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ᓴᖅᑭᔮᖅᑎᑦᑎᓂᖅ ᑎᑎᕋᖅᑎᓂᒃ: ᐊᐃᔭ ᖁᒪᖔᐱᒃ • Author Spotlight: Aija Komangapik

ᓴᖅᑭᔮᖅᑎᑦᑎᓂᖅ ᑎᑎᕋᖅᑎᓂᒃ: ᐊᐃᔭ ᖁᒪᖔᐱᒃ • Author Spotlight: Aija Komangapik

ᖁᕕᐊᓱᒃᐳᒍᑦ ᓴᖅᑭᑎᑦᑎᔪᓐᓇᕋᑦᑕ ᓄᑖᓂᒃ Inhabit Education-ᒃᑯᓄᑦ ᐅᖃᓕᒫᒐᓕᐅᕈᔾᔨᖃᑦᑕᖅᑐᓂᒃ ᐃᓕᓴᖅᓯᓂᕐᒥᒃ! ᐅᐱᒍᓱᒃᐳᒍᑦ ᓴᖅᑭᔮᖅᑎᑦᑎᔪᓐᓇᕋᑦᑕ ᑖᒃᑯᓂᖓᒐᓚᒃ ᐱᒃᑲᒻᒪᕆᐊᓗᖕᓂᒃ ᐃᓄᖕᓂᒃ ᑎᑎᕋᖅᑎᐅᔪᓂᒃ ᐱᓕᕆᖃᑎᒋᖃᑦᑕᖅᑕᑦᑎᓐᓂᒃ. ᐅᕙᓂ ᐃᑭᐊᖅᑭᕕᒃᑯᑦ ᓴᖅᑭᑎᖃᑦᑕᖅᑕᑦᑎᓐᓂᒃ, ᖃᐅᔨᔪᓐᓇᖅᐳᑎ ᑖᒃᑯᐊ ᑎᑎᕋᖅᑎᑦ ᑎᑎᕋᕐᓂᕆᖃᑦᑕᖅᑕᖏᓐᓂᒃ, ᖃᓄᕐᓗ ᐃᓱᒪᓕᐅᖃᑦᑕᕐᓂᖏᓐᓂᒃ, ᐱᓕᕆᐊᖏᑕᓗ ᐊᓯᖏᓐᓂᒃ.

We're thrilled to share a new edition of the Inhabit Education Books' Author Spotlight series! We are proud to shine a spotlight on the many creative and talented Indigenous authors and contributors on our team. In these blog posts, you’ll learn about each author’s writing process, the inspiration behind their work, and more.

ᐅᓇ ᓴᖅᑭᔮᖅᑎᑦᑎᓂᖅ ᑎᑎᕋᖅᑎᓂᒃ ᐊᐱᖅᓱᕐᓂᐅᕗᖅ ᐊᐃᔭ ᖁᒪᖔᐱᖕᒥᒃ, ᐅᓂᒃᑳᓕᐅᖅᓯᒪᔪᕐᒥᒃ ᓇᓴᕋ ᒥᑭᓗᐊᖅᑐᖅ!

This Author Spotlight features an interview with Aija Komangapik, the author of the adorable new storybook My Hood’s Not Big Enough!
My Hood's Not Big Enough

ᐊᐃᔭ ᖁᒪᖔᐱᒃ ᒪᒃᑯᒃᑑᕗᖅ ᑎᑎᖅᑯᒐᖅᑎ/ᐊᒥᐊᖅᑎ ᓴᓇᖃᑦᑕᖅᑐᓂᓗ ᐃᓄᖕᓄᑦ ᓱᕈᓯᕐᓄᑦ ᑐᖄᖓᔪᓂᒃ ᑭᐱᙳᐃᔭᐅᑎᒃᓴᐅᓪᓗᒋᑦ ᑕᑯᒥᓇᖅᑐᓕᐅᕐᓂᖓᒍᑦ. ᐃᓅᓯᒪᕗᖅ ᐱᕈᖅᓯᒪᓪᓗᓂ ᐃᖃᓗᖕᓂ ᐊᒻᒪᓗ ᓅᓚᐅᖅᓯᒪᕗᖅ ᑯᐸᐃᖕᒧᑦ. ᓴᓇᓯᒪᕗᖅ twitter-ᒃᑯ ᑎᑎᖅᑲᓄᑦ ᐃᓕᔭᒐᕐᓂᒃ ᑲᓇᑕᒥ ᓄᓇᖃᖅᑳᓯᒪᔪᑦ ᑕᖅᑭᖓᓂ ᐊᑐᒐᒃᓴᓂᒃ ᐊᒻᒪᓗ ᓵᓚᒃᓴᖅᓯᒪᕗᖅ 2019-ᒥ ᓄᓇᖃᖅᑳᖅᓯᒪᔪᑦ ᑕᑯᒥᓇᖅᑐᓕᐅᕐᓂᕐᒧᑦ ᐅᓂᒃᑳᓕᐅᕐᓂᕐᒧᓪᓗ ᓵᓚᒃᓴᕋᓲᑎᒥᒃ Historica Canada-ᒃᑯᓐᓂᑦ ᑎᑎᖅᑐᒐᓚᐅᖅᑕᖓᓄᑦ “ᕿᓚᐅᔾᔭᖅᑎ”, ᖃᕆᓴᐅᔭᒃᑯᑦ ᑎᑎᖅᑐᒐᐅᑎᒧᑦ ᓴᖅᑭᔮᖅᑎᑦᑎᓪᓗᓂ ᐊᒥᐊᑦᑎᐊᖅᓯᒪᔪᓂᒃ ᐊᐅᓚᙳᐊᖅᑐᓂᒃ. ᓴᓇᒐᔪᖕᓂᖅᐹᕆᕙᐃᑦ ᑕᑯᒥᓇᖅᑐᓕᐅᕐᓂᖅ ᒥᑭᑦᑐᓂᒃ, ᒥᖅᓱᖅᐸᒃᑐᓂᓗ, ᐊᒻᒪᓗ ᐅᖃᓕᒫᕈᒻᒪᐅᕗᖅ ᐅᖃᓕᒫᒐᕐᓂᒃ ᐱᔪᓐᓇᖅᑕᓕᒫᖏᓐᓂᒃ.

Aija Komangapik is a young aspiring artist who hopes to entertain and inspire other Inuit children through her art. She was born and raised in Iqaluit until she moved to Quebec. She was the designer for the Canadian Indigenous History Month emoji for Twitter and won the 2019 Indigenous Arts and Stories contest from Historica Canada for her piece “Drum Dancer”, a digital image that showcases her fluid style and bright colourful choices. Most of her time spent is used to create small crafts, sewing, or reading whatever she can get her hands on.

ᑐᑭᓯᒋᐊᕈᓐᓇᖅᐳᑎ ᐊᐃᔭᒥᒃ ᐊᐱᖅᓱᖅᑕᐅᑎᓪᓗᒍ!

Learn more about Aija in our Q&A below!

ᓇᑭᑦ ᐅᓇ ᐅᓂᒃᑳᓕᐊᕆᓯᒪᔭᐃᑦ ᓇᓴᕋ ᒥᑭᓗᐊᖅᑐᖅ ᐱᓯᒪᕙ? • What inspired you to write My Hood’s Not Big Enough?

ᑎᑎᖅᑐᒐᖃᑦᑕᕋᒪ ᕿᑲᑦᑎᐊᕈᒪᙱᓕᕌᖓᒪ ᐊᒻᒪᓗ ᐱᓕᕆᐊᒃᓴᖃᙱᑦᑕᕌᖓᒪ. ᑕᐃᒪᐃᑦᑐᖓ ᐋᓯᑦ ᑎᑎᖅᑐᒐᓚᐅᖅᐳᖅ ᑎᕆᒐᓂᐊᙳᐊᑯᓗᖕᒥᒃ ᐊᓈᓇᙳᐊᕐᒥᒃ ᕿᑐᕐᖓᖏᑦ ᐊᒥᓲᓗᐊᒧᑦ ᓇᓴᖓᓂᑦ ᑲᑕᒐᐃᙳᐊᓕᖅᑐᒥᒃ, ᑎᔅᓯᒋᓚᐅᖅᐸᕋᓗ. ᑎᑎᖅᑐᒐᖅᑕᕋ ᐅᖃᙳᐊᖅᑎᓚᐅᖅᐸᕋ, “ᐋ! ᓴᓇᕋ ᒥᑭᓗᐊᖅᐳᖅ!” ᑕᕝᕙᙵᐅᓂᒃᑳᓕᐊᕋ ᐱᒋᐊᓚᐅᖅᐳᖅ.

I am always drawing and doodling when I have difficulty concentrating or if I have nothing to do. One day I drew a little fox mother with her babies tumbling out of her hood, and I laughed. I drew her saying, "Ah! My hood’s not big enough!" The story just sprang out of that.

ᓱᓇᒥᒃ ᑐᑭᓯᕚᓪᓕᖁᕕᒋᑦ ᐅᖃᓕᒫᕐᓂᐊᖅᑐᑦ ᕿᒥᕐᕈᐊᒐᓕᐊᕆᓚᐅᖅᑕᕐᓂᑦ? • What do you hope readers will learn from your book?

ᓱᕈᓯᑦᑑᖅ ᐅᖃᓕᒫᕐᓂᐊᖅᑐᑦ ᑐᑭᓯᐅᒪᓕᕐᓂᐊᖅᐳᑦ ᐃᓐᓇᐅᒐᓗᐊᕈᕕᑦ ᓱᕈᓯᐅᒐᓗᐊᕈᕕ, ᓈᒻᒪᒃᐳᖅ ᐃᑲᔪᖅᑕᐅᔭᕆᐊᖃᕐᓗᓂ ᐃᑲᔪᖅᑕᐅᔪᒪᔭᕆᐊᒃᓴᖅ ᐃᓚᖕᓄᑦ ᓄᓇᖅᑲᑎᓐᓄᓪᓗ. ᓄᓇᖅᑲᑎᒌᑦ ᒪᑭᒪᑦᑎᐊᖅᑐᑦ ᐃᓄᙳᐃᓲᖑᕗᑦ ᐃᓄᖕᓂᒃ ᒪᑭᒪᑦᑎᐊᕈᓐᓇᖅᑐᓂᒃ.

I hope children learn that at any stage of life, it's okay to need help and ask for help from one's family and community. Strong communities raise strong people.

ᖃᓄᕐᓕ ᐃᓱᒪᕕᑦ ᓱᖕᒪᑦ ᐱᒻᒪᕆᐅᖕᒪᖔᑕ ᐱᓪᓚᑦᑖᙳᐊᖅᑐᓂᒃ ᐅᓂᒃᑲᐅᓯᖃᕐᓂᕐᒥᒃ ᓱᕈᓯᓄᑦ ᐅᖃᓕᒫᒐᕐᓂᒃ? • Why do you think representation is important in children’s literature?

ᐱᒻᒪᕆᐅᓱᒋᕙᕋ ᐱᓪᓚᑦᑖᙳᐊᖅᑐᑦ ᑭᒃᑯᑐᐃᓐᓇᐅᔪᓐᓇᕐᓂᖏᑦ. ᐃᓄᐃᑦ ᓱᕈᓯᑦ ᑐᑭᓯᐅᒪᔭᕆᐊᖃᖅᐳᑦ ᐅᓂᒃᑳᒥ ᐱᓪᓚᑦᑖᙳᐊᖑᔪᓐᓇᕐᒥᖕᒪᑕ ᐃᓄᐃᑦ. ᐃᓄᐃᑦ ᓱᕈᓰᑦ ᑐᑭᓯᐅᒪᔭᕆᐊᖃᖅᐳᑦ ᑕᒪᑐᒥᖓ. ᑭᒃᑰᓂᖏᑦ, ᐃᓕᖅᑯᓯᖏᑦ, ᐊᒻᒪᓗ ᐃᓅᑦᑎᐊᕈᓐᓇᐅᑎᖏᑦ ᐅᓂᒃᑳᒥ ᓴᖅᑭᔮᖅᑎᑕᐅᔪᓐᓇᖅᐳᑦ ᐅᓂᒃᑳᖑᓪᓗᐊᕐᓗᑎᒃ.

I think it's important that everyone can be a main character. Inuit children should know that they don't have to be side characters or background characters. Their ethnicity, culture, and morals are allowed to be centered in the plot.
My Hood's Not Big Enough illustration
ᓇᓪᓕᐊᑦ ᐊᓕᐊᓇᐃᒋᓛᕆᓚᐅᖅᐱᐅᒃ ᐅᖃᓕᒫᒐᕐᒥᒃ ᑎᑎᕋᖅᑎᓪᓗᑎᑦ ᑖᑉᓱᒥᖓ? • What was your favourite part of writing this book?

ᐊᓕᐊᓇᐃᒋᓛᕆᓚᐅᖅᑕᕋ ᑎᑎᖅᑐᒐᕐᓂᖅ! ᐅᖃᕈᓐᓇᖅᐳᖓ ᐅᓂᒃᑳᓕᐅᕐᓂᖅ ᐊᒃᓱᕈᕐᓇᕆᓂᖅᓴᕆᕙᕋ ᑎᑎᖅᑐᒐᕐᓂᕐᒥᒃ.

My favorite part was illustrating! I admit that I'm not as comfortable writing as I am talking or drawing.

ᓇᓪᓕᐊᑦ ᐊᒃᓱᕈᕐᓇᕆᓛᕆᓚᐅᖅᐱᐅᒃ ᐅᓂᒃᑳᓕᐅᖅᑐᑎᒃ ᑎᑎᕋᕐᓂᕐᒥᒃ? • What was the most challenging thing you had to overcome in the writing process?

ᐊᒃᓱᕈᕐᓇᕆᓛᕆᓚᐅᖅᐸᕋ ᐅᓂᒃᑳᓕᐅᕐᓂᕐᒥᒃ ᐱᕙᓪᓕᐊᙳᐊᕐᓂᖏᑦ. ᑎᑎᕋᕐᓂᖅ ᐅᓂᒃᑳᑉ ᑐᕌᖅᐸᓪᓕᐊᓂᖏᓐᓂᒃ, ᑎᑎᖅᑐᒐᖅᑐᒋᓪᓗ ᖃᓄᐃᓕᐅᙳᐊᓕᕐᒪᖔᑕ, ᑭᒃᑯᙳᐊᓪᓗ ᐊᑦᑎᖅᓱᖅᑐᒋᑦ ᐱᔭᕆᐊᑐᓗᐊᓚᐅᙱᑦᑐᑦ, ᑭᓯᐊᓂᓕ ᖃᓄᖅ ᐅᓂᒃᑳᖅ ᑲᑦᑐᖅᑕᙱᒍᓐᓇᕐᒪᖔᑦ ᐊᒃᓱᕈᕐᓇᓛᖑᓚᐅᖅᑐᖅ.

The most challenging part was just writing the story. Writing the plot points, drawing the actions, and naming the characters was easy, but making the story flow naturally was the most difficult.

ᑭᓱᒥᓪᓕ ᑭᖑᓪᓕᕐᒥᒃ ᐅᓂᒃᑳᓕᐅᕈᒪᕕᑦ? • What do you want to write about next?

ᑭᖑᓪᓕᕐᒥᒃ ᐅᓂᒃᑳᓕᐅᕈᒪᕗᖓ ᑐᕌᖓᔪᓄᑦ ᒪᒃᑯᒃᑐᕐᔪᐊᓄᑦ ᑳᒥᒃᕗᒃᕋᔭᐅᓗᑎᒃ ᐅᓂᒃᑳᖃᕐᓗᑎᒃ ᒪᒃᑯᒃᑐᙳᐊᓂ. ᑖᒃᑯᐊ ᐳᐃᒍᖅᑕᐅᒐᔪᓛᖑᖅᑰᔨᖕᒪᑕ ᐃᓄᐃᑦ ᐅᓂᒃᑳᓕᐅᕐᓂᖏᓐᓂᒃ, ᐱᓇᓱᒡᓗᒍ ᖁᕕᐊᓇᕋᔭᖅᑐᒋᕙᕋ.

I hope to write an older teen/young adult comic featuring Inuit youth. I feel like there is a gap in the market for Inuit literature aimed at our older youth, so it'd be fun to try to fill that.
My Hood's Not Big Enough illustration
ᐊᐃᔭᐅᑉ ᐅᖃᓕᒫᒐᓕᐊᕆᓯᒪᔭᖓ, ᓇᓴᕋ ᒥᑭᓗᐊᖅᑐᖅ, ᒫᓐᓇ ᓂᐅᕕᐊᒃᓴᐅᓕᖅᐳᖅ. • Aija’s new book, My Hood's Not Big Enough, is available now.
My Hood's Not Big Enough
ᓇᓴᕋ ᒥᑭᓗᐊᖅᑐᖅ • My Hood’s Not Big Enough
ᐅᓂᒃᑳᓕᐊᖑᔪᖅ ᑎᑎᖅᑐᒐᖅᑕᐅᔪᕐᓗ ᐊᐃᔭ ᖁᒪᖔᐱᖕᒧᑦ • Written and illustrated by Aija Komangapik
ᑐᕌᖓᔪᑦ ᐊᕐᕌᒍᓕᖕᓄᑦ: 3–5 • Ages: 3–5

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