NCTE, November 17-18, 2017

Hi everyone,

For anyone going to NCTE in St. Louis next month, I hope you’ll come see me.

On Friday, November 17, Mary Jo Fresch and I will give a Scholastic presentation from 12:30 – 1:45 titled “7 keys to writing success: Changing how students research.”

Following that we’ll sign from 1:45 – 2:15 our new book, 7 KEYS TO RESEARCH FOR WRITING SUCCESS at the Scholastic booths.

Saturday from 11:00 – 12:00 I’ll sign A PLACE TO START A FAMILY, my new book from Charlesbridge at their booth.

From 12:30 – 1:45 I’ll sit at my table for the ticketed Authors Luncheon.

Later that day, time to be announced, I’ll sign galleys of CRAWLY SCHOOL FOR BUGS, my new picture book of poetry from Boyds Mills Press.


Today will have to go some to beat yesterday

Hi everyone,

Does my wife make pretty children or what? Happy birthday yesterday, sweet Robin. We loved sharing it with you!

Not only did I have a good evening, the day was fine too. It began with a SKYPE session with my writing partner, Mary Jo Fresch, about the book we’re winding up for Scholastic, BEFORE THE FIRST DRAFT, that’s due out next spring. Several teachers are involved with that one and it’s looking good.

Within hours apart I received the jacket copy for CRAWLY SCHOOL FOR BUGS, due out next spring, and hi-res art for the whole book of A PLACE TO START A FAMILY, also due next spring. Both books are looking glorious.

While I was walking around the house grinning into mirrors, I heard from a music professor in Texas that she is writing a score for men’s chorus based on my poem, “I’m Signing on a Crew,” (from PIRATES), which she found on The Poetry Foundation website. She attached the first few pages of the sheet music. So I stopped grinning and starting singing”Argh!”

And then I heard back from someone who can be helpful to me as I consider the possibility of a new nonfiction book that may take a few years to develop. So “Argh!” turned into “Wowzers!” It was a good day for vocalizing. Oh, got a school visit invitation in there too.

I also completed my part of the three-way poetry manuscript with Steve Withrow and J. Patrick Lewis.

Today I’ll get back to tweaking the poetry chapter for CHILDRENS’ LITERATURE IN THE READING PROGRAM. (Yup, due out next spring.) My deadline is May 12 but I’ve got Chicago to do between now and then.