Donna M Maguire


I began writing children’s books without ever thinking of publishing them! After more than 35 years in the marketing profession, I left my consulting business and moved to Nevada to help care for my grandbabies. The change was driven by the loss of my nephew, whom I had raised as a son after providing hospice for his mother. Little did I realize that caring for my grandbabies would provide such an effective form of therapy and delight. Reading early and often to children not only makes for good times, it promotes bonding and nurtures the joy of reading, so I read to them often. Something amazing happened; my creativity and imagination were re-ignited. It seemed only natural to funnel this new-found energy into a long-term desire to write children’s books.

Since I initially created the books for a very select audience, i.e. my grandbabies, I set several goals for them including (1) promoting literacy by helping to nurture the joy of reading through humorous story telling, (2) providing a message of acceptance, love and friendship, not just for others but for themselves, and (3) igniting young readers’ natural curiosity for the world, the environment and the creatures that inhabit it along with us.

My Basset Hound Winston, Silly Willy Winston as I call him, was the perfect muse and unlikely hero for my books. He has the biggest ears ever, a stout frame, huge paws and a super large snout. He trips over his ears and paws which often makes him a bit of a clown. People laugh but he embraces their laughter as an invitation to make friends. If you ask me, he is the perfect role model for self-acceptance and empowerment. Winston’s traits – the way he uses them to his advantage – also make him an ideal character to help children recognize, understand and protect themselves and others against bullying.

After sharing the books with a child, parents can ask if the child ever feels as if he or she is different like Silly Willy Winston: what makes them different, how they feel about being different and what special powers or unique gifts the child gains from those differences? Whether or not the child feels different, Winston’s story can be used by parents to start a conversation regarding bullying. This gives parents the opportunity to discuss how some children may pick on others because of their differences. Once the dialogue is started, parents are able to address this sensitive issue and prepare their child to protect self and others against bullying through awareness, confidence and mutual respect.

Smashwords Interview

When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I care for my grand babies (20 months and 3 years old) three days a week, I walk Winston - AKA Silly Willy Winston - my muse and the unlikely hero of the children's book series, hike in the beautiful Nevada parks and volunteer for groups focusing on literacy.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
That's an easy question. The first book I ever wrote was "The Wacky World of Silly Willy Winston." I wrote this and the other four books in my series for my grand babies without planning on publishing them. It wasn't until a friend and author read them and told me I should publish them that I pursued becoming an independent author.
Read more of this interview.

Where to find Donna M Maguire online

Where to buy in print


BookBuzzr Interview with Donna Maguire, Author of the Silly Willy Winston Children's Book Series
Donna Maguire shares how she developed Silly Willy Winston's secret identities and the ideas for the stories


Silly Willy Winston in the Adventures of Pirate Snout - Mystery in the Desert and on the Seas
Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 4,470. Language: English. Published: February 26, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Action & Adventure / Pirates, Fiction » Children’s books » Imagination & Play
Silly Willy Winston throws his hearted and first mate Aiden a bandanna and wooden sword. He readies his nose and his snout, puts on his pirate hat and grabs his telescope - in an instant he becomes Pirate Snout. On this journey they discover a ship buried in the Mojave Desert and a pyramid under the sea. Come explore with us and see all that there is to discover on the seven seas.
The Adventures of Silly Willy Winston as Explorer Snout in a Tale of Two Deserts
Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 4,060. Language: English. Published: February 21, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Nature & the Natural World / Environment, Fiction » Children’s books » Imagination & Play
When Silly Willy Winston and his BFF LIVI set out on a journey Silly Willy Winston readies his nose and his snout. In a jiffy he becomes Explorer Snout. In this book they explore the Mojave and Gobi Deserts. They learn what creatures live there and how they survive. They also discover a rare bear that calls the Gobi its home.
Silly Willy Winston in the Adventures of Inspector Snout - The Case of the Missing Tadpole
Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 3,430. Language: English. Published: February 20, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Nature & the Natural World / Environment, Fiction » Children’s books » Imagination & Play
Silly Willy Winston takes on the secret identity of Inspector Snout to help his friend Billy find his missing tadpole. Much more than an open and shut case, Billy along with readers are taken on an adventure of discovery into the amazing world of metamorphosis as they learn that the tadpole is not missing -- just a bit different.
Silly Willy Winston in the Adventures of Super Snout - Have No Fear
Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 3,390. Language: English. Published: February 20, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Social Issues / New Experience, Fiction » Children’s books » Imagination & Play
Our steadfast friend and unlikely hero, Silly Willy Winston, throws on his cape and grabs his mask to take on his secret identity as Super Snout. While he does not leap tall buildings in a single bound, he helps friends understand shadows cast in the dark, climb tall high to their treehouse and more. His adventures help his friends over come fears and embrace new challenges.
The Wacky World of Silly Willy Winston - An ordinary pet with extraordinary adventures
Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 2,910. Language: English. Published: February 20, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Children’s books » Imagination & Play, Fiction » Children’s books » Social Issues / Friendship
Young readers will fall in love with Silly Willy Winston, a heart-warming Basset Hound whose traits, like his big ears and large snout make him a bit of a clown at times. But as they join him on his journey of self-discovery and acceptance they will admire and relate to him as he learns his unique characteristics are just the things needed to help his friends and have amazing adventures.

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