Suzanne Williams – Will Write for Cookies

WILL WRITE FOR COOKIES

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INSIGHT – INFORMATION – INSPIRATION

FOR WRITERS

TODAY’S GUEST

Suzanne Williams

SUZANNE WILLIAMS

 

FLASHBACK!

It’s 2009. My book is almost ready to go to the printer. I try to get in touch with the authors of the picture books I am recommending to see if they would like to read an advance copy and give me an endorsement. One of the books is Mommy Doesn’t Know My Name. The author is Suzanne Williams. She has an awesome website. I go there. I connect with her. She says…YES!

Fast forward to this year! I thought, wouldn’t it be great to shine the Will Write for Cookies spotlight on this wonderful author? So I contact Suzanne and she says…YES! That’s right…she’s a pretty special woman!

Suzanne Williams lives in Renton, WA and is the author of nearly 60 books for children, including the award-winning picture book Library Lil (illustrated by Steven Kellogg). Together, she and Joan Holub write the Goddess Girls, Heroes in Training, and Grimmtastic Girls series.

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I’m so happy to have her here to share her thoughts with us.

Welcome, Suzanne!

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

 

Suzanne:


I was one of those children, as writers often are, who read constantly as a child. So picking a favorite is difficult. That said, I remember with special fondness, the I Can Read book, Little Bear by Elsa Minarik (illustrated by Maurice Sendak), a gift from my grandparents when I was seven years old. Later favorite reads included Strawberry Girl by Lois Lenski, the Pippi Longstocking books by Astrid Lindgren. P.L. Travers’s Mary Poppins books, and series like Nancy Drew, The Bobbsey Twins, and Trixie Belden. I was definitely more of a fiction reader than a non-fiction reader, so it’s no surprise that’s what I’ve chosen to write.
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If You Plant It, Will It Grow?

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I usually post a picture book review and craft on Friday. But, as I mentioned last week, I’m taking a short blog break. This month I’m enrolled in Kristen Fulton’s Non-Fiction Archaeology class AND participating in her WOW NonFicPic week of writing. I’m overwhelmed with all that I am learning and doing – but loving every minute of it. I took out a total of 144 non-fiction picture books from the library this month to help me with my research and writing.

Plus, I’m trying to establish my first vegetable and herb garden here in New Hampshire – I forgot how much bending is involved when you plant and weed.

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Getting back to gardening reminded me how similar it is to writing, revising and submitting.

With gardening, first you do your research: what plants will grow in your area and how will you care for them. Then you do the work: Plant, weed, fertilize. You give it time and perhaps a few prayers for sunny days and gentle rains. And then, if all goes well, you reap in the harvest.

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With writing, you also need to do your research. You think about your passions, find out if there are other books out there on the subject, read and study other books to use as mentor texts, check out various agents or editors who might be looking for your kind of writing. Then you work. You write and revise and write and revise and write and revise. You submit your story to critique groups. You revise again and again. You submit to Rate Your Story or get professional critiques. You send your story out. Next, you give it time and maybe pray a bit for an agent who is blown away by your story or an editor who is looking for just that title. And finally, you reap the harvest when an agent offers you representation and an editor offers you a book contract and children who read your book say, “Please, read it again!”

I stopped by here to post the link to an article on submissions – Alayne Kay Christian has a brilliant on-going series and she invited me to participate – what an honor!

I hope you will all visit her blog – and after you read what I wrote, I know you will want to check out the previous posts from other writers in this incredible kid lit community. The ‘All About Submissions’ series is a wealth of information and stellar resources.

http://alaynekaychristian.wordpress.com/2014/06/27/all-about-submissions-guest-blogger-vivian-kirkfield-trying-back-doors-a-few-thoughts-about-submitting-to-small-press-publishers/

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#PPBF: Peter Panda Melts Down – Dealing With Temper Tantrums

Today is Perfect Picture Book Friday – I review a picture book, provide a simple fun craft you can do with your kids and then I link up with dozens of other writers, moms, librarians and other lovers of picture books on Susanna Leonard Hill’s blog.

 

I recently connected with the author of today’s selection…Artie Bennett is super funny and super talented…so it’s not surprising that his new book is super awesome as well! My grandson was repeating the refrain after the first couple of pages…and gave the book an enthusiastic thumbs up.

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PETER PANDA MELTS DOWN!

Written by Artie Bennett

Illustrations by John Nez

Publisher: Blue Apple Books (2014)

Ages: 3 and up

Themes: Expressing feelings, appropriate behavior, temper tantrums

 

Opening Lines:

“Let’s meet the Pandas. Here’s Peter. He’s three! And Mama, who calls, “Climb down from that tree!”

 

Synopsis:

From the author:

“Uh-oh. Here it comes. Here comes that frown. Peter Panda melts dowwwnnn!”

     Poor Peter Panda. He’s only three and filled with frustration. And when things don’t quite go his way, he’s apt to throw a tantrum—in the car, in the library, in the supermarket, in the . . . He’s the most meltdownable panda we know. Continue reading