I’d also like to thank Tara Lazar, the PiBoIdMo founder and organizer. For those who don’t know, Tara spends countless hours each summer and fall lining up guest posts, contacting agents for prizes, organizing a Cafe Press store (where she donates all proceeds to Reading Is Fundamental – RIF), moderating registration, managing the PiBoIdMo Facebook Group, sorting out and awarding prizes, and probably a dozen more things I don’t even know about.
She does this all for us. PiBoIdMo is completely free. For everyone.
And while all of this work does give Tara’s books some exposure, that exposure doesn’t count for much unless we, the PiBoIdMo participants, take action.
So this holiday season, I encourage everyone to purchase at least one (or more) of Tara’s books, all of which are terrific favorites in my family. If not for yourself, then perhaps as a gift for a child in your life or your local library or school.
While I am a strong supporter of independent book stores (see yesterday’s post), I’ll make it easy for you:
Why is November 1st one of my all-time favorite days of the year?
No, it’s not my wife’s birthday! (or is it?)
November 1st is the start of Tara Lazar’s PiBoIdMo (Picture Book Idea Month)! According to the FAQ (found here), “PiBoIdMo is a free November writing challenge for picture book writers and illustrators. The object is to jot down one picture book concept daily. By the end of the month you’ll have at least 30 bright & shiny new ideas! You can then refer to these ideas throughout the year to jumpstart your creativity and write new manuscripts.”
What a lineup, eh? And what a logo! PiBoIdMo founder and organizer Tara Lazar works tirelessly every fall to organize this event. And today happens to be the book birthday for her third picture book, Little Red Gliding Hood. So let’s give Tara a hearty congratulations! I’d also like to congratulate Little Red Gliding Hood illustrator (and PiBoIdMo 2015 Artwork Creator), Troy Cummings.
Congrats to Tara & Troy!
And as I do at the conclusion of every blog post, here are two recommendations for you:
Two for You (Tara Lazar Edition)
1. The Monstore written by Tara Lazar and illustrated by James Burks
Just in time for Halloween, pick up this family favorite, Tara Lazar’s debut!
2. I Thought This Was a Bear Book written by Tara Lazar and illustrated by Benji Davies
Alien crashes into a bear book. Hilarity ensues. Meta at its finest!
End with a very uncomfortable moment for a Red Sox fan
I highly recommend you subscribe to the Let’s Get Busy Podcast if you haven’t already. Matthew Winner has so many amazing interviews with fabulous guests in the previous 192 episodes (and many more lined up to come!). And certainly check out his new home for the podcast – All the Wonders, a home for readers to discover new books and to experience the stories they love in wondrous ways.
Also, I decided today to start a new tradition. Because so many of my blog posts are about me, I’d like to share two favorite books by others at the end of every post from this day forward. I’ve decided to very creatively call this:
Two for You
(two books I highly recommend)
1. Boats for Papa written and illustrated by Jessixa Bagley
I love everything about this book. Get the tissues ready, cause it made me start crying in the middle of a bookstore.
2. Snoozefest written by Samantha Berger and illustrated by Kristyna Litten
Great rhymes and illustrations, and starring a sloth.
My first book comes out on Tuesday. Lady Pancake & Sir French Toast. You’re probably tired of hearing about it by now, so lucky for you, I don’t plan on talking about it in this post.
Today it’s how to support picture book authors and illustrators.
One of the best things you can do is buy their book(s).
But what if you’re not in the market for picture books at this time in your life, so the idea of buying one doesn’t really interest you? Maybe it doesn’t fit your budget. Or maybe you have an irrational fear of cute animals and anthropomorphic breakfast foods.
Here are ten ways to support picture book authors and illustrators:
Give the book as a gift. You probably know someone who might like it. Give it to her/him. Or donate it to your library.
Request that your local library purchase a copy. This can be done in person or often in an online form.
Reserve and borrow it from the library. Increased circulation of books is noticed by librarians. They are smart people.
Review the book. On goodreads. On Amazon. On bn.com. Text reviews are even more valuable than just star-ratings.
Talk about the book with librarians and booksellers. There are a lot of great books out there. Get this book on their radar.
Talk about the book with friends. Or parents of your child’s friends. Or your child’s teacher. Or strangers on the street.
Share the book on social media. Tweet about it. Blog about it. Post on Facebook, Tumblr, Pinterest, Instagram, MySpace, etc. about it. Share the cover image. If you see it in the wild, snap a picture and share that. And tag the author or illustrator (or both). We love that!
Share the author or illustrator’s posts on social media. Follow them on social media sites and share with your networks.
Read the book in public. Like at the park. Or in a restaurant. Or the airport.
Make your own fan book trailer. And post to YouTube. If that’s your thing.
Note: I’m not the first to write a post like this. Here are a few other posts which have similar and more detailed info. Please check them out:
Brace yourself: this post is gonna be long. If you’re like me, you might want to just look at the pictures.
I spent last Monday and Tuesday at nErDcamp in Michigan. What is nErDcamp? It’s a conference for educators focused on reading and literacy founded by members of the Nerdy Book Club (if you don’t know what that is, stop reading this and go here now). Over 900 educators from all over the U.S. and Canada attended the two day conference.
So let me tell you what happened with pictures.
Sunday morning I flew from Boston to Detroit.
After chilling at the airport for a bit, I hitched a ride with educators Lesley Burnap, Jason Lewis, and Debbie Ridpath Ohi (author/illustrator of Where Are My Books?, illustrator of I’m Bored and Naked – two separate books). We stopped at Bob’s Big Boy for a snack on the way from Detroit to the Hampton Inn in Jackson.
After checking in at the hotel, we met up with my good friend Jess Keating (author of How to Outrun a Crocodile When Your Shoes are Untied, How to Outswim a Shark without a Snorkel, this October’s How to Outfox Your Friends When You Don’t Have a Clue, and next February’s Pink Is for Blobfish, AND member of #TeamKrush) and her husband who shall henceforth be referred to as #NerdyPhotographer. Along with Debbie, we headed over to the high school where nErDcamp would take place starting the next day. We stopped by the rock for this photo:
While hanging out in the Hampton Inn ‘bar’ for the evening, I shared Lady Pancake & Sir French Toast with several new friends who hadn’t seen it before. I also took the opportunity to share Dear Dragon and Pirasaurs! sketches, and it was a blast to see these readers’ reactions. And then I went to bed…
only to be woken up at 6:30 by the fire alarm which quickly shut off. When it came back on for the second time three minutes later, I headed to the lobby to check it out and it (apparently it was a malfunction), but I stayed to eat breakfast, only to receive this at 7:17:
I wasn’t scheduled until session 2, so I grabbed a quick bite to eat in the teacher’s lounge and hung out with Donalyn Miller’s awesome family. And then I led the “Picture Book Panel” featuring NINE Picture Book Pros: Miriam Busch (Lion, Lion), Larry Day (Nanook & Pryce), Matthew Cordell, Philip C. Stead, Erin Stead, Debbie Ridpath Ohi, Lauren Castillo, Deb Pilutti (Ten Rules of Being a Superhero), and Matt Faulkner (A Taste of Colored Water).
[Photo by Aliza Werner twitter.com/alizateach]
And there I am standing at the edge of Debbie’s view from between the pair of Team Caldecott:
What a thrill it was to lead this panel with such a stellar cast! And it went very well! Everyone got a chance to speak, and we even had a few laughs (I think it was with me, not at me…).
After session 2, I went to see Mr. Schu talk about his favorite books of the year so far. He started with picture books, and had so many on his list, he got as far as … some of the picture books (sorry Non-Fiction, Middle Grade, Graphic Novels).
So this post is taking forever to write, and I’ll bet almost nobody is actually reading this far, and it’s Saturday night, and my wife wants to spend some time with me (yay! she loves me!), so I think I’ll just post some pictures with captions for the rest of the way.
Lady Pancake & Sir French Toast was named in two Top 10 Most Anticipated Releases for the Rest of 2015 lists today (see the posts from Unleashing Readers here and Mrs. Knott’s Book Nook here). I sure hope the fabulous authors of those blogs enjoy the book when it eventually gets released. And I can’t really explain what it feels like to be listed alongside four Newbery Medal Winners (Kate DiCamillo, Jennifer Holm, Katherine Applegate, Rebecca Stead), two Caldecott Medal Winners (Kevin Henkes, Brian Selznick), a whole host of other awesome authors, and a literary legend (Harper Lee).
Since I was on two lists, I thought I would pay it forward by listing my TWENTYMost Anticipated Releases for the Rest of 2015 (in order of release date).
Something Extraordinary by Ben Clanton (June 16th)
Ricky Ricotta’s Mighty Robot vs. The Uranium Unicorns From Uranus written by Dav Pilkey and illustrated by Dan Santat (June 30th)
I’m with Cupid by Anna Staniszewski (July 7th)
First Grade Dropout written by Audrey Vernick and illustrated by Matthew Cordell (July 7th)
Princess Juniper of the Hourglass by Ammi-Joan Paquette (July 21st)
Mind Your Monsters written by Catherine Bailey and illustrated by Oriol Vidal (August 4th)
Baba Yaga’s Assistant written by Marika McCoola and illustrated by Emily Carroll (August 4th)
Double Happiness written by Nancy Tupper Ling and illustrated by Alina Chau (August 4th)
Zack Delacruz: Me and My Big Mouth by Jeff Anderson (August 4th)
Your Alien written by Tammi Sauer and illustrated by Goro Fujita (August 4th)
It’s Raining Bats & Frogs written by Rebecca Colby and illustrated by Steven Henry (August 11th)
Boo-La-La Witch Spa written by Samantha Berger and illustrated by Isabel Roxas (August 18th)
Monster Needs Your Vote written by Paul Czajak and illustrated by Wendy Grieb (August 25th)
What’s Up with This Chicken? written by Jane Sutton and illustrated by Peter J. Welling (September 15th)
The Tapper Twins Tear Up New York by Geoff Rodkey (September 29th)
How to Outfox Your Friends When You Don’t Have a Clue by Jess Keating (October 2nd)
Lenny & Lucy written by Philip C. Stead and Erin E. Stead (October 6th)
Sunny Sweet Is Not So Scary by Jennifer Ann Mann (October 13th)
Little Red Gliding Hood written by Tara Lazar and illustrated by Troy Cummings (October 27th)
Bird & Squirrel on the Edge by James Burks (October 27th)
Wow! August is gonna be a busy month for the bookstores (especially the 4th). What’s on your list?