Fay’s mother was a writer and an artist, and when Fay was about eight years old, she asked her mother to sketch something for her. Fay’s mom quickly drew some characters on a sheet of paper using her ink pen then she showed the characters to Fay.
“What do you want to call them?” her mother asked. Fay hesitated for a moment not even considering giving the newly drawn characters a name; then Fay blurted out ‘Wafflehoffers! I’m going to call them Wafflehoffers.” Even though the characters had no resemblance to waffle, it was the first name that popped into Fay head, and she liked how it sounded. Hence The Wafflehoffers were created.
Fay treasured that drawing her mother drew and she placed it in a protective sleeve to preserve it for all time. Fay hid the sketch in a hiding place even her older sister didn’t know about, and the drawing stayed hidden for more than ten years.
The protected drawing of the Wafflehoffers traveled across the Pacific Ocean when Fay fell in love and married the man of her dreams who was American and lived in California.
Sadly, Fay’s happiness only lasted for six years when her husband died suddenly, leaving Fay to raise two beautiful daughters all on her own.
Fay’s mother, father, and mother-in-law all passed away within a few years of each other.
Fay removed that sketch her mother drew of The Wafflehoffers from its safe, protective hiding place, and she shed a few tears. When Fay looked at her mother drawing, she wanted to feel peace and not pain from so much loss in her life. So, Fay decided to redraw The Wafflehoffer character’s that her mother had sketched in ink pen so many years ago, and she gave them more life. Fay drew them with freckles on their long nose as well as gave them colorful clothes to wear. She gave them a home to live in that looked like a waffle, and she made The Wafflehoffers into a family.
She first experimented with drawing a few of the characters on greeting cards then added a humorous caption. But sadly once again the Wafflehoffers returned back to a dresser drawer as life got hectic being a single parent with two teenage girls. Spending time with her children was her priority. She didn’t want her girls to feel the void she did growing up and asking for something way her only way to get her mother’s attention. Well at least for a little while. Fay’s mother was suffering her own pain from her childhood and painting or writing in her notebook was her mother’s way of coping with her pain.
Fay’s mother sadly passed away in 1989 at the age of only 62 years old from bone Cancer.
It wasn’t until spring of 2015 and Fay’s children were all grown up and had left home, that Fay decided it was time to share the Wafflehoffers with the world.
After reading books on ‘How to write children’s fiction,’ as well as reading lots of successful award-winning children’s picture books, Fay decided with the help of a critique group and an editor, to write a children’s fiction picture book of her own.
Hence The Wafflehoffers were born.
The Wafflehoffers stories revolve around the main character named Maple, who is a curious six-year-old little girl who knows she has the love and support from her family. The books also include the rest of The Wafflehoffer family, Mama, Papa, Zack her older brother and not forgetting Butter the family dog.
Fay’s oldest daughter Charlotte, helped her select the names for the Wafflehoffer characters.
Fay sketched out a storyboard of what she wanted her illustrator, Gian Uy, to draw on each page of the book, to bring The Wafflehoffer characters to life, in a town named Waffleville and in a home that looked like a waffle.
Gian, helped transform those squiggly characters that were first sketched by Fay’s mother nearly fifty years ago, into beautiful colored illustrations to go inside a sixty-page book.
The Wafflehoffers came to life in their first book called, The Wafflehoffers Curious Maple. The second book in the series is called The Wafflehoffers, Maple’s First Competition which takes place at the County Fair when Maple enters a waffle-baking competition.
I cannot put into words the amount of joy that I’ve felt creating The Wafflehoffers characters and stories. I hope some of that joy shows through when you read The Wafflehoffers books.
Reading to your children is the greatest gift you can give and the most incredible memory you can ever have. That emotion of feeling loved before you close your eyes and drift off to sleep into dreamland is priceless. Books help you go on incredible adventures and journeys as well as conquer amazing feats. They help give you confidence through relating with characters that you never imagined you had. Books can help you learn and accomplishing anything you desire! Share the love of reading. Read to your children!