Thursday, February 28, 2013

The Next Big Thing: A Global Blog Tour

I was tagged by my friend Liza Woodruff to participate in a blog tour! I'm supposed to answer some questions about a recent or upcoming book and then pass it on to some author and illustrator friends. So here goes...

1 What is the working title of your next book?
2 Where did the book idea come from for the book?
3 What genre does your book fall into?

 I'm going to answer these together, because I feel like it!

I'm going to write about Magical Monty, written by the fabulous Johanna Hurwitz and illustrated by Me! It's a chapter book for early readers and it's the fourth and final book in a series about a slightly shy first grade boy named Monty. The ideas and the writing for the series is all Johanna Hurwitz, but it's funny that many of the events throughout the series felt like they were mirroring my own life. When I was working on the first book, Mostly Monty, my son was starting to get ready for first grade, like Monty. He was an excellent reader and had asthma, just like Monty. Monty's baby sister was born, and my son's baby sister was born- two, actually, over the time I was working on the series. We've had pet birds, and, of course, lost teeth. Monty has identical twin friends. And Noel has identical twin cousins, who look mysteriously similar to the girls in the book. And just this year, my daughter, now in second grade, joined an after school magic club at her school. So it's been fun to illustrate all of these things and be right in the middle of it while I'm drawing it!

4 What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition?
hmmm... I'm not good at actors and actresses. I think that boy from Nanny McPhee would be just about perfect!! But he'd be too old. And he's got that whole british accent thing going. I'll get back to you on that. 

5  What is the one sentence synopsis of your book?
A sweet boy grows into himself and discovers the world.

6 Who is publishing your book?
Candlewick. Love them!

7 How long did it take you to write the first draft?
Infinity. I didn't write it. T
o sketch and draw and paint the illustrations? I forget. 9 months?

8 What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
Maybe a little bit like the Ramona books, but for a little bit younger.

9 Who or what inspired you to write this book?
Illustrate the book. The kids, of course. I love to draw the kids. I love to watch them figure things out in the world.

10 What else about the book might pique the reader's interest?
Maybe these?!

Thanks for checking this out!!

And don't forget to take a look at Liza's book, "If it's Snowy and You Know It, Clap Your Paws!"

And finally, next on the blog tour, available next Thursday, two Jennifers!

A fantastic new children's book author and illustrator, my friend, Jennifer K Mann!!!

And the magnificent author and illustrator, my friend, Jennifer P Goldfinger, who is just starting her brand new blog here!! Welcome to blog world, Jen!

Barbara Firth

I just saw that Barbara Firth died recently. 
She's one of my very favorite illustrators.
That makes me very sad.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Little House on the Prairie and other stuff

We've recently taken the whole of season 1 of Little House on the Prairie out from the library, and we've been watching it episode by episode. They don't make tv shows like that anymore!

Carys on the drive home from school yesterday:
Mom, why doesn't Ma ever yell at her children when they're late for school?

Show is definitely a bad influence.

Another favorite recent Carys quote...
Carys On Skiing:
Mom, my hands have a headache.

Here's an sketch from early in the morning on our recent ski vacation while the kids were still sleeping:

The 2 little ones were snuggled in the same big bed. (Sorry snuggling not shown.)
They always remind me of hamsters when they're sleeping. 
I don't know why.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Carys at Work

Carys draws with her face so close to the paper,
you can barely tell what she's doing.

I used to draw like that.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

last month's birding

Last month we did a little bit of birding here and there.

Of some excitement to me was a cute little clay colored sparrow. I didn't get a picture of him because I didn't have my camera, but you can see a picture of him here:

Not so exciting to you? Sorry.

Noel and I also saw this guy...

Can you see him??

 He looks like this. If you look again I think you'll find him. He camouflages very well.
He's an American Woodcock. Apparently he's also called a Timberdoodle.
We liked him quite a lot.

And of course we saw lots of these guys:

Glenn is not so fond of them because they eat everything in our yard.
I still like them, but don't tell Glenn that. 

Happy Valentines Day!

Saturday, February 09, 2013

Thumbnails and Storyboards and Book Dummies

Carys is very excited about her new book.


We had a snow day yesterday and she worked on it all morning long.

Then the big kids came home and we watched season 1 of little house on the prairie and looked at the deer eating out of the birdfeeder with the snow coming down then a friend came over and we played apples to apples and then they all dressed up like martians and went outside to play in the snow.

The end.

Thursday, February 07, 2013

Music Classes

The girls have music on Thursdays.
Noel has recently changed to Tosday for guitar.