Mining for Heart: “The Battle Within” by Elizabeth Brown

Elizabeth Brown found the heart of her story by examining how her character overcame obstacles. What pulled her through? How did that perseverance manifest itself? Then, how could the author thread that through her story for children? Today we dig deep into DANCING THROUGH FIELDS OF COLOR: THE STORY OF HELEN FRANKENTHALER by Elizabeth Brown, illustrated … More Mining for Heart: “The Battle Within” by Elizabeth Brown

Behind the Scenes: Jo Ann Allen Boyce, Debbie Levy, and This Promise of Change

What an honor to have a “Behind the Scenes” guest post from Jo Ann Allen Boyce, and Debbie Levy on how they teamed up to create THIS PROMISE OF CHANGE: ONE GIRL’S STORY IN THE FIGHT FOR SCHOOL EQUALITY (Bloomsbury Children’s Books, 2019)! Jo Ann Allen Boyce, a retired pediatric nurse and sometime jazz singer, lives in … More Behind the Scenes: Jo Ann Allen Boyce, Debbie Levy, and This Promise of Change

Behind the Scenes: “Knowing the Why, Finding the How”

Got the luck o’the Irish this month with an extra guest post! In anticipation of her debut picture book bursting into the world on March 19, Elizabeth Brown shares a bit of the story behind the book: DANCING THROUGH FIELDS OF COLOR: THE STORY OF HELEN FRANKENTHALER by Elizabeth Brown, illustrated by Aimee Sicuro (Abrams … More Behind the Scenes: “Knowing the Why, Finding the How”

Mining for Heart: “Knowing When to Stop” by Mara Rockliff

I am such a fan of Mara Rockliff’s books: MESMERIZED, GINGERBREAD FOR LIBERTY, AROUND AMERICA TO WIN THE VOTE, and soooo many more! Plus a few brand new ones! Thank you, Mara for sharing your process of “mining for heart.” Where should a story end? If your story—like many of mine—is a biography, the answer might … More Mining for Heart: “Knowing When to Stop” by Mara Rockliff

Mining for Heart: “The Metaphor” by Jessie Oliveros

Having experienced loved ones struggling with memory loss in my own family, Jessie Oliveros’ debut picture book, THE REMEMBER BALLOONS, really touched my heart. It’s clear that this story came straight from her own experience, but how does a writer convey an abstract concept like memory loss and make it comprehensible to children?   Thank … More Mining for Heart: “The Metaphor” by Jessie Oliveros

Behind the Scenes: Out-Takes from An Inconvenient Alphabet

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

Mining for Heart: “Plucking Heart Strings with Word Choice” by Vivian Kirkfield

Vivian Kirkfield has a really big year coming up in 2019! I had to nab her now to share her process of ‘Mining for Heart’ before she takes off on her trip hopping across the globe and gets too busy with multiple book launches! Thank you, Vivian, for your thoughts on heart as the emotional … More Mining for Heart: “Plucking Heart Strings with Word Choice” by Vivian Kirkfield

Mining for Heart: “Finding the Heart in Hardship” by Hannah Holt

Today I welcome author Hannah Holt who’s sharing her process of finding the heart of her debut picture book THE DIAMOND & THE BOY. What could be more appropriate for this series based on a “mining” metaphor than a story of diamonds! Thank you, Hannah! In one of my early drafts for The Diamond & … More Mining for Heart: “Finding the Heart in Hardship” by Hannah Holt