Look What Turned Up…

Posted by on Apr 7, 2017 in Book: Deadly Wish | 0 comments

IMG_8834…in my Easter basket–galleys for Deadly Wish! The bunny was here early this year!

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Maine Student Book Awards

Posted by on Mar 30, 2017 in Book: The Eureka Key, Reviews | 0 comments

The Eureka Key

The Eureka Key pops up on the Maine Student Book Award list! Loud jubilation! State awards are always particularly exciting because the actual kid readers get to actually vote, and it’s even better to be nominated in your own state. Maine readers, I salute you!

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Just Arrived!

Posted by on Mar 21, 2017 in Ancient Animals | 0 comments

IMG_8728An advance copy of Plesiosaur just arrived on my desk–along with a smashingly color-coordinated card from the staff at Charlesbridge. Exciting!

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From Ursula

Posted by on Mar 13, 2017 in Childhood, Children's Literature, Editing | 0 comments

381134Ursula Nordstrom edited and published some of the greatest writers and illustrators for children: Maurice Sendak, Shel Silverstein, Ruth Krauss, Garth Williams, Margaret Wise Brown, and many more. I like to look through her collected letters for joy and inspiration when the creative slog feels longer than usual.

In 1953 she wrote to Meindert Dejong:

“Did I ever tell you that, several years ago, after the Harper management saw that I could publish children’s books successfully, I was taken out to luncheon and offered, with great ceremony, the opportunity to be an editor in the adult department? The implication of course, was that since I had learned to publish books for children with considerable success perhaps I was now ready to move along (or up) to the adult field. I almost pushed the luncheon table into the lap of the pompous gentleman across from me and then explained kindly that publishing children’s books was what I did, that I couldn’t possible be interested in books for dead full finished adults, and thank you very much but I had to get back to my desk to publish some more good books for bad children.”

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Deadly Flowers Giveaway!

Posted by on Mar 9, 2017 in Book: Deadly Flowers, Educators & Librarians, Events, Ninjas, Promotion | 0 comments

Deadly Flowers

Twenty-four lucky libraries got a free copy of Deadly Flowers in a giveaway created by the awesome and entertaining Curious City. They also got a chance to try a great interactive game that uses the book to help readers find their way around the stacks. Here’s what some had to say:

“A perfect book for the age group about making decisions.”
“Excited about this book!”
“How cool is this kit? I can’t wait to use it for a back-to-school event!! :)”
“I already know my kids are going to be interested in this book! Thank you for this opportunity!”
“I can’t wait to play this game with the library tweens!”
“I have students who will LOVE this!”
“I know just the right students for this book!”
“I know some kids that would enjoy this book!”
“I think my students will love this book!”
“Kids will love this!”
“Looks like a great book for our library!”
“My students love this type of book.”
“Nice to see a female taking the lead in an action adventure.”
“Our middle school students in our after school students would love this book!”
“Sounds great for my middle schoolers!”
“Sounds like a book the kids (and I) will love!”
“Sounds like a Great MS read for my students & pre-service teachers!”
“Sounds like an awesome story for our middle school readers!”
“The activity kit looks great.”
“This is a great giveaway! We have a really active manga patronage, and I think this would be a great book to entice them to the traditional print format.”
“This looks like a great book club title. Thanks!”
“This looks like a really great book! Thanks for the opportunity to share it with my patrons.”
“This looks like a very interesting read and I think it would be a big hit in our library!”
“This sounds so interesting!”
“This would be a great book to feature this summer when we have free lunch and could spend all afternoon running a ninja school training!”
“This would be great for my ninja fans!”
“This would be great for our bookclub!”

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Ninjas In the Stacks!

Posted by on Feb 17, 2017 in Book: Deadly Flowers, Book: Deadly Wish, Educators & Librarians, Events, Japanese Demons, Ninjas, Promotion | 0 comments

IMG_2390-1024x768My awesome publicist, Kirsten Cappy of Curious City, has created a thrilling ninja activity for bookstores and libraries! Readers will become book ninjas as they use their wits and dexterity and perhaps a card catalog to uncover clues and solve puzzles and perform challenges. Great, fun, and active–fabulous for grades 5-10. Check it out!

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McArthur School

Posted by on Feb 6, 2017 in Educators & Librarians, Events, Race, School Visits | 0 comments

IMG_8597Last Friday I did a round of poetry workshops with some of the classes at a McArthur Elementary. I snapped a picture of this fabulous quilt hanging up in the main office.

I loved the energy and excitement of the kids as they listened to poems and tried writing their own. Especially the Asian girl who earnestly asked for the right English adjective to describe quick, happy, upbeat music (she was pleased with my suggestion of “lively”) and then proudly read her poem aloud in her tentative English; the Hispanic girl who wrinkled her nose a bit at my Spanish accent but still smiled at me to make sure she wouldn’t hurt my feelings; the Caucasian boy who squirmed throughout my presentation until I thought he was bored out of his skull and then blew me away with one of the best poems I’ve heard; the Middle Eastern girl who hugged me and said she could now check “hugging an author” off her bucket list.

It was lovely to see all these bright, eager, American face light up with joy to be talking about artwork and writing poems.

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