Monday, February 15, 2010

Author visits

This is a busy week for me with two author visits and a Houston SCBWI Conference this weekend. I only write picture books, unlike the other writers in Will Write for Cake.

What's new that I can mention to you about an author visit? Probably not much, but gosh, they are just so much doggone fun.

My four picture books, published by Sylvan Dell Publishing, obviously have great appeal to students under the age of 8. But lucky for me, my books are also filled with facts for all ages, as well as wacky pictures to find. Even adults giggle while reading my books. Happy Birthday to Whooo? is full of baby animal birth announcements. Guess which baby has been born from word play in the announcement and the art around each announcement.

The best guess I've received from a student(who was three years old) was for an announcement that started, "We are flying high in the sky."It's an octopus!" he eagerly told me. Clearly the little guy knew everyone was telling me animal names, but was he exactly on the right page? Probably not! But who cares? I told him it was a great guess, while the teachers in the room giggled behind their hands.

My other three books, One Odd Day, My Even Day and My Half Day are all Math with a Laugh. Rhyming and full of unusual pictures, readers find oddities in each book, as well as being introduced to odd number, even numbers and fractions. Amazing art and verse involve the reader with all the fun.

When I first started author visits, I wondered what I would do, how would this work, was I a dud before I even opened the school door? But I've found out students love visiting authors. Not only am I visiting their school or the author at a literacy night, but I'm a real "live" author, which I like better than being a real "dead" author.

Teachers and librarians couldn't be more helpful, considerate and excited, too. What fun for everyone. I hope all children's writers have the chance to enjoy this aspect of publishing. What a book blast baked to perfection with sweet memories!

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