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Student author offers lit advice

Rebecca+St.+Croix+Martinez+showcases+her+children%E2%80%99s+book%2C+%E2%80%9CRocket+Baby+%26+Burt+The+Bunny%2C%E2%80%9D+on+Tuesday%2C+Feb.+5+in+the+Dezember+Reading+Room.
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Student author offers lit advice

Rebecca St. Croix Martinez showcases her children’s book, “Rocket Baby & Burt The Bunny,” on Tuesday, Feb. 5 in the Dezember Reading Room.

Rebecca St. Croix Martinez showcases her children’s book, “Rocket Baby & Burt The Bunny,” on Tuesday, Feb. 5 in the Dezember Reading Room.

Rebecca St. Croix Martinez showcases her children’s book, “Rocket Baby & Burt The Bunny,” on Tuesday, Feb. 5 in the Dezember Reading Room.

Rebecca St. Croix Martinez showcases her children’s book, “Rocket Baby & Burt The Bunny,” on Tuesday, Feb. 5 in the Dezember Reading Room.

Sam Underwood

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Rebecca St. Croix Martinez spoke at the second annual Author Showcase and told a story about her childhood, that she would get in trouble for daydreaming in class. Her teachers would send home notes saying she was daydreaming too much, or not paying attention.  

Today, Martinez got to respond to all those teachers, as she holds up her book.   

“To all those teachers, in your face,” she said.

The Walter Stiern Library hosted the Author Showcase on Tuesday, Feb. 5. This showcase gave six faculty and staff members from CSUB an opportunity to talk about their books, to share with the community.

Authors featured in the Dezember Reading Room also included Dayanand Saini, Hager El Hadidi, Stephen Allen, Mark Novak, Stafford Betty, Hossein Bidgoli, and Martinez. 

Martinez spoke last but hear voice was heard. She talked about how anyone who writes can publish their own e-books online and find some success as she did.

Martinez, who writes under the pen name, Rebecca St. Croix, has been working at CSUB for 17 years as an administrative coordinator for the Arts and Humanities department.  Since 2014 she has been the social media specialist, overseeing posts on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, as well she posts to the arts and humanities blog.

After attending Bakersfield College for four years, Martinez transferred to CSUB.  She has been taking classes at CSUB the last three years and continues to work towards her bachelor’s degree in studio art. It was in an art class that utilized Photoshop, where she developed a newfound interest in creating children’s literature.   

Martinez has created many characters such as Rocket Roy, or Boris the Bear, but her recurring main character is Burt the Bunny. In the beginning she was self-publishing her books in kindle format, when suddenly something unexpected happened. 

“One day, all of a sudden I started getting royalty checks deposited into my account, and there were an awful lot of them, I thought something got screwed up,” said Martinez. 

What had happened was that one of her books had found some success in Japan.  Martinez attributed her achievement to the more adventurous tales that Burt the Bunny was going on.

Martinez’s books are currently written to appeal to infants and toddlers ages four to five. However, she has been getting requests for books more appropriate for elementary school grades. The next book Martinez is working on will have Burt the Bunny going on a pirate adventure to Carrot Island. 

At the showcase, Martinez got to meet with some students that want to publish graphic novels and books of poetry. The other authors spent some time at the podium giving some background on their books and giving insight into their process. The experience of listening to them was invaluable to anyone who is starting out as a writer.

Bidgoli made an emotional connection with his books. He joked that “My books are like my children,” he said.  Then ended his  talk as he said, “Now I have 69 little children running around.”

Novak spoke about the level of commitment in writing a book, and mentioned that his book, “Issues in Aging,” included over one hundred pages of sources. 

Hadidi spoke passionately about culture in Egypt, including the role of the djinn and significance of jewelry to the Zar; all while her own jewelry jingled softly, slightly amplified by the microphone. 

Martinez’s message to the audience was simple: “Upload your stuff, you never know who might like it.” Martinez added, “I want [writers] to know; have some confidence, go out there, you can do it.  You never know what can come from it.”

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