Behind the Scenes: “Collaborating with an Illustrator” by Andrea Wang

Andrea Wang’s new picture book, WATERCRESS, has been all over the news recently. It’s an outstanding book in every way, a collaboration of skilled, sensitive, extraordinary book creators. I wish I’d had this book when I had a classroom full of English language learners from around the world with their myriad of experiences. Here Andrea … More Behind the Scenes: “Collaborating with an Illustrator” by Andrea Wang

Behind the Scenes: “Best Practices for Reaching Out (or Not!) to Biography Subjects” by Emma Bland Smith

Inquiring minds want to know the answers to all these frequently asked questions! Thank you, Emma Bland Smith, for addressing these issues! Nonfiction writers, biography writers, parents, educators, librarians, and readers—dig in. I’ll bet you all find something of interest here.  Emma is offering a GIVEAWAY, too! Just leave a comment below for a chance … More Behind the Scenes: “Best Practices for Reaching Out (or Not!) to Biography Subjects” by Emma Bland Smith

Behind the Scenes: “How Waiting Saved My Writing Career” by Kirsti Call

Welcome, Kirsti Call! Thank you so much for sharing this essential part of the path to publication! Waiting is hard. So hard. And after experiencing rejections, even harder. But…patience can make all the difference.  If you’d like a chance to win a copy of COW SAYS MEOW, just leave a comment after the post to … More Behind the Scenes: “How Waiting Saved My Writing Career” by Kirsti Call

Behind the Scenes: “Connecting the Past to the Present with Back Matter” by Colleen Paeff

When I saw the title of this book, I had to know more! A story about stinks? Right up my alley! Or should I say “Smelly” Kelly’s subway tunnel! 😁 Back matter is a chance for authors to present all sorts of ideas. Here, Colleen Paeff shares how she used back matter to connect the … More Behind the Scenes: “Connecting the Past to the Present with Back Matter” by Colleen Paeff

Behind the Scenes: “Kid Friendly Facts” by Chana Stiefel

Facts can be loads of fun. But often they’re dropped in as info dumps. And many times dates, places, sizes, costs and such don’t hold much meaning for kids. So what does an author do with all those fascinating facts? Chana Stiefel sorted through them and found a way to bring the ones vital to … More Behind the Scenes: “Kid Friendly Facts” by Chana Stiefel

Behind the Scenes: “BACK MATTER? How a Character-Driven Picture Book Became Informational Fiction,” by Julie Rowan-Zoch

It’s such a pleasure to share critique partner Julie Rowan-Zoch’s debut picture book as author/illustrator! What fun to see this story develop over time, and, as the die-hard nonfiction person in our local critique group, so cool to see the nonfiction element grow stronger and even inspire back matter! Thank you, Julie, for sharing how … More Behind the Scenes: “BACK MATTER? How a Character-Driven Picture Book Became Informational Fiction,” by Julie Rowan-Zoch

Behind the Scenes: “Mining Your Mentor Texts” by Lindsey McDivitt

Mining is a perfect metaphor to talk about using mentor texts because mentor texts can offer gems of all sorts for a writer. Thanks to Lindsey McDivitt for drilling down into how she used mentor texts as aids for writing as she tackled a bio on Nelson Mandela.  AND thank you, Lindsey for offering a … More Behind the Scenes: “Mining Your Mentor Texts” by Lindsey McDivitt

Behind the Scenes: “Where and When?” by Susan Kusel

Today we get a peek into the process of taking a classic story and changing it up with a different time and place. Thank you, Susan Kusel, for sharing your meticulous research process for THE PASSOVER GUEST!  AND thank you for offering a GIVEAWAY! Leave a comment after the post for a chance to win … More Behind the Scenes: “Where and When?” by Susan Kusel

Behind the Scenes: “Prompts Can Spark Stories” by Rosie Pova

Have you ever wondered if an idea sparked by a prompt can result in a publishable story? Well, here’s your answer! Thank you, Rosie Pova, for sharing the process of shaping SUNDAY RAIN from the spark of a prompt.  Rosie is offering a swag giveaway x 3! Just leave a comment below for a chance … More Behind the Scenes: “Prompts Can Spark Stories” by Rosie Pova

Behind the Scenes: “Finding Focus” by Keila Dawson

After 2020 and all the challenges faced, I’m sure you’re all itching to hit the road to get out and explore. That wasn’t always as simple for everyone as it is today.  Keila Dawson’s new book, OPENING THE ROAD: VICTOR HUGO GREEN AND HIS GREEN BOOK, opens our eyes to a time when African Americans … More Behind the Scenes: “Finding Focus” by Keila Dawson