About J. Aday Kennedy
J. Aday Kennedy was born and raised in McKinney, Texas. During her teenage years she was a
line officer in the McKinney High School Marquettes (drill team). Aday disliked school and quit in the eleventh grade.
When she quit high school, it did not take long to realize she needed an education. Aday had always been bored by her teachers. When she decided to complete her education she was determined to become a “different” kind of teacher that instructed, entertained and inspired. She also wanted to instruct a school dance/drill team in Texas.
In 1989, she moved to Walnut Creek, Ca. and started junior college. After three years she completed her general education credits and was admitted to the University of California at Davis.
She never received a high school diploma or GED, but earned her bachelors degree in twentieth century European history. After she attained her degree she returned to Texas and researched graduate schools to pursue a teaching credential.
Before she applied to graduate school, she caught spinal meningitis. Due to complications, Aday suffered a respiratory and cardiac arrest and stroke. She fell into a coma. Two hours after the doctors pronounced her brain dead she regained consciousness as a ventilator-dependent quadriplegic.
After several years of intense therapy she grew bored. She had recaptured partial use of her left arm and hand, but one day after another consumed with physical therapy left her unfulfilled.
Her cognitive brain function had been unaffected by the stoke It clamored to be used. Aday began speaking at seminars for registered respiratory therapists on spinal meningitis and patient advocacy. They opened the door to motivational and inspirational speaking engagements, but she wanted to do more.
She found writing classes on the internet. Her creative mind and love for children manifested in essays, articles and children’s books. Three years and fifteen classes later she received a picture book contract. Aday had grown into “The Differently-Abled Writer” making her dreams come true a story at a time.
Did you always want to be a writer?
No. When I was a little girl I wanted to be Big Bird. I’m tall enough and my feet are big enough, but my beak and feathers never grew.
When I got older I wanted to be a history teacher, but luckily I had a stroke and fell in love with and discovered a talent for writing.
Tell us about your children’s books.
I have six picture books under contract with Guardian Angel Publishing. They are a mixture of humorous fantasy and Christian stories. All include a teacher’s guide, send a positive message and are geared to attract reluctant readers.
Describe your working environment.
I am blessed to have my house on 4.5 acres of land on a private lake in East Texas. I have only to look out the window to be inspired. I’m a legally blind ventilator-dependent quadriplegic. (It’s a great excuse to stay in bed.) When I began to fall in love with where my computer could take me, I found a computer desk that slides over my bed at Ergoquest, I have my goals, inspirational sayings and Herb, my trusting writing bug, attached to the edges of my computer monitor.
What are you working on now?
I’m marketing my picture book, “Klutzy Kantor”. For this book I co wrote a song, “Go Me”, with LeFerna Walch of The Character Studio DOT com. There are three books in the series today. “‘Cobbledom’s Curse“ is book two, and “The Itcha Itcha Goo Goo Blues” is book three. The plan is to create a song and a music video for each.
I have several picture books I am writing. My memoir, “101 Ways to Torture a Quadriplegic: A Journey of Laughter Through Tears”, is in progress. “After Patty Killed Her Daddy” is a chapter book and the beginning of a series for tweens.
My second picture book, “Marta Gargantuan Wings”, was assigned an artist, Eugene Ruble. He illustrated “A Horse of Course” written by Shari Lyle Soffe. The horse oozes personality in each illustration. I cannot wait to see what he does with Marta, the Pegasus that resembles a mule with wings and Stajon his cheeky friend, the squirrel monkey. I am working on the marketing plan for it, too.
What is the best advice on writing you’ve ever received?
When you have written something let it rest. Do not look at it for weeks before you begin the editing process. Then you can look at it with fresh eyes.
Available for purchase online through
www.amazon.com and through your local bookstores.
Paperback: 24 pages
Publisher: Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc (April
Kantor, a young flying horse wishes he wasn’t so clumsy. The crone Agra tells him that the leprechaun -Cobbledom McSweeney can grant that wish, but only if Kantor can answer his riddle challenge. His tree mates – Rabbit, Fox and Bear help by quizzing him on riddles before the fateful day.
Every day Kantor Pegasus practices solving riddles. A tricky leprechaun attempts to outsmart him by giving him a next to impossible riddle to solve. To end his clumsy ways he must solve it. Children learn the benefit of practice and to focus on their strengths.
Jack Foster’s illustrations are perfect. The marriage of J. Aday Kennedy’s words and Jack Foster’s illustrations make a magical combination and a delightful read