Episode 283: Art, Magic, and Robots — Interview with Carolyn Crimi and Corinna Luyken

by Gabriela Pereira
published in Podcast

Hey there word nerds! Today, I have the pleasure of interviewing Carolyn Crimi and Corinna Luyken, the author and illustrator behind the buzz-worthy middle grade novel Weird Little Robots.

Carolyn Crimi is the author of several books for children, including Where’s My Mummy?, Henry and the Buccaneer Bunnies, Henry and the Crazed Chicken Pirates, and There Might Be Lobsters. Weird Little Robots is her first novel and she lives in Illinois.

Corinna Luyken is the author-illustrator of the NY Times Bestseller, My Heart; as well as The Book of Mistakes, which received four starred reviews and has been praised by Entertainment Weekly, the Wall Street Journal, NPR, and more.  

She is the illustrator for Weird Little Robots, written by Carolyn Crimi and Adrian Simcox Does Not Have a Horse, written by Marcy Campbell. She lives in Olympia, WA with her husband, daughter, and two cats.

In this episode Carolyn, Corinna and I discuss:

  • The inspiration behind Weird Little Robots
  • Shifting from writing picture books to full length novels
  • How to maintain creative momentum
  • Building characters that feel alive and real
  • How throwing away eighty pages of work inspired a stronger story and characters

Plus, their #1 tips for writers.

About Carolyn Crimi and Corinna Luyken

Carolyn Crimi is the author of several books for children, including Where’s My Mummy?, Henry and the Buccaneer Bunnies, Henry and the Crazed Chicken Pirates, and There Might Be Lobsters. Weird Little Robots is her first novel. She lives in Illinois.

Corinna Luyken is the author-illustrator of the New York Times Bestseller, My Heart; as well as The Book of Mistakes, which received four starred reviews and has been praised by Entertainment Weekly, the Wall Street Journal, NPR, and more.  

She also illustrated Weird Little Robots, written by Carolyn Crimi and Adrian Simcox Does Not Have a Horse, written by Marcy Campbell. She lives in Olympia, WA with her husband, daughter, and two cats.

Weird Little Robots

When two science-savvy girls create an entire robot world, they don’t expect the robots to come alive. But life may be a bit more magical than they thought.

Nine-year-old Penny Rose has just moved to a new town, and so far the robots she builds herself are her only company. But with just a bit of magic, everything changes: she becomes best friends with Lark, has the chance to join a secret science club, and discovers that her robots are alive. Penny Rose hardly remembers how lonely she used to feel. But then a fateful misstep forces her to choose between the best friend she’s always hoped for and the club she’s always dreamed of, and in the end it may be her beloved little robots that pay the price. Quirky and wonderful, this illustrated chapter book from Carolyn Crimi and Corinna Luyken shows that making your own space and a true friend in the world is a kind of magic all its own.

If you decide to check out the book, we hope you’ll do so via this Amazon affiliate link, where if you choose to purchase via the link DIY MFA gets a referral fee at no cost to you. As always, thank you for supporting DIY MFA!

Link to Episode #283

(Right-click to download.)

If you liked this episode…

Head over to iTunes, Stitcher Radio or Google Play and subscribe so you’ll be first to know when new episodes are available.

Also, remember that sharing is caring so if you know anyone who might enjoy this podcast, please tell them about it or leave us a review so other listeners will want to check it out.

Until next week, keep writing and keep being awesome!


Enjoyed this article?