Julie Hedlund and Daughter, Molly

Ants may rule the hill, but they don’t rule here! Art by Landon (Click to Enlarge)

Ants may rule the hill, but they don’t rule here! Art by Landon (Click to Enlarge)

Hello, Great Readers of our series! Just in case you haven’t visited before, let me tell you a little about A Great Nephew and A Great Aunt. My great nephew, Landon (a sixth-grader) and I (his great aunt) collaborate. I write a poem which he illustrates. We started this collaboration in the fall of 2014 and have had so much fun with it that we decided to invite others along early in 2015. Landon and I will continue to have a new episode on the second Friday of each month. The other Fridays I host guests. I have created a page on my website to view all the episodes of A Great Nephew and a Great Aunt. Click HERE to visit the page and enjoy past episodes.

Today it is my pleasure to share a creative collaboration from . . .

Julie Hedlund and her daughter, Molly

Words from Julie about the collaboration: About the poem: A friend of mine named, you guessed it – David, once told me in great detail about a dream he had featuring a brilliantly colored bird. The dream, and his description, was so vivid, I started seeing this bird in my OWN dreams. I felt as if the bird was following me, yet never fully revealing itself. After a while it reminded me of human relationships. We can’t truly hold on to another person or bend them to our will. Sometimes the best thing you can do is just “be” with someone. Thus the inspiration for this poem.

Julie’s Poem

Slide1

More from Julie: When I sent Molly the poem, I asked her to create a picture based on what she saw. I confess when I got this back, it hit me straight in the heart. So much emotion here. When I asked her to tell me more about it, she said, “I think the bird was a temptation of the characters, so I tried to have them separated by fiction and reality so the bird cannot protect her yet.”

Molly’s Art

David's Bird copy

Art by Molly

We can’t truly hold on to another person or bend them to our will.” — Well said, Julie. I can feel this in your words and Molly’s art. Thanks to both of you for being a part of this series.


 

Molly and Me (1) copyMeet Molly: Molly has been an artist from birth. She’s always drawn freehand and never wanted or had much use for a coloring book. In addition to drawing and painting, Molly loves theater, singing in the choir, and putting together awesome, fashionable outfits for both herself and her mother. 🙂

Meet Julie: Julie Hedlund is an award-winning children’s book author, founder of the 12 x 12 Picture Book Writing Challenge, blogger, and a regular speaker at SCBWI and other industry events.

Her picture book, A TROOP IS A GROUP OF MONKEYS, Little Bahalia Publishing, 2013, first published as an interactive storybook app, was the recipient of the 2014 Independent Book Publisher’s Association Benjamin Franklin Digital Gold Award. Her storybook app, A SHIVER OF SHARKS, Little Bahalia Publishing, 2013, was a 2014 Digital Book Award winner. Her most recent book, MY LOVE FOR YOU IS THE SUN, released in September 2014 also from Little Bahalia.

Julie is a monthly contributor on author/illustrator Katie Davis’ Brain Burps About Books children’s literature podcast, a PAL member of SCBWI, and a contributing editor on the subject of 21st Century Publishing for Children’s Book Insider.

Enjoy the trailer from Julie’s book, MY LOVE FOR YOU IS THE SUN.

Thanks to Sylvia at Poetry For Children for hosting the Poetry Friday Roundup today. If you’d like to know more about Poetry Friday, click HERE for an explanation by Renee LaTulippe.poetry friday button


 

I thought I had a winner! Wait! I do have a winner!

Winner! Winner! Winner!

bear bookYes! The winner has been determined!

I thought about sending the winner on an around-the-galaxy tour with Prince Zilch! But Prince Zilch has a history of crashing!

I thought about providing the winner with an life-long supply of porridge! But the bears told me that porridge is NOT THAT SPECIAL!

I thought about gifting the winner free enrollment in one of many classes taught by Goldilocks. Classes include:

  • The Art of Breaking and Entering and Bearly Getting Away
  • Porridge-Getting it Just Right
  • The Musical Chairs of Life-How to Avoid a Breakdown
  • Who Needs a Sleep-Number Bed? Three and Counting-So Many Beds, So Little Time!

But none of those prizes would be near as special as . . . . . . .

a signed copy of I THOUGHT THIS WAS A BEAR BOOK! And who will be receiving this wonderful prize??? Who was randomly chosen by Random.org???

Who is the winner??? I thought I told you! I didn’t? Well, it’s . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

bear book

Buffy Silverman!! Yes, Buffy! You’re the winner!

Congratulations!!!

And thanks to all of you who commented and celebrated with Tara!

 

Linda Baie and Granddaughter, Ingrid

Ants may rule the hill, but they don’t rule here! Art by Landon (Click to Enlarge)

Ants may rule the hill, but they don’t rule here! Art by Landon (Click to Enlarge)

Hello, Great Readers of our series! Just in case you haven’t visited before, let me tell you a little about A Great Nephew and A Great Aunt. My great nephew, Landon (a fifth-grader) and I (his great aunt) collaborate. I write a poem which he illustrates. We started this collaboration in the fall of 2014 and have had so much fun with it that we decided to invite others along. Landon and I will continue to have a new episode on the second Friday of each month. The other Fridays are filling up quickly with guests. I have created a page on my website to view all the episodes of A Great Nephew and a Great Aunt. Click HERE to visit the page and enjoy past episodes.

Today it is my pleasure to share a creative collaboration from . . .

Linda Baie and her granddaughter, Ingrid

Words from Linda about the collaboration: In May and June, we had a delightful visitor to my garden, a tiger swallowtail butterfly. There are lots of flowers, including many butterfly weed plants, and it would come flying through, drinking away, then move on to someone else’s flowers. My granddaughters, six and four, come to visit at least once a week, and a couple of times we had fun sitting outside watching this beautiful butterfly together. We would sit on the grass quietly, and hope it would be attracted to our bright clothing. It never landed on any of us, but did make a few close fly-bys! When I suggested to Ingrid, six, that I would love to write a poem that she would illustrate, I asked her what she might like to draw. And she told me she knew just how to draw butterflies, so there was the topic. The girls and I play “I spy with my little eye” sometimes, and when I was messing around with words for a ‘butterfly’ poem, I connected the game, our watching, and the rhymes.

Finally, one afternoon Ingrid came over to hear the poem, discuss it, and examine some pictures I had taken of that one butterfly visitor. It was a special time watching her draw, and I loved writing just for her, too.

Linda’s PoemSlide1

More from Linda: Here are pictures in the garden, and pictures showing the beginning progress of Ingrid’s art, and the final drawing. Special note: Ingrid made sure to put a colorful dress on the little girl so she would attract butterflies!

butterfly

Photo by Linda Baie

tigerswallowtail

Photo by Linda Baie

Ingrid hard at work.

workinghard

Almost done.almostdone

Ingrid’s final art.

final

Art by Ingrid

Proud artist.

Ingrid with final

Art by Ingrid

I just love that colorful dress, Ingrid. It’s perfect for attracting butterflies!

And here are Linda and Ingrid after Ingrid’s performance at drama camp as a cat.

Ingrid-Linda copy

Poet and Artist

Many thanks to Linda and Ingrid for being a part of the series.


Meet Linda: Linda Baie is newly retired from teaching middle-school-aged students and being a literacy coach for many years at an independent school in Denver, CO. She loves being with family, including a son, daughter-in-law and 14-year-old grandson in Texas, and a daughter, son-in-law and two granddaughters very near in Denver. She blogs at TeacherDance.org.


Catherine Flynn at Reading to the Core. has the Poetry Friday Roundup today. If you’d like to know more about Poetry Friday, click HERE for an explanation by Renee LaTulippe.poetry friday button


 

A Great Nephew and a Great Aunt are taking a week off :-)

Ants may rule the hill, but they don’t rule here! Art by Landon (Click to Enlarge)

Ants may rule the hill, but they don’t rule here! Art by Landon (Click to Enlarge)

We’re taking the week off. A Great Nephew and a Great Aunt will be back next week with guest collaborators. See you then. In the meantime, feel free to check out past collaborations HERE.

Jill Esbaum and Great Niece, Emaline

Ants may rule the hill, but they don’t rule here! Art by Landon (Click to Enlarge)

Ants may rule the hill, but they don’t rule here! Art by Landon (Click to Enlarge)

Hello, Great Readers of our series! Just in case you haven’t visited before, let me tell you a little about A Great Nephew and A Great Aunt. My great nephew, Landon (a fifth-grader) and I (his great aunt) collaborate. I write a poem which he illustrates. We started this collaboration in the fall of 2014 and have had so much fun with it that we decided to invite others along. Landon and I will continue to have a new episode on the second Friday of each month. The other Fridays are filling up quickly with guests. I have created a page on my website to view all the episodes of A Great Nephew and a Great Aunt. Click HERE to visit the page and enjoy past episodes.

Today it is my pleasure to share a creative collaboration from . . .

Jill Esbaum and her Great Niece, Emaline

Jill’s Poem

Slide1

1st published in Babybug, July/Aug 2003

Jill’s great niece, Emaline, illustrated Jill’s fun poem. Emaline’s mom asked her where the robins were. Emaline said she didn’t want birds in her picture 🙂

Emaline’s Illustration

art

Art by Emaline

I think Emaline’s art is just perfect! Who needs birds? 😀

Many thanks to Jill and Emaline for being a part of the series.


Emaline

 

Meet Emaline: Emaline is about to start kindergarten. She lives in Minnesota.


photo of Jill

Meet Jill: Jill Esbaum is the author of many picture books. Her newest is Animal Groups, a nonfiction title from National Geographic. She is also the author of I Am Cow, Hear Me Moo!, which recently won a Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators Crystal Kite award. Coming in September is Elwood Bigfoot:  Wanted: Birdie Friends. Jill co-hosts the Whispering Woods Picture Book Writing Workshop/Retreat each summer. She lives on a farm in eastern Iowa. For more, visit her website at http://www.jillesbaum.com.


Tabatha at The Opposite of Indifference has the Poetry Friday Roundup today. If you’d like to know more about Poetry Friday, click HERE for an explanation by Renee LaTulippe.poetry friday button

I THOUGHT THIS WAS A BEAR BOOK by Tara Lazar AND a giveaway!

I’m so excited to be sharing a book birthday with agency-mate, Tara Lazar. Her latest book, I THOUGHT THIS WAS A BEAR BOOK, is out in the world today, too. I’m here with Tara hoping to ask her a few questions but we keep getting interrupted by Prince Zilch and Dragon.

Let’s see what they’re talking about.

Dragon and Prince Zilch

Adorable Graphic by Tara Lazar

Dragon: It’s a good thing you didn’t crash land in my book!

Prince Zilch: Correct, fiery creature. Your unusual land already has a Prince! But I do not see him. Did you swallow him, too?

Dragon: That is only known by the deep depths of my belly. Perhaps you’d like to have a look-see? 

Prince Zilch: No, zank you. But why don’t you ask this yellow-haired, nosy human I know.

Dragon: You know a yellow-haired nosy human? How did you meet said yellow-haired nosy human?

Prince Zilch: She was annoying hairy, brown creatures. Who were annoying me. Did the knight annoy you? Is that why you ate him?

Dragon: I ate the knight because I love a “good” knight. It was the steed that was annoying. I had no choice but to swallow him right down! Would you like me to take care of the hairy, brown creatures? They sound like a “just right” snack.

Prince Zilch: Zep. They are stuffed with blueberry filling.

Well, it seems as if Prince Zilch and Dragon have struck up quite a friendship. I think they could talk all day. So why don’t we leave them to it and get back to the questions I wanted to ask Tara. Oh! I do want you to take special notice of the cute graphic Tara made for the Prince Zilch/Dragon conversation. Adorable!
bear book
Penny: Being that you are the genius behind PiBoIdMo I found you online very quickly when I started writing picture books. But, I don’t think I’ve ever heard what brought you to writing picture books. Can you share that?

Tara: What brought me to writing PBs is that I have always naturally written short. Short stories in college, flash fiction as an adult, and since I always wanted to write for kids (ever since I was one), now picture books!

I have begun and abandoned MG novels because writing more than 1000 words just gets me lost in the wilderness! I can’t keep track of things. (This is the same at home. I am so disorganized, I lose the laundry.)

Penny: I love the idea of a character landing in the wrong book after an unfortunate bookshelf collapse. Did you have a hard time deciding in which book the alien would land? Was there a runner up?

Tara: The alien was always in my mind as the “character who didn’t  belong.” I arrived at the bears by thinking about the complete opposite of a small, green, slimy alien. I decided a large, brown, furry bear was the best prospect. So the book wasn’t originally about the Three Bears, but just BEARS. But as I continued to write it, I kept finding myself writing jokes about Goldilocks and finally figured out what was going on! LOLonce upon

not planet zeroPenny: Benji Davies illustrations are amazing. How excited were when you found out he’d be illustrating your book?

Tara: Honestly, I didn’t really know Benji’s work when he was selected, which was 4 years ago! But I looked at his online portfolio and his books (like BIZZY BEAR! Hello!!!)  and knew that he’d be perfect. Of course, he blew me away!

bear tushThis page alone totally sold me on Tara’s book!

Penny: I know that this isn’t the only book you have coming out this fall. Plus PiBoIdMo is right around the corner. I can’t imagine how busy you must be. Can you give us a glimpse of how you keep all these balls up in the air? Any words of advice? An organizational tip?

Tara: I have no organizational advice because, contrary to popular belief, I am not a naturally organized person. I’m so TYPE B that I’m really TYPE C. I’m very laid back and I tend to try to keep everything straight in my own head. Only recently have I begun to use a daily calendar. (I hate it. LOL). I just know what has to get done and I do it. It’s just the way I operate. If I had to get more organized than I am, I wouldn’t survive! I like flying by the seat of my pants. Being too regimented about anything strips away my creative mojo.

Well I say stay disorganized then, Tara, because I love your books and I don’t want you doing anything that strips away your creative mojo!

I hope you have the happiest of book birthdays!!

Thank you so much for creating the adorable graphic, answering my questions, and sharing a signed copy of your book for the giveaway.

For all you readers out there…make sure you leave a comment because some lucky person is going to win a signed copy of I THOUGHT THIS WAS A BEAR BOOK! A winner will be chosen in two weeks.

Tara is well known in the Kidlit community. She has another picture book coming out this fall and several more to follow. If you haven’t met her yet, here’s your chance.tarafall2011picrounded1

Street magic performer. Hog-calling champion. Award-winning ice sculptor. These are all things Tara Lazar has never been. Instead, she writes quirky, humorous picture books featuring magical places that everyone will want to visit. Here are the places you can find Tara.
Website
Twitter
Pinterest
Facebook