONFICTIONLa canción de Gabriela: ¿Cómo me adapto a un lugar nuevo?(Gabriela's Song: How Will I Adjust to a New Place?)Gómez-Bassols, Isabel & Eric Vasallo.illus. by Priscilla Garcia Burris. Rayo: HarperCollins. 2007. unpaged. ISBN 978-0-06-114102-7. $12.99.PreS-Gr 2–Yo no tengo miedo, porque el miedo no me va." ("I am not afraid because fear does not fit me.") The song comes in handy when her family moves from their comfortable home in an unnamed country to her aunt's house in the United States. The youngster is concerned about leaving her friends and moving to a place where people don't speak her language. Her song—and her mother's support—helps her feel brave enough to face school. Her ethnically diverse class helps her feel welcomed. [Críticas, 9/1/2007]















1 comment:

JOHNNY DIAZ said...

Eric,
This is fantastic!
Felicidades, chico!
I too loved Gabriela!
See... si tu puedes con la literatura!! (did you catch the pun in there?) :)