What to do today?

Hi everyone,

Yesterday I submitted a proposal for a book that DAN BURR and I want to do. He and I haven’t worked together since I wrote and he illustrated PIRATES (2008) and COWBOYS (2012) for Boyds Mills Press.

PIRATES, especially, received recognition, including Kansas State Reading Circle, NCTE Notable Poetry Book, Nominated for Cybils Award, selected for VOYA’s Nonfiction Honor List, Texas Bluebonnet Master Reading List, Indiana Young Hoosier Book Award Master Reading List, and selected to represent the state of Missouri at the National Book Fair in Washington D.C. I would love to get a new book in the works with Dan.

I also sent a proposal for a book with TIM RASINSKI. We’ve already done the work and leased rights to use it in schools in Pennsylvania and Virginia. Now we’re thinking we might see about getting it published instead of marketing it ourselves.

Also submitted a new story I wrote with JANE YOLEN to a publisher neither of us has worked with before. I need to start thinking about something else I might do for that house.

Jane and I haven’t done anything together since RUM PUM PUM (Holiday House, 2019), which I loved doing.

Also checked signals with KATE COSGROVE about a book we’re interested in doing together. THE DIRT BOOK continues to do well and we love working together.

I think today I’ll work a bit more on the idea to do with Kate. I need to move that one along enough that I can submit it somewhere.

Elsewhere, Tim Rasinski, LYNNE KULICH, and I continue to wait for the readers to report in about the proposal we submitted several weeks ago for a new education book.

LAURA ROBB, Tim Rasinski, and I expect to get a pub date anytime now for a book we’re just completing for Teacher Created Materials. I hope to see that one come out late this year.

Hi everyone,

This will be an interesting week, or at least Wednesday will. That morning I’ll join eleven other children’s authors for a virtual literature festival hosted by Park University in Parkville, Missouri, not far from Kansas City. The event is called “Pirates Read.” Too bad I didn’t think to pack a copy of PIRATES.

Wednesday afternoon I’ll meet by Zoom with LAURA ROBB, TIM RASINSKI, and our editor at Teacher Created Material, CATHY HERNANDEZ, for a creative meeting about the book we’re doing.

Otherwise, you’ll find me in the cage if you need me.

A brief series of favorite poems and their histories, #8

Hi everyone,

Here’s #8 on the list of my favorite poems.

This is the opening poem in PIRATES, Wordsong/Boyds Mills Press, 2008. The title was chosen to represent Missouri at the National Book Fair in Washington D.C., 2013. It was a NCTE Notable Book of Poetry, on the Texas Bluebonnet Master Reading List (2011-2012) as well as Kansas State Reading Circle List (2009) and Indiana Young Hoosier Book Award Master Reading List (2011-2012).

PIRATE NEST

Times were hard for some men.
They slept in places
roaches would snub,
ate when they were able,
drank what they could.

The waterfront teamed
with men like that,
living life on the bottom rung,
neither giving
nor expecting mercy.

Tomorrow would be
like yesterday —
rotten teeth, rat bites,
odd jobs loading ships,
stealing a coin now and then.

Men like that nursed
their bruises with their beer,
brooded, plotted revenge on life,
decided that dying as a pirate
was better than living like this.

(c) 2008 David L. Harrison, all rights reserved

Outstanding Science Trade Book List for A PLACE TO START A FAMILY

Hi everyone,

A PLACE TO START A FAMILY (Charlesbridge, 2018) — about structures animals create in which to start their families — has been chosen for the 2019 NSTA Outstanding Science Trade Books list. This is my second partnership with Giles Laroche, who also illustrated 2017’s NOW YOU SEE THEM, NOW YOU DON’T, also Charlesbridge. Both were edited by Karen Boss who told me that this year five Charlesbridge titles made it on the list.

I’m delighted to see A PLACE TO START A FAMILY recognized by science teachers. PIRATES was honored by VOYA, NOW YOU SEE THEM was voted best children’s nonfiction book of 2017 by Society of Midland Authors, and now A PLACE TO START is being honored. All three books are science-based poetry so I’m especially happy about that.

No more Pirates

Hi everyone,

I’m looking down the list of titles that Boyds Mills just took out of their line. I’m going to miss PIRATES and those wonderful paintings by Dan Burr. Its recognitions included: Kansas State Reading Circle List, 2009; NCTE Notable Poetry Books, 2008; nominated for Cybils Award; VOYA’s Nonfiction Honor List, 2009; Texas Bluebonnet Master Reading List, 2010-2011; Indiana Young Hoosier Book Award Master Reading List, 2011-2012; selected by Missouri Center for the Book to represent Missouri at the National Book Fair in Washington D.C., 2013.

Dan and I introduced PIRATES at Texas Library Association in 2008. We had no idea who the guy dressed like a pirate was. He just appeared and stood in behind us for the picture. The Center for the Book held a reception in Warrensburg for Dan and me. Here’s the link. What a great party that was! http://books.missouri.org/content/david-harrison-and-dan-burr-book-signing I didn’t attend the National Book Fair in Washington, D.C. Sandy said I should have gone. Cheryl Harness did you go the year your book was chosen? I think I heard that more than 100,000 people go to those affairs. Here's a poem from PIRATES, published by Wordsong, 2008, (c) by David L. Harrison, all rights reserved.

WHAT’LL THE KING SAY, CAP’N?

Nice and easy, Cap’n.
Do nothing you’ll regret.
We’re helping ourselves to all your gold
And we’re not finished yet.

I’ll have your pistol, Cap’n.
Your knife will also do.
Ah, those rings are pretty things!
Hand them over too.

What’ll the king say, Cap’n?
Seems you lost his loot!
Seems you lost your pistol, Sir,
Your knife and rings to boot.

What’ll the king say, Cap’n?
Your kindness can’t be matched!
Let’s hope the king’s as kind as you
And leaves your head attached.