Behind the Scenes: “Subverting Expectations with a Nonfiction Narrator” by Henry Herz

Bringing nonfiction topics to kids can entail challenges but also can invite creative approaches. Henry Herz took on an unlikely topic—smoke—and made it a character. Read on to learn how he used a narrator as a fictional element to share science, culture, and more. After reading I AM SMOKE, you’ll probably never think of smoke … More Behind the Scenes: “Subverting Expectations with a Nonfiction Narrator” by Henry Herz

Mining for Heart: “A Difference of Color” by Larry Dane Brimner

Sometimes, a story idea won’t let go, but, like Larry Dane Brimner, until I connect on an emotional or experiential level that hits me in the heart, it won’t become a story. Here, Larry shares how he found his way into his latest book: Without Separation: Prejudice, Segregation, and the Case of Roberto Alvarez, releasing Sept. … More Mining for Heart: “A Difference of Color” by Larry Dane Brimner

Countdown to the RESTLESS WRIGGLE!

One month until TAD LINCOLN’S RESTLESS WRIGGLE gets loose! Expect PANDEMONIUM. Hope for PATIENCE.   Discover 1863 IN THE PRESIDENT’S HOUSE! School is starting, and kids everywhere are getting to know each other. So let’s get to know Tad Lincoln.  To view the BOOK TRAILER, download an EDUCATOR’S GUIDE, and learn more about TAD LINCOLN’S RESTLESS … More Countdown to the RESTLESS WRIGGLE!

Mining for Heart: “Logline as Lifeline for Whole Whale” by Karen Yin

I know too well that loglines can be pure torture. All the essential pieces of story have to be there. I absolutely love Karen Yin’s post about her process using the logline to guide her writing—pure gold! Read on to see how her debut picture book, WHOLE WHALE, came to be. AND don’t miss the … More Mining for Heart: “Logline as Lifeline for Whole Whale” by Karen Yin

Behind the Scenes: “Working with Experts to Verify Information in Back Matter” by Debra Shumaker

One of the challenges with nonfiction, whether a full manuscript or elements within an otherwise fictional story, is vetting. Sounds easy, right? Well, sometimes that little fact check turns into its very own rabbit hole and swallows up a huge chunk of time. I’ve been there! Here, Debra Shumaker shares her experience with one little … More Behind the Scenes: “Working with Experts to Verify Information in Back Matter” by Debra Shumaker

Freaky, Funky Fish: Odd Facts About Fascinating Fish

If you’ve ever thought that informational nonfiction might be dry….you need to see FREAKY, FUNKY FISH by Debra Shumaker and Claire Powell. My Perfect Picture Book Friday pick, this picture book will surely have your jaw dropping, smiles spreading, and awe popping at the wonders of nature. Come back next week when Debra Shumaker shares … More Freaky, Funky Fish: Odd Facts About Fascinating Fish

Exquisite: The Poetry and Life of Gwendolyn Brooks

Today, for Perfect Picture Book Friday, I’m sharing another favorite from the “BEST of 2020” lists. EXQUISITE: THE POETRY AND LIFE OF GWENDOLYN BROOKS truly is exquisite! Suzanne Slade is another favorite author who continually teaches me about the craft of writing picture books. Congratulations to Ruthie Kirk! You’ve won a copy of IS IT … More Exquisite: The Poetry and Life of Gwendolyn Brooks

Behind the Scenes: “Crafting Memory into Story” by Sandy Brehl

Sandy Brehl is one of those kid lit people who shares picture book love through thoughtful interviews and posts. I’m just one of many kid lit creators who is grateful for her support and honored to call her a friend. Here, Sandy shares how a memory kept calling her through time, finally resulting in her … More Behind the Scenes: “Crafting Memory into Story” by Sandy Brehl

Cover Reveal! Revolutionary Prudence Wright

With the Fourth of July around the corner, I thought it’d be a perfect time for a sneak peek and cover reveal for REVOLUTIONARY PRUDENCE WRIGHT: LEADING THE MINUTE WOMEN IN THE FIGHT FOR INDEPENDENCE. We all learn about Paul Revere’s ride and the battles at Lexington and Concord where the first shots of the Revolutionary War were … More Cover Reveal! Revolutionary Prudence Wright

Mining for Heart: “Heart in Action—Louder than Words”

With Father’s Day approaching, it seems fitting to celebrate a father who gave the gift of patience. “Heart in Action — Louder Than Words” Tad Lincoln was a boy of action. Lots of action. Endless Action. To the point he drove everyone around him crazy. Except his father. One father/son action had sparked my interest … More Mining for Heart: “Heart in Action—Louder than Words”