Author Spotlight: Kiara Gaton
Kiara Gaton’s brand, Love Anise, is inspired by two-year-old Nova Janae. Love Anise was created to empower and educate children and encourage literacy amongst the African American community. Love Anise’s sole purpose is to provide our children with educational resources, tools, and merchandise that look just like them. Our goal is to ensure our children see, read, and experience characters that represent themselves. We believe representation matters and the exposure needs to begin at birth.
“Nova is the inspiration for Loving Me ABCs. Nova lights up every room she enters. I never want anyone to have the power to dim her light. We have said positive affirmations since she was born. I feel it is important to empower our children and pour positivity into them at an early age so that as they grow, society and others cannot tell them who they are. They will be able to tell society who they are and how they expect to be treated.”
Kiara Gaton is a living example of Frederick Douglass’ quote, “It is easier to build strong children than to repair broken men.” She created an entire brand to leave as a legacy for her daughter.
Let’s get right to it.
1.) Tell us a little about yourself.
Hi! My name is Kiara Gaton. I am a school social worker with a passion for helping children reach their fullest potential. I am a single mother to two-year-old Nova Janae Anise Carraway. Nova is the owner and inspiration behind all things Love Anise. I have always loved reading and writing and thankfully Nova does, too!
2.) Tell us what your book, Loving Me ABCs, is about.
Loving Me ABCs is a book full of positive affirmations for children. Each letter is used to describe an affirmation to affirm children in who they are and who they can be. The book was created to promote literacy and self-love among children. It is full of bright and relatable illustrations.
3.) What was the inspiration for this book?
Nova is the inspiration for Loving Me ABCs. Nova lights up every room she enters. I never want anyone to have the power to dim her light. We have said positive affirmations since she was born. I feel it is important to empower our children and pour positivity into them at an early age so that as they grow society, and others cannot tell them who they are. They will be able to tell society who they are and how they expect to be treated.
4.) What was the hardest thing about writing a children’s book?
Honestly, the hardest thing was finding a word to fit the letter X. The book literally goes from A-Z with a variety of positive affirmations and definitions embedded in the story. X took me a while to figure out…but we did it!
5.) What was one thing you learned about yourself while writing Loving Me ABCs?
While writing Loving Me ABCs, I learned that I can do anything I put my mind to. I also learned it is okay to take your time when creating.
6.) Describe your book in one line.
Loving Me ABCs is a book that uses positive affirmations to teach children about self-love.
7.) What made you decide to write a children’s book?
Nova was honestly the reason I decided to write a children’s book. I felt it was necessary to show her that the sky is the limit. I wanted to gift her a business that she could benefit from forever, but also something educational to share with others.
8.) What advice do you have for aspiring children’s authors?
Even on days you feel like giving up…keep going. Greatness awaits on the other end.
9.) Why did you choose to self-publish your book?
I did not self-publish my first book. I worked with a small Black publisher I met online. Our second book, set to launch before the year ends, will be self-published. I wanted to learn how to self-publish because I think it is a skill that is valuable and necessary if you want a line of children’s books. It has been amazing watching our book come to life through each stage of development. It makes it that much more amazing when you know that you did the work, put in the time, and published yourself!
10.) Where can readers buy your book?
Readers can purchase our book at Love-anise.myshopify.com or on Amazon.
11.) Where can our readers find you on social media?
We are on Facebook and Instagram at loveanisellc. Our email is firstname.lastname@example.org
12.) Please share your website with our readers.
Audra Russell is a blogger, freelance writer, and published author. She holds two undergraduate degrees in journalism as well as a Master of Science degree in Education. She also completed the Wesleyan University online Creative Writing Specialization course series.
She is an avid reader and writer’s advocate. Her passion for promoting the works of up-and-coming authors inspired her to create her new podcast, Between the Reads, as well as her website, Read It Black to Me. Her debut novel, BLOOD LAND, was published on August 29, 2020, as her fiftieth birthday gift to herself. She lives in Maryland with her husband of more than 20 years, her 3 amazing children, a 12-year-old perpetual puppy, two dueling cats, and 2 chickens.