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Meet Dawn Marie Chaffin and Kathryn Orlando

Hailing from Long Island, New York, Dawn Marie Chaffin and Kathryn Orlando share a passion for writing children’s books. Their collaboration came to fruition in their latest series, The Magical Adventures of Katinka and Darinka. Their other works, include, My Love and Dusty and Kit which are also featured on their website

I love the title of your newest children's book, The Magical Adventures of Katinka and Darinka. How did you come up with those unique names? What came first, the title or the idea for the story? What inspired the story?

Thank you! The story idea came first, then shortly thereafter we decided on the title because we knew it was going to become a series. The story was inspired by our beautiful soul sister bond which transcended into the birth of Katinka and Darinka. We truly are just kids at heart. All we do is laugh and have fun. It is always rainbows and sunshine when we are together. How the names came about is quite a cute story. Kathryn‘s Nana used to call her Katinka when she was a child and I truly loved it. Since the girls are twins we picked Darinka for Dawn because that rhymes, and we needed a D name since the twins represent our sisterhood.

What made you decide to collaborate on this book?

We both had previously written a children’s book but we knew we wanted to collaborate on this one because as soon as we started writing it just became magical.

Can you briefly describe your collaboration process?

Well there isn’t just one collaboration process. It could be an idea that popped into our head and we would text, call each other, or actually meet and the words would just flow out so naturally as if it was something we always did.

Do either of you have any creative writing quirks?

We write in rhyme together and in no particular sequence. We just let the story come to life by putting down all of our ideas.

How long did the entire process for this book take from concept to having the book in your hands?

The entire process of the book took two years from the first concept to having the book in our hands. However, the story came to life very quickly once we started collaborating.

How did you go about finding an illustrator?

It was actually a very hard process, we just put an ad online. We chose from the plethora of illustrators that responded.

How closely did you work with the illustrator?

We worked very closely with him every step of the way. Our illustrator created the characters closest to our imagination that we described to him. We tweaked the twins until the birth of the characters were created that you see in our book today.

What was one of the most surprising things you learned while creating your book?

The most surprising thing that we learned when we were creating our book together is how like-minded we are in our creations. One of us would start the sentence and the other would finish it.

Did you hire a company to help you with self-publishing, and if so, did you shop around for different companies before settling on the one you chose?

We did self-publish our book, however we gave the completed book to the self- publishing company, just to print and help with distribution.

Will there be a sequel to The Magical Adventures of Katinka and Darinka? If so, can you share a tidbit?

There most definitely will be a sequel, in fact, there will be an entire series of, The Magical Adventures of Katinka and Darinka.

“Another adventure awaits that will be told. Just wait and see what will unfold…”

Have either of you written any books individually? What are the titles and genres? Do you have a favorite?

We each wrote children's books, individually, that are near and dear to our hearts. Dawn’s book is titled, My Love, and was inspired by the love for her children and a gift they will always treasure. Kathryn‘s book, Dusty and Kit, was inspired by the passing of her dad and the eternal love she has for him.

What advice do you have for aspiring authors?

The best advice we can give aspiring authors is to write from your heart, let your imagination soar and follow your dreams on your own magical adventure!

*** To purchase Dawn and Kathryn's books, please visit:


Hi. I'm Liz Ambrico, freelance proofreader and aspiring author. I too am querying agents, editors, and publishers in hopes of becoming a published author.



Wordy is the get-in-the-know hotspot for writers. From grammar to publishing find info, tips, and inspiration to take your WIP (Work In Progress) to the next level.


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I co-founded and managed a successful author and writer group on Long Island for five years. During events with publishers and authors I learned what matters, what agents are looking for, and the benefits and pitfalls of traditional publishing vs. self-publishing.

I've gained a lot of tips and tidings on my writing journey and want to share what I know.

Besides my passion for writing, I'm a fitness enthusiast, and I love coffee, chocolate, and animals. I'm mom to two amazing young men, and I live on Long Island with my husband, four zany cats, and the sweetest dog ever.

Whether you're new to writing, ready to query, or about to submit your manuscript,  welcome, you've come to the right place.

About Me


Alyssa is Wordy's website administrator and tech guru. She holds a degree in Communication and has always enjoyed writing and marketing, both of which are highly useful skills for aspiring authors. 

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