Annie's Book Stop of Worcester

The little bookstore that's bigger on the inside


Annie’s Book Stop of Worcester is very happy to shine our Friday spotlight on children’s book author Valerie Bolling. Valerie, for those who don’t know you, could you please tell us about yourself and your writing?


Well, I’m passionate about creating stories in which all children can see themselves and feel seen and heard, valued and validated. I’m a traditionally published author of five picture books (LET’S DANCE!, TOGETHER WE RIDE, TOGETHER WE SWIM, RIDE, ROLL, RUN: TIME FOR FUN!, and BING, BOP, BAM: TIME TO JAM!) and RAINBOW DAYS, a Scholastic Acorn early reader series. Currently, I’m writing a chapter book and board books.


I’ve been an educator for 30 years. Next year I will become a full-time author, and I look forward to sharing my love of reading and writing with children during school visits. Having more time to write will be great, too.


I’m an active member of the kidlit community – teaching picture book classes (independently and for the Highlights Foundation), serving as a mentor, and presenting at conferences. I enjoy being immersed in a community of creatives!


I live in Connecticut with my wonderful husband, who is my biggest fan, and we enjoy traveling, hiking, reading, going to the theater, and dancing.



Where can people find your work? (Besides Annie’s Book Stop of Worcester–though they should totally check here first!)


1. In an independent bookstore nearby


2. At a local library


3. In an elementary school’s media center


NOTE: If my books aren’t in these places, please request them.



How can we follow your work and share your awesomeness?


Thank you for saying I’m awesome. I’d love it when readers and writers follow me. I also appreciate book reviews if you like my books.








For readers unfamiliar with your work, how would you describe what you write?  What can readers expect from Rainbow Days: The Gray Day?


The books I write feature community, connection, and diversity. On the home page of my website, it says:


I write because I want all children to feel at home in a book. I want them to smile, laugh, think, and question. Most of all, I want them to celebrate the diverse world in which we live.


My current titles will encourage children to smile and laugh, but I have books coming out in the next couple of years that will also promote thinking and questioning.


My most recent title that was released on May 2, 2023 is Rainbow Days: The Gray Day. It is the first book in my Scholastic Acorn early reader series.


The series features Zoya and her puppy, Coco, who love to create art together. Here’s a description of The Gray Day:


It’s a perfect day to paint outside – until it begins to rain! Zoya and Coco rush back inside with their art supplies. But together – and with a splash of glitter – they find creative ways to brighten the gray day.


The second book, Rainbow Days: The Gold Bowl, will be released on September 5, 2023, and the third book, Rainbow Days: The Orange Wall, will make its appearance on March 5, 2024. All books may be ordered now.



What piece of advice would you want to share with other writers?

Keep at it! Be persistent, persevere, and be patient … and be prepared to face rejection. But don’t give up if publication is your goal. Also, continue to study/learn and create. And give yourself grace as well as others.




What is one thing that most people don’t realize about you?

I’m tall. I’m not exceptionally tall but taller than the average woman at 5’10’’. Since I’ve met so many people via Zoom (and have been communicating with them that way for the past two or three years), when I see them in person for the first time, they often say, “You’re tall!” or “I didn’t realize you were so tall.”



What is the greatest lesson you’ve learned, thus far, in your writing career?

Community is the key to success.


Writing seems like a solitary act, but it isn’t. We need our critique partners, agent, and editors to help us produce our best work and have a thriving publication journey. Being connected to writing groups and organizations is also beneficial along with taking classes and attending webinars and conferences.


Part of my community is the children for whom I write, so doing school visits and participating in book festivals and other events where young readers will be present is something I enjoy.


And, of course, I have a wonderful, loyal community of family and friends who cheer me on and tell others about my books.



Are there any groups, clubs, or organizations that you would recommend to other writers that have helped you in your career?

    • My critique groups


    • SCBWI


    • 12×12 Picture Book Challenge


    • Black Creators Headquarters


    • The Authors Guild


    • The Highlights Foundation


    • We Need Diverse Books



Valerie, thanks so much for taking the time to answer so many of our questions! People can order Valerie’s books at Annie’s Book Stop of Worcester by sending Email to:    


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