It’s Time for Halloweensie and Picture Book Month!

Knock, knock!

Who’s there?


Boo, who?

Don’t cry! It’s time for Susanna Hill’s 5th Annual Halloweensie Contest!

friendly jackolanternCourtesy Google Images

That’s right—the contest runs from today till Friday…so there is still plenty of time to participate. Here are some of the rules from Susanna’s post.

The Contest: write a 100 word Halloween story appropriate for children (title not included in the 100 words), using the words costume, dark, and haunt.   Your story can be scary, funny or anything in between, poetry or prose, but it will only count for the contest if it includes those 3 words and is 100 words (you can go under, but not over!) Get it? Halloweensie – because it’s not very long and it’s for little people. 🙂 (And yes, I know 100 words is short but that’s part of the fun and the challenge! We got over 130 fantastic entries last year so I know you can do it!) Also, you may use the words in any form – e.g. haunt, haunts, haunted, darkness, darkening, costumed, whathaveyou 🙂 No illustration notes please!

For more details, please click here:

I love this contest—all of my previous entries have been rhyming, so I thought I would change it up a bit this year. I hope you enjoy my story. And when you finish reading it, please hop over to Susanna’s website where you will find many more Halloween tales.


Halloween Fever (99 words)


Philpot blew his nose. His eyes watered. His throat tickled. His skin flushed red with fever.

“Oh no!” he moaned. “Whoever heard of a red ghost?”

Never had Philpot missed going a-haunting on Halloween. Opening Wanda Witchner’s spell-book, he flipped to the ‘C’s’. Exploding CAKES. Flying CATS. Disappearing COLDS.

“Hocus Pocus Mucus Phlegm!”

Blink. No more watering.

Swallow. No more tickle.

Sniff. No more dripping snot. But his skin still glowed red.

“If magic won’t do the trick, I can use my imagination!”

And grabbing a white sheet as his costume, Philpot floated out into the dark night.


 I hope you enjoy my little Halloween tale…for many more incredible stories, please visit Susanna’s Halloweensie Contest page:

MORE GOOD STUFF – Please keep reading!

On Friday, I mentioned that November is a great month because of the PiBoIdMo Challenge. Well, there is another awesome picture book event coming up…Picture Book Month. Organized by author and literacy advocate Dianne de las Casas, this event is supported by everyone who loves picture books. Visit her website every day during November and be prepared to be inspired and informed with posts by: Sudipta Bardan-Quallen, David Biedrzycki, Paulette Bogan, Mike Curato, Matthew Gollub, Julie Gribble, Julie Hedlund, Carter Highins, Molly Idle, Joe Kulka, Jennifer Gray Olson, Kathryn Otoshi, Anne Marie Pace, Rukhsana Khan, Robin Newman, Penny Parker Klostermann, Eric Litwin, Loren Long, Deb Lund, LeUyen Pham, Matt Phelan, Stephen Shaskan, Trisha Speed Shaskan, TJ Shay, Whitney Stewart, Holly Stone-Barker, Mo Willems, Natasha Wing, Matthew Winner, and Paula Yoo.


How lucky are we to have these incredible mentors sharing their love of picture books with us!

Thank you for stopping by. Your visit is much appreciated!

Dianne de las Casas – Will Write for Cookies







I connected with today’s Will Write for Cookies guest of honor because she shares my love for picture books. I had heard about Picture Book Month as I followed the blogs of writers, illustrators, educators and parents. A month devoted to picture books? What brilliant person had thought of that?

Dianne de Las Casas is an award-winning author, storyteller, and founder of Picture Book Month. Her performances, dubbed “revved-up storytelling” are full of energetic audience participation. The author of 24 books, Dianne is the International Reading Association LEADER 2014 Poet Laureate, and the 2014 recipient of the Ann Martin Book Mark award. Her children’s titles include The Cajun Cornbread Boy, There’s a Dragon in the Library, The Little “Read” Hen, The House That Santa Built, and Cinderellaphant.

When Dianne agreed to participate and share her thoughts with us, I was thrilled. There are lots of golden nuggets of inspiration and information that you will take away from this interview…and wait till you see her cookie recipe! So, without further ado…here’s Dianne! Continue reading

Check in – Check out – Check up: November Challenges

November appeared on the end of Halloween’s black cat tail…and it’s going to be a busy month!

Have you reached your writing goals so far this year?

jeremys first day at soccer made a goal 9_7‑13

Check-in: At the end of each month, Julie Hedlund requests that we check-in to let her know if we have completed a picture book draft as part of the 12×12 Challenge. I’m happy to say that I have! And please keep in mind that registration for 12×12 in 2014 is just around the corner. If you are looking to be inspired, motivated and encouraged in your picture book writing…THAT IS THE PLACE TO BE! This year, members at the Golden Book level had the opportunity to submit picture book manuscripts to ELEVEN awesome literary agents!

Check-out: I hope you will check out Susanna Leonard Hill’s blog because she will be announcing the FINALISTS in the Halloweensie Contest. There were almost 80 entriesclick here for her link up post to read some amazingly creative stories. Click here to read my submission: HALLOWEEN DANCE PARTY COUNTDOWN. I’ll add Continue reading