Monday, April 25, 2011

other big news...

My boyfriend of nearly 5 years proposed on Friday at Golden Gardens at sunset.

I said yes :)


It's been a while...

  I haven't posted in a while and I feel so guilty! Especially because a lot has been happening! The other weekend I attended my very first writer's conference. For two full days at the SCBWI Western WA 20th Annual writing conference I attended breakout sessions, listened to keynote speakers, mingled with fellow writers and illustrators, and even met a published author or two.  It was an awesome experience and I am so glad that I went and did it on my own. 
  Here are some of my favorite pieces of advice/ helpful reminders that I took away:
Story comes from what you know, what you feel and from what you can imagine
Ignore any prohibitive thing
Let kids embrace their weirdness
Your work should melt the editor's face off they love it so much
Write from your heart, not to a trend
Take the time to make your work Great
Work harder
Enter contests! Win awards! Get your work out there
Revise, make your work better, always be evolving and learning and improving
Write because you love it, surround yourself with what you love and draw inspiration from it
Make your work meaningful
Leave your mark on the world

  I can't wait to one day attend the national SCBWI conferences in NY and LA. The inspiration and motivation I drew from this one conference makes it all worth while.
Now, I gotta get to work!

Me with the awesome author/illustrator Jesse Joshua Watson and his inspring book Hope for Haiti

Me and the wonderful Peggy King Anderson, SCBWI WWA's first ever recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award.  I have taken her class, The Magic of Writing for Children three times and hope to enroll again soon. 

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Earth Day, Everyday

  Let's honor upcoming Earth Day, April 22, and try to honor our Earth everyday!  I can't wait to check out Patrick McDonnell's picture book about the young Jane Goodall, Me...Jane.  Goodall reminds us that even young people can help to create "a better place for people, animals, and the environment." 

  What are some of your favorite environmentally friendly children's books?

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Poem of the Day...

Where the Sidewalk Ends
By Shel Silverstein
There is a place where the sidewalk ends
And before the street begins,
And there the grass grows soft and white,
And there the sun burns crimson bright,
And there the moon-bird rests from his flight
To cool in the peppermint wind.

Let us leave this place where the smoke blows black
And the dark street winds and bends.
Past the pits where the asphalt flowers grow
We shall walk with a walk that is measured and slow,
And watch where the chalk-white arrows go
To the place where the sidewalk ends.

Yes we'll walk with a walk that is measured and slow,
And we'll go where the chalk-white arrows go,
For the children, they mark, and the children, they know
The place where the sidewalk ends. 

Monday, April 4, 2011

Happy National Poetry Month
Happy Birthday Dr. Maya Angelou!

Quite possibly my favorite sentence ever comes from the title of Maya Angelou's biography, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings.  The image evoked by these simple words strung together is so hauntingly beautiful, so wonderfully moving, so incredibly uplifting even in its sorrow, that ever since I first heard it, I have been captivated by it.  Something about birds in song, gets me every time. Which probably explains why one of my alltime favorite songs is "Songbird" as sung by Eva Cassidy.  And why birds often appear in my writng...

Here is part of the poem that inspired the title of Maya Angelou's book:

By Paul Laurence Dunbar

I know why the caged bird sings, ah me,
When his wing is bruised and his bosom sore,
When he beats his bars and would be free;
It is not a carol of joy or glee,
But a prayer that he sends from his heart's deep core,
But a plea, that upward to Heaven he flings –
I know why the caged bird sings.