Posted by viviankirkfield
WILL WRITE FOR COOKIES
INSIGHT – INSPIRATION – INFORMATION
Today’s guest is yet another of the wonderful writers I met when I first dipped my toes into kidlitland. So when I heard that her second picture book was about to launch, I knew that I wanted to have her stop by to chat with us.
I grabbed part of the text from Patty’s website to give you a peek into who she is…what an inspiration to all of us who wonder…is this writerly path the right road for me…and will I ever get published:
When I was in third grade, I had my first brush with “writing fame” when I wrote a patriotic poem that won a contest. The prize was free summer writing camp.
Was that what propelled me to becoming a writer? Nope! Sports camp was much more fun. Archery! Trampolines! Dodgeball on scooters!
I didn’t think seriously about writing until I was an adult. When I was 28, I decided that I wanted to open a children’s bookstore. With the support of my family, I did just that. And, BOOM! I was completely and forever in love with children’s books.
When the store closed, I turned my attention from selling books to writing them.
And aren’t we all glad that she did!!!!
Welcome, Patty! Thank you so much for visiting Picture Books Help Kids Soar. I’ve got some questions for you, so let’s get started.
ME: Who were your favorite authors/illustrators when you were a child?
PATTY: I learned to read quite young and loved rhyming books, especially Dr. Seuss. I was also one of those kids who peppered my parents with non-stop questions, so they purchased a series of books called TELL ME WHY, and I devoured them.
When I started reading novels, I fell in love with specific books more than particular authors. My favorites included THE HUNDRED AND ONE DALMATIONS by Dodie Smith, CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY by Roald Dahl, and A WRINKLE IN TIME by Madeleine L’Engle.
ME: What do you know now that you wish you knew when you first started writing?
PATTY: About ten years ago, I went through a spell of being frustrated with and discouraged by the “black hole” – that policy of publishers and agents not responding unless they’re interested in your work. It felt to me like turning my kids out into the world and not knowing what happened to them. I tried to quit writing, but my brain wouldn’t turn it off. I then made an important decision just write for writing’s sake. I focused on exploring the depths of my craft, learning how to make my work better. In the process I discovered that a well-written piece was more important to me than a sale. Surprisingly enough, that’s when the sales started to happen!
ME: Where do you like to write – inside, outside, special room, laptop, pen and paper?
PATTY: At the idea stage, I’m all pen and paper (or napkins, sales receipts, paper bags…). But after that, I’m a laptop girl. I once had little writing nook under the stairs, which I loved, mostly because I could throw the doors open to a gorgeous yard. But in our current townhouse, my family complains that I make the entire house my office! I’ll write in a chair, on the couch, at the kitchen table, even in bed. And everywhere I go, a pile of books follows.
ME: When do you write – early morning, late in the day, middle of the night, on schedule, as the muse strikes?
PATTY: With a busy day job in a middle school LRC, it’s a constant battle for me to write more consistently. When I’m hot on an idea, I’m pretty frenzied, working whenever and wherever I can. I’m a night owl, so my sweet spot tends to be after 8pm.
ME: Why do you write for children?
PATTY: I’ve had many jobs in my adult life. Looking back, I’ve discovered that nearly all of them focus on the intersection of children and books – I’ve worked in schools and libraries, and for a business that facilitated author and illustrator visits for schools. I also owned a children’s bookstore for seven years, which was magical. I feel like all of those paths have converged on the sweet spot of writing for children.
I love this quote from Zoltán Kodály, a Hungarian composer: “Let us take our children seriously! Everything else follows from this – only the best is good enough for a child.” I believe he was referring to music education, but I feel the same applies for writing, and I am happy to try my best to provide great reading material for children.
ME: WOW…Patty…I love all of your insights! Thank you so much for sharing. I know that many of the things you said will resonate for all the writers out there.
To learn more about Patty, please visit her fabulous website: http://www.patriciatoht.com
And in addition to everything else she does, Patty is also a contributing writer to the GROG blog: https://groggorg.blogspot.com
With the holidays coming, it’s always nice to have a new treat recipe…here is a NO-BAKE one that is perfect to make with the kiddos.
Photo courtesy: https://www.thereciperebel.com/bake-christmas-tree-cookies/
For ingredient list and instructions: https://www.thereciperebel.com/bake-christmas-tree-cookies/
And more awesome goodness…here’s one of Patty’s favorite holiday recipes:
Hooty Creek Cranberry Cookies
(from Mo at the Container Store)
2 ¼ cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 cup butter
2/3 cup brown sugar
2/3 cup white sugar
2 tsp vanilla
1 cup rolled oats
1 cup dried cranberries
1 cup white chocolate chips
1 cup chopped walnuts
Combine dry ingredients. Cream butter and sugar, add eggs and vanilla and mix well.
Mix in flour mixture and oats, then stir in cranberries, chips and nuts.
Drop by spoonfuls onto a greased cookie sheet.
Bake at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes.
Thank you so much, dear friends, for spending your precious time here. Don’t forget to leave a comment to be entered in the giveaway of a copy of Patty’s wonderful book.
Wouldn’t it be lovely to have a copy of PICK A PINE TREE to read during the holidays?
Have a safe and happy weekend.
Posted by viviankirkfield
Here we are again! It’s Perfect Picture Book Friday!
I hope everyone had a Thanksgiving where good food, friends, and family took center stage. I have so much to be thankful for…starting with all of you, dear readers. And also all of these wonderful picture books of 2017 and their talented authors and illustrators!
Our book review today is perfect for the season…but first, we have some winners to announce. A lot of winners thanks to our generous authors!
A copy of MOTOR GOOSE: RHYMES THAT GO! by Rebecca Colby. And the winner is…
MIDGE BALLOU SMITH
A copy of CAPTAIN BLING’S CHRISTMAS PLUNDER by Rebecca Colby. And the winner is…
A copy of FINN FINDS A FRIEND by Jenna Grodzicki . And the winner is…
A copy of ALIENS GET THE SNIFFLES, TOO! by Katy Duffield . And the winner is…
A copy of NANTUCKET SEA MONSTER: A FAKE NEWS STORY by Darcy Pattison. And the winner is….
Oh my gosh…is it the season of giving gifts or what?
And here is my gift to you today…a review of Patricia Toht’s fabulous new picture book!
PICK A PINE TREE
Written by Patricia Toht
Illustrated by Jarvis
Published by Candlewick Press (2017)
Themes: Christmas, decorating a tree, family time
From Amazon: A festive read-aloud brimming with all the joy and excitement of Christmastime — beginning, of course, with picking out a tree!
magic of the Christmas season stems from the traditions that families and friends take part in every year: hanging up stockings; putting lights in the windows; and, one of the most important of all, picking out and taking home the Christmas tree. With style and warmth, debut author Patricia Toht and Jarvis, the author-illustrator of Alan’s Big, Scary Teeth, evoke all the rituals of decorating the tree — digging out boxes jam-packed with ornaments and tree trimmings, stringing tinsel, and, at long last, turning on those twinkling lights. Joyously drawn and rhythmically written, this celebration of family, friends, and the holiday season is as merry as the tradition it depicts.
Why I like this book:
- Wonderful rhyming text that parents will enjoy reading and kids will enjoy listening to over and over again.
- Great illustrations…I especially love the double-spread fully decorated Christmas tree that you turn the book on it’s side to see.
- A perfect addition to any home bookshelf – it’s nice to have a new holiday book to add to your collection!
CHRISTMAS TREE CRAFTS
Photo courtesy: https://handsonaswegrow.com/easy-christmas-crafts-kids/
Here are a bunch of awesome crafts for the season. You will find details on each one here: https://handsonaswegrow.com/easy-christmas-crafts-kids/
Please don’t forget to leave a comment to be entered in the giveaway for a copy of PICK A PINE TREE. If you’ve already read this wonderful book, why not hop over to Amazon to leave a review. And definitely be here tomorrow when author Patricia Toht stops by to chat about her writing journey.
I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!