Posted by: Kathy Temean | December 19, 2021

Book Giveaway: THIS IS YOUR WORLD: The Story of Bob Ross by Sophia Gholz

Sophia Gholz has written a new picture book, THIS IS YOUR WORLD: The Story of Bob Ross, Illustrated by Robin Boyden and published by Running Press Kids. They have agreed to share a copy with one lucky winner living in the United States.

All you have to do to get in the running is leave a comment. Reblog, tweet, or talk about it on Facebook with a link and you will get additional chances to win. Just let me know other things you do to share the good news, so I can put the right amount of tickets in my basket for you.

Sharing on Facebook, Twitter or reblogging really helps spread the word for a new book. So, thanks for helping Sophia and Robin.

If you have signed up to follow my blog and it is delivered to you everyday, please let me know when you leave a comment and I will give you an extra ticket. Thanks!


Discover the true story of iconic American painter and TV host Bob Ross in this official picture book biography.

Bob Ross continues to inspire young and old alike with his public television painting program, “The Joy of Painting,” almost 30 years after the show went off the air. Bob Ross fell in love with painting and wanted to inspire others to find joy in their happy accidents. Follow his footsteps toward becoming a TV painter icon in this delightful and reverent picture book biography of a gentle soul who loved painting and teaching others how to paint too.


I recall flipping through TV channels as a kid and pausing to watch Bob Ross deftly create a landscape in mere minutes. His skill seemed like magic. Needless to say, I was a fan from day one. So, when I received a call from my agent to discuss a picture book project about Bob Ross, I couldn’t contain my excitement!

When I started drafting This Is Your World, I wasn’t initially sure what angle to take to tell this story. I wrote a few possible opening scenarios, but nothing clicked right away. I completely scrapped my first few drafts and began to feel like I may have bitten off more than I could chew. That’s when I had to walk away from the project to let my mind settle and refocus.

In the meantime, I decided to watch some reruns of The Joy of Painting. As I was sucked into the gentle and calming world of Bob Ross, I realized I didn’t need an angle to tell his story. People fell in love with Bob for his approachable demeanor. In fact, most viewers who watched his show never painted. They simply watched for the relaxing effect Bob had on them. I realized if I wanted to tell this story, I needed to incorporate as much of that feeling into it the manuscript as I could.

I started reading through old transcripts of The Joy of Painting line by line to search for moments when Bob would share a personal story or memory of his youth and life. I jotted down page after page of notes. There was so much to discover! I love coming across surprises while researching new books. For this one, I was fascinated to learn about Bob Ross’s tough military persona and background. I felt like it was so relatable to have a career, while holding onto your passion. Inside this soldier, was a dreamer and an artist.

Writing a new book is often a long (and sometimes painful) process. But once the tone and mood clicked, the words started flowing on this manuscript, and they didn’t stop. Perhaps it was reading Bob’s quotes repeatedly that helped me along. But This is Your World was one of those rare manuscripts that felt like it came together naturally. As a writer, it’s magical when that happens. I felt the same way when I saw the first round of art from Robin Boyden. The art in the final book is almost identical to Robin’s lovely initial sketches. He was truly able to capture the essence of this book in art and I am in awe of that skill. I’m also happy that we incorporated so much color into the text and pages. While watching Bob paint, he was so enthusiastic about the colors themselves. I’d really hoped to capture as much of that as possible.

Bob Ross achieved a lot in art and entertainment. But what drew me most to his story was that he was considered a “late bloomer”. I love the idea that it’s never too late to begin pursuing your dreams, and that you can change the direction of your life any time you wish. I think this message of self-empowerment is one that Bob perpetuated continuously on his show and through teaching. He didn’t just speak these words, he seemed to live by them. I hope readers young and old find as much inspiration in Bob’s words and story as I have.


Sophia Gholz is an award-winning children’s book author, music lover, magic seeker and avid reader. She enjoys writing fiction with humor and heart. When writing nonfiction, she pulls on her love of science and her strong family background in ecology. Since 2017, Sophia has helped oversee the Henry L. Gholz SEEDS National Field Trip Endowment for The Ecological Society of America, funding ecological field experiences for students from diverse backgrounds. She is also a founding board member of, a nonprofit organization focused on early literacy initiatives. Previously, Sophia worked as an advertising copywriter and made a career working with visual artists in New York City.

When she’s not writing from her home base in Florida, you can find Sophia reading, visiting schools or exploring the great outdoors with her family. For more, visit Sophia at:




Facebook Author Page


Robin is a freelance illustrator based in Herefordshire in the West of England. In 2007 he graduated from University College Falmouth with a First Class Honours Degree and soon after completed a Masters in Art and Design.

Robin works in the picture book and middle grade fiction market and has previously worked as editorial illustrator. He has twice been selected for the AOI Images annual and has worked for numerous clients in the publishing and editorial sectors worldwide. His author/ illustrator debut ‘Gerald Needs A Friend’ came out in April 2021.

Since 2012, Robin has been represented by Charlie Bowden at Pickled Ink illustration agency.


Scholastic, Bloomsbury, Puffin Books, Francis Lincoln, David Fickling Books, Nosy Crow, Oxford University Press, Capstone Publishing, Wired Magazine, The Guardian, The Independent, The Times, Pearson Education, Haymarket, the Leonardo Da Vinci National Museum of Science in Milan, MEC Global, Kensington Palace, Kew Gardens, The Ride Magazine, BBC Focus Magazine, Appelberg Publishing, Running Press, UCLAN,

Twitter: @RobinBoyden
Instagram: @robin_boyden_fiction

Thank you Sophia for sharing your book and journey. So many of us grew up watching Bob Ross on TV. I love that you are introducing him to todays children and hope your book will inspire them to dabble in the fun and beauty of creating art. I know Robins illustrations will keep them reading. The illustrations are gorgeous. Good Luck with the book!

Talk tomorrow,



  1. I’m excited to read this and share with an art teacher friend!


  2. What a beautiful tribute to an amazing man and artist -congrats! 🙂


  3. Looks like fun. Bob has certainly inspired a lot of people in the last few years. Thanks for this.
    I’ve tweeted:, and shared: I also follow daily by email: crs(at)codedivasites(dot)com
    Thanks again, have a great holiday season everyone!!


  4. Looks like a wonderful story! Congratulations, Sophia and Robin! I posted this on Twitter and follow daily, Kathy. Great interview!


  5. I love the opening lines and the text is lyrical and I want to learn more about this creative person. I’m an email subscriber and shared:


  6. Sophia and Robin, this looks like a “happy” book! It’s the word that comes to mind when I think of Bob Ross. I absolutely loved everything he did and learned a lot from watching him. Of COURSE I’d love the chance to win this beautiful book 😀 ❤ Sharing!


  7. Oh – I’d LOVE to share this book with elementary students when I sub for the art teacher! They’d love it! When I sub for the art teacher, I always try to tie literacy into the lesson.


  8. What a fun subject for a book. I have some real Bob Ross fans in my family who would love to read this. Thanks for the post. I subscribe to your blog by email.


  9. Congratulations, Sophia! You know how much I love this book, and I’m definitely a late bloomer. Kathy, I’m a subscriber and will share on Twitter. Laura Roettiger


  10. I shared the link on Twitter.


  11. This sounds like a great book and I can’t wait to read it!


  12. What a great person to spotlight!


  13. This new biography sounds fabulous! Congrats, Sophia!


  14. I love that your passion lead you to learn more about Bob and produced a book born out of wonder and love. I remember watching him just because he made me feel calm and better. He made painting look so easy. I always thought only painters watched the show. This book has much more I’d love to know about. I have commented, RT, subscribe to Writing & Illustrating email, am following Kathy, and will follow Sophia as soon as Twitter lets me follow more people. PLEASE enter me in the drawing for this book. I will even wear my Bob Ross Tee Shirt to read it! congrats to all involved making this book. Stay well! Happy Holidays all!✌🏼💝🎶🎨📚🌻


  15. What an excellent idea for a picture book!


  16. So lovely! What a treat to learn how you discovered all the little details of Bob’s life. When I was ten I was gifted my first easel, and it was all because of The Joy of Painting. I still have some of my original paintings with their happy clouds and fan brush trees. I’ll definitely be sharing this on Twitter for a chance to win a copy!


  17. Looks like a fun way to read about the life of Bob Ross! Congratulations Sophia and Robin!


  18. Too awesome! So many people in my family have loved watching Bob Ross! Can’t wait to read this! Congrats!

    I follow by email and I tweeted this post, Kathy.


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