#GuestDayTuesday – Featuring #Children’sAuthor #Mike Allegra

Today, I have the great pleasure of introducing an author new to The Write Stuff, Mike Allegra. Mike writes charming children’s books, and I’m sure you’re going to enjoy getting to know him better. In fact, I recommend checking out Mike’s webpage later from the links below, and from there, his blog. Trust me –it’s wonderfully funny! And on that note, let’s get right to today’s post. Take away, Mike!

Thanks, for having me today, Marcia!

The Dusting Distraction

I am a children’s book writer. I am also a house husband. As a house husband, I have to do House Things like the shopping and the cooking and the bills and the cleaning and the laundry.

Lots of laundry, actually.

I’m still not certain how all that laundry materializes every day. Sometimes my son goes through two sets of pajamas in one night. Sheesh, kid, if the long sleeve jammies are too warm in the spring, just put them back in the drawer and put on the short sleeve jammies! That’s all you have to do. What you don’t do is throw the long sleeve jammies in the hamper. Wearing long sleeves for 20 minutes doesn’t make them dirty!

But I digress.

My point is, even if your house is small, the chores add up. Just when you think everything’s under control, there’s another shower to scrub or lunch to make or a whatever-it-is that needs a bit of whatevering.

In some ways, this is good for me. I’m kept busy. Idle hands are the devil’s blah blah blah. More importantly, my wife and son appreciate what I do for them.

On the other hand, chores give me a pretty dang good excuse to not write children’s books.

Writing is hard. When I’m between projects or I’ve hit a rocky patch in a story or I just can bear the thought of doing my jillionth rewrite, my attention drifts to my toilet and I soon discover a newfound sense of purpose.

How can I be expected to write, I ask myself, when that porcelain isn’t glittering?

This is a problem I think a lot of writers have who work out of the house instead of, say, in an office environment. At home there is no cleaning crew to whisk that cobweb off the ceiling. If you don’t go for the Swiffer, the web is stayin’ there. That nasty microwave in the breakroom is not someone else’s responsibility, it’s yours, because it’s your microwave and that breakroom is actually your kitchen. Home is where the heart is; it’s also where the distractions are. And that is how procrastination happens.

I think I know what you might be thinking right about now. I think it, too, sometimes: Is it really procrastination if you’re not farting around on YouTube watching baby goat videos? Is it really procrastination if you’re replacing one task with a different task? Is it really procrastination if what you’re doing instead of writing is something that really, really, really needs to get done?

Yeah, it kind of is.

Running a house is an important job. Crazy important. But writing is a job, too. And if you make a living at it like I do (or wish to make a living at it), writing also needs to be deemed very important. Time needs to be set aside for it. This isn’t easy. I’ve been writing children’s books since 2012 and I still need to remind myself that my Dyson vacuum (The best vacuum in the history of ever!) can, under specific circumstances, be just as insidious a timewaster as posting photos of toaster waffles on Instagram. 

It’s about balance. Emptying the dishwasher (or, fiiine, watching a couple of YouTube videos if you must) in the middle of your regularly scheduled writing time can be a nice palate cleanser. Breaks go a long way toward relieving some of the mental anguish of a Bad Writing Day. Just don’t let those breaks pull you away from the writing for too long. Set an alarm and jump back into the world of letters. Because if you don’t find the time to write your story, your story will never get written.

And don’t worry, a dirty toilet is patient; it’ll wait for you to finish that draft.

As for me, the last chapter of my middle grade novel is taking a lot longer than I had hoped. I need to devote more time to my writing. In other words, my boy is gonna have to learn the simple joys of going to sleep in sweatpants. That’ll teach him.

Author Mike Allegra

Mike Allegra is the author of 17 books for children including the picture books Scampers Thinks like a Scientist (Dawn, 2019), Everybody’s Favorite Book (Macmillan, 2018), and Sarah Gives Thanks (Albert Whitman and Company, 2012). He also wrote the chapter book series Kimmie Tuttle (Abdo Books, 2021) and Prince Not-So Charming (Macmillan, 2018-19; pen name: Roy L. Hinuss). Scampers was the winner of Learning Magazine’s 2020 Teacher’s Choice Award and was selected for inclusion in the Literati Kids subscription box. His story, “Harold’s Hat,” was the winner of the 2014 Highlights fiction contest and was published in the July 2015 issue.

His new picture book, Sleepy Happy Capy Cuddles (Page Street Kids) will hit store shelves in October 2022. You can preorder it now!

You can Pre-Order a Hard Copy of Sleepy Happy Capy Cuddles HERE

A Few More of Mike’s Books to be Found on His Author Page

You can reach Mike on Social Media here:

Amazon Author Page


97 thoughts on “#GuestDayTuesday – Featuring #Children’sAuthor #Mike Allegra

      • LOLI don’t want my man anywhere near the iron and my clothes.
        Great post today, Mikey! Yes, housework is a great method of procrastination. And those toilets that wait, can grow things. urgh! Not in my house mind you, but in some college aged boys’ houses. I even use housework for procrastinating on other housework. I have tubs of photos to go through from generations ago. But that floor isn’t going to scrub itself. Go through a bunch of paper clutter and deal with it instead of just shuffling the piles around, I definitely need to dust my bedroom.

        You really do need to set a timer, alarm, or whatever and set that time aside for yourself. It’s too easy for your time to be taken up with all worthwhile things, except maybe the toaster waffle pictures. lol
        And people tend to take you for granted if you are working from home.
        Have a good one, Mike!

        Liked by 1 person

  1. A great snippet into the real life of a writer! I love this: “Home is where the heart is; it’s also where the distractions are.” So true. In spite of the distractions, MIke has produced quite a lot in the past ten years. Well done and keep writing!

    Liked by 3 people

    • I’m really glad you enjoyed meeting Mike (and happy to say he’ll be visiting us again in a few weeks). Thanks for dropping in and taking a moment to say hello! 😀 ❤


    • Thanks so much for the kind words, Jill!

      My house is pretty clean — except for my home office, which is a dust bunny sanctuary. (When I’m in my office I wanna write, not clean!) Dust bunnies make great low-maintenance pets, by the way.

      Liked by 1 person

          • Believe it or not, I’m somewhat allergic to them myself. (I shut them out of the bedroom because sleeping with cats at night would definitely have me sneezing the next day.) But since I’ve never in my entire life lived in a house without at least one, I refuse to give them up, Volkswagen sized hairballs or not. (Yes, I’m a glutton for punishment.) 😁


  2. Great to meet Mike, and wishing him every success. Yup, working and cleaning house, and all the other stuff packed into life has a way of keeping us from our writing time! The books look great! Thanks for sharing, Marcia 💕🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Although a bit different, my retired mom always says she has no idea how she ever worked with how busy her retired life is. There is always something to do in the home, especially if you are looking for a distraction. This was a fun piece, and I can see why Mike’s books would be well-received. Thanks for introducing us to him, Marcia! 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

    • It was a real pleasure to introduce you all to Mike, who obviously has a gift for making us laugh! I’m happy to say he’ll be visiting again in the weeks ahead, at least twice. Hopefully more. Thanks for stopping by to comment today, Yvettte, and good for your mom for not seeking out the rocking chair already! 😀 ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Pingback: The Dust Bunny Distraction – Hey, Look! A Writer Fellow!

  5. just put them back in the drawer and put on the short sleeve jammies! That’s all you have to do…and all YOU have to do it fold them up in the laundry room and put them in the middle of the clean pile!

    Ok Now you know MY secret of 2 boys doing that….lol

    We’ll NOT get into the daughter laundry!! oy vey!!

    Liked by 2 people

  6. just put them back in the drawer and put on the short sleeve jammies! That’s all you have to do <–and all YOU have to do it fold them back up and stick them in the middle of the clean clothes. Now you know the secret of TWO sons.

    We'll not get into the daughter stuff……….oy vey!


  7. It is hard to ignore all that needs to be done to write, but not impossible 😉 I’m with you about laundry, I’m convinced it multiplies in the night. Co grsys on your latest release. I will be. Checking it out for the younger granddaughters.
    Thanks for hosting, Marcia!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Mike is one of my favoritest (I know its not a word, but it should be) people!! So cool that you brought him on over to introduce to a whole new populace of readers. I have purchased books and had them autographed for my niece and nephew. His books are awesome!
    I also have a lot of respect for his ability to be the “house husband” and writer and I know his family gets the absolute best treatment he can provide. How can you NOT appreciate someone who is willing to do laundry?? 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • So glad you enjoyed meeting Mike and learning more about his books (and his dusting and laundry woes)! I truly enjoyed having him as a guest poster, and the good news is, he’ll be back in the weeks ahead! I’m looking forward to this latest release, being a huge fan of capybaras, myself, and have already preordered the book to read to my youngest granddaughter when she visits again.

      Thanks so much for stopping by and taking the time to let Mike (and me) know your thoughts, Sally! We really appreciate it! 😀 ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  9. It’s good to see Mike flitting here and there – there should be more of it 😉 Having read (and bought several copies) of Scampers Thinks Like a Scientist I can heartily recommend it. I’m a sucker for kids’ books and I’m looking forward to some Capy Cuddles in October.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Pingback: Smorgasbord Blogger Weekly – #Goodnews John Howell, #Steampunk Richard Dee, #Poetry Robbie Cheadle & Yvette Calleiro, #Characters Gwen Plano, #Reunion Pete Springer & Jennie Fitzkee, #Interview Marcia Meara & Mike Allegra | Smorgasbord B

  11. Hi Marcia, it is great to see a children’s author here. It is a lovely thought to write full time (or part time given the housekeeping). I don’t think I’ll ever get to that point until I retire. Mike’s books sound lovely and the illustrations are eye catching.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Glad you enjoyed Mike’s post, Robbie. (He’ll be back at least a couple more times in the weeks ahead). I’ve already pre-ordered his capybara book for my granddaughter, and think his other books look terrific. I suspect this very funny man is working plenty hard with these days, and I am impressed with what he’s accomplished already. Thanks for stopping by today and taking a moment to say hello! 😀 ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Mike is a hoot, Marcia. And it’s a delight to get back from procrastinating on vacation and find him here. Hi Mike! Loved the post and laughed all the way through despite the serious message beneath: if we don’t make time for writing, it won’t happen. Thanks for the fun and Happy Writing!

    Liked by 1 person

    • It was a very great pleasure to have Mike visit us here on TWS (which is simply the initials for the name of this blog: The Write Stuff). I’m glad you enjoyed his post, writersideup, and you’ll probably be happy to know he will be back at least twice more in the upcoming weeks. Hopefully, he’ll visit here now and then for a long time, as everything he writes makes me laugh like crazy.

      Thanks for stopping by and taking a moment to say hello! 😀


      • Mike is the best 🙂 And I’ve had the pleasure of meeting him years back at one of our conferences. Just love him ❤ And I REALLY hope whoever reads his posts here also follows his blog. His post notifications are one of the few I NEVER delete…don't want to miss anything! 😀 ❤

        Liked by 1 person

        • I agree totally, and highly recommend his blog. Especially if you are looking for a laugh or two. And how nice you got to meet him in person. Meeting some of my blog friends in person has always been a dream of mine!

          Thanks again for stopping by! 😀


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