May 19, 2024
The Pond of Reflection by Catherine Ann Russell is recognized for its outstanding writing, design and overall market appeal out of thousands of books submitted into the Book Excellence Awards.

Catherine Ann Russell is a multiple-award-winning children’s book author, entrepreneur and the founder of the Basketful Relief Project (BRP). She has published three children’s picture books: Get to Bed!, The Little Book of Why, and Picco and Wren Three, with an upcoming fourth book, Boo Bear’s Light: An A B C Adventure. She also writes fantasy-adventure for tweens called, The Pearls of Wisdom Series.

Books 1-4 of this series are published and include: The Pond of Reflection, The Hyrax Song, The Zoe-Chai Seed, and The Last Storyteller.

In 2019, Catherine founded the Basketful Relief Project: Beautiful Children’s Books to Feed Young Tummies and Minds as a platform for her children’s books and to share her vision of supporting infants and children in need. At least 10% of proceeds from the sale of each book directly support reputable organizations established to distribute food and medicine to children experiencing war, food scarcity, or catastrophe displacement. This year, 2024, Catherine is working to establish the BRP Books Foundation, a private 501c3 that will manage proceeds from book sales to assist children in crisis for years to come.

A multi-faceted talent, Catherine started her own digital multimedia company called Spike Productions after a successful career as a research scientist at the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Combining her passions for science and art, analysis and natural beauty, Spike Productions helps individuals and organizations communicate their vision and purpose through digital multimedia in a timely, cost-efficient manner.

Catherine lives in Lyons, Colorado, with her husband, Ed, and several farm animals, including two burros named Nikki and Norman.

This one-on-one interview shares Catherine’s background and experience writing The Pond of Reflection.

Tell us about The Pond of Reflection.

Content in her father’s wise kingdom, Princess Journee loves life but has one nagging question: Who is she? Yes, she is a mouse and a princess, but who is she really?

With her adventurous spirit and her father’s mighty steed to protect her, she goes on a quest to find herself. The adventure takes an interesting turn when she befriends a toad and an owl who tell her about a legendary Pond of Reflection known to reveal one’s true identity. But first they must find it, if indeed it exists. Their friendship and appreciation for each other grow as they encounter difficulties along the way, and strange happenings in the ancient Whoami Forest.

Is the Pond of Reflection magic? Is it simply a solitary place to reflect on who you are? What will the legendary water show Journee and her friends? Answers lie deep within their hearts.

What inspired you to write The Pond of Reflection?

In 2019, two years after my older sister and only surviving immediate family member met a sudden death, which was then followed by a strange two-year period of significant difficulty, I woke up from a dream hearing a voice that said, “write this down.” So, I did.

It was the beginning of The Pond of Reflection, the first book in The Pearls of Wisdom Series: Stories Inspired by a Biblical Proverb. I believe this book is God’s work. He has a plan for this book, and the seven books to date that have followed: to help infants and children in need.

How did you feel when you found out you received a Book Excellence Award?

I am deeply honored by the wonderful news and the significance of this recognition. The Book Excellence Awards is a quality platform for any author.

How did your background and experience influence your writing?


The culmination of life experiences that shape us ultimately permeate through any form of creative expression, including writing. Therefore, I could point to my family, education, activities, lifestyle, and careers as having each played a significant role in shaping who I am and what I write.

However, I believe that it’s my personality that led me to write children’s books—whether that be picture books or pre-teen fiction. I think creatively and am a child at heart. I’m sensitive and empathetic. I love the beauty and ingenuity of our natural world. I truly believe that making a contribution to this world that doesn’t either encourage, inspire, inform, or walk alongside others — especially our youth, is not worthwhile. Thus, children’s writing became the natural outflow of my heart.

Finally, I cannot neglect that I believe this story in particular was divinely inspired in a very real sense.

What is one message you would like readers to remember?

The main takeaway from The Pond of Reflection is that our identity and self-worth spring from heart and character (our inside-out), thus sincere friendship can happen regardless of how different outward appearance may be (our outside-in). This piece of wisdom was inspired by the Biblical Proverb 27:19, a wisdom verse that says: “As water reflects the face, so one’s life reflects the heart.”

Purchasing the Book

The Pond of Reflection has received positive reviews from well-known literary organizations, authors, and reviewers around the world. Book Excellence writes, “An original story with a powerful message, The Pond of Reflection will aid in young ones’ social and emotional understanding and development while transporting them on an adventure unlike any other.” In addition, reviewer Richard Hindmarsh writes, “The Pond of Reflection is a well-written and enchanting story that offers a valuable lesson in self-discovery, friendship, and the true nature of identity.”

The Pond of Reflection is available for sale on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Nook, and the Google Play store. Readers are encouraged to purchase their copy today:

To learn more about the Basketful Relief Project, and receive updates on new book releases, visit: To connect with Catherine, please visit:

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