Thursday, November 1, 2012

Character Gender

I've always been interested in the mix of male vs. female characters in children's books. My sense is that the default choice is usually male. A blog post that's more analytical on the subject is here.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Common Core

Check out Reading Rockets to learn more about the important topic often being talked about these days, the Common Core State Standards. "Children's author and historian Marc Aronson discusses the importance of reading nonfiction in developing critical thinking skills."
Here's the link:

Monday, June 25, 2012

The Big Six Quiz

Quiz time! Often when you read an article about the publishing business, it refers to "The Big Six."  These are the six largest North American trade publishing houses. Can you name them?  For the answers, look here.  See which ones make the cut and what their various divisions include.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Ruckus Reader

When it comes to the world of children's ebooks and apps, what everyone talks about is the difficulty for consumers to sort through and find material in the huge volume of choices out there. The flip side is the difficulty for producers of content to be found. Ruckus Media Group has launched their attempt to stand out by offering a retail platform for their own work and others' material, too. The article in Publisher's Weekly about it is here. Watch the CEO's promotional explanation of it below.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Book Awards

Book award lists are a good way to find a variety of interesting children's books. Many different groups give awards for different reasons. Best know in picture books is the Caldecott, of course, but there are lots more. There's a list of awards from the Center for Children's Books to peruse here. I got interested when I was told one of my books was honored this week. Awards shine a little spotlight on individual books and help us see the great diversity of children's books!

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Allen Say

Allen Say is the great picture book creator who received a Caldecott Medal for his book Grandfather's Journey. In the interview below, he talks about facing new experiences and challenges. A bio is here.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

The Future

Recently, NPR did a story on the future of traditionally printed children's books versus children's ebooks and apps. Author and illustrator Roxie Munro gave her perspective. Listen here and check out her website here. Below is the promo for the app.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Jez Alborough

It's always so interesting to hear other picture book writers and illustrators describe the creative process!
Meet Jez Alborough below, and visit his website, too. (If you want to view the video directly on YouTube, to see full screen, click here.)

Tuesday, February 28, 2012


Researching characters can send you exploring in lots of directions. I'm working on a warthog.

A real warthog in South Africa is in a lovely little video here.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012


Why don't we have something here like these English amusement parks with the fab theme song? Boys and girls, raise your hands if you think we should.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012


I've been thinking about newfangled things like ebooks and apps and how media can change. As a person who once sat in the Peanut Gallery, I think this is a fun example of that. Enjoy the little girl who mistakes the big bad wolf for a member of the cast.

Saturday, February 11, 2012


Maybe sometimes we have to remind ourselves of the nobility of our pursuit. In case you didn't see this before, here are some ideas about picture books by people who have given the form quite a bit of thought.

Monday, February 6, 2012


Sometimes you find something so wonderful it gets you out of your blog blahs and inspires a post! This Kohler video was one of those things.

I had three boys, so I've seen a lot. Most little boys get into stuff. Many get passionate about stuff. Some little boys just really obsess about stuff. Later, they grow up to be men. Draw your own conclusions.