Interview with Author Carole Lindstrom— We Are Water Protectors

In anticipation of Earth Day tomorrow, I am grateful to celebrate Carole Lindstrom’s words of warning, encouragement, and hope. 

Carole is of Anishinaabe/Métis descent and is tribally enrolled with the Turtle Mountain Band of Ojibwe. Her book We Are Water Protectors, illustrated by the brilliant Michaela Goade, tells of the bravery and activism of one girl and her community as they fight against the “black snake” of oil pipelines built on Native lands. The story was inspired by the many Indigenous-led movements across North America, like the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe standing up against the Dakota Access Pipeline. Miigwech, Carole, for your activism and voice! 

If you’re looking for a way to support your local bookstores, authors and illustrators who released books during the pandemic, *and* celebrate Earth Day: 

  1. Find your favorite indie online, 
  2. Buy the book for yourself or someone you love, and 
  3. Spread the word. 

5 words that speak to your current state of mind:

Content, Optimistic, Grateful, Hopeful, Hungry – cuz I haven’t eaten breakfast yet. 🙂

You have shared how your story is inspired by the many Indigenous-led movements across North America, like the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe standing up against the Dakota Access Pipeline. What do you hope children take away from this story?

I hope that children will see this story as a call to action. That they can become Water Protectors and effect the well-being of the planet. I also hope that it will draw attention to the fact that we (Native Peoples) are still here and we are still fighting for the planet.

What is your favorite line from the book?

“We fight for those who cannot fight for themselves.”

I am struck by the fierce agency you give your child protagonist. What was your process of developing this justice-seeking character?

I just thought of myself and used me as the model for the character. This was all the things that I was thinking and feeling and through the character, I was able to coax them out onto the page. 

What is a meaningful moment in your journey of bringing this book to life?

Gosh, so many….but I would say one of the best was meeting my wonderful and amazing agent. And the fact that she saw what this story could be. 

I knew I wanted to be a writer when…

I was a kid and spent all of my extra time at the library down the street from my house. 

Who is your writer hero? 

Louise Erdrich

Plot or characters first?


Valued writing habit or quirk?

Having my baby of chocolate covered peanut butter filled pretzels beside me. 🙂

Do you have words of wisdom for aspiring writers?

Never, ever, ever give up! No matter how many rejections you receive. No matter how many naysayers you encounter on your journey. Always believe in yourself and keep honing and working at your craft. It will happen. 

What is giving you hope today?

Young people give me hope. They get it. They understand how important it is to save our planet and how dire the situation is. They give me hope. 

Is there anything else you’d like to share?

I am grateful for this opportunity to share a bit about me. Miigwech for allowing me this time and space. Be safe and well. 



We Are Water Protectors is published by Roaring Books Press and launched on March 17, 2020

Leave a Reply

  • (will not be published)