Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Greetings from Nowhere

A lovely review of Greetings from Nowhere from a teacher (my heroes) blog: Driven to Read.

I love kids

From a reader:

I am so over excited to have read your novel. I hope you enjoyed it.

I love kids.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Writing Yoga by Bruce Black

One of my favorite bloggers is writer Bruce Black. His blog, Wordswimmer, has terrific author interviews and insights into the writing process.

AND, he has a new book out: Writing Yoga: A Guide to Keeping a Practice Journal.

After becoming a devotee of Anusara Yoga, Bruce began to use personal journaling as a companion to that practice. The result is this book, that "explores the nexus of yoga, writing, and life."

Even though I don't practice yoga myself, his connections between writing and yoga resonated with me.

A sampling of chapters:

Moving Past Fear
Paying Attention
Trusting the Process
Finding Your Balance
Listening to Your Voice

He includes some of his own journal entries. My favorite is the following:

The writing lets me touch something inside me--reach a place only accessible when a pen and journal are at hand….Without seeing the words on paper, without the physical act of writing, there's something vaguely abstract and elusive about one's thoughts, whereas, with pen and paper, we make those thoughts concrete.

A lovely, insightful book packed with valuable nuggets useful to writers, practitioners of yoga, and anyone who lives life (i.e., everyone).

Monday, March 28, 2011

Book Club

Yesterday I was invited to attend the monthly meeting of a fantastic book club (5th grade girls and one brother). They had read How to Steal a Dog.

So much fun!

They played a trivia game based on the book (and they knew more about it than I did).

They made (and gave me) terrific bookmarks.

They asked great questions.

We had such interesting discussions. (Like, if you were suddenly homeless, what few items would you take from your bedroom to keep in your car?)

Thanks, y'all!!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Things I Love Thursday

This little soy sauce pitcher.

For years I thought it was a camel, but I think actually might be a dragon. ??

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

A big mess

This looks like a big mess.

But by Friday, it will be in the mail.

It will be in the mail.

And it will not be a big mess.

Monday, March 21, 2011



A great day out at the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art in Amherst, MA.

The event was an NESCBWI panel, organized by the fantastic Melissa Stewart: Overcoming Challenges: A Program for Writers and Illustrators.

(l to r) Jo Knowles, Brian Lies, me, Mary Newell DePalma

Me and Jo Knowles (right)

This is the Eric Carle Museum scrapbook that is signed by all the authors and illustrators who visit. I wanted to steal it.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Points of View

My work-in-progress has eight points-of-view.

Yes, you heard me correctly.


A tad challenging to keep track of.

Where did I leave off with that character? What is the setting? What time of day is it? etc etc

Then there was the problem of spacing them out. Were they balanced enough?

Being a visual person, I devised several ways to do that.

First, I have my beautiful color-coded outline in Scrivener:

Then I have my little color-coded index cards:

Then I have these awesome folders called "Collections." I can see all of the chapters of one point of view consecutively:

Then there's the more archaic devise of a chart showing the point of view of all 56 chapters:

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Things I Love Thursday

In honor of my 27th wedding anniversary (St. Patrick's Day 1984):

I love my husband.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Stop squinting

I used the word "squinted" 39 times in my manuscript.

I wish I were kidding....

....but I'm not.

Work in Progress Check-In

Eric Carle Museum

I'll be speaking on a panel at a New England SCBWI event at the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art in Amherst, MA this Saturday.

What: Overcoming Challenges: A Program for Writers and Illustrators

When: Saturday, March 19; 10-3:30

Where: Eric Carle Picture Book Museum; Amherst, MA

Who: Mary Newell DePalma; Jo Knowles; Brian Lies; Barbara O'Connor

Download a pdf

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Writing Workshop

A writing workshop with 4th graders from Deer Hill School in Cohasset, MA:

Many thanks to teacher extraordinaire, Mike Lewis, for the photos.

Monday, March 7, 2011

EXPOSED Book Launch Party

Yesterday was the book launch party for Exposed by my dear friend, Kim Marcus

Kim Marcus (left) and me

My writers group celebrating the happy occasion:

(l to r) Carolyn DeCristophano, Delia Weikert, Brian Lies, Kim Marcus, me, Mary Wisbach, Valerie Kerzner, Wiesy MacMillan

Kim reading from Exposed:

Friday, March 4, 2011

Shout out to Deer Hill School!

Talk about a welcome!

I had the best, best visit at Deer Hill Elementary School in Cohasset, MA.

Check out this amazing display that greeted me in the hall!

Thank you, Deer Hill. There's nothing an author loves more than great teachers who love teaching (and children's books).

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Ruby's favorite toy

Just like the postal service: neither snow nor rain nor gloom of night....keeps this toy away.