Conference Updates & KidLit Events May 24

HAPPY BOOK BIRTHDAY

More Happy Book Birthday wishes for May go to two authors who are long-time members of my favorite online hangout, the SCBWI Discussion Boards: Kersten Hamilton and Kell Andrews.

Blue Boat by Kersten Hamilton, Illustrated by Valeria PetroneKersten Hamilton, author of the MG GAdgets & Gears series, and the YA Goblin Wars Trilogy, has a new companion book to join her picture books RED TRUCK and YELLOW COPTER!

BLUE BOAT

Illustrated by Valeria Petrone

When a family on a sailing outing gets stuck in a surprise storm, there’s only one boat tough enough to handle the rocking waves and howling winds: Blue Boat!

BLUE BOAT launched May 17 from Penguin Random House.

MIRA FORECASTS THE FUTURE by Kell Andrews, Illustrated by Lissy MarlinKell Andrews, author of the middle grade novel DEADWOOD, has a  debut picture book!

MIRA FORECASTS THE FUTURE

Illustrated by Lissy Marlin

Telling the future is a gift: you either have it, or you don’t. And Mira, daughter of the famous fortune teller Madame Mirabella, just doesn’t. Until one day Mira gets a pinwheel and a windsock, and finds her own special way of making predictions.

LOCAL KIDLIT AUTHOR EVENTS

RETURN TO THE ISLE OF THE LOST by Melissa De La CruzMAY 27, THURSDAY, 7:00 PM: MELISSA DE LA CRUZ, MG AUTHOR

Spring Forest Middle School, 14240 Memorial Drive, Houston
COST: FREE! Admission: In order to go through the signing line and meet Melissa de la Cruz, please purchase RETURN TO THE ISLE OF THE LOST from Blue Willow Bookshop.

Author Melissa de la Cruz will share fun activities and her new sequel to her #1 NYT best seller The Isle of the Lost, RETURN TO THE ISLE OF THE LOST: A Descendants Novel. (Disney-Hyperion)

Mal’s an expert at intimidating her enemies, but she’s broken the habit since leaving her villainous roots behind. So when she and her friends Evie, Carlos, and Jay all receive threatening messages demanding they return home, Mal can’t believe it. Sure, she’s King Ben’s girlfriend now, and she’s usually nice to her classmates, but she still didn’t think anyone would be silly enough to try to push her around.

The thing is, it kind of worked. Especially since she and her friends have a sneaking suspicion that their villainous parents are behind the messages. And when Evie looks into her magic mirror, what she sees only confirms their fears. Maleficent’s just a tiny lizard after her run-in with Mal at Ben’s Coronation, but she’s the worst villain in the land for a reason. Could she have found a way to escape? Whatever’s going on, Mal, Evie, Carlos, and Jay know they have to sneak back to the Isle and get to the bottom of it.

Without its infamous leader, the island’s even worse than when they left it, but the comforts of home—even a home as gloomy as the Isle of the Lost—can be hard to resist for recently reformed villains. Will the kids be able to beat the evil bubbling at the Isle’s wicked core, or will the plot to destroy Auradon succeed?

MAY 23-27: BOLDFACE WRITERS CONFERENCE

University of Houston

Boldface was founded in 2009 by the editors of Glass Mountain, the undergraduate literary magazine at the University of Houston, as a conference devoted exclusively to developing writers (i.e., anyone who has not studied creative writing at the graduate level is welcome). Our goal is to give emerging writers an experience that is usually available only to professional writers: several days of intense focus on the craft of writing through workshops, readings, and craft talks.

CONFERENCE UPDATES

Retreats & Writing Workshops

JULY 8-9: SCBWI-HOLLINS WRITING WORKSHOP: HONING YOUR CRAFT

Editor: Kelsey Murphy/Balzer + Bray/HarperCollins
Authors/Illustrators: Tom Angleberger; Candice Ransom; Alexandria LaFaye; Hillary Homzie

Conference Updates & KidLit News May 17

This week I’m excited to share an inspiring new STEM book from SCBWI Oklahoma author Gwendolyn Hooks, illustrated by Colin Bootman.

TINY STITCHES by Gwendolyn Hooks; Illustrated by Colin BootmanHappy Book Birthday

TINY STITCHES

THE LIFE OF MEDICAL PIONEER VIVIEN THOMAS

A biography of the African-American surgical technician who went on to pioneer cardiac surgery on children.  Published by Lee & Low Books.

Also celebrating its release this month from another SCBWI Oklahoma author is Tammi Sauer’s

I LOVE CAKE by Tammi Sauer; Illustrated by Angie RozelaarI LOVE CAKE!

STARRING RABBIT, PORCUPINE, AND MOOSE

Three friends come together to celebrate Rabbit¹s birthday until the cake mysteriously disappears, and SOMEONE (names will not be mentioned, Moose) has to figure out how to make things up to his friends. Published by Katherine Tegen Books, HarperCollins.

Tammi Sauer will be leading a picture book workshop here in Houston on June 4!

Also, mark your calendars for November 5 for a Picture Book, Early Readers, & Non-Fiction Workshop Day in Tulsa, Oklahoma with these two authors, plus SCBWI-Oklahoma author Barbara Lowell. This workshop will also offer off-Site Editor/Agent paid critiques.

 

Local Author Events

 

OUR GREAT BIG BACKYARD by Laura Bush & Jenna Bush Hager; Illustrated by Jacqueline RogersMAY 17, TUESDAY, 4:00 PM: LAURA BUSH & JENNA BUSH HAGER, PB SIGNING
Memorial Drive Presbyterian Church: 11612 Memorial Dr, Houston

COST: FREE! Admission:  This is a ticketed event. Purchase a pre-signed copy of OUR GREAT BIG BACKYARD from Blue Willow Bookshop to receive your admission ticket, which will admit one person. Each book will have a signed bookplate placed within it. When you arrive, you will pick up a wristband which will allow you through security. After the event, you will return to the Fellowship Hall to pick up your books.
Please see Blue Willow’s Event page for important information!

Blue Willow Bookshop is pleased to host Former First Lady Laura Bush and Jenna Bush Hager for a discussion of their new picture book, OUR GREAT BIG BACKYARD. This exuberant picture book is a tribute to our national parks and the importance and fun of connecting with nature. Blue Willow’s Valerie Koehler will facilitate the conversation which is expected to last about one hour.

OUR GREAT BIG BACKYARD follows Jane, whose plans of spending the summer playing video games with her friends are dashed when her parents announce that her family is going on a road trip to national parks around the country. Yet somewhere between the Everglades and Big Bend National Park, things begin to change. Jane starts paying attention to the magnificent sights and spends less time looking at her screen. The stunning views open up her imagination as she and her brother see everything that nature has to offer. And the more Jane discovers, the more she realizes how much there is to love about the outdoors whether she’s in a national park across the country or right in her own backyard.

IT WASN'T ALWAYS LIKE THIS by Joy PrebleMAY 17, TUESDAY, 6:30 PM: JOY PREBLE, YA BOOK LAUNCH
Murder By the Book

Local author Joy Preble celebrates the launch of her new YA novel IT WASN’T ALWAYS LIKE THIS (Soho Teen). In 1916, Emma O Neill is frozen in time. After sampling an experimental polio vaccine, she and her family stop aging as do the Ryans, her family’s business partners. Since Emma is in love with Charlie Ryan, being seventeen forever with him is a dream. But a group of religious fanatics, the Church of Light, takes note. Drinking the elixir has made the O Neills and Ryans impervious to aging, but not to murder. When their families are massacred, only Emma and Charlie escape with their lives but are tragically separated. For the next hundred years, she plays a cat-and-mouse game with the Church of Light and their descendants. She becomes a private investigator when a series of murders whose victims all bear more than a passing resemblance to her indicate that her enemies are closing in. Yet as the danger grows, so does Emma’s hope for finding the boy she’s certain is still out there . . .

FREDDY HOPPIE AND THE EYE GLASSES by Michelle Nott, illustrated by Robert Lee Beers May 21, SATURDAY, 2:00 PM: MICHELLE NOTT, PB SIGNING
Katy Budget Books

Michelle Nott signs FREDDY, HOPPIE, AND THE EYEGLASSES (Guardian Angel Publishing). Freddy and his imaginary frog Hoppie jump into each day. But, numbers smudge, words blur, and classmates snicker. By the end of the week, there is no more spring in their step. Freddy knows he should tell his mom about the trouble they are having, but how?

MAY 23-27: BOLDFACE WRITERS CONFERENCE
University of Houston
COST: $395/$495

Boldface was founded in 2009 by the editors of Glass Mountain, the undergraduate literary magazine at the University of Houston, as a conference devoted exclusively to developing writers (i.e., anyone who has not studied creative writing at the graduate level is welcome). Our goal is to give emerging writers an experience that is usually available only to professional writers: several days of intense focus on the craft of writing through workshops, readings, and craft talks.

Conference Updates

For more information, go to the main conference pages. If you’d like to be notified of these weekly posts, please use the form on the left sidebar to Subscribe to Updates.

EDITORS & AGENTS @ CONFERENCES

JUNE 3-4: SCBWI CENTRAL NY THE WRITE STUFF WORKSHOP, AMHERST, NY

EDITOR: Alyson Heller Editor/Simon & Schuster
AGENT: Brianne Johnson/Writers House

AUGUST 27: 10th ANNUAL SF/SOUTH ILLUSTRATORS’ DAY,  SAN FRANCISCO, CA

PUBLISHER: Allyn Johnston/Beach Lane Books/Sinom & Schuster
ART DIRECTOR: Lauren Rille/Simon & Schuster

OCTOBER 15: SET YOUR CRAFT A-SALE, THOUSAND OAKS, CA

AGENT: Tricia Lawrence/Erin Murphy Literary Agency
EDITORS: Julie Bliven/Charlesbridge; Stephanie Pitts/Schwartz & Wade Books, Random House Children’s Books; Alexandra Arnold/Katherine Tegan Books, HarperCollins

RETREATS & WORKSHOPS

JULY 14-17: BENEDICTINE RETREAT, CULLLMAN, AL

No agenda

SEPTEMBER 30-OCTOBER 2: 5th ANNUAL FALL WRITERS’ RETREAT , SPA, BELGIUM

No agenda

Conference Updates & KidLit Events, May 10

THE BFF BUCKET LIST by Dee Romito

Last week I wished a Happy Book Birthday to THE HOLE STORY OF THE DOUGHNUT, but two  great MGs also launched last week, so I want to wish a Happy Book Birthday to Dee Romito‘s BFF BUCKET LIST and Anna Stanislewzki‘s THE TRUTH GAME!

Congratulations to Dee Romito

on the launch of her debut novel,

THE BFF BUCKET LIST

Ella and Skylar have been best friends since kindergarten—so close that people smoosh their names together like they’re the same person: EllaandSkyler. SkylerandElla. But Ella notices the little ways she and Skyler have been slowly drifting apart. And she’s determined to fix things with a fun project she’s sure will bring them closer together—The BFF Bucket List. Skyler is totally on board.

The girls must complete each task on the list together: things like facing their fears, hosting a fancy dinner party, and the biggest of them all—speaking actual words to their respective crushes before the end of summer. But as new friends, epic opportunities, and super-cute boys enter the picture, the challenges on the list aren’t the only ones they face. And with each girl hiding a big secret that could threaten their entire friendship, will the list–and their BFF status–go bust?

Many of you know Dee from her excellent blog for writers, I Write for Apples and her Query.Sign.Submit. interview series which has grown to Query.Sign.Submit.Debut! THE BFF BUCKET LIST debuted May 3, 2016 from Simon and Schuster. You can also find it at your favorite local bookstore via Indiebound, or at Barnes & Noble or Amazon.

THE TRUTH GAME by Anna StaniszewskiCongratulations to Anna Staniszewki

on the fourth book in the Dirt Diary series,

THE TRUTH GAME

The truth is more than just a game.

1.Do you have a best friend? That’s one easy. Yes!
2. Have you ever had a fight with your BF? Ugh. Yes.
3. Have you ever told your BF a major lie? Ugh again. Yes. (More than I’d like to count)
4. Do you ever wish you were best friends with someone else? No! Well, um…

Rachel Lee thought that ninth grade would be different. That she would be different. Holding hands with Evan in the hallway, future president of the baking club… but it feels like she and BFF Marisol are drifting apart. At first, Rachel thought the Truth Game app would be a great way to do a little anonymous confessing, to see how others handle their friendship fails. But when her painful truths become public, Rachel’s in danger of losing her best friend – permanently.

THE TRUTH GAME launched May 3, 2016 from Sourcebooks Jabberwocky. You can also find it at your favorite local bookstore via Indiebound, or at Barnes & Noble or Amazon.

LOCAL KIDLIT AUTHOR EVENTS

MAY 12, THURSDAY, 6:00 PM: RUMMEL CREEK YOUNG AUTHORS NIGHT

Barnes & Noble, Town & Country

Students of Rummel Creek Elemntary School will share their writing. Middle School required summer reading lists will also be available.

THISTLE DOWNE by Molly & Gary Whitney

MAY 14, SATURDAY, 10: 00 AM: MOLLY & GARY WHITNEY, CHILDREN’S AUTHORS

Barnes & Noble, Westheimer Crossing 

Meet Molly and Gary Whitney, authors of THISTLE DOWNE, and see their infamous, hand built troll and fairy house!
THISTLE DOWN: Life as a troll is never easy, but Tyson faces more challenges than most. When his mother’s early death leaves him with an unfeeling father, he finds himself alone, unloved and uneducated. Trying to better himself through education, he’s bullied about both his looks and his race.

CONFERENCE UPDATES

For more information, go to the main conference pages. If you’d like to be notified of these weekly posts, please use the form on the left sidebar to Subscribe to Updates.

EDITORS & AGENTS @ CONFERENCES

AUGUST 4-7: CAPE COD WRITERS CENTER CONFERENCE, HYANNIS, MA
AGENTS: Katie Shea BoutillieR/Donald Maass Literary Agency; Ammi-Joan Paquette/Erin Murphy Literary Agency

SEPTEMBER 16-19: SCBWI MID-SOUTH CONFERENCE, FRANKLIN, TN
AGENTS: Ali Brydon/Bright USA; Holly Root/Waxman Literary Agency; Kathleen Rushall/Andrea Brown Literary Agency
ART DIRECTION: Katrina Damkoehler/Random House Children’s Publishing
EDITORS: Allison Moore/Little, Brown BFYR; Jill Santopolo/Philomel Books, Penguin Young Readers Group

NOVEMBER 3-6: SANIBEL ISLAND WRITERS CONFERENCE, SANIBEL ISLAND, FL
AGENT: Christopher Schelling/Selectric Artists