Meet Z.R.Polgrean, debut Author of 'Betsy the Most Famous Cow in Cornwall'

As a mum of four, Z.R.Polgrean has spent many years making up and reading stories to her children. She knows how they always love the humorous ones and believes that these stories stick so vividly in their memories because of the smiles that they bring.

It was during lockdown that Z.R.Polgrean was able to get the time to start writing children’s books, as before she focused on writing poetry. She was always attempting to write that 'epic' as most authors do... but it just wasn’t flowing, so she decided to write short children’s stories.

This she found much more enjoyable and authentic, and humour was the special ingredient!

Z.R. Polgrean lives with her beautiful four children in Wadebridge, in the legend filled county of Cornwall. Before moving to Cornwall and having children she lived as a child in a quaint and pretty village called Ivinghoe in Buckinghamshire. Z.R.Polgrean believes this country upbringing sparked her imagination for writing as she was able to spend many happy days outside playing in her somewhat enchanted garden. There were huge national forest trees and a stream with 3 small bridges that you could cross to look at the great cornfield opposite which harbours a historic windmill in the centre of it.

The fond memories of playing down at the local farm with all the animals and regular trips to Cornwall where her Cornish ancestors lived, helped with the eventual creation of 'Betsy the Most Famous Cow in Cornwall'. That and making up Betsy's adventures on the way to drop her youngest daughter to school every day!

'Betsy the Most Famous Cow in Cornwall' is the debut title in Z.R.Polgrean's series of children's picture books. She can’t wait to publish all of her titles eventually, for not only children to read but enjoyed by adults too. Watch this space!

ZRP: What advice would I give a new writer?

Just keep it up, even if it’s not working. It will come when it’s ready! But don’t be afraid to try different styles of writing I never thought to try poetry for years then stumbled upon it and I believe it prepared me for writing my short children’s stories.

ZRP: Where do I draw my inspiration from?

Largely my children, especially the humour! I also write a lot about the importance of morals in my stories most of which I have to thank my parents for teaching me. When I started writing poetry, my inspiration was drawn from looking at art - to really tap into emotions and then as time progressed I learned to really feel the world around me which helped me on a deeper level to express myself much better when writing.

ZRP: What book is currently on my bedside table?

I normally keep my mums Bible she gave me by my bed. I also have a picture of Robert Burns with part of the poem ‘A Red Rose’ underneath his portrait - I am indeed a lover of cheesy romance!

ZRP: What book could I read over and over again?

Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice.

ZRP: What’s my favourite book and author ?

I’m Pretty much old school again when it comes to most authors, I loved J.M Barrie, C.S Lewis as a child, Lewis Carroll, Shakespeare, Tolkien and Hemingway. But I suppose because of the romantic in me it has to be Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice. My favourite children’s book is Alice in Wonderland!

ZRP: If I could meet someone dead or alive who would it be?

Meeting someone... it is so hard to think as there are so many amazing people!

I could think of Tom Hiddleston if I was just being blown away with my daft romantic brain but seriously thinking about it, it most certainly would have to be the Queen! She’s just remarkable.

ZRP: What is the best part of my day?

I think mornings are so important! One thing I try to teach my sometimes grumpy children is, "if first you smile to greet the day more often than not, you will take it with you throughout the day."

ZRP: One thing someone doesn’t know about me?

Semper te ipsum fide verba volant, scripta manent

ZRP: Describe yourself in one sentence?

I am honest! What you see is what you get there’s no ghosts attached that’s for sure.

ZRP: If I could change one thing about the world what would it be?

The world needs to love more, there’s so many angry people out there these days, it’s sad. If more people tried to find peace and love in themselves then people would certainly be a lot happier and in turn nicer to others.

ZRP: Best advice I’ve ever been given?

I have fond memories of my mum singing Doris Day to me as a child ‘Que Sera, Sera’ and it is something I’ve passed on down to my children and telling them to always seek what makes them happy.

ZRP: Favourite way to unwind after a busy day?

I try and train once or twice a day shadowboxing, weights, stretches, meditation and Tai chi. I think it’s important in the rush of life to just switch off and balance yourself out. It’s amazing how much better you feel after and how much more you can handle under stressful situations if we just take the time to chill.

ZRP: What’s my guilty pleasure?

My guilty pleasure would probably be my glass of red wine I drink whilst cooking dinner!

ZRP: Am I morning person or night owl?

I’m certainly NOT a night owl, I like to go to bed early otherwise I feel like a cross between Aggy the Witch and a Zombie in the morning!

ZRP: What did I want to be as a child?

An Actress! I was always a big movie fan but I unfortunately went through a very shy stage as a teenager so that squished that dream much to my amazing drama teacher's disappointment. She was always telling me “Go to RADA Zowie!” I can still picture her pretty sincere face now, but I couldn’t see how I’d have survived with my shyness so I chose something else to do.

ZRP: Do you have any hidden talents?

I have virtually painted my whole house during lockdown... so painting! I find this really therapeutic, along with singing whilst I paint particularly to old classics like Tom Jones, Frank Sinatra, John Denver, you name the old song, I will probably sing to it.

ZRP: If I could choose a super power what would it be?

To be able to put my head on a blank piece of paper and get the blasted fantasy book I’ve been trying to write perfectly out onto it!

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