B&N National Storytime on 1/2/16

As you probably know, I’m a strong supporter of my local independent book stores – and I’m lucky to have so many near me in New England. But I also know that for many others, the only brick and mortar book store option is Barnes & Noble. And today I have some great news!

Lady Pancake & Sir French Toast has been selected as the first national storytime read of 2016 at all U.S. Barnes & Noble locations!

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On Saturday, January 2, 2016 at YOUR local Barnes & Noble, Lady Pancake & Sir French Toast will be featured with activity kits and more (probably at 11am). I’m very thankful that Barnes & Noble has chosen to highlight Lady Pancake & Sir French Toast to start the new year!

So on January 2nd, I recommend a hearty brunch, followed by a trip to the book store at 11am! And while you’re there, be sure to check out …

Two for You

(two books I recommend you read)

1. I Don’t Like Koala written by Sean Ferrell and illustrated by Charles Santoso

i don't like koala

2. I Love You Already! written by Jory John and illustrated by Benji Davies

i love you already

Thank you, Tara Lazar

The 7th annual Picture Book Idea Month (PiBoIdMo) came to a close yesterday and I’d like to congratulate everyone who took part in the challenge.

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:

Little Red Gliding Hood

(under $11 at press time)

little red gliding hood

Indiebound | Barnes & Noble | Amazon


I Thought This Was a Bear Book

i thought this was a bear book

Indiebound | Barnes & Noble | Amazon


The Monstore

the monstore

Indiebound | Barnes & Noble | Amazon


Normal Norman

(available for pre-order only, releases 3/1/2016)

normal norman

Indiebound | Barnes & Noble | Amazon


Two for You

See the four for you above.

My PiBoIdMo Post: Do Your Worst

Quick note: My 2015 PiBoIdMo Post Josh Funk Dares You to Do Your Worst went live yesterday. I encourage everyone to check it out and if you register for PiBoIdMo and comment on the page, you’ll be eligible to win some Lady Pancake & Sir French Toast swag (see image below):

swaggg

Registration for PiBoIdMo is now open (click here) but it’s only open for TWO MORE DAYS! So register now if you want to have a chance at winning any of the giveaways (literary agent consultations, books, swag, etc) throughout the month.

Two for You

1. Stone Giant written by Jane Sutcliffe and illustrated by John Shelley

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Enthralling story of how Michaelangelo’s David came to be.

2. Hiding Dinosaurs written and illustrated by Dan Moynihan

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Boy hatches dinosaur eggs. Hilarity ensues.

7th Annual Picture Book Idea Month Is Here!

PiBoIdMo 2015 Calendar

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.”

Registration for PiBoIdMo is now open (click here)! It’s free and it’s awesome. Every day throughout November a different author or illustrator will post on Tara’s blog in order to inspire and ignite your creativity. I posted last year (see here) and I’ll be posting this year again (on November 2nd!). Here’s the calendar for the entire month:

pibocalendar

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.

tara lazar

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

monstore

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

i thought this was a bear book

Alien crashes into a bear book. Hilarity ensues. Meta at its finest!

Rhyming Picture Book Revolution: Best in Rhyme Award

19 awesome rhyming picture books (and Lady Pancake & Sir French Toast) were recently nominated for the first annual Best in Rhyme Award. This award will be presented at Angie Karcher’s Rhyming Picture Book Revolution Conference.

rpb

It’s such an honor to be listed with these 19 other fantastic books:

  • Circus Train written by Jennifer Cole Judd & illustrated by Melanie Matthews
  • City Kitty Cat written by Steve Webb & illustrated by Magali Le Huche
  • Duddle Puck written by Karma Wilson & illustrated by Marcellus Hall
  • Everybody Sleeps (But Not Fred) written & illustrated by Josh Schneider
  • Interstellar Cinderella written by Deborah Underwood & illustrated by Meg Hunt
  • It’s Only Stanley written & illustrated by Jon Agee
  • Jampires written & illustrated by Sarah McIntyre and David O’Connell
  • Lady Pancake & Sir French Toast written by Josh Funk & illustrated by Brendan Kearney
  • Monkey and Duck Quack Up written by Jennifer Hamburg & illustrated by Edwin Fotheringham
  • Monster Needs Your Vote written by Paul Czajak & illustrated by Wendy Grieb
  • Monster Trouble! written by Lane Fredrickson & illustrated by Michael Robertson
  • Outer Space Bedtime Race written by Rob Sanders & illustrated by Brian Won
  • Pirate’s Lullaby: Mutiny at Bedtime written by Marcie Wessels & illustrated by Tim Bowers
  • Smick! written by Doreen Cronin & illustrated by Juana Medina
  • Snoozefest written by Samantha Berger & illustrated by Kristyna Litten
  • Spots in a Box written & illustrated by Helen Ward
  • Stick and Stone written by Beth Ferry & illustrated by Tom Lichtenheld
  • There Was An Old Dragon Who Swallowed a Knight written by Penny Parker Klostermann & illustrated by Ben Mantle
  • What About Moose? written by Corey Rosen Schwartz and Rebecca J. Gomez & illustrated by Keika Yamaguchi
  • Sharing The Bread: An Old-Fashioned Thanksgiving Story written by Pat Zietlow Miller & illustrated by Jill McElmurry

What is Angie Karcher’s Rhyming Picture Book (or RPB) Revolution Conference? It’s a conference dedicated entirely to writing rhyming picture books. Faculty include all-star rhyming authors Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen, Lori Degman, Karma Wilson, Corey Rosen-Schwartz, and the Kidlit TV-ers! More info on the conference and registration can be found at Angie Karcher’s RPB Revolution website here.

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And as I do with every blog post, here are two recommendations for you (in addition to the 19 up above):

Two for You

1. Under a Pig Tree: A History of the Noble Fruit (A Mixed Up Book) written by Margie Palatini and illustrated by Chuck Groenink

pigtree

My new favorite book. So clever and meta and funny!

2. Ally-Saurus & the First Day of School written and illustrated by Richard Torrey

allysaurus

Very cool layered first day of school imagination book! The illustrations add a ton to the story.

Cybils Award Nominations

Lady Pancake & Sir French Toast was recently nominated for a Children’s and Young Adult Bloggers’ Literary Award (The Cybils) along with many other fantastic picture books (see the entire list here) – and thank you to the nominator! And the good news is that you – yes YOU – can still nominate any book that hasn’t already been nominated! Nominations are open through October 15th in the Picture Book category, as well as 10 other children’s and young adult categories.

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I nominated Boats for Papa by Jessixa Bagley. Now it’s your turn. Click here to nominate books for the Cybils.

Two for You

(two books I highly recommend)

1. Cat Nights written and illustrated by Jane Manning

cat nights

Get ready for Halloween with this story of a witch transforming into a cat.

2. Nugget & Fang: Friends Forever – or Snack Time? written by Tammi Sauer and illustrated by Michael Slack

nugget

A stunningly illustrated tale of underwater friendship.

My First Podcast Interview: Let’s Get Busy with Matthew Winner

Just a quick note today: if you’ve never listened to the Let’s Get Busy Podcast with Matthew Winner, you certainly should. And today you have TWO reasons … because I am the featured guest on Episode #193 talking about Lady Pancake & Sir French Toast!

podcast

In this interview I:

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

boats for papa

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

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Great rhymes and illustrations, and starring a sloth.