Sculpting a Picture Book (& A Double Giveaway!)

I’ve wrestled with my fair share of picture book manuscripts. A “brilliant” idea at 9 a.m. that falls apart by noon. That wonderful first sentence that pops up while making coffee, only to fade to confusion an hour later in the shower. An entire book theme that carries through perfectly, …

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MARGARET AND THE MOON: A very nice nonfiction addition

Margaret and tte Moon

When the movie “Hidden Figures” came out last year, chronicling the roles three African-American women played in NASA during the space race, I liked it so much, I watched it twice. So, I was predisposed to like MARGARET AND THE MOON  (Alfred Knopf, 2017), a picture book written by Dean …

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New Release! DANGEROUS JANE (+ giveaways)

Exciting news! My picture book biography about Jane Addams, DANGEROUS JANE (illustrated by Alice Ratterree) releases from Peachtree Publishers September 1st — just in time for Jane’s birthday on September 6th! So I’d like to celebrate Ms. Addams by sharing a bit of my research, interviewing illustrator Alice Ratterree, and offering a …

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DAD AND THE DINOSAUR dazzles — for readers and writers

Dad and the Dinosaur

Recurring elements are one of my favorite features in picture books. Picture books are shorter affairs, so the writer has to fit a plot into a tighter-than-normal space. To make the story hang together and feel like a coherent whole, there often are words, phrases or themes that repeat throughout …

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