Category Children’s Publishing

MEMORIES OF FIREFLY NIGHTS

MEMORIES OF FIREFLY NIGHTS

A new version of It’s a Firefly Night, illustrated by Betsy Snyder and published originally in 2013 by Blue Apple Books is being released this month, and I couldn’t be happier!  Originally published as a hardcover, it’s a paperback this time around, with a glittery cover and lots of brand-new extension activities in the back matter.  (For a sneak peek, and more information, check out the publisher listing at www.blueapplebooks.com/book/its-a-firefly-night/.)

When the book first came out, we did an interview discussing how the story came about in my imagination and then made its way to the bookshelf.  I’ve gotten permission to reprint the article here, which is also posted on the newly-updated BAB website (www.blueapplebooks...

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SUMMERTIME IS THE RIGHT TIME TO READ ABOUT FIREFLIES

SUMMERTIME IS THE RIGHT TIME TO READ ABOUT FIREFLIES

Lantern and fireflies

With Memorial Day in the review mirror, it’s time to look ahead to summer vacation days and starry summer nights.  If there are kids in your life, you may be thinking of how to fill their summer with learning and STEM-fueled fun.  If you’re lucky enough to have fireflies where you live in the summer,  why not plan an evening firefly spotting session on the back porch?  You might want to try to capture a few fireflies (or ‘lightning bugs’) in a mesh ‘bug box’ or clear plastic jar with a lid to take a close-up look before releasing them back to wink and blink across the back yard.

What if you don’t have fireflies to study ‘up close and personal’? You can read books about them...

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CELEBRATE CHILDREN’S BOOK WEEK WITH READING EVENTS ACROSS THE U.S.!

CELEBRATE CHILDREN’S BOOK WEEK WITH READING EVENTS ACROSS THE U.S.!

child reading

Children’s Book Week is the annual celebration of children’s books and reading.  This year will mark its ninety-ninth year, making it the longest-running national literacy initiative in the United States.  And it’s just about to kick off again:  from April 30 to May 6. Next week, bookstores, libraries, museums, and schools across the country will celebrate the joy of reading in oh-so-many ways.
For a preview of what’s planned for 2018, you may wish to go to this recent article from Publishers Weekly: https://www.publishersweekly.com/pw/by-topic/childrens/childrens-book-news/article/76648-children-s-book-week-2018-preview.html.

But how, you may ask, did Children’s Book Week come about in the first place?  Read...

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It’s been an exciting summer!

The Last Blast of Summer

Although we haven’t reached Labor Day weekend, summer time is winding down.  My summer was busy, including:

Author events in paradise. I had the privilege of speaking about the research done for my historical nonfiction title, MOLLY, BY GOLLY!, at  the Marion County Public Library, in Ocala, Florida, in July.  The kids, parents and staff were great.  While in the area, I made stops at the Ocala Barnes and Noble bookstore as well as the B&N in the Villages for story hour appearances. I also did a story hour and signing at my hometown indie, Bookstore1Sarasota, in August.  Thank you, all, for hosting me!

My picture books read aloud on a terrific YouTube channel...

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LOOKING BACK WITH THANKS-GIVING

LOOKING BACK WITH THANKS-GIVING

What an amazing year 2016 has turned out to be for my work! I’m so gratified by the love my books have received. From the community StoryWalks in Somerset County, New Jersey, and New Richmond, Wisconsin, this summer for It’s a Firefly Night (Blue Apple Books) to the wonderful awards bestowed upon It’s a Seashell Day (Blue Apple Books) over the spring and summer, it’s extremely rewarding to any author to know that their books are touching people’s lives.

In April, I was honored to attend the 2015 Florida Book Awards in Tallahassee to receive the Gold Medal/Reichert Award in the Children’s Literature division for It’s a Seashell Day...

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IT’S A FIREFLY SUMMER

IT’S A FIREFLY SUMMER!

Like fireflies blinking in the night, books can have on/off bright-light moments long after the light bulb burst of its publication date.  That’s what happened for my 2013 picture book from Blue Apple Books, IT’S A FIREFLY NIGHT (which was so perfectly illustrated by artist Betsy Snyder) when it was selected by the Peapack-Gladstone Library in Somerset County, New Jersey for their community’s “StoryWalk” this summer.

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You may be asking, “what the heck is a StoryWalk?”  (I did, too.) Answer: StoryWalk® is an innovative and delightful way for children to enjoy reading and the outdoors at the same time. Laminated pages from a children’s book are attached to wooden stakes, which are installed along an outdoor path...

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IT’S A FIREFLY SUMMER

IT’S A FIREFLY SUMMER

Like fireflies blinking in the night, books can have on/off bright-light moments long after the light bulb burst of its publication date.  That’s what happened for my 2013 picture book from Blue Apple Books, IT’S A FIREFLY NIGHT (which was so perfectly illustrated by artist Betsy Snyder) when it was selected by the Peapack-Gladstone Library in Somerset County, New Jersey for their community’s “StoryWalk” this summer.

You may be asking, “what the heck is a StoryWalk?”  (I did, too.) Answer: StoryWalk® is an innovative and delightful way for children to enjoy reading and the outdoors at the same time. Laminated pages from a children’s book are attached to wooden stakes, which are installed along an outdoor path...

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Thoughts of Earth Day, Seashells and Fireflies

THOUGHTS OF EARTH DAY, SEASHELLS AND FIREFLIES

Earlier this month, I traveled to Tallahassee, Florida, to receive the Gold Medal/Reichert Award in the children’s literature category of the 2015 Florida Book Awards for my picture book, IT’S A SEASHELL DAY.

I stayed on after the FBA events to participate in the Word of South festival of literature and music (http://www.wordofsouthfestival.com), doing a mini-workshop at the storytelling area for kids and appearing as a member of the FBA winners speaker panel for grownups.

There were just  three of us:  Susan Cerulean, http://comingtopass,  Gold Medal winner for Florida non-fiction for her adult title, Coming to Pass: Florida’s Coastal Islands in a Gulf of Change with photographs by David Moynahan (University of Georgia, 2015); ...

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Top Ten Things Every Author Should Know About Digital Publishing

TOP TEN THINGS EVERY AUTHOR SHOULD KNOW ABOUT DIGITAL PUBLISHING

Whether you believe digital publishing is revolution or evolution… the plain fact is that it represents the future of the book.  As writers and artists, we need to educate ourselves to meet the creative challenges and greet the new opportunities industry changes bring our way.

1.  CHILDREN ALREADY KNOW THE DIGITAL LANDSCAPE INTRINSICALLY.

If you’ve ever watched a toddler happily operating a parent’s iPhone at the grocery store, you already know this.  The trick is that we, as adults, need to play catch-up in finding our comfort zone with today’s digital technology (or ‘platforms’) upon which tomorrow’s stories will be told.  Knowing how the Nook, the I-Phone, the I-Pad, the Kindle, etc...

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