Will Write for Cookies: Lori Degman PLUS Giveaway









Many of you know that I’m a lover of rhyme and a fan of rhyming picture books. So when Lori Degman agreed to participate in Will Write for Cookies, I was thrilled.

Lori Degman writes in rhyme, most of the time – but not always.  She is the award winning author of  1 Zany Zoo, illustrated by Colin Jack (Simon & Schuster, 2010 – Winner of the Cheerios New Author Contest, Illinois Reads featured title, and South Carolina Picture Book Award Nominee); Cock-a-Doodle Oops!, illustrated by Deborah Zemke (Creston Books, 2014 – International Literacy Association Honor Book); Norbert’s Big Dream, illustrated by Marco Bucci (Sleeping Bear Press, 2016); and the forthcoming Just Read (Sterling, 2018). Lori lives near Chicago – home of the World Champion Cubs! (She says she is sorry about the plug, but it’s been such a LONG wait!) 

Before we begin with the Q&A, I want to remind everyone that there will be a giveaway of Lori’s newest picture book, Norbert’s Big Dream, so please stick with us throughout the post and then leave a comment at the end. How about telling us what your biggest dream was when you were a kid.


Lori, I’m thrilled to welcome you to Picture Books Help Kids Soar!

ME: Who were your favorite authors/illustrators when you were a child?


My favorite picture book authors & illustrators were Dr. Seuss, Maurice Sendak, PD Eastman, William Steig, Shel Silverstein & Else Holmelund Minarik. 

ME: What do you know now that you wish you had known when you first started writing for children?


I first started writing before the Internet existed (I don’t like to brag, but I’m pretty old) so I’d never heard of SCBWI and I had no idea there was a whole kid-lit community out there.  I think, if I’d known about SCBWI, it wouldn’t have taken so long to get published – or maybe it would have, but I’d have had more fun along the way!


ME: Where do you like to write/draw – inside, outside, a special area in your home, on the computer, in a notebook?


I always write on my laptop – I type faster than I write and I don’t usually have trouble reading it later.  I flip-flopped my living and dining rooms and now my dining room table is by the front window, so I can look outside while I write.  I’ve become a bit of a Gladys Kravitz (the <40’s can look her up), but that’s part of the fun!

ME: When do you write – early morning, late in the day, middle of the night, on schedule, as the muse strikes?


I do my best writing in the morning – unless I’m totally inspired, then I can write anytime!  I still teach full-time (this is my last year!), so I do most of my original writing in the summer and on breaks and I mostly revise during the school year.  Sadly, I go for long stretches when I can’t get any writing done – but that’s going to change in June. 

ME: Why do you write for children?


The main reason I write for kids is to make them laugh and instill a love of books!  When my sons were young, I read to them all the time and they loved the funny books best.  I really wanted to write books I could read to them that would make them laugh! (unfortunately, they were in their 20s by the time my first book was published).  I love knowing there are kids reading my books and hopefully enjoying them! 


ME: Lori, if you have any thoughts or advice for aspiring writers, please share. As well as anything else you want to talk about that parents, educators, writers, librarians might want to hear.


My advice to aspiring writers is to join SCBWI, get into a critique group with writers whose opinions you value, write – write – write, and don’t give up!

My advice for parents and teachers is to let kids focus more on story-telling and less on the mechanics for their first drafts.  There’s always time to go back and clean things up!

Lori, thank you so very much…it’s been an honor to have you here!

And for all of you who want to find out more Lori and her wonderful books or get in touch with her:

Website – http://loridegman.com/loridegman.com/Home.html

Blog – http://loridegman.blogspot.com/

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/lori.degman

Twitter – https://twitter.com/LoriDegman

Okay friends…you know what they say…it’s not over until the cookie recipe is shared!


I’m not a good baker – I think it’s because I’m not precise enough, so the desserts I make are usually no-bake or things that don’t rely on precision.  The closest thing to a cookie that I make is called a Cheese Blintz Roll-up.  I make them every year for Thanksgiving and they’re gone in minutes!  I don’t have any pictures of them and I didn’t want to make a whole batch because I’d eat them all, so I found a picture that looks just like them on the website Amish365.com. 


Here’s the recipe:


1 8-ounce package of cream cheese, softened

1 egg yolk

¼ cup sugar

¼ tsp lemon juice

1 large loaf of white bread

1-2 sticks of butter

¾ cup brown sugar

2 teaspoons cinnamon


  1. Heat the oven to 350. Cut the crust off the bread and flatten the slices using a rolling pin.
  2. Combine the cream cheese, egg yolks, white sugar and lemon juice.
  3. Spread the mixture over each slice of bread and roll up the bread to enclose the filling.
  4. Combine the brown sugar and cinnamon in a bowl.
  5. Melt the butter and brush it on all sides of each roll and then roll them in the brown sugar-cinnamon mixture.
  6. Place the rolls on a cookie sheet and freeze for at least three hours. Cut logs into thirds after frozen and bake at 350 for 15-20 minutes. Serve warm.

OH MY GOSH! I’d make these immediately, but I am missing several of the ingredients…white bread, butter, cream cheese…not my usual fare…HOWEVER…I think I need to give this one a try…it sounds somewhat decadent, rich, and…perfect for a long night of revision.

And while I’m enjoying one of these treats with a cup of tea, I’ll be reading your comments and then Random.org will choose the winner of a copy of Norbert’s Big Dream. Don’t forget to share what YOUR biggest dream was when you were a kid.

Dear friends, thank you for spending your time with Lori and me…next week I’ll have another wonderful guest as I turn the spotlight on one of the debut picture book authors of 2017: Andrea Loney. Don’t miss it!

About viviankirkfield

Writer for children - Reader forever Mom of 3, educator, author of FOUR OTTERS TOBOGGAN: AN ANIMAL COUNTING BOOK (Pomegranate Press, 2019), PIPPA'S PASSOVER PLATE (Holiday House, 2019), FROM HERE TO THERE: INVENTIONS THAT CHANGED THE WAY WE MOVE (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2019), SWEET DREAMS, SARAH (Creston Books, 2019), picture book junkie, lover of travel, hiking, fly-fishing, cooking, and playing Monopoly with my 9-year old grandson.

Posted on January 21, 2017, in Author-illustrator interviews, Dessert recipe, Uncategorized, Will Write for Cookies and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 26 Comments.

  1. Terrific interview, Lori!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. All these great books, while still teaching — impressive! Watch out, world, when you retire! Great interview, Lori.
    My dream as a child was to make picture books 😊.

    Liked by 2 people

    • And aren’t we all lucky that your dream came true, Iza! Thanks for stopping by…there are many great books still to come from both of you wonderful ladies. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

    • I’m not a classroom teacher so I don’t have nearly the amount of prep and paperwork that they do! I really admire the hard work that goes into being a classroom teacher! I’m glad you followed your dream 🙂


  3. All her books look darling . . . with covers that just make you want to dive in!
    Her recipe also makes me want to dive in!)

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I am putting these books on my “must read” list- thanks so much for a great interview.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I loved Cock-a-Doodle Oops! and can’t wait to read Norbert’s Big Dream. It sounds like a great story.

    I am not much of a baker either. It’s not that I’m not good at it, I just don’t like baking (which is probably because I don’t like things that are too sweet.But I do love cinnamon so your recipes sounds tasty as well as quick and easy.) Thanks.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m glad you like Oops and hope you like Norbert too! The roll-ups are pretty sweet, so I’d cut back on the sugar, if you make them.


  6. I’ve recommended Norbert’s Big Dream to my library. Can’t wait to see all the wonderful books Lori will write when she can devote more time to writing.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks so much for promoting Norbert! I hope more writing time will equal more books being published! I still need to get an editor to bite 🙂


  7. I can’t wait to read this one. It sounds fun. =)

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Thank for introducing us to Lori, Vivian. I see she has written a few interesting books. I’m also fond of books that give us a giggle, so I’l be checking these out.
    Enjoy your final year of teaching, Lori. I assume there’ll be more time for writing then!


  9. Thanks, Lori and Vivian, for this nice interview. I also have a bit of a Gladys Kravitz situation going on with my front window desk. Norbert looks so cute and I can’t wait to read it.

    My dream as a small child was to grow up to be a monkey. Honestly. I practiced jumping and swinging all day and refused to eat anything but bananas. My first career was as an actor, so pretty close.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Great interview, Vivian! I look forward to reading Lori’s books … off to request them from my library! 🙂 Delish recipe too!


  11. I wasn’t about to miss this interview! I even marked my calendar. I got a chuckle out of the Gladys Kravitz comparison. I hadn’t drawn the connection until now as to why I’ve done the same with my dining room table and laptop. But a serene view (and sometimes a blank wall) sure do help the writing process along. Lori, I’m looking forward to meeting you at The Anderson’s Children’s Literature Breakfast next month.


  12. Great interview, Vivian. I love Lori’s books. Lori, I hope your last year of teaching is as meaningful as the first. Thanks for devoting your careers (teacher and writer) to kids! I’ve dreamed of being a writer (of funny things, too!) since I was a kid.


  13. What a wonderful interview. Lori’s books are now on my to read list, and I’m looking forward to some great stories, a hot cup of coffee, and those wonderful Cheese Blintz Roll-ups.


  14. Lori is one of my favorite authors! Great interview, and the Blintz Roll-ups look yummy!


  15. I think Lori and I are picture book soul mates! Truely! I admire her talent so much, her books make me laugh, and she’s just as delightful as her books!
    Thanks for the great interview, Lori and Vivian 🙂


  16. Oh my how did I miss this! Great interview and two of the loveliest ladies. I admire anyone that can write in rhyme. Lovely post.


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