Baptiste Paul is a picture book author and a man of many other talents—from woodworking to gardening to entertaining hordes of children for hours on end.
Born and raised in the West Indies (St. Lucia), Baptiste is a native Creole/Patois speaker and enjoys roasting his own coffee and chocolate as well as eating anything he can cook on a grill.
Baptiste holds degrees in environmental studies and political science from Bucknell University and currently resides with his family near a wildlife sanctuary in Green Bay, Wisconsin.
Baptiste’s debut picture book, The Field, garnered Starred Reviews from The Horn Book, Booklist, and Kirkus. His second book, Adventures to School: Real-Life Journeys of Students from Around the World, is co-authored by his wife, award-winning author Miranda Paul. Baptiste’s next book, I am Farmer, will be published in 2019.
Learn more about Baptiste Paul on his website.
Q1: OUR THEME THIS YEAR IS HERE'S AN IDEA! WHERE IS YOUR FAVORITE SPACE FOR PONDERING IDEAS?
Baptiste: I don't have a favorite space for pondering ideas. Life is way too chaotic juggling many schedules. My ideas and inspiration comes from my everyday activities. I mostly start with a memory, feeling, or idea. And I'm a big fan of outlines before drafting. During the day I walk around with a pencil tucked above my ear and a memo book in my pocket. I like jotting down thoughts as soon as they come to mind. After I have idea documented, ask questions: who, what, why, where, when, how - and I repeat the whole process a lot.
Q2: WHAT WAS YOUR FAVORITE SUBJECT IN SCHOOL?
Baptiste: I would say geography was my favorite subject in school. I enjoyed learning about other places and cultures.
Q3: WHAT ONE THING WOULD YOU LIKE TO LEARN TO DO?
Baptiste: Someday, I wold like to learn how to fly a plane.
Q4: WHEN DID YOU KNOW THAT YOU WANTED TO BE AN AUTHOR?
Baptiste: My path to being an author started many years ago. As a child, I enjoyed reading, and walked 12 miles round trip to the library. I was drawn to oral story telling. The elders of the village told elaborate stories about witches, magic, mythical creatures and distant lands and that captivated my interest. Their ability to keep everyone's attention for a long time stuck with me to this day. Some credit for my publishing journey has to be given to my wife, and picture book author, Miranda Paul. For years, I kept sharing stories from my childhood experiences with her and she always encouraged me to write them down. After we received our first rejection for a story we co-wrote together, she saw how deflated I was but her message was "keep writing"... and so I did.