What I’ve been up to

Hi everyone,

Usually I prefer to share my life as a writer by showing bits and pieces of things, places, and occasions that stimulate me artistically. But now and then I use my blog for its original purpose, which was to support the sales of my books and invite invitations for me to visit schools and speak at conferences. I’ve just completed an update of my activities so far this year plus some on the calendar for next year and beyond. It’s a long document but I’ve decided to post it anyway.

Update on David L. Harrison literary activities,
January 1, 2018 to September 11, 2018

January, 2018
Renewed/extended contract with Nelson Education for ten additional years using my poem, “Keepers,” in Literacy Grade 1 Kit: Materials and Objects.

January 16, 2018
94th published book, A Place to Start a Family: Poems About Creatures that Build (Charlesbridge), illustrated by Giles Laroche, who also illustrated Now You See Them, Now You Don’t. Twelve poems present a variety of animal homes and mate-attracting constructions: arachnids, birds, fish, insects, mammals, and a reptile are each introduced by way of a double-page spread and a simple two-to-eight stanza poem. School Library Journal wrote, “The use of alliteration, rhyme, and onomatopoeia adds an inquisitive nature to the poems as it presents information regarding each animal’s habitat. . . . As with their previous work on Now You See Them, Now You Don’t: Poems About Creatures That Hide, this is an exceptional example of collaboration.” Kirkus Reviews said, “Harrison’s poems employ varied voices, rhythms, and formats; all are memorable and easy to understand. Some are humorous.”

Korean translation of A Place to Start a Family.

Poem reprinted in Poems are Teachers, edited by Amy Ludwig VanDerwater, Heinemann.

March 2018
Poem reprinted in Science & Children, Volume 55, Number 7, page 29.

March 18, 2018
Spoke to eight groups of children over two days at the 36th year at the Warrensburg Children’s Literature Festival. Have attended more than any other author.

March 20, 2018
95th published book, Crawly School for Bugs (Boyds Mills Press, Wordsong), illustrated by Julie Bayless. ““Poetry and bugs are brought together in this humorously wacky book. This collection will delight young readers and teachers who are in need of entertaining ways to introduce students to poetry.” (School Library Journal). “Graceful and humorous, these short poems allude to typical behaviors. With deftly constructed rhyme and rhythm patterns, lively language, and alliteration, his poems have immediate appeal.” (Kirkus Reviews).

April 3-5, 2018
Presented my poetry for a ticketed “Poetry Rodeo” event at Texas Library Association held in Dallas at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center. Title: “Making Science Real Through Poetry.”

April 18, 2018
Four poems reprinted in The Megabook of Fluency, by Timothy V. Rasinski, in Scholastic Professional.

April, 2018
“Yellow Garden Spider,” from A Place to Start a Family, reprinted in No Water River poetry anthology.

May 18, 2018
Featured in article published in Children’s Book Insider: “Poetry Anthologies: Bringing Big Ideas and Big Conversations to Young Audiences,” by Kimberly M. Hutmacher

June 15, 2018
5th edition of Children’s Literature in the Reading Program (Guilford Press) was published, for which I wrote the poetry chapter, “Creating a Community of Poetry Enthusiasts.” “Preservice and practicing teachers alike will feel confident implementing the ideas shared by highly knowledgeable scholars in the field of children’s literature.”–Patricia E. Bandré, PhD, reading instructional specialist, Salina Public Schools, Kansas. “Critically analyzing varying genres and formats of children’s literature, the authors invite teachers to successfully adopt high-quality books on a range of topics. This updated fifth edition is an invaluable resource.”–Ruth McKoy Lowery, PhD, Department of Teaching and Learning, The Ohio State University.

July 20-23, 2018
Co-presented two-hour workshop with professor emeritus Mary Jo Fresch at International Literacy Conference at the Convention Center in Austin, Texas. Title:
“7 steps to writing success: Changing how students research.”

July 22, 2018
Live Facebook podcast from Austin with Mary Jo Fresch based on our book, 7 Keys to Research for Successful Writing (2017, Scholastic). Has been viewed by more than 9,000 people.

August 8, 2018
An hour-long interview by Gabriela Pereira on national diyMFA Radio. Title: Poetry and Science. Listen at https://DIYMFA.com/212.

September 1, 2018
My latest book, Crawly School for Bugs, Poems to Drive You Buggy, was chosen by Missouri Center for the Book to represent Missouri at the National Book Fair in Washington, D.C.

September 7, 2018
Chaired and co-presented “An Evening with Poets,” to a packed room at The Library Center in Springfield, Missouri.

September 11, 2018
Member of a three person panel to discuss this year’s selections of 100 candidates for The Great American Read, held at The Library Center in Springfield, Missouri. Members include mystery writer Nancy Allen, MSU psychology professor Dr. Christie Cathey, and children’s author and poet David Harrison. The topic is why we love inhabiting other worlds, and how we as a culture connect through those 100 books.

Throughout the year: variety of book signings and school visits.


October 11, 2018
Speak to three sessions of children at Children’s Literature Festival of the Ozarks on the campus of Missouri State University in Springfield, Missouri.

Fall, 2018
Poem reprinted in 5th grade workbook in India by Macmillan editorial in India.

Article in SCBWI Bulletin

December 3, 2018
Speak at Parents’ Night at Ridgecrest School in Ridgecrest, Missouri.

January 17, 2019
Speak to civic group at Twin Oaks Country Club in Springfield, Missouri.

February, 2019
Featured article, “The Game Changer,” in themed poetry issue of Missouri Reader, published by Missouri ILA.

February 14-16, 2019
Featured author at SCIRA annual conference at Hilton Head, South Carolina.

March 27, 2019
School visit at Ridgecrest School, Ridgecrest, Missouri.

May 14, 2019
96th book, And the Bullfrogs Sing (by Holiday House). Illustrated by Kate Cosgrove.

97th book, RUM PUM PUM (Holiday House). Co-authored with Jane Yolen.

98th book, After Dark (Boyds Mills Press, Wordsong).

99th book, I Want an Apple (Holiday House).

100th book, The Dirt Book (Holiday House).

20 comments on “What I’ve been up to

  1. Wow! Your doing quite a lot. Of course I’m especially looking forward to your lead article in the Missouri Reader’s special edition on poetry next year. Our state is soooooooo lucky to have you! Sam

  2. David’s Schedule

    Write with pencil,
    mark with pen,
    this list shows
    where I’ll be when!

    Past is full
    of fun-filled days,
    future holds
    some special stays.

    Meet new people
    write new poems,
    schedule shows
    when I’ll be home.

    Love to travel
    love to write,
    schedule helps to
    get it right!

    • Thank you, Su! A schedule helps indeed! Occasional juggling is necessary but people are always kind when we need to find alternate dates. Wish I could see the aspens. I love them this time of year. Hugs.

    • Thanks, Matt. Yes, I’ve been fortunate to place several projects there. A number of other works are making the rounds so, like everyone else, I keep my fingers crossed and check my e-mails every few minutes!

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