Mother and daughter team: Author Alexandra Welch-Zerba, left; illustrator, Sheila Welch, right; with Anna, their inspiration for “Animals in My Room.”
About the Author: Alexandra Welch-Zerba
Alexandra was born on Nantucket Island in Massachusetts, and has always dreamed of writing a children’s book. She reads to her daughter, Anna, every night, and has been inspired by the many different types of children’s books they have enjoyed. She has never actually seen a live unicorn or alligator in her room, but her daughter has more than 100 beloved stuffed animals in hers, including her two favorites, Doggy and Teddy. Alexandra lives with her husband, daughter and five cats.
About the Illustrator: Sheila Welch
Since Sheila was a very small child, her favorite pastime was to draw. After graduating from the Rhode Island School of Design, she worked for a small art agency in Boston, Massachusetts, and then moved to Nantucket, Massachusetts, where she started her own commercial art business. With retirement came a move to Portsmouth, New Hampshire and time to experiment with watercolors, and design greeting cards for family and friends. In illustrating “Animals in My Room,” Sheila worked in colored pencil. Her goal was to create animals that were “quite realistic, but with big personalities, happy smiles, silly clothing and bright colors. Above all, they had to be magical and fun.” Sheila now lives with her husband in Exeter, New Hampshire where she continues to enjoy working with pen, pencil and brush.
Anna enjoyed helping with this book, including suggesting ideas for the animals’ activities and the rhymes. While she has never caught her stuffed animals engaging in mischief, she believes that magical things do happen while you sleep!