Saturday, April 25, 2009

About Me

At Raven Tree Press they wrote an author bio about me to go along with Bedtime Monster. It's kind of funny to read about myself. Sounds like I'm living my dream!

You can read my bio here.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

In My Dreams

Last night, well okay it was this morning, I did something I haven't done in a while. I dreamt a book. And --bonus-- I remembered it!
Perhaps it was because I was dreaming so late into the morning. There's a lot of time for dreaming when you get to sleep in until 10am. (Thanks honey.) Or maybe it's because I kept waking up and repeating the words to myself. (I have this fabulous talent of being able to fall right back to sleep in the morning. No problem.)
When I finally got up I wrote the lines down that I had been crafting in my dream. I even remembered the twist I devised for the end. In my sleepy state I had thought the book was about one thing. I was stoked when I realized I'd come up with the perfect beginning for a book I've been thinking about writing for a long time but hadn't been able to figure out the right way to tell the story.
After having to force my writing for a while now, I feel like I'm finally getting back to my old self and the words are coming to me, even if it is in my dreams.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009


I want to blog. I have things to talk about. I just need more hours in the day. If you have any minutes to spare, please send them along. I will try to use them wisely.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Interview with Christine Rose, author of Rowan of the Wood

Okay, if you haven't noticed, I've decided that I like doing interviews. They're fun, and I get to ask people questions. Cool writer people!

I've kicked it up a notch today. Christine Rose, co-author of the book Rowan of the Wood along with her husband, Ethan Rose, has stopped by Frolicking Through Cyberspace on the Beltan Blog Book Tour.(Ethan does sneek in for a second.) And we're trying something new. Christine has answered my interview questions...on video. Plus she's answering your questions here today in the comment section.

Christine and Ethan's book is about an ancient wizard who possesses a young boy after a millennium of imprisonment in a magic wand. He emerges from the child in the face of danger and discovers Fiana, his new bride from the past, has somehow survived time and become something evil.

Sounds spooky. Christine will tell us more about Rowan of the Wood and answer some other questions too. Take it away Christine!

You can also find out more about Christine and Ethan at and read about(and enter!) the contest they are running during their Beltan Blog Book Tour at

Wasn't that fun? Thanks Christine, for being here.
Have a question for Christine? Just ask. She'll be here all day.

Friday, April 10, 2009

I'm Back

I took the winter off of work at the library since the weather is so unpredictable around here. I was skiing/sledding/walking out two miles and it was negative degrees for so much of winter this year, so I was glad I did. But I missed the library.

I'm finally getting back into the swing of things(winter was long!) I don't get to work too often--did you notice that I said get? That's right, because I love my job. I love shelving books. I have a hard time not reading each book jacket as I put them in their place. I love helping people find books they want/need. I love checking books out.

I fear that if I didn't work at the library I wouldn't even know what adult fiction books are out there. I do read quite a bit of non-fiction(mostly writing related of course) but really, I'm all about the children's books. I always head to the picture book section first, then go puruse the middle grade and young adult. The cool thing is, since I'm so into it, that has become "my section" of the library. All the subs get a section, depending on what they're into(the head librarian is very cool that way). No one else is so into children's books like I am. Imagine that.

It's my mission to rearrange books so kids can find them and to help kids find books that interest them. One girl said today, "I only read good books." She was very serious. Her friend cracked up. It was classic. Some people are harder to find books for than others.

My favorite part though is putting up book displays in the picture book section. We like to have some sort of theme, so I get to sit and look through the shelves just like I would anyway, but with more of a focus than I would normally have. I did a water theme last week. This week I did birds. And there's always my favorite library themed display. I want to start blogging my displays. I haven't had the time to write the books down so far. The library is a busy place.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

And the Winner is ...

I put all the names in a hat, stirred them up, and my little guy pulled out... Stephanie! *the crowd cheers--they actually did, the kids ran around and went wild, throwing confetti, dancing, and clapping. Okay, they were shrieking too. It was joyful chaos!

Thanks to everyone who entered. You were all so kind to share the ways you tortured or were tortured by your siblings which I must admit was a lot of fun to read.

If you didn't win, hop on over to Brimful Curiosities where she's giving away a copy of Otto Grows Down on April 13th.

Many thanks to Michael Sussman for a great interview and for the contest!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Interview with Michael Sussman, author of Otto Grows Down and a contest!

On Tuesday I posted a review of Otto Grows Down written by Michael Sussman and illustrated Scott Magoon. Go here to read the review. *Hint, hint, it's a great book!

As promised, Michael has stopped by to answer some questions about his writing and his book. Plus, he's giving away a signed copy of Otto Grows Down!(details below) First, the interview:

Michael, how did you come to write OTTO GROWS DOWN?

About five years ago, I was experiencing a bad case of writer’s block as I struggled to start a second novel. My son, Ollie, inspired me to start writing for children. As soon as I switched my intended audience from adults to children, my writer’s block disappeared!

As a child, I would sometimes fantasize about what life would be like in backwards time. This fantasy became the basis for OTTO. In early drafts, time turned around because of a book called “Backwards and Forwards” which Otto received as a present. I wasn’t wild about this aspect of the plot, but struggled to come up with an alternative. Finally, while taking a bath, I had my “Eureka!” moment: Time reverses when Otto makes a birthday wish that his baby sister was never born!

By the way, I chose Otto’s name because it’s a palindrome. All the names in the story—Otto, Anna, Bob, Mom, and Dad—read the same backwards and forwards.

Are there any similarities between you and your main character, Otto?

Having an older and a younger brother, I used to fight for my parents’ attention. Like Otto, I also experienced remorse when I overshadowed my siblings.

What was your road to publication for OTTO GROWS DOWN like?

I received dozens of rejections from editors on an early draft of the story. I revised the manuscript and sent it out again. Once more I received dozens of rejections, but two editors were interested. One editor backed out when her colleagues decided the story was too edgy for a picture book. The other—Frances Gilbert at Sterling Publishing—loved the story and has been a delight to work with.

How many other children’s manuscripts had you written before OTTO GROWS DOWN? What have you done with them?

OTTO was my second attempt at a picture book. The first one never got published, and I haven’t gotten around to revising it.

You’ve published books in the adult world. How does it feel to be able to call yourself a children’s author now?

It’s wonderful. I love reading the story to audiences, and the responses I’ve received from children and parents have been truly heartwarming. There’s no sweeter sound in this world than a child’s laughter.

Do you have any other books in the works? Tell us about your work-in-progress.

I’m currently polishing two picture book manuscripts. One is whimsical adventure story, written in verse. The other is about a girl who develops a superpower that spins out of control.

What are you doing to support the publication of your book?

I’m doing bookstore events with Scott Magoon, the illustrator. I’m also giving readings in schools and libraries. With any luck, the “Otto industry” will thrive without any government bailouts!

Finally, if you could live in any book, which one would it be and why?

I’d say either Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, because I’d never be bored, or Tom Sawyer, because I long for a simpler way of life.

Thanks Michael, for the great interview! It's interesting to know that palindromes, childhood fascination, and writer's block are all a part of Otto Grows Down. Now I have even more stuff to talk with my kids about when we read your book(for the hundredth time!)

Otto Grows Down is published by Sterling Publishing. You can read more about Michael at his website

Ready to win a signed copy of OTTO GROWS DOWN? All you have to do is leave a comment on this post. You can just say enter me, but if you want to get it off your chest, you can share what your siblings did to pester you(or what you did to pester them!) I'm told that I used to make my poor little sister sit in the corner all the time. I don't remember doing any such thing. Unfortunately there are photos.

I'll take entries until Tuesday, April 7th at 6 p.m.(PST) when I'll put all of the names in a hat and have my littlest guy, who can't even read yet, pull out a winner. I'll contact you if you leave a link or if I recognize you, otherwise, check back in on Tuesday to see if you've won. U.S. mailing addresses only. Good luck!