My apologizes readers, it has been way too long since my last post. The good news- I have lots to talk about.
Items for post:
Q new illustrator
SCBWI Oregon 2018 Conference
A new review system for PB’s
The coming of the Summer drag
So, let’s get right to it…
My second picture book Q has been stalled for a year. But now, with a new path forward it seems that Q will be shared with the world Spring 2019.
Meet the illustrator for this important new voice for kids who struggle with theirs-
The amazing and lovely Anni Becker. You can find out more about her here. I am excited to be working with her. She exudes heart and light and I am very much looking forward to what her bright spirit will bring to the words of the story.
Now, the Oregon SCBWI Conference.
First of all- a massive shout out to my critique partners- Carol Zink (your heart and support is so cherished), Jamie Lynn Schultz, Maria Marshall, roommate extraordinaire Sandy Bohman, Cindy Droker and the lovely Elaine Asaidali. You all really made my going to this event possible, enjoyable and magical.
Second- Vanessa Bradley-Newton, I still get goosebumps thinking about her presentation, presence and heart. How she shared all of that with all of us and still beamed with love and energy at the end of the weekend I’ll never know. But she did, and I will have lots more to say about her in future posts.
Third- Illo notes. So, one of the agents, Natascha Morris ofBookEnds Literary stirred the pot by mentioning-several times-that she LOVES illo notes. Readers/writers, she is NOT the norm on this. When submitting, do your research. Be sure that what you send includes and leaves out illo notes. Personally, as a writer, I love putting them in (when they are necessary and succinct), but many do not.
Fourth- I learned about the Jump Start Book Program during agent Stefanie Sanchez Von Borstel’s session. I am excited to explore 2018’s choice, Maybe Something Beautiful by Isabel Campoy and Theresa Howell, illustrated by Rafael Lopez. I am also excited to pair up with my daughter’s school Librarian and bring this “community of art” to life in their halls next year.
Fifth- People to follow on Instagram/Twitter
Brent Taylor- https://twitter.com/btaylorbooks
Lauren Spieller- https://twitter.com/laurenspieller
Naomi Hughes- https://twitter.com/NaomiHughesYA
Penny Moore- https://twitter.com/precociouspenny
Sixth- I am still digesting everything. I am sure I will have more to post about the weekends events. Now on to an idea I had while at the conference. A new review/rating system for Picture Books. There is always a lot to say about books. Especially when reviewing them. But, a review for me boils down to 5 points. So, my plan is to review at least three books a week using my new system. I will post these reviews on the page on FB as well as on Twitter. You can find links to those pages FB-HERE and T-HERE.
Now on to those important FIVE things that make up what I am calling The CHESH Review:
The CHESH Score a 1-5, 1 low-5 high scale for:
Crave- Do I want to read it over and over again?
Heart- Does this book have good story?
Eyes- Is the art magic?
Soul- Did this book inspire, stir emotions?
Head- Is it written well?
The first book reviewed using this system was After the Fall by Dan Santat.
The second was
Lines by Suzy Lee, 2017
Though “wordless” this picture book transports you into Suzy Lee’s created world. I can’t just give a number for “Eyes” here. Simply stunning this book embodies magic of the highest wizardly level.
Now onto the SUMMER DRAG-
I have an amazing daughter, she is 8 now. And she just happens to be a child with some special needs. Summers are hard for me as a writer, lovely for me as a mom. Sitting down after an entire day teaching and being with your kid is not a luxury I often indulge in during the summer months, I am usually too tired, BUT, I do try.
This summer my plan is to continue writing (I know I am not alone in this). My goal- 3 new PB manuscripts written and in a phase of editing.
Do I think I will be able to write another novel this summer, no. But, it could happen. Instead of writing a new one I will continue to focus on editing the one I currently have. I am always looking for readers, so if you are up for a YA historical fiction read, please contact me.
I think that will have to be all for now. More soon. More on the SCBWI Oregon Conference, Vanessa Bradley Newton and more reviews.