Larchmont Writer Creates Itsy Bitsy iTunes App
10 Feb, 2013
By Amalie Howard
Frankie: the Untold Story of an itsy-bitsy Spider, is an itunes app by Carey Mills Federspiel, who lives in Larchmont.
Ever wonder why the itsy-bitsy spider went up the waterspout? Turns out it’s a super fun waterspout. Beautifully told and gorgeously illustrated, Frankie: the Untold Story of an itsy-bitsy Spider brings new life to a childhood favorite–in a not altogether unexpected way.
It’s an iTunes app– that allows you to play along while hearing about Frankie’s journey. Notwithstanding the truly lovely illustrations, the story was easy to follow and fun. Add in the soothing voice of the story’s narrator, and you have a story that the youngest children will be able to enjoy with a parent or on their own.
Frankie is the star of our story, taking us on a journey that leads him to the infamous waterspout from the children’s nursery rhyme. Not only does Frankie bravely venture up the waterspout, he comes down in a way that you could never imagine … turning an ordinary rain gutter into an epic surfing adventure.
In an industry where everything is changing and becoming more digitally accessible, Federspiel has taken children’s publishing one step further by making reading an interactive learning experience. And the fact that my four year old is still reading the Frankie app (for the tenth time in a row) with a huge smile on her face makes me a very happy parent.
(Following is Amalie’s interview with the author)
1) What made you want to write/illustrate Frankie’s story?
When I sang this rhyme to my kids I always wondered why the itsy-bitsy spider wanted to go up the waterspout in the first place – and why would he want to go back up after getting washed out. I could envision the spider’s world and wanted to pair it with the story.
2) As much as I love this app, I would love to have this book in hard-cover for my child’s library. Is there a forthcoming edition of that?
My next step is to get Frankie in hardcover form. It’s a long process to get published, but I’m working on it.
3) What can readerslook forward to from you and Frankie in the future?
I’m working on a new story for Frankie. Readers will get to know more about him and his friends—the lady bug who isn’t too ladylike, the ants who play as much as they work, and the reclusive pill bug (my kids call him a “roly poly”).
4) I couldn’t help but love your illustrations – they were whimsical and beautifully done. Where and when did you learn to paint?
I painted at an early age, but my first watercolor class was with Duke Wellington, an artist from my hometown of Columbus, Kansas. I did more watercolor in high school and went on to get an art education degree from the University of Kansas with an emphasis in drawing and painting.
5) What is your favorite childhood nursery rhyme and why?
Of course it’s the Itsy-Bitsy Spider—I like the image of the spider going up and the finger-play that goes with the rhyme. But Miss Muffet is an intriguing one: why is she eating curds and whey? I’m working on that.
6) Where can readers find you?
I have a website: www.FrankieSpider.com and a Facebook page: www.facebook.com/FrankieSpider . If you go to the Facebook page and “Like” it you will certainly find out when Frankie’s in hard cover. In the meantime, he offers the occasional inspirational quote. He’s a pretty cool little guy.