Nicky Mee is a Children’s Picture Book author from Sydney, Australia. Nicky Mee has been a primary school teacher for 15 years and have 2 wonderful daughters aged 2 and 4, and an amazing and supportive husband who encouraged her to turn her stories into books for all children around Australia and other parts of the world to share and relate to. Picture books in “Stories by Mee” series are filled with plenty of Australian themes, touches on themes such as resilience, curiosity, love, family and friendships.
Did you always wanted to be a children’s book author?
Since I was a little girl, I’ve always loved writing poems and stories and have never stopped writing. I’ve been writing about what I know best, and that is my family. ‘Hooroo, ta-ta, bye-bye’ is told through the perspective of my daughter and how she sees the world. It focuses on her saying goodbye to all the little things in her life and realising that it’s only goodbye for now and not forever.
Who has encouraged you to write your very first book?
I have had a lot of support from my husband, Brad, who has encouraged and motivated me to turn my stories into books for all children around Australia and other parts of the world to share and relate to. I decided to make this into a series (Storiesbemee) as there is only so much you can fit into one book and I am currently working on my 3rd book with Ana from Mosherino, which should be available in the next few months.
What was the biggest challenge you faced along the way?
Due to the lockdowns and Covid restrictions last year, my launch day for my first book had been postponed and I had to rely heavily on social media to promote my book and get it into as many households as possible to use as a reading resource.
What part of writing children stories have you come to appreciate the most?
I have come to appreciate the hard work that goes into creating something that can be physically held in your hands once you have accomplished your goals, and also how other children can relate to the story and rely on it as a bedtime story to bond with their loved ones.
What advice would you give to your younger self?
Keep writing and never give up. Take one day at a time and always give out positive vibes to the universe that you will succeed.
What’s on your nightstand? Any books?
When it comes to Children’s Picture Books, my favourite author is Pamela Allen- I read her stories to my girls all the time- Fav- who sank the boat, Mr McGee goes to the zoo/and the big bag of bread/ and the biting flea. Matt Cosgrove- Author and illustrator of variety of books such as Macca the Alpacca, Alpaccas with Marracas.
When did you write your very first children story?
I have always written short stories and many poems since I was little, however, none of them came to life until ‘Hooroo, ta-ta, bye-bye’ which was inspired by my eldest daughter, Courtney.
What do you wish you’d have known starting out as an author?
I have loved the learning journey from where I started to where I am now. From finding an outstanding illustrator (Ana!) and an editor who attends to detail, to self-marketing and visiting Childcare centres to do book reads.
What inspires your work?
My family, especially my daughters, have inspired me to create the amazing books that are now available to everyone. My husband is my rock and has encouraged me to become an author and turn my stories into books.
What sparked the idea for the series “Stories by me”?
I believe that it’s an obvious thing that having an interesting surname of ‘Mee’ would be great to have as a business name for my Children’s book series, ‘Stories By Mee’. I feel that it’s memorable and definitely relates to the stories and my family.
Which five words do you feel best describe Stories by Mee?
Why do you think your books make an excellent addition to a child’s library?
I feel that because these books are so relatable to a child between the ages of 0-8, it would make an excellent addition to their own book collection. Stories By Mee books also have rhyming, repetition and always end on a happy note. They touch on themes such as family, friendship, love, resilience and acceptance, curiosity and fun. Any child and their parents/carer would easily bond together during a reading of these books before bedtime each night.
What has been the best reaction from a reader, so far?
A child loved the book SO much (“Hooroo, ta-ta, bye-bye”) that she dressed up as “Courtney Koala” as her character for Book Week at her primary school and her mum sent me a photo of her with a huge smile on her face! She had her face painted, koala ears and her very own ‘bibi’.
Should we expect to see more stories published in Stories by Mee series? Any projects coming up you would like to share with us?
I am currently working on with Ana on my 3rd book which is going to be titled ‘Yay! Yay! Holiday’ and will be released in the next few months. I also have 3-5 more books up my sleeve which will hopefully begin to be available from 2023.