Welcome Wednesday: Truth-Filled Picture Books with Natalie Totire Brinley

Author: Natalie Totire Brinley

Genre: Children’s Picture Books

Books: Cindy Mutt (coming soon), God’s Mighty Raptors, God’s Spooky Night Creatures, Who Made the Owls?, Mighty Raptors Coloring Book, God’s Leaping Wonders

“Cindy Mutt” – A charming blend between the Cinderella story and the true story of Bo, the First Dog. #picturebooks #kidlit #childrensbooks #dogs #pets

Truth-Filled Picture Books

Interview by Jenny Fulton

Natalie Totire Brinley is an author/illustrator who aims to create books filled with excellence, truth, honesty, and integrity. She writes and illustrates her own fiction and nonfiction picture books and has illustrated a number of predominantly fiction picture books for others. Her latest work, Cindy Mutt, is a fictional story that combines elements of the Cinderella story with the true story of President Obama’s dog, Bo.

Cindy Mutt is almost ready to be published,” Brinley shared. “It just needs a few more edits.”

This will be Natalie’s twenty-ninth self-published book. You can find the full list of her work on her website at https://www.couragelit.com/booklist.html

Where do you get the ideas for your books?

“I get them from life lessons, Bible stories, news stories, and mainly reflecting on how to explain something to a child.”

What personal life experiences do you pull from as you write and illustrate?

“I wrote and illustrated two stories reflecting on our crazy weather patterns through the recent years. The Five Foolish Frogs [That learned how to make a rain dance] is one of them.”

What are some of the themes woven throughout your stories? Are there any that show up in multiple books?

“My books usually feature showing good character and learning to trust. In Cindy Mutt, Cindy learns to trust the ‘Fairy Dogmother’ even though the magic at the time makes little sense.”

Since you’re both an author and an illustrator, which came first – a love for writing or a love for art?

“That’s a good question! I would say art just because I made books as a child before I was able to write, so I only used pictures.”

Do you have a favorite medium for your illustrations? Any favorite subjects you like to draw?

“Yes, I use both watercolor and Photoshop. As far as favorite subjects, I love illustrating animals and people.”

How has writing these books impacted you?

“It gives me a sense of accomplishment and it’s nice having something always on hand to share, especially with the children I work with.”

What do you hope readers come away with after reading your books?

“It depends on which ones. For the nonfiction Intelligent Design series, I hope children gain more of a sense of awe and appreciation for the Creator.”

Freelance Illustrator

In addition to illustrating her own books, Natalie Totire Brinley also contracts as an illustrator for other authors. Some of her illustrations include:

  • Elijah Teaches His Friends the ABCs and Meet the Darlin Dujeezeys by Pat Brannon
  • William Martin in Baker Woods by Karen Cox Gray
  • Good Can Come From There by Rosemary Calkins
  • Baby’s First Book series by engineer, Stephen Goss

Where and how do you find your clients for illustrating?

“Usually through the web and through word of mouth.”

Connect with Natalie

To reach out to Natalie and see more of her work and services, check out her website at www.couragelit.com.

Purchase the Books

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