Alexandra Hill, author of children's picture book Florian Finds a Friend

A book about a fox? It seems destined to be published by Argyle Fox Publishing. But first, artist and first-time author Alexandra Hill had to get over her hesitation. Fortunately she did, and the world of children’s literature is richer for it.

Learn about Alexandra’s sweet book, how it felt to put illustrating duties in the hands of another artist, and her plans for more books in the future.

Tell us a bit about Florian Finds a Friend. What is it about, what inspired the story, and how long did it take for you to move toward publication?

Florian Finds a Friend is a story about a little fox in search for his new best friend. Along the way he learns important life lessons about friendship, kindness, and empathy toward others. This story was inspired by own experiences with making friends as a child.

I first wrote about Florian in June of 2023. I was drawing sketches of various foxes that day and I felt like one little fox in particular needed his story told. Since then, I began telling family members about my new character and story. They all encouraged me to publish it, but I was very hesitant. In February of 2024, I finally decided I wanted to share Florian’s story, so Florian started his first adventure!

How did you find Argyle Fox Publishing, and what made you think we would be a good fit?

I was looking for a local publishing company near me that I could hand deliver my manuscript to. However, I found out publishing companies don’t typically accept physical manuscripts anymore. I did some more research and found Argyle Fox Publishing. I looked at all the books the company published and was so impressed by all of it. Though I was very nervous to hand over my manuscript, Daniel handled it with such love and care. I couldn’t be more grateful.

Nicole Reasonda’s illustrations are gorgeous! However, you’re also an artist. Talk about your vision for the characters, how well Nicole captured that vision, and how it felt to hand the illustrations off to another artist.

The illustrations were very important to me. I have my own style of art that I use to tell my stories, and I wanted to make sure that my characters were accurately drawn. So, I sent Nicole sketches of all the characters in my book that showed how I wanted them to look.

When Nicole sent over her first sketch of Florian and his mother, I actually cried with how accurate her sketch was to mine. Nicole beautifully captured all of Florian’s expressions that I drew in the concept art. I’m so happy with how everything turned out!

Now that Florian Finds a Friend is published, how will you measure whether your book is a success? What is your goal for the book?

I strive to create content that sparks creativity and imagination. The goal for my book is to inspire young readers to create their own art and stories. If children read my book and become inspired to write their own book, draw their own characters, or even learn more about nature, I would consider that a success!

What are you doing to market your book and let folks know it is available?

I’ve been creating various content on my Instagram and TikTok about Florian and Wisteria. I also have copies of my book being sold around my city to introduce Florian to a broader audience.

What feedback have you received so far on your book?

I’ve gotten a lot of positive feedback from children and adults alike.

To promote my book, I went to a school to read to the kindergarteners. They were so impressed with Florian, and they asked so many wonderful questions about being an author and an artist. They also, of course, asked many questions about little Florian and told me how “cute” and “cool” he is!

Do you have plans to write more books? If so, can you give us a sneak peek into your next book?

I do! Florian loves flowers, so in his next adventure he will be introducing readers to flowers and teaching them about their meanings.

Where can readers find you online?

I have an Instagram and a TikTok, where I post about Florian weekly!

Is there anything else the world should know about you or your writing?

I’m planning on writing a young adult fantasy novel in the future, but for now Florian has many more adventures to go on that he would like to share.

Thanks so much, and here’s to success!