Created July 21, 2023 by Tanja Bauerle
Eboniè P. Fields is a poet, writer, and children’s book author of the adventurous tales of Zenie and the Magical Hummingbirds, Zoey and the Magical Hummingbirds, and Lenny and Leila and
the Magical Hummingbirds. In December of 2021, her first two children’s books received an honorable mention from the Royal Dragonfly Book Awards. Fields’ most recent 2022 publication, Lenny and Leila and the Magical Hummingbirds, and Zoey and the Magical Hummingbirds, have both received a Five-Star Review from Readers’ Favorite. Zoey and the Magical Hummingbirds has been recognized as a Silver Award Recipient by the Mom’s Choice Awards and Book Excellence Awards. Fields enjoys using her writing talents to create exciting and vivid stories for children of all ages to read. She has the creative talents to descriptively allow your imagination to put you inside the story, taking you on an incredible journey with her charismatic characters.
Q: How long have you been a member of SCBWI and what’s your favorite part?
EF: I’ve been with SCBWI for close to three years now. My favorite part of the membership is the opportunity to interact with other independent published authors. Prior to this, I felt alone and solo in the independent publishing world. I longed to connect with others, share success stories as well as discuss challenges, and SCBWI has given me that platform.
Q: What book are you working on now?
EF: The book I’m working on now came from a bedtime story I was telling my 5-year-old son. It’s about a prince who has it all and goes on an incredible adventure to win the heart of a princess. It’s a wonderful tale, especially for young boys of color who do not see themselves represented in books or movies, which I’m very excited to have published and share with the world. Previously, I published my very successful series of The Magical Hummingbirds books. I’m not letting them go, but I felt that this new tale challenges me to explore new areas where I can show diversity in fairy tales.
Q: What excites you the most about the story?
EF: It’s a good-hearted prince who finds true love, but finds that however privileged, he still needs to show the values of chivalry, honor, respect, and bravery to win his dream girl. That’s a message that we have moved away from, for young girls too, to expect to be valued, treasured, and respected.
Q: When will your book be available?
EF: It should be available towards the end of 2024. Though the story is basically there, I like to take my time and be thorough and keep making it better until I feel in my heart and my soul that it is ready to be published.
Q: How hard was the road to your first publication?
EF: It was hard. I was new to the industry and to all its nuances. I knew I had a story I wanted to share with the world. I first went the route of shopping for traditional publishers but eventually decided I wanted to go the self-publishing route. I’ve been writing for years. I was a journalism major and have a marketing background. I have written for various publications and felt confident enough in my work and my story to go the independent route. I went through Author House and published my first book in 2013. It was a wonderful experience for me as a first-time author; I was able to get my book at Barnes and Noble, Walmart, and bookstores overseas as well. That opened the gates to grow as an author, build my brand, and be prepared to have an audience for my second book.
Q: What themes do you like to explore when writing from #livedexperience?
EF: The themes I like to explore within my stories are the themes that help a child become an outstanding person. I think about these children who are reading these books and going on an adventure – why not incorporate family values, friendship, and sharing? Within my Magical Hummingbirds series, a common theme is when the kids run away, the hummingbirds take them on a magical adventure to meet new friends, who each offers them something of theirs to help them out in their situation. At the end of the stories, those kids return home, recognizing that they do love their home and their family, and how blessed they are with the life that God has given them.
Q: What do you find to be your biggest obstacle as a marginalized creator?
EF: There hasn’t been much of a platform for marginalized creators to market their books at local bookstores in the past. For the longest time marginalized creators did not have their books spotlighted on their websites, or at events, sometimes tied to other bookstores. That's been a problem because marginalized creators want to be seen and heard, and connect with avid readers. Though I must say it’s been a blessing, for over the past few years, I’ve seen a change. We see more diverse authors attending events at Barnes and Noble, and more local bookstores picking up marginalized creators. So I’m really happy about the shift, but we do still have a long way to go and promote marginalized creators on a bigger platform.
Q: What advice would you give to other marginalized creators?
EF: My advice: the best way is to find a mentor within the industry. You learn more from people who have already taken the path that you’re trying to take in the publishing world. For me, I’ve been blessed to join an organization like SCBWI, and also to work with other authors locally, who have shared with me their stories, both successes and challenges, and educated me about book award contests that would give my books more brand awareness, locally, regionally, and even internationally.
Q: Which of your favorite resources would you like to share?
EF: I would say, my favorite resource would be hands down the Society of Children’s Books Writers and Illustrators. They have a great platform where you can see other authors, where you can join different organizations that actually connect you to different local bookstores such as Barnes and Noble, Half-Price Books, etc., and put you in front of avid readers, connect you with the community so they can learn more about your work. There are also different committees you can join. Being in the Equity and Inclusion Team has connected me with other marginalized creators. We have shared successes and challenges, and this has empowered me to keep writing. And that’s what it’s about.
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