I was a kid blessed with a father who had a workshop—a section of the basement with work benches, tools, hardware, and LOTS of scraps! I could go down there to create, experiment, and “invent” (crude versions of things that had already been invented). I distinctly remember a stirring device I built with a crank … More Cover Reveal! Franz’s Phantasmagorical Machine
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!
Today, with release just ONE MONTH away, I share one of my own “behind the scenes” experiences with “SMELLY” KELLY AND HIS SUPER SENSES. Once I had gotten a whiff of the life of James Kelly, the first subway leak detective who had an extraordinary nose, I had to know more. I found only three … More Behind the Scenes: “He had me at ‘Rats’.”
166 years ago today, Elizabeth Jennings boarded a streetcar in New York City. She was in a hurry to get to church. But, when the conductor ejected her because of her race, too-late-for-church took a backseat to too-late-for-equality. Seven months later, the young school teacher sat in a Brooklyn courtroom, waiting for the white judge … More 166 years ago today, Elizabeth Jennings boarded a streetcar…
This is the second in a new series I hope to grow – about what goes on “behind the scenes” in writing for children. If you put together all the writing that’s done for a picture book, it would be enough for a novel. All the revisions. All the cuts. Ideas tried and dumped. Information … More Behind the Scenes: Out-Takes from An Inconvenient Alphabet
What a perfect time of year! What a perfect place! What a thrill to do my first school visit where my writing journey began – at Woodview Elementary School in Grayslake, IL! Last Friday, while visiting family in the area, I returned to the school where I attended 2nd through 5th grade, oh so long … More Of Home and Gratitude
I’m feeling very grateful. And I’ve got the perfect picture book to share. Open the cover and be welcomed into Cherokee culture for Perfect Picture Book Friday. Title: We Are Grateful, Otsaliheliga Written by: Traci Sorell Illustrated by: Frané Lessac Charlesbridge, 2018 Suitable for ages: 3-7 Themes/topics: Cherokee Indians, Native Americans, gratitude, culture Opening: Cherokee … More We Are Grateful, Otsaliheliga
“Listen and I’ll tell the tale
Of storing summer in a bale.” … More Hey, Hey, Hay!
In previous guest posts, other authors have written that the heart of the story is in the characters and their relationships. I agree. But when writing about real people from history using limited resources, it’s often a challenge to get to know them. When I’m digging for what makes an historical figure tick, I look … More Mining for Heart: Listen to Your Characters
In the beginning, there were three colors:
Yellows, Reds, and Blues. … More Mixed, A Colorful Story