From the Publisher
Fascinating questions to help you explore your faith—a guide for kids 6 to 9. Christianity is filled with big ideas and amazing miracles, but they might leave you with some questions. This book is here to help! It discusses all sorts of important topics so curious kids like you can learn how powerful your faith can be.
FIND YOUR ANSWERS: Explore 100+ commonly asked questions and discover answers to “Who is God?,” “Why did the disciples follow Jesus?,” “Are angels real?,” and so much more!
CREATE YOUR OWN QUESTIONS: Reading this book will inspire new thoughts and ideas. Find space in the back where you can write down your own questions and discuss them with your loved ones.
FOR ALL CHRISTIAN KIDS: This inclusive book celebrates all Christian beliefs, so you can enjoy it no matter your denomination.
“Finally, an easy-to-understand and theologically sound book to help answer my kids' (and mine) most important questions about faith. There is no other resource better suited to equip parents and kids alike. A must-have for any parent, teacher, or pastor!”
—Bradley Williams, senior minister at Forum Christian Church
Brock: How did you come up with the idea for this book or series? or What was your inspiration for writing this book or series?
Amy: I didn’t come up the idea, the publisher did. I had contacted Callisto Media asking for freelance work writing for children and especially writing a faith-based title if they had one available. I asked at the right time and had the background in writing for children and writing faith-based books they were looking for.
Brock: In three sentences (or you can choose three words) what is this book about?
Amy: Christian Q&A Book for Kids includes over 100 questions and answers about God and the Bible written in language that a child can understand. Each answer includes the Bible basis for the answer. The appendix features pages where kids can write their own questions, parent guidelines, resources, and index.
Brock: Do you outline the entire book before starting, or do you write as you go and let the characters take control of the story?
Amy: Callisto Media supplied an outline, but I was able to create the questions I wanted to answer. I worked with an editor to group the questions and put them in a logical order. The outline contained page numbers for the table of contents, letters to parents and children, questions and answers (over 100 pages), and appendix.
Brock: How do you believe this story relates to the lives of readers?
Amy: This book relates to the everyday spiritual lives of children. Understanding helps children know the awesome power and love of God and our relationship as God’s children.
Brock: What is your favorite genre to write for?
Amy: Christian picture books is my favorite genre to write for.
Brock: What is the biblical background or basis for the series?
Amy: Every answer has a Biblical basis and includes a Scripture verse.
Brock: Any certain research required for the book, or is it all from your imagination?
Amy: I researched every answer in this book, some extensively, and kept a detailed bibliography. It was so important to get the answers right, but also find a balance since the target readers are from a variety of Christian backgrounds.
Brock: How do you strike the right balance in your book?
Amy: I included a variety of questions and answers on a range of topics such as, God and Jesus, prayer, Christianity, the Bible, and Christian holidays. I kept my audience (children ages 6 – 9) in mind as I was writing. I’ve been attending Bible study for over 30 years, but feel I have so much to learn. So I approached writing the book as if I was explaining the answers to my three grandchildren, who (at the time I wrote the book) were, a girl, age 5, and 8-year old twin boys. Every answer relates to a Bible verse.
Brock: How does it feel to have your work published?
Amy: This is the first time worked with Callisto Media. While I had written Christian curriculum, this book was a new experience. It is a reference book. It was such a challenge and such a blessing. While I have a number of books published, it’s still thrilling to have a new release. Have a “book baby” never gets old!
Brock: How do you hope parents will use this book with their kids?
Amy: In fact, there’s a section in the back, a discussion guide for parents, that tells exactly that. I hope parents will discuss questions and answers in the car, at the dinner table, before bed. I hope they can be open to other questions and researching answering together. My hope is that my book will spark meaningful discussions that will deepen not only the child’s but the faith of everyone taking part.
Brock: What do you hope kids take away from this book or series?
Amy: I hope kids have a better understanding of God and the Bible. I hope they will feel comfortable asking questions. I hope they will discuss their faith with other family members and friends.
Brock: Where do you like to write?
Amy: My favorite place to write is in our living room while sitting on the couch either using a notebook or my laptop. In the winter, it’s so cozy to have a fire going.
Brock: Are you a full-time or part-time author/writer?
Amy: I work pretty much full time on writing, although I have other commitments so it’s not 40 hours/week. I don’t have another job outside the home right now. I feel very fortunate that I can devote my time to writing.
Brock: How long does it usually take you to write a single book?
Amy: When I write on assignment, most of my books are very short, some are 100 words. Deadlines range from one day to a week to a few months—whatever the publisher requires. For Christian Q&A Book for Kids, I signed the contract in December and the manuscript was due in March. For my freelance work, I write mostly picture books, and those can come very quickly or take years to get right. So it’s a whole range of time!
Brock: Expound on the spiritual themes in the book/series.
Amy: God is a powerful, loving provider who desires a relationship with you.
Brock: What is your "how I got published" story?
Amy: Long ago (in the 1980s) when I was a young mother, I sent Christmas poem, “The 5 Senses of Christmas” to a Christian magazine, Alive for Young Teens. It was accepted and I was paid $5. I couldn’t have been more thrilled!
Brock: When did you realize you wanted to become a writer?
Amy: I was home with our older daughter, Emily, when she was a baby. Emily took really long afternoon naps, like 3 hours. So during my “free” time, I started writing for something fun to do. That was when I realized how much I loved writing and felt a need to publish.
Brock: What are some of the strongest influences on your writing?
Amy: My mother is a poet and a writer. She still reads my work. She has been the strongest influence on me. I also have some very dear writer friends, and we encourage each other. Reading is also a strong influence and inspiration.
Brock: What was your favorite book as a teen or child?
Amy: My favorite book when I was a child was The Mystery of the Green Cat by Phyllis A. Whitney. It’s about a blended family who moves to California. While the new siblings are becoming friends, there’s a mystery to solve about an antique, green statue of a cat. The main character, a girl of about 12, if I remember correctly, is so admirable, but realistic, too. And the story is so well written. I’ve read it more than once as an adult.
Brock: What is the one author, living or dead, who you would co-write a book with and why?
Amy: One author I really admire is Karma Wilson. Have you read Mortimer’s Christmas Manger? It not only tells a great story about a mouse looking for a place to live, but incorporates the true message of Christmas without being preachy. Her “Bear” picture book series is adorable, too. I love to write picture books in rhyme, like many of Ms. Wilson’s books. It’s fun to dream of such a collaboration! I hope to meet her someday at a conference.
Brock: Describe your feelings when you opened the box and saw the first published copies of your book.
Amy: Seeing copies of Christian Q&A Book for Kids was the culmination of all the work of the past several months. I was filled with gratefulness and a good kind of pride.
Brock: What are your hopes for your future as an author?
Amy: I love writing on assignment, but now that I have an agent, I’m hoping to have my own work published. My hope is to educate, inspire, and entertain. My picture book, God’s Protection Covers Me, was well received and won two awards, but didn’t sell well. The focus of my book selling well is not fame or fortune, but to fulfill my mission of teaching children about God and helping with their faith formation.
Brock: In what ways does your faith impact how you approach writing?
Amy: My faith impacts how I approach writing. Spending hours and hours writing, not knowing if it will be published, if others will read it, if it will sell requires a strong faith.
Brock: Favorite season?
Amy: I love autumn—the beautiful colors it brings, the harvest, the cooler weather. I love the spicey aroma of baking pumpkin bread and butternut squash pie, sipping hot apple cider, and preparing for a cold, snowy winter. I love getting together with family at Thanksgiving. Autumn is my favorite season.
Brock: Do you have a favorite Bible verse?
Amy: I believe this is true and that it applies to my writing. Roman’s 8:28: “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”
Brock: What was the religious or spiritual background of your childhood?
Amy: My family is Jewish, and while we didn’t go to temple, I knew my parents believed in God. We celebrated a few Jewish holidays but we also celebrated Christmas. (Not the true meaning that Jesus is the son of God.) Our Christmas featured decorating a tree, believing in Santa Claus, and exchanging gifts. We also listened to the one Christmas carol record my parents owned featuring Harry Belafonte. Interestingly, Christmas was my way in, was my introduction to Jesus. But it wasn’t until I was in college that I believed the nativity story was true. I had a friend who invited me to church, to Bible study, to a community of believers.
Brock: When were you baptized?
Amy: It took a long time before I was baptized because I didn't know how my family would feel about it. I was so relieved to discover they loved me no matter what. Years passed before I decided I wanted to baptized. I was in my 30s and had remarried. My husband, Steve, and I have attended the Methodist Church in Maryville since we moved here 30 years ago. Through those relationships, Bible study, and worship, I have grown in my faith, but feel I have a lot more to learn. Writing about Jesus deepens my faith.
Meet the Author
Amy Houts is an award-winning author who’s written over 100 children’s books including God’s Protection Covers Me and Active Bible Play. She’s a member of the United Methodist Church where she’s attended Bible study for over 30 years.
Book Title: Christian Q&A Book for Kids
Series Title: N/A
Publisher: Rockridge Press, a division of Callisto Media
Audience: Boys and girls age 6 through 9 years old.
Genre: Christian nonfiction for children
Release Date: August 2, 2022
Author Name: Amy Houts
Author Website: www.amyhouts.com
Author Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorAmyHouts/
Author Twitter: @AmyHouts
Author Instagram: @AmyHouts
Author Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/houtsandhome
Author Other Social Media: LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/amyhouts/