Are You A Children’s Book Illustrator-Wannabe?

created by Michigan SCBWI member, Lindsay K. Moore I’m drawing-challenged, but if I weren’t I’d be registering for this Retreat before the chartreuse could dry on my cotton duck canvas. The (Days and) Nights of the Roundtable Fall Retreat 2016 is hosted by SCBWI Michigan. It features three tracks: picture books, novels, and illustration. The illustrator track… Read more »

The HOW of reducing PB text!

Laura Backes, former children’s book editor and now co-founder of Children’s Book Insider, wrote a helpful article in their newsletter about the perennial topic of leaving room for illustrations. I’ve blogged about the “why” of this concept before and now Laura’s perfect algorhythm for “how” to keep word count down follows. To read the full newsletter and access all… Read more »

Floyd Cooper (and Tara Lazar) Helps me Get It

Remember that PiBoIdMo adventure I posted about recently? I love it because it gives me permission to throw ideas out there without mental-censoring. And the posts Tara Lazar has lined up by creative people are always inspiring. Today’s post, however, did more than inspire. It shifted my thinking on a point that has stuck in… Read more »

You Might Not Know This About Punctuation Marks — But You Should 

My current events-junkie hubby brought this short article to my attention (Akira Okrent, The Week online 10/14/14).  We all know that word meanings morph over time, but I hadn’t thought about how the role of punctuation is changing, too. Poor little comma…

A Picture Book with No Pictures…What?

If you’ve forgotten for just a split second why we write children’s books for younger children, watch this. Trust me.

I’ve Been Tagged! Writing Process Blog Tour continues…

One of my many happy booksigning moments… Shutta Crum, Michigan author extraordinaire (MINE!, Thunderboomer, Dozens of Cousins, etc), tagged me to participate in the ongoing Writing Process Blog Tour. Shutta’s effervescence is her calling card, and just underneath it lies gobs of talent as a writer, poet, child whisperer, storyteller, mentor, and role model. I… Read more »

In Which I Answer Some Good Questions About A Cool Summer Tail and Writing NF

Michigan author, Jennifer Rumberger, was kind enough to interview me for her blog. She reviews picture books and participates in the Marvelous Middle Grade Monday series. She’s an insightful seeker (and share-er) of knowledge in the kidlit world. Yay, Jennifer! Her adorable first book, Ducklings on the Move, is available by digital publisher, MeeGenius. 

How to Write the Ha-Ha

Adding humor to writing can be daunting and hard to define as a technique, so I wanted to share this article that was written by Tim Bete and appeared in Writer’s Digest five years ago. I think it can really help us develop a funny bone to use in our manuscripts… The old TV game show “Match Game”… Read more »

Let Us Not Be Lazy

Although I have many faults, being lazy isn’t one of them. HOWEVER, I do fall into lazy writing occasionally. I use cliched phrases when a quick twist would create something much more memorable. I drop in pet words — like “the” — without restraint. But I didn’t know I was a pleonasmist until I read… Read more »

A “Must Read” by Lisa Kron

Once again, I am following Shutta Crum’s lead on sharing a REALLY IMPORTANT POST ABOUT WRITING. It’s on Writer Unboxed which is one of the most helpful writerly sites out there. This postwritten by Lisa Kron is about how crucial it is to determine our main character’s point of reference to the world before we begin… Read more »