Friday, December 7, 2007

Reading/Signing tomorrow, December 8!

Just a quick reminder that I'll be reading and signing Library Lion tomorrow, December 8, at the Clinton Book Shop in Clinton, New Jersey.

Clinton Book Shop
33 Main Street
Clinton, NJ 08809
Tel: 908-735-8811

I hope you can come!

Friday, October 12, 2007

New York Times Great Children's Read!

I'll be reading Library Lion at The New York Times Great Children's Read this Sunday, October 14. My reading is at 10:30 a.m. at the Target Stage, and then I'll be signing books from 11 to 11:45 a.m. The entire event runs from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and will include lots of children's book authors and celebrities (including Julie Andrews!) and even They Might Be Giants!

Admission is free. :)

Location: Columbia University, Broadway and 116th Street.

For more information:

Official site:

New York Times article:

I hope you can come!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Reading in Park Slope this Sunday, September 30

I'll be reading Library Lion at Community Bookstore in Park Slope this Sunday, September 30, at 3 P.M. If you're in the area, please come by!

Community Bookstore
143 7th Svenue
Park Slope, Brooklyn 11215

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Bad Blogger! Bad! Bad!

I am failing miserably at this blogging thing. Let's see, what's been going on since I last wrote? Library Lion is still on the New York Times best-seller list, which is just very cool and exciting and sort of surreal. Okay, very surreal. It's been 34 weeks! Sometimes it falls off, but then a few weeks later it shows up again. :)

I'm so pleased to share that LL has won two more wonderful awards! The first of these is the 2007 Time of Wonder Award from the Maine Discovery Museum! I'll be in Bangor with Kevin Hawkes to accept the award over Columbus Day weekend (see "Where I'll Be" at right). LL is also the winner of the New Atlantic Independent Booksellers Association (NAIBA) Book of the Year Award for Picture Book! That one will be awarded at the NAIBA Fall Conference the evening of October 14. The independent booksellers have been so awesome and supportive of Library Lion since the very beginning. He would not be where he is today if not for them! I'm glad I'll have another chance to thank some of them in person at the conference.

I've also been invited to read at The New York Times Great Children's Read on Sunday, October 14, on the Target Stage at 10:30 a.m. The entire event runs from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and lots of other children's book authors and celebrities will be there, and also They Might Be Giants!! So please come if you can—the event will be held at Broadway and 116th Street, and admission is free.

In other news, I cut my hair very short a couple of months ago. Here is a photo:

I've had long hair for years and years, so this was a big deal for me. It's . . . different. After I got over the initial shock, I started to like it. But I kind of miss my long hair, too.

I finished what should be the final revision (not counting copyediting!) on my middle-grade novel earlier this month. During that time I came up with the following list of things to do when the revision is Not. Going. Well.:

  • post to your listserve let yourself be soothed by the kind, helpful responses from the wonderful people on there

  • read Anne Lamott

  • read pieces of good books that remind you of why you wanted to be a writer in the first place

  • remember that some of the most important books from your childhood are ones that you now consider to be not, technically, very good, but that there was a time when those stories and those characters were your best friends and you don’t know how you would have gotten through certain terrible years without them

  • let your agent reassure you

  • go for a walk, but not to anyplace where you are likely to see too many happy, well-adjusted people and their lovely children and friends and spouses who all look like they know some secret to life that everyone forgot to tell you

  • eat peanut M&Ms

  • eat Ben & Jerry’s Cherry Garcia frozen yogurt with too much chocolate syrup and some walnuts, for protein and crunchiness

  • make lists

  • watch Star Trek or Buffy or Veronica Mars or anything else that makes you feel happy and safe

  • drink a glass of wine (or two)

  • read some piece—a scene, a paragraph, a sentence, a phrase—of something you’ve written that you know is good

  • listen to music that you love, that makes you want to write and imagine things

  • call certain friends who think you are great, and who would never believe that your novel sucks, no matter what you say

  • pet your cat

  • buy things

  • go to the gym (to make you feel more ok about eating lots of bad things when you get back home to the computer)

  • daydream about when you’re finally done going back through the chapter revisions and that lovely idea you have about printing out the final draft and taking it in hard copy to that nice cafe you like and sitting in one of those big chairs or maybe on a couch in the company of those other industrious-seeming people and drinking lots of iced coffee and eating many of those yummy brownie things and other assorted pastries and going back through the manuscript one more time with a red pen and fixing some last-minute things and hopefully finding it’s all not as bad as you think

  • challenge people to endless games of online Scrabble

In the end I think the revision went okay, maybe even well. But it got ugly there for a while in the middle. It's a new experience for me to be working on something this long and complicated! I do like working on novels, though—I like having more room to tell a bigger, more involved story, and having more characters and a more complex plot; it's just a lot different from the shorter books I've done. Anyway, now that the revision is back with my editor, I can think about writing other things, which is very nice and exciting. I have a deadline for a new picture book manuscript in January. That is not very far away.

Okay. This Saturday is flying by, and I've got lots more to do and a hockey game to go to later (yay, Rangers!), so I will bring this lengthy post to a close. Glad I got to catch up on some of the stuff that's been happening. I'll try to be a better blogger moving forward!

Sunday, August 5, 2007

New York Times List

Library Lion is still hanging in there on the New York Times Children's Best-Seller List! It's posted online now (although the list is dated August 12, 2007) at #9. Yay!!

Thursday, August 2, 2007

ALA very belated photos and things

So, ALA happened more than a month ago, and I am finally posting some photos. I had a wonderful time, met some great people (including a real-life librarian named Mr. McBee!) and got to spend time with my awesome agent and editor, which is always very fun. Especially this time, because we had the best brunch ever in the entire history of brunches. I also got to meet up with some writer friends (including Rebecca Stead and Karen Romano Young) and had a lovely dinner with some writers I'd only previously known in the online world, including Annette Curtis Klause, Toni Buzzeo, Elisa Carbone, Anne Marie Pace, Kathleen Jeffrie Johnson, and Cindy Lord.

This is my wonderful editor Sarah Ketchersid with me at the Candlewick cocktail party:

Here you can see all the nice beverages we were served before attacking the two-level brunch buffet. That's my fabulous agent Jodi Reamer whose top part is cut off on the left, and if you squint you can see Sarah's arm on the right. Hey, I was aiming for the beverages, not the people!

Sarah and me again (she was a very good sport about letting me take lots of pictures of us all weekend):

Here are some of the lovely Candlewick Press people with whom I got to go to the Newbery/Caldecott/Wilder banquet. From left to right: Katie Cunningham, Kristen Nobles, me, Laura Feczko, Sarah:

Some of my friends from Kane Press came to visit before my book signing! That's Juliana, Margot, and Joanne:

Some photos from the signing:

The man in the red-checked shirt is a librarian named Mr. McBee!!

Me with Mr. McBee. How could I not get our picture taken together? It was so great to meet him:

Monday, June 18, 2007


I'll be signing Library Lion at the Candlewick booth on Monday, June 25, from 3–4pm. If you're going to be at ALA, please come by!

Friday, June 15, 2007


Here is something I love about being an author. I can sit here, very seriously, in full-on work mode, and say to myself: Okay. Now think. What do the robots want?

Thursday, June 14, 2007

More List News

Library Lion is #14 on the June 14, 2007 Book Sense Children's Bestsellers list, and will be #10 on the June 24, 2007 New York Times Children's Best-Seller list!

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Back on the list!

Hooray! Library Lion is back on the New York Times Best-Seller List at #9. :)

Some photos

Since I'm catching up on this blog thing, and since I need to learn how to use all the posting tools and things, I'll post a few photos from past events.

This is from the Ithaca Children's Book Fest in the fall of 2002:

That's David Kirk sitting next to me, trying to teach me how to draw a cartoon chameleon. I always sit next to illustrators at these things, and they're always drawing cute little things in everyone's books, and I was jealous. He was very helpful, but eventually I had to give up. Mostly I just sign with a little smiley face. At BEA this year, however, after two glasses of wine, I did start drawing little cartoon lions in the autograph books at the Candlewick party. That was fun. :)

Signing Library Lion F&Gs with the wonderful Kevin Hawkes at ALA in July 2006:

This is me with Julie Andrews(!!!) at the Child Magazine awards at Books of Wonder, January 31, 2007:

And here are some photos from the Easter Egg Roll at the White House (April 9, 2007).

Wild Thing(s) on the White House lawn:

Mr. Peep was my very favorite character of the day:

Dramatic reading:

More dramatic reading:

Some of my adorable audience members:

Hey there

Okay, so yeah, here I am, starting a blog. 'Cause, you know, all the other kids are doing it. Mostly it seemed an easier way to keep up with posting timely things like book signings and conference appearances, since I never seem to update my website often enough. I can't promise to be one of those people who posts every day, though. I'll try to post whenever time and interesting things to say both present themselves simultaneously. Or I suppose anytime I want to avoid working, but that NEVER happens. EVER. (Are you reading this, Jodi?) Oh and photos from events and things, because those are fun to share. And maybe occasional photos of my cat, because she is awesome. And sure, probably random other things. From time to time. :)