DEBUT JOURNEYS Emily Ann Davison


Welcome to this virtual landscape where debut authors get to take us along ancient streets, deserted beaches and dark forests, showing us what inspired them, pointing out the crossroads and obstacles and describing the next steps for their writing careers. This month Helen Simmons steps out with author Emily Ann Davison whose debut, Every Bunny is a Yoga Bunny is out in March 2022. 

Let’s begin our journey...

There’s nothing like a good walk to fuel creative ideas and give us inspiration in our writing. Where are you taking us on our walk today? 

Today, I’m walking along the Kent shoreline, and down onto the shingly beach. The wind whirls around me, and the sea is glistening. Here, you can investigate rock pools, hunt for fossilised shark teeth (that are 50 million years old!) and look out onto wondrous views. In the distance, I can see two 12th century towers of a former medieval church dominating the skyline. There are also the ruined remains of a Roman fort here. This place has so much history and is full of inspiration. 

What about the landscape you have created in your picture book? How important is the setting to your plot and themes? 

For me, it’s often the characters and concept of the book that dictates the plot and theme. As a picture book writer, much of the landscape is left for the illustrator. I like to leave room for the illustrator to interpret my words. I was paired with Deborah Allwright for Every Bunny is a Yoga Bunny, and I absolutely adore the scenery that Deborah has created in the book. There is so much warmth in her illustrations, and they really celebrate the wonder of nature. 

As the saying goes, a journey of a thousand steps starts with one. Tell us about your inspiration for your book. 

Every Bunny is a Yoga Bunny was a cumulation of a number of things coming together. The very first draft came about as part of a writing exercise with the Golden Egg Academy – where I wrote a story about a family of monsters doing meditation. This story went in a drawer, but I always knew there was something there and I would come back to it. Six months later, my daughter was finding bedtimes tricky and we were starting to try different techniques to help her relax and feel calm. One thing that really helped was yoga! I remembered the monster meditation story, dug it out and transformed it into a story about yoga. 

Now we have got into our stride, can you tell us what you loved most about writing this book? 

I loved creating the character of Yo-Yo. She came quite quickly to me, albeit as a monster originally! But the essence of her character never changed. She is a lovable, wriggly and giggly character who I hope children will be able to relate to. It was really important to me, that at the end of the story she was still wriggly and giggly, and found it tricky to sit still. I didn’t want the character to change, but she came away with an extra tool in her belt – a way of feeling calm by using yoga. 

We seem to be lost in the woods now. Can you describe your most difficult moments when you were writing, and how you got back onto the right path? 

Every Bunny is a Yoga Bunny found its home with Nosy Crow with a little bit of luck and good timing. It never went out on submission to publishers. I had taken it to a Children’s Book Circle event held at the Nosy Crow offices. But even though the story didn’t go on submission, I went out on submission to agents and this was one of the trickier parts in my writing journey. I had quite the rollercoaster ride! I think along the way, I had every experience possible. Silence. Standard rejections. Personal rejections. Back and forth with agents. Near misses. I had an offer of representation, which I ultimately turned down as it wasn’t quite the right fit. That was one of the hardest decisions! But throughout all of this, I picked myself back up every time. Writing requires a lot of determination and grit. I always allowed myself to sulk, before asking myself ‘now what’. What really helped was having a plan and knowing what my next steps would be. 

As we reach the summit, can you tell us how it feels to be a first time author? 

It feels very surreal to have my debut picture book published! I always loved writing as a child, but I didn’t know it was something that you could do as a job. Publishing a picture book takes quite a bit of time. I signed the contract for the book in October 2019, and its publication date was March 2022. You have to be very patient! Being a first-time author, means learning as you go along. I am very thankful to Tegen Evans, my wonderful editor at Nosy Crow, who answered my many, many, MANY questions along the way. 

We’ve finished our walk and now I think we deserve to celebrate with tea in a cosy inn. As we warm our feet by the blazing fire, tell me where you think your writing will take you in the future? 

Oooo.. what a question! I have a very special book coming out next year with Andersen Press, called The Blue Umbrella, which is illustrated by Momoko Abe. I can’t wait to be able to share more about that in the future. I am always bursting with ideas and writing lots and lots. I enjoy the process of writing such a lot, and can’t wait to see where my words will take me… 

Finally, I have really enjoyed walking and talking with you today. Can you give us one take away tip for yet-to-be-published writers? 

ONE? Only one? I can’t! But I’ll sum it up quickly… 

• Celebrate every step. An edit. An idea. A good word choice! The writing journey has so many ups and downs, it’s important to celebrate the small things. We are often seeking the ‘next thing’ and forget to enjoy the thing right in front of us. 
• Be kind. Be kind to yourself and others. It’s a tough journey. Support your fellow writers when you can. Make time for yourself too. Take time out if you need it. Be kind. 
• Keep going! The road is rocky, take breaks when you need them, but (and importantly as long as you are enjoying it), get back onto the road too, once you have refuelled.


Emily Ann Davison worked with young children for many years, and her passion for children’s books grew and grew and GREW, until one day, a story idea POPPED into her head. Now the ideas won’t stop popping! When she isn’t writing, she can be found tinkling on the piano, having adventures with her family or daydreaming about what stories she can write next.

Emily lives in the Garden of England, Kent, with her daughter, husband and playful puppy. She is never seen without a cup of tea.

Follow Emily:

Twitter: @emilyanndavison

Instagram: @emily.a.davison



Helen Victoria is a writer of YA fiction, a full time drama teacher and a reader of anything and everything. When she is not putting on shows, reading or writing, Helen loves to walk in wild places, or hang out with her family and friends in London, France and Cornwall.

Follow Helen:

Imogen Foxell is an illustrator with a particular interest in creating intricate imaginary worlds. She illustrates English literature revision cards for, and interesting words for Her website is Follow her on Twitter and Instagram

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