Wednesday, June 29, 2016

duck days

I have no idea what this outfit is about, except that it was very elaborate and specific.

I think it was something about eating jelly.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

a day in the life of a duck

So, Rain Dragon has had many passions turn into obsessions and then fade away-- the planets, Curious George, penguins, far, Totoro has remained fairly strong but the only love that has been truly evergreen (from when she was small baby!) is ducks. She loves all ducks but her favorite is the one she named Pato (which is the Spanish word for duck. No, neither I nor her father know any Spanish. It's because we let her watch Pocoyo.). So even though the stuffed animal is official Duck from Duck and Goose (sorry Goose, you were discarded), she will indignantly correct you if you attempt to call him a different name.

Because Pato is her friend in all adventures, wearing outfits and costumes that only a pre-schooler's brain and fingers can make. From swimming to the deep sea:

I think they are looking for a underwater satellite

To wearing protective space suits:

the universal use of tin foil!

and being the patient to her doctoring:

scotch-tape bandages

And birthdays:
which happen daily, instead of yearly

He is her, if not constant, always awaiting companion.

and to sleep, in a sock nightcap and, yes, her duck foot slipper

Wait until you see what else they do!

Monday, June 20, 2016

On My Desk Monday

I'm finally back to my painting desk! It's been a while. I'm glad I have this little project to warm back up.

It's kind of fun to do something that only really has to make sense to myself!  It's going to be part of an exhibition at Springfield's D'Amour Museum of Art to help celebrate the new Dr. Seuss museum that will open in the fall. More to come, but I'm looking forward to it!

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

just like eric carle

So, Rain Dragon has always been a little uninterested in what I do for work. I've told her many times that I am an author and illustrator of books, but she never quite caught on.

But a couple of weeks ago at her preschool they did an unit on Eric Carle, studying all his books and choosing their favorite:

her favorite was The Hungry Caterpillar
So the other night at bedtime, after reading Ling and Ting together, I asked her, "Who do you think made this book?"
She replied, "Eric Carle!"
To which, I opened to the back and showed her the picture:

And she cried out, in utter amazement, "MAMA!"

It was, perhaps, the sweetest moment in my entire book career.  And now, when we meet people, Rain Dragon says, "This is my Mama. She makes books."


Monday, June 13, 2016

My advanced copies are now out in the world...

So last week I sent out my newsletter with the ARC giveaway! I had five advanced reading copies reserved for this contest:

an advanced reading copy is a "rough draft" of a book that the publisher puts together-- it has typos, incomplete art, etc but is supposed to give reviewers and booksellers an idea if they want to recommend it or order it

I was pleased that 456 people entered before the deadline! Yay! So glad so many of you want to read the new book! But how to pick the winners? So many of you wrote lovely notes along with your entries (thank you! Some brought tears to my eyes!) and it was really, really difficult not to choose based on reading the e-mails. But I had said five ARC's were going to be given away completely randomly, so I felt like I had to follow through. Which is why I used:

Yes, the random number generator! So if you're e-mail came in the 9th, 78th, 101st, 321st or 431st I sent you an ARC! Congratulations!

Goodbye, ARC'S! I sent them to all the schools I've visited this past year as well as the random winners!

So sorry to all those that don't receive one! But, chin up! The book launch is right around the corner and if you pre-order the book, I promise the goodies I add will make it worth the wait!

If you do receive an ARC,  I hope so much that you enjoy the story (I won't say book, as the real book isn't out until October)! Whenever I think about people reading it, my heart pounds like one of those taiko drums.  So, if you do like the story, please let the world (and me) know! 

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Save the Date for the When the Sea Turned to Silver Book Launch!

October 8, 2016 at 3pm
Porter Square Books, Cambridge MA

Remember the Where the Mountain Meets the Moon Book Launch? Or the one for Starry River of the Sky? Well, I'm doing it again! And since When the Sea Turned to Silver is a companion book, it seemed only fitting to do it again at Porter Square Books!  Yes, awesome gift bags! Grand prizes! And, of course, the company of yours truly.  Please Come!

If you pre-order your book from Porter Square Books, not only can it be personally autographed, you will received some super-special goodies with it (that can be shipped if you don't live nearby). I'll be announcing what the goodies will be and more specifics in August (they will be really good, promise) but you can order now if you want! 

Want to meet me but don't live near Porter Square Books?  I'll be going on a book tour, in October.  You can see some of the places I will be HERE,  but the final schedule (we're still nailing specifics down for other dates and cities) will be in my next newsletter, so stay tuned...

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

There's Always Time to Read!

So, last month I came home from a school visit to find Rain Dragon running around like this:

"Look what I got, Mama"!
Apparently, I had received a package in the mail but it was around the time of Rain Dragon's birthday and she had been receiving a constant stream of gifts in the mail, and she assumed every box was for her.  So she ripped it open, including the letter enclosed.

isn't it cute? there IS always time to read!
It was a lovely clock from...Scholastic? Unfortunately, while the envelope was still intact, the letter was thrown somewhere in Rain Dragon's dance of joy. So, I was a little confused. My book publisher is Little, Brown. Why was Scholastic sending me nice presents? Had they mixed me up with someone? Had there been a corporation merge?

Luckily, soon afterwards, I met these lovely ladies at Book Expo America:

Carolyn Scully, Kristin Standley and me!

who both work at Scholastic. Since they were so friendly, I asked about the clock and was thrilled to hear that it was actually 1) really for me and 2) it was a congratulations/welcome to neighborhood gift because When the Sea Turned to Silver will be included in this fall's Scholastic Book Fairs as well as the club! Isn't that neat? So exciting! 

In the meantime, the clock has taken residence in Rain Dragon's room. She still insists it was a gift for her. 

she wouldn't let me hang it in the studio 

Thanks, Scholastic!