Posted in PB, So Many Good Books

The Imposter

Perfect Picture Book Friday

The Imposter (Gnome Road Publishing, March 2024) by Laura Bower and illustrated by Kerisa Greene is a darling picture books that is relatable.

When Olive’s favorite stuffed animal is missing, she searches everywhere. Then an imposter turns up!

This character is funny and real–kids know!

Read about Laura here and check out her other forthcoming book here.

Kerisa is both an illustrator and an author. Read about her here and see her forthcoming picture book here.

Posted in PB, So Many Good Books

You Make Me Sneeze!

Perfect Picture Book Friday

You Make Me Sneeze! (Astra Young Readers, 2024) by Sharon G. Flake and illustrated by Anna Raff is absolutely hilarious. And especially relatable to anyone with allergies. It’s also a companion book for You Are NOT a Cat.

Duck and Cat are best friends on a camping trip, but there’s a problem. Duck is allergic to Cat. He makes Duck’s beak itch and twitch, and “Achoo!”

With hilarious attempts to fix the problem, the book ends with a twist.

Read about the author here and check out Sharon’s other books here.

Look at a sampling of Anna’s illustrations here, read about her here, and see all her books here.

Posted in PB, So Many Good Books

Giraffe Is Too Tall for This Book

Perfect Picture Book Friday

I haven’t been reading many picture books lately–I need to get back to it. So first up is Giraffe Is Too Tall for This Book (Page Street Kids, 2023) by DK Ryland. It reminds me a bit of the old The Monster at the End of this Book. I think kids will get a kick out of it.

Giraffe is too tall for the book and his other animal friends are trying to help, but nothing is quite working. In the end, with the help of the reader, Giraffe solves the problem.

DK is an author/illustrator and this is her first picture book, but she already has others coming soon. Read about them here and read about her here.

Posted in PB, So Many Good Books

So Loud!

Perfect Picture Book Friday

So Loud! (Annick Press, April 2024) by Sahar Golshan and illustrated by Shiva Delsooz is a book to be put on your to be read list for next spring. (I read an ARC.) It’s funny, charming, and especially important story for little girls who have been told to they’re too loud. (And even for the adult women who were told the same thing.)

Rudabeh, Rudy for short, is too loud. At least that’s what all the adults tell her. But when Rudy turns her volume down like the water in a tap, she doesn’t feel like herself. Rudy’s especially worried that the grandmother she’s meeting for the first time will think she’s too loud like everyone else does.

I love this character so much.

So Loud! is Sahar’s debut picture book. Read about her here and about her other writing here.

Read about Shiva here and check out her portfolio here.

Posted in Contest, Craft, Inspiration, The Nitty Gritty of Children's Writing

Springflingkidlit 2023

It’s a contest–read about it here for spring-inspired stories under 150 words! The organizers are author Ciara O’Neal and agent Kaitlyn Leann Sanchez. There are prizes to be won and a short window to submit: April 1st thru 3rd. And it’s free to enter.

This year I thought it might be fun to participate. It’s one way to get my writing out there. So the image above is a gif* that is required to go with the story.

I’m not comfortable pasting my whole story here, but will paste the opening:

A Squirrel Did It

“Noah, did you leave the bamboo gate open?” Mama asked.
“I think a squirrel did it.”
“Noah, did you dig a hole in the gravel path?” Mama asked.
“No, a squirrel did it.”
“Noah, did you put leaves in the fountain?” Mama asked.
“I bet a squirrel did it.”

The story in total is 107 words. (For the contest entry, the judges will get to see the whole story.)

Why do we want to write short? There’s always room for shorter stories, whether in magazines or in picture books. I like what the Arapahoe Library says on their “Children’s Books with Few Words” page: “Your child can feel successful when reading these books that have very few words.” The page has links to staff chosen books.

But it’s not just for those learning to read. Parents often like a few short choices. Some kids have short attention spans. But also sometimes “less is more”–fewer words can have a stronger and lasting impact.

Short can be moving, hilarious, quiet, and more.

Here are some short picture books I love:

Caring for Your Lion by Tammi Sauer (261 words)
From Here to There by Sue Fliess (287 words)
Ghost Cat by Kevan Atteberry (200 words)
The Rabbit Listened by Cori Doerrfeld (296)
When Pencil Met the Markers by Karen Kilpatrick (223 words)

(You can find the word count of many books at Accelerated Reader Bookfinder.)

So, I challenge you to try writing short. You might like it.

*Gif found at gifer.com