Sign my guest book?

Hi everyone,

I spend so much time here at the blog that I sometimes forget to brag on Kathy Temean’s work when she created my website nine years ago. One of the buttons you can click on it takes you to my guest book.

I’ve added several friends and followers since the last time it occurred to me to mention the guest book and ask visitors here to pop over to sign it. This only takes a minute or two so give it some thought. Thanks for considering it.

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Graduation Day

Hi everyone,

In 2010 I gave the author luncheon address at the New Jersey SCBWI conference held in Princeton, NJ. Prior to the conference I heard from Michele Heinrichs, whose 10-year-old daughter was a fan of mine. They lived two hours away by car but Rachel wanted to meet me in person and Michele was willing to drive that far if I had time.

When they arrived at the conference, I got to meet Rachel and exchange proper hugs. The conference chair, Kathy Temean, made arrangements for Rachel to sit in the back of the room with her mom during the luncheon. In years that followed, Michele brought Rachel and her younger sister Sarah to Honesdale when I was giving poetry workshops. As you can imagine, we have continued to stay in touch even as Rachel grew and became more involved in school and social activities.

Well, yesterday Rachel graduated from high school. I think you will agree she has grown and blossomed into a beautiful young woman. The first time I “met” her was when as a 4th grader she used to post poems on my blog. And now just look at what writing poetry will do for you!

Congratulations, Rachel. I am very proud of you!

With love, David

Promoting two books at once

Hi everyone,

With two books out at once I’m spending more time than usual with my marketing cap on. 7 KEYS TO RESEARCH FOR SUCCESSFUL WRITING is being well received by those who’ve read it. Today or soon Mary Jo Fresch and I will have an article on the subject on Scholastic’s blog. More when I have it. Some of you saw (and participated in) Kathy Temean’s interview of us/book giveaway on her blog January 28. I don’t think she’s awarded the free copy yet so there might still be time to check on it. Mary Jo and I presented on the subject at NCTE and are on the ILA agenda later this year with a two hour workshop. Last week I was interviewed about the book on radio. I’m open to other suggestions for promoting 7 KEYS. Sometimes SKYPE sessions are effective, either with students or teachers.

Now that A PLACE TO START A FAMILY is out, I’m getting busy promoting that one too. This Saturday I’ll sign copies at Barnes & Noble in Springfield (1-3 p.m.). I’m arranging a store signing in Florida in February, be in a magazine in March, and in April will speak/sign at Texas Library Association, do an evening program at our main library, make a school visit in Kirksville, Missouri about four hours from here, and appear on radio to celebrate National Poetry Month. I also have my own giveaway opportunity in progress for those who leave a comment on Amazon about the book. One person has already done so although I’m not sure I know her. Bibi, I’ll be happy to put your name in the hat for this great review. Many thanks for your kind words!

“Hurray, this book finally arrived today! (I ordered it months ago.) It definitely lives up to its promise. The artwork is intricate, fascinating, and gorgeous. The poetry is fresh, fun and informative. I bought this for my toddler grandson, and had to be very careful. He was so excited by it and wanted to ripe the pages! My 10-year-old grandson is quite the naturalist, and he loves the illustrations, the poems, and especially the Learn More! boxes which lead him to more information about the builders he is curious about. Altogether, a book that offers so much: a look into the hidden world of builders and tunnelers, beautiful explanations of how they feed and hunt, mate and build. The poems are alive with rhythmic fun. This is a must for the child’s library!”

Again, I’m open to possibilities for promoting 7 KEYS so keep that in mind if you hear of anything interesting.

How to win a copy of A PLACE TO START A FAMILY

Hi everyone,

On her blog today Kathy Temean features A PLACE TO START A FAMILY and offers a free book. Here’s her link. https://kathytemean.wordpress.com/2018/01/08/book-giveaway-a-place-to-start-a-family-poems-about-creatures-that-build-by-david-l-harrison/#comments

I hope you enjoy the story of how Giles Laroche and I went about creating the new book and signing up to win a copy.

Also, don’t forget my own offer for a free copy to someone on February 16 that will chosen by random drawing from names of those who comment about A PLACE TO START A FAMILY on Amazon by that date. The official pub date is January 16.

Time to revamp my blog?

Hi everyone,

When Whiz-Kid Kathy Temean designed my website and blog in 2009, we worked until both sites met our expectations. We’ve made some adjustments along the way but it has been a while now since we stood back to take a look to see how well they fit today’s reality based on six years of experience. Nothing major, just a snip here and a tuck there ought to do it I think.

For example, I NEVER think to keep my schedule current so I think I might drop that little box and maybe replace it with the background information I just finished compiling. Anyone interested in reading some of that would find it a handy reference.

I’m sure I need to drop or rewrite my letter to principals about the Word of the Month Poetry Challenge section for students. I’m sad that teachers everywhere seem overwhelmed these days and few can carve out the time to work with their kids on writing poetry. We used to get dozens of student poems and now we get none most months and a handful in others from stalwarts like Ken Slesarik. I’m not sure what to tell principals but most of them are former teachers themselves so they understand the problem and are sympathetic to it. I keep hoping that the educational pendulum has reached its amplitude and as its velocity slows there will be more time to add in some of the important elements it lost during its initial rush toward change. Kids need time to read, time to write, time to become familiar with and passionate about the power of our language.

Okay, where was I? Oh. So I’ve asked Kathy to look over the current format and content of my blog. Many of you know my blog about as well as I do so I would be remiss if I didn’t ask for your input.

I’m going to leave this up for a couple of day. I think it’s important.

David