A Great Nephew and a Great Aunt, Guests-Janet Wong and Sylvia Vardell, Friends

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. 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 . . .

Janet Wong and Sylvia Vardell

From Janet: Which came first, the photo or the poem? The photo. It’s one of many taken by Sylvia at the North Carolina State Fair last month, when she was visiting NC as a featured speaker at their state school library conference. Sylvia’s father was a professional photographer, and she has always loved taking photos. In fact, for our ebooks P*TAG (PoetryTagTime Book 2) and Gift Tag (PoetryTagTime Book 3) poets chose from dozens of photos taken by Sylvia and wrote poems about them—a neat exercise in ekphrastic poetry!

Sylvia’s Photograph

sylvia's pumpkin

Photograph by Sylvia Vardell

Janet’s poem, in the voice of the big pumpkin.Slide1

Many thanks to Janet and Sylvia for sharing their special collaboration with us today. It’s perfect for getting us in the mood for pumpkin pie.


Janet and Sylvia ALL PFA books cropped copyMeet Sylvia and Janet

Sylvia Vardell is Professor in the School of Library and Information Studies at Texas Woman’s University. She has published extensively, including five books on literature for children and over 100 journal articles. Her current work focuses on poetry for children, including a regular blog, PoetryforChildren. She is also the regular “Everyday Poetry” columnist for ALA’s BookLinks magazine and the 2014 recipient of the ALA Scholastic Library Publishing Award.
Janet Wong is a former lawyer whose dramatic career change has been featured on The Oprah Winfrey Show, CNN’s Paula Zahn Show, and Radical Sabbatical. She is the author of 30 books for children and teens on a wide variety of subjects, including writing and revision, dumpster diving, diversity, and chess. A frequent speaker at schools, Wong is active in the ILA Literacy & Social Responsibility SIG and the NCTE Children’s Literature Assembly.
Together, Vardell and Wong are the creative forces behind The Poetry Friday Anthology series, launched in 2012 and used in thousands of school districts nationwide.

The latest in the series is The Poetry Friday Anthology for Celebrations.pfac cover with border copy


Tricia at The Miss Rumphius Effect 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


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