Spaceships, spaceships, spaceships!

So I had the inspiration for my children’s story Pep, Polish and Paint – all I now had to do was write it! So I sat down and wrote the first draft without too much thinking. In that first draft I just called the three spaceships spaceship 1, spaceship 2 and spaceship 3. But after sending it off to be critiqued, it was suggested that it would be better if the spaceships had names.

So now came the problem – what names should I choose? Again, I didn’t give it much thought. I just used the first three names that came to me which were Jimmy, Johnny and James, but following advice I received from a bestselling children’s author in the USA, I changed James to Jenny so that not all the characters would be male and the story would appeal to a wider audience. That also fitted in well with how the illustrations of the spaceships were shaping up at the time, as one of them definitely had a more female ‘air’ to it than the others. I did ask some of my friends and fellow authors for their thoughts on the spaceship names and received some interesting suggestions, but in the end I kept with Jimmy, Jenny and Johnny as they were simple, easily recognisable and I liked their alliteration and rhythm.

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PEP, POLISH AND PAINT: ‘masterfully written, beautifully illustrated, a charming fantasy all children will love…’

"Our children thoroughly enjoyed 'Pep, Polish and Paint' and continue to do so. The story is masterfully written and beautifully illustrated. It has purpose, and this is mindfully woven into the theme. We look forward to Helena's next children's story!"
~Roark, Amazon Reader
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"Pep, Polish and Paint is a delightfully clever story with an important message for children on how some things come from within us! Helena Harper uses her skill as a teacher to develop this charming fantasy all children will love. Malachy McKinney's illustrations are engaging and imaginative."
~Author and Illustrator J.D. Holiday, Amazon Reviewer
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"Children will love the well thought out storyline portrayed by Helena, and will be fully engaged by Malachy McKinney's illustrations, which are bright, bold and full of character!
Adults will also find the story amusing as this is exactly what we try to make ourselves feel better - RedBull/Coffee, a shower/make-over or a new set of clothes - but do they really make you feel better, or is it in fact something else that really makes you truly happy about yourself?!
Read the book with your kids and find out!"
~Bill Andrews, Bill @theeducast, Amazon Reader
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