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A TON OF GIVEAWAY PRIZE NOTIFICATIONS

I must apologize, dear readers. We’ve had many giveaways in the past two months…but my life got crazy busy with travel planning for next year (more about that later) and I neglected to award the prizes. Plus, for some reason, Facebook is not letting me use my share button to post on my own page. I can share someone else’s posts. And I can post on anyone else’s page. And I can comment everywhere. But on my home page, the share button is disabled. If any of you more tech savvy people out there have any idea of what is going on, your input would be much appreciated!

I believe the last giveaway we awarded was a copy of Anna Redding’s GOOGLE IT! to Rosie Pova. I know Rosie received it already because she posted about it on Facebook. Rosie, I know you will love the book.

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So, the first giveaway today is from author/illustrator Emilie Boon…a copy of ELLA AND MONKEY AT SEA. And the winner is…CARMELA SIMMONS

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After that we have a copy of H IS FOR HAIKU written by Sydell Rosenberg and brought to the world by her daughter, Amy Losak. And the winner is…TRACY HORA.

H IS FOR HAIKU BOOK COVER PENNY CANDY BOOKS March 2018

Next is a critique by the talented Christy Mihaly, author of HEY, HEY, HAY. And the winner is…TINA CHO.

heyheyhay

Then we have a copy of MAXIMILLIAN VILLAINOUS  by Margaret Greanias. And the winner is…LISETTE CRUZ

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And last, but certainly not least, is Robin Newman’s hilarious NO PEACOCKS! 

And the winner is…Carol Gordon Ekster.

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CONGRATULATIONS TO ALL OF THE WINNERS! And a big thank you to all of the authors for writing these wonderful books and to the illustrators for bringing the stories to life with their pictures.

I’ll be connecting with all of you to make sure that you receive your books!

I truly appreciate you all coming to visit and read and comment. I’ll be skipping this week’s PPBF and WWFC, but I’ll be back with SIX STRAIGHT WEEKS OF AWESOME Debut Picture Books and Q&A’s with their authors. Heads up, everyone, because we’ve got:

AN INCONVENIENT ALPHABET by Beth Anderson

THE DIAMOND AND THE BOY by Hannah Holt

SCARLET’S MAGIC PAINTBRUSH by Melissa Stoller

SOPHIE AND LITTLE STAR by Amber Hendricks

TEACH YOUR GIRAFFE HOW TO SKI by Vivianne Elbee

ROCK AND ROLL WOODS by Sherry Hyberger Howard

You won’t want to miss any of these books!

Speaking of books…I’m blessed to have sold five manuscripts in the last couple of years. And those manuscripts are being made into books. And those books are soon to be published. I hope to have some cover reveal posts in next month or two. But I thought to myself, what could I do to celebrate this realization of a dream. And how could I best promote those books and spread the word far and wide.

Spread the word far and wide? Why not take a trip around the world? 

globe

So, this is the plan:

  1. I leave for Sydney on Februry 19th. (24+ hours of actual flight time) I’ll be presenting at the Australia/NZ conference and meeting up with several kidlit friends…plus my agent, Essie White, is the keynote speaker. 
  2. I fly to Auckland and will stay with one of my dearest critique buddies. And while I’m there, I will do a program for the regional NZ SCBWI.
  3. On March 19, I’ll hop another LOOONG flight (again over 24 hours of actual flight time) to Geneva where another wonderful critique buddy will pick me up and I’ll stay with her for a couple of weeks until…
  4. We train to Italy for the Bologna Book Fair where I hope to meet up with some of the wonderful editors who are publishing my books and another incredible critique partner.
  5. And after the conference, we’ll take day trips by train to Florence, Milan, and..
  6. Back to Boston on April 8.

Phew! And just to let you know…the #50PreciousWords Writing Challenge will still take place…I’ll be reading all of your wonderful stories while I’m in New Zealand. I’m already on the look-out for prizes for next year so, if you’d like to donate a critique or a seat in an online writing class, please FB PM me or email me at viviankirkfield@gmail.com.

But for this weekend…if you are in a state where the leaf colors change like here in New Hampshire, I hope you get to see them. And if you drive, please be safe. We’ll be heading up to Lake Winnipesaukee to cheer for my son and son-in-law as they compete in the Tough Mudder. And then on Sunday, we’ll head to Connecticut to spread some of Stuart’s ashes on the river where he loved to fish. A bittersweet weekend, for sure.

 

 

Perfect Picture Book Friday: OPERATION RESCUE DOG Plus GIVEAWAY

Friday is one of my favorite days and I’m sure you all know why. It’s the day I get to review a brand new picture book! Hurray!

And today’s selection is from one of my favorite kidlit authors, Maria Gianferrari, who is so generous and kind. She is offering a copy of OPERATION RESCUE DOG as a giveaway. Please make sure you leave a comment for a chance to win!

operation rescue dog 1

OPERATION RESCUE DOG

Written by Maria Gianferrari

Illustrated by Luisa Uribe

Published by Little Bee Books (September 2018)

Ages: 4-8

Themes:

Synopsis: From Amazon: 

This sweet story about a girl named Alma and a stray dog named Lulu shows how a girl and a dog can rescue each other.

Lulu’s ears flap in the wind

as the rescue truck rolls into the lot.

Lulu’s tail thumps—

Everything smells . . . new.

Lulu sleeps under the moon, drinking from mud puddles and is covered in ticks until she is rescued. She waits for the Operation Rescue Dog truck, scared and uncertain.

Alma misses her Mami, who is far away in Iraq. Alma wears Mami’s scarf around her like a hug. She wonders: Can a dog feel like a hug?

Why I like this book:

  • You’ve got a dog who needs a home and a little girl who needs a friend…that’s a formula for a book filled with heart…and I love books filled with heart.
  • Wonderful illustrations will keep the kids wanting to turn the page to see the next one.
  • Maria has such a wonderful understanding of dogs…and the relationship they have with people.

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RELATED ACTIVITIES:

Dog-Crafts-for-KidsPhoto courtesy: https://www.easypeasyandfun.com/dog-crafts-for-kids/

WOW…what a fabulous collection of dog crafts for young kids. If you’d like detailed instructions, please go here: https://www.easypeasyandfun.com/dog-crafts-for-kids/

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend. Autumn is definitely here…our leaves are already changing color and the temperature in the morning is decidedly crisp. I am fortunate to live in New England because the fall foliage is something many people travel here to see.

School is underway in just about every town and city…but this is a perfect season to do day or short weekend trips with the kiddos. Do you have any travel plans in the near future? My son is flying in from Chicago next week to participate in the Tough Mudder in Gilford, NH. What is a Tough Mudder you ask? Here a short video clip: https://toughmudder.com/events/2018-northeast

It’s a 10 mile race with 20 obstacles…like a slog through ice cold water (filled with ice cubes), a run between wires that have electricity going through them…and you…OUCH! As well as climbing up walls, swinging from rings and more! My daughter and I will definitely not be participating…only cheering him and her hubby on. And then the next day, we’ll be making a bittersweet drive to Connecticut to hold a tribute to my husband at the river where he fished for decades. 

And my writer friends…how is your writing life going? We are in the last quarter of the year…are you working on anything new? Revising manuscripts? I just finished a new story and just need to polish the author’s note (it’s another nonfiction pb) befoe I send it to my agent. And then…a new story! YAY! I just came back from visiting a dear friend in New Jersey. We stayed up late…talking for hours and hours. In fact, her husband was sure we would lose our voices. But we didn’t! And I came home with TWO fabulous story ideas that I can’t wait to start researching and writing.

Please don’t forget to leave a comment to be entered into the giveaway for a copy of Maria Gianferrari’s brand new book: OPERATION RESCUE DOG…it’s available for preorder and launches in just a few days!!!!

Robin Newman: Will Write for Cookies PLUS Giveaway

WILL WRITE FOR COOKIES

Plate of Cookies

INSIGHT – INFORMATION – INSPIRATION

FOR WRITERS

TODAY’S GUEST

head shot

ROBIN NEWMAN

I met today’s guest early on in my kidlit writing journey and was always impressed with her passion and determination.

Raised in New York and Paris, Robin is a graduate of Bryn Mawr College and the City University of New York School of Law. She’s been a practicing attorney and legal editor, but she prefers to write about witches, mice, pigs, and peacocks. She’s the author of the Wilcox & Griswold Mystery Series, The Case of the Missing Carrot Cake and The Case of the Poached Egg, and Hildie Bitterpickles Needs her Sleep. She’s a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, National Writing Project’s Writers Council, and the Bank Street Writers Lab. She lives in New York with her husband, son, goldfish, and two spoiled English Cocker Spaniels, who are extremely fond of Phil, Jim, and Harry.  

ME: Welcome, Robin! Thank you so much for stopping by to chat…and a big thank you for offering a copy of your awesome new picture book, NO PEACOCKS! as a giveaway. I know everyone is excited to learn more about you, so let’s get started.

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

 

ROBIN: I will seriously date myself but here goes:

 

  • Maurice Sendak—My twin sister and I grew up with Max and Pierre. By age 3, I’m pretty sure we knew every single word in The Nutshell Library. And we can still sing all the stories out of tune with some help from Carole King in the background;

 

  • Ludwig Bemelmans—We lived in Paris when we were kids and fantasized about going to school with Madeline. Boohoo! Who wouldn’t want their appendix out too?;

 

  • Jean de Brumhoff—Loved Babar, Celeste, and the Old Lady. In fact, one of our English bulldogs was named Babar; and

 

  • Beatrix Potter—How could you not love The Tales of Peter Rabbit and Benjamin Bunny?

 

 

ME: What do you know now that you wish you knew when you first started writing?

 

ROBIN: It may seem very obvious, but writers need a gene for patience. Patience for writing and developing story ideas. Patience for working on rewrites. Patience waiting for agents and editors to review your submissions and patience for implementing and processing feedback. Patience, as well as a good box of tissues and chocolate, for dealing with lots of rejection.

 

ME: Where do you like to write—inside, outside, special room, laptop, pen and paper?

 

ROBIN: I work on a laptop. Most of the time, I work in my teeny tiny office that’s been overtaken by swag and books with my dogs, Cupcake and Madeleine, under my feet. But I also like to work in coffee shops while waiting for my son to get out of camp or school.

 

Now, if I don’t have my laptop with me, I always have a notebook or two that I use for marking down ideas and sketching/outlining stories. When I finally have a solid draft, I like to print it out and mark it up on paper. I seem to see the story more clearly when I’m reviewing it on paper. And if I’m working on a picture book, once I have a solid draft, I always always always make one or several dummies so that I can cut, see where the page turns are going to fall, and cut some more.

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

 

ROBIN: I write in the morning after my son heads off to school or camp. And I have till school or camp pick up to finish my work.

 

ME: Why do you write for children?

 

ROBIN: I LOVE it! I love getting kids excited about reading and writing, including my own son, who’s a difficult customer to please. And it’s an absolute privilege to write for children.

 

Prior to writing for children, I had been a miserable attorney (that’s miserable with a capital M), and then a legal editor before switching gears completely to writing picture books and early chapter books. I still remember the day when I walked into my first children’s fiction writing class, it just felt so right. I knew I had found my people.  

 

Bottom line: there’s no better job in the world than writing for children. (And I’m extremely grateful to my amazing husband who supports my writing habit.)

 

ME: If you have any thoughts or advice for aspiring writers, please share.

ROBIN:

  1. Write and rewrite. Rinse and repeat.
  2. Follow Publishers Weekly, familiarize yourself with the children’s publishing industry and the business of publishing children’s books, and be aware of what editors are buying.
  3. Do your homework when looking for an agent. And yes, it is easier to sell a story with an agent who can get your work in front of the right editor.
  4. Join the SCBWI.
  5. Join a critique group.
  6. Don’t give up!

ME: HURRAY! What amazing advice, Robin! Thank you so much. I know everyone is applauding. We appreciate that you shared so much with us. And I know you have a very special treat to share with us.

ROBIN: Although I will most definitely write for cookies, I must confess that I prefer carrot cake. Here’s Molly Katzen’s awesome carrot cake recipe from The Case of the Missing Carrot Cake. It’s super easy and super yummy!

recipe

Thank you so much, Robin! This is a fabulous recipe…and you’ve been so generous in sharing your thoughts on writing!

Don’t forget to leave a comment to be entered into the giveaway, dear friends.

I hope everyone has a safe and wonderful weekend! 

 

 

 

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