I've been a fan of dystopian YA long before it became a trend, and confess I had been turned off the genre because of so many jumping on the bandwagon. THE SCORPION RULES by Erin Bow (Margaret K. McElderry/Simon & Schuster) however, has such original and multi-layered world-building plus I find the main antagonist (Talis) so fascinating that I can't WAIT for the next book in the series. THE SCORPION RULES is a breath of fresh air for fans of dystopian YA.
Welcome to Inkygirl: Reading, Writing and Illustrating Children's Books (archive list here) which includes my Creating Picture Books series, Advice For Young Writers and Illustrators, Writer's and Illustrator's Guide To Twitter, interviews, my poetry for young readers, #BookADay, writing/publishing industry surveys, and 250, 500, 1000 Words/Day Writing Challenge. Also see my Inkygirl archives, and comics for writers (including Keiko and Will Write For Chocolate). Also check out my Print-Ready Archives for Teachers, Librarians, Booksellers and Young Readers.
I tweet about the craft and business of writing and illustrating at @inkyelbows. If you're interested in my art or other projects, please do visit DebbieOhi.com. Thanks for visiting! -- Debbie Ridpath Ohi
Like many authors, Megan Crewe finds writing about herself much more difficult than making things up. A few definite facts: she lives with her family in Toronto, she tutors teens with special needs, and she can't look at the night sky without speculating about who else might be out there.
On Picture Book Translation Rights: An Interview with Curtis Brown's Jonathan Lyons and Sarah Perillo
I'm thrilled that my books have been translated into French, Spanish, Japanese and Chinese, and am grateful to the Curtis Brown Translation Rights department for all their help. Jonathan Lyons and Sarah Perillo have kindly agreed to answer a few questions for me about the picture book translation rights process at Curtis Brown.
The Freedom To Read: Free, print-ready poster of one of my favorite Judy Blume quotes #BannedBooksWeek
In honor of Banned Books Week, I've illustrated one of my favorite Judy Blume quotes:
"Having the freedom to read and the freedom to choose is one of the best gifts my parents ever gave me."
I was lucky that way, too. My father used to take the whole family to our local public library every week, and we kids could choose whatever books we wanted. My parents never questioned my choices, and I will always be grateful to them for that trust.
You can download a free, print-ready poster here.
Guest post by Chuck Sambuchino
I once joked that debut picture books are the one of the most difficult things to get published—perhaps second only to gay Amish novellas. While that was an exaggeration for humor’s sake, the truth remains that compiling a large list of literary agents who actively seek picture books has never been an easy task.
As the editor of the 2016 Children’s Writer’s & Illustrator’s Market, it’s my job to compile oodles of markets for kidlit writers and illustrators. But the truth is that not every market listed everywhere is 100% open—it’s not that simple. Sometimes a few agents at any agency are open to signing new writers, whereas others are not. Sometimes a publisher or agent closes themselves down to submissions for a while. With all these ins and outs, what’s a writer to do?
If you're looking for funny, smart middle grade books and lots of entertaining animal facts, you need to check out Jess Keating's "My Life Is A Zoo" series. I met Jess through Torkidlit and Nerd Camp. The third book in her series, HOW TO OUTFOX YOUR FRIENDS WHEN YOU DON'T HAVE A CLUE, comes out from Sourcebooks Jabberwocky on October 6th.
Happy National Punctuation Day! Be kind to a comma today, and beware of misplaced apostrophe's.
Just finished AWKWARD, an absolutely wonderful middle grade graphic novel by Svetlana Chmakova (Yen Press/Hachette, 2015). Omigosh, this needs to be in every school library. Why? Because it Svetlana does SUCH a great job at capturing the awkwardness of middle school personal interactions, especially for the insecure and shy. I wish this book had been around when I was that age, because it would have inspired me to take more risks, to not be so afraid of making mistakes when it came to social situations.
One of my favourite Neil Gaiman quotes: "Just write. Many writers have a vague hope that elves will come in the night and finish any stories for you for you. They won’t." You can see the original video in which he offers advice for young writers:
Just finished THE KIDNEY HYPOTHETICAL: OR HOW TO RUIN YOUR LIFE IN SEVEN DAYS by Lisa Yee (Arthur Levine Books, Mar/2015). I've been a fan of Lisa's since MILLICENT MIN, and I thoroughly enjoyed her new YA. What I love about all of Lisa's books, including this one: the wry sense of humor, flawed and appealing characters, how the relationships develop throughout the story. And who could NOT love a character named Higgs Boson Bing? :-)
Every journey to publication is different. Don't compare yourself to others. Find your OWN path, at your own pace.