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<<October 2016>>
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1. Thoughts on the New TV Season, 2016 Edition, Part 2

This year's fall pilot season is shaping up to be rather muted.  Which, to be fair, is an improvement on the dreck of previous years, but also not much to talk about.  It probably tells you all need to know about the fall pilots of 2016 that there are two different time travel shows--Timeless and Frequency--and neither of them are worth saying anything about.  Nevertheless, here are a few series,

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2. Inktober So Far


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3. Baseball and Ben-Gay

1945 World Series

A young boy sat on the windowsill of his grandmother's Sheffield Ave. Brownstone, and watched his beloved Cubbies.

Binoculars in hand, and radio nearby, his view was unobstructed, straight down the first base line. Grandma would bring him a sandwich and ask for updates on the game.

The summer heat settling in the top floor apartment, coupled with an over-powering smell stinging his nostrils from his grandmother's "overuse" of Ben-Gay, made it imperative to lean as far out the window, as possible.

"Now, Kenny. Don't you fall," she'd warn.

A World Series appearance and win was always first and foremost on his mind.

The last Cubs pennant win was 1945; 7 months after he was born, so another pennant or series win was just around the corner.


It would be a lifetime before the Cubs would make it to another series. 71 years.

In case you're wondering, Ken isn't still sitting in the window of his grandmother's Brownstone, but he's just as excited now, as he was then, to see his team play.

It's been 7 decades for this long-suffering fan, but joy, along with relief, came flooding back.

Go Cubbies!

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4. A Tribe of Three

How exciting to have so much to look forward to!

A new face.
Baby smell.
Cute outfits.
Small toes.
To be needed, ALL. THE. TIME.
Sleep deprived.
Baby shrieks.
Poopie diapers.
Toddler regression.
I could go on and on.....but that may be TMI.

I have so many mixed emotions about what is to come, but our family has been busy making the most of every moment being together as a tribe of three before there is four. And I can't be more than blessed and thankful!

My art has taken the back seat. Although I have been able to do some drawing here and there, it has been far more minimal than usual. Yet, some chapters in our lives require attention on our relationships than career.

Here is what we've been up to the last couple of months:

In August we traveled to Elgin, IL for the fantastical World of Faeries Festival! This was our first real big family road trip and extended stay. We spent four days there in a hotel and working my shop, Sara B Illustration, in a tent. It was definitely a large learning experience for Brian and I as parents, as a family working a festival together, and the logistics of traveling 6 hours in the car with a toddler.

•  •  •

In September we spent time with good friends playing and working at the Renaissance Festival at Sleepy Hollow in Des Moines, IA. It's a three weekend event that I work selling corsets and dresses for EaGenie's Scots N Knots. I have many friends there that I get to spend ample amounts of time with, including my dad (which I treasure)! Norah also has a blast dressing up and seeing all of the pirates and princesses.

My ladies, Amber on the left, Jess on the right.

Time with Papi (my dad)

•  •  •

In October we ventured to the pumpkin patch at the Center Grove Orchard in Cambridge, IA. I didn't think I could do a day on my feet like this, but I am so glad I did!! We had a blast playing in the corn kernel pool, shopping for pumpkins, eating cider donuts, and feeding goats.

•  •  •

And had a great family dinner night out at the amazing landmark restaurant The Iowa Machine Shed in Clive, IA. This place not only represents all of Iowa in great atmosphere and shopping, but it also has the best comfort food!! It was definitely a treat for all of us. :)

Making Norah feel special, growing our bond with her, and establishing our unit as three has been paramount for us during this waiting period until Jaxon arrives.

•  •  •

As an artist it's challenging to divide myself between parent and creator. 

This in itself has caused bouts of depression for me. I so desperately want to be both at the same time! Keep my house organized, the studio open at all times, painting side by side with my kids, coming up with all kinds of crafts and to dos to share with them. Yet when I think of all that, I freeze and just sit staring at Norah playing puzzles, and do nothing.

Our trials and what appear to be hardships or undesired results can actually help shape and form us for the better if we allow it.

I have learned in the last couple of months that in this crazy artistic life of mine, I have chapters of family, and I have chapters of creating art. For myself it is currently very difficult for me to combine the two. I admire those moms who can with littles running around, keeping some kind of organization and self discipline in their daily routine. I thought I had to be that, but I don't. I can step aside, let God lead my feet, and being willing to do what is called of me every day. One. Day. At. A. Time.

"They're little only once."

I'm told that over and over again. Even by artists I highly admire and are successful. I do not want to make the mistake of regretting my time spent on something that can be done later, and not spending it with my children when they need me most.

It will be hard. It will be a struggle. It will be crazy. It will be WORTH IT.

We may not see the outcome of our hardships right now, but in hindsight we will and have no regrets. ♥︎

How can you relate?
Share in the comments how you manage your time between life and art. 

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I am thankful for this review for, "Heroes Beneath the Waves," with Deborah Kalb who now has her first children's book released. "Heroes Beneath the  Waves: Submarine Stories of the Twentieth Century", is written for the men who served, for families of submarine veterans to understand what it was like for  their love ones, and for students to understand war is not a game. My husband has two stories in the book. He never got to see the book as he passed away two day before the book was released.

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6. Author-Illustrator Interview: Ambelin Kwaymullina on Justice, Hope & Her Creative Family

Sample chapter from Candlewick Press
By Cynthia Leitich Smith
for Cynsations

The second of a four-installment dialogue with Ambelin and Cynthia.  

Our focus is on the creative life and process, speculative fiction, diversity, privilege, indigenous literature, and books for young readers.

Yesterday, Ambelin spoke on ethics, the writing process and own voices.

We have children’s-YA literature and the law in common. That’s actually a pretty common combination here in the states. Why do you think there are so many people involved in both?

Well, I’ve had some of my law students suggest the law is so horribly dry that it drives people to being creative in order to escape its clutches (these are generally the students who are studying law because their parents thought it was a good idea).

But for me at least, I think the reason I studied law and the reason I write are the same. In both realms, I am seeking justice – and justice, in Aboriginal societies, generally equates to balance, not just between human beings but between all forms of life (and everything lives).

I write speculative fiction because I want to write about the possibility of defeating injustice; to write about the terrible things that were (and are) while imagining what could be.

The oppressive law I wrote about in the Tribe series divides people into three categories: those without an ability (Citizens); those with an ability (Illegals); and those whose ability is considered benign (Exempts).

This is not an invented law. It is based on the Western Australian Natives (Citizenship Rights) Act 1944, a piece of legislation that purported to offer Aboriginal people ‘citizenship’ by exempting us from racially-based restrictions that only applied to my ancestors in the first place because they were Aboriginal.

In the Tribe series, this law is ultimately defeated by an alliance of the marginalised and the privileged, and by a heroine whose power is to identify and sustain the connections between all life.

And in writing of connections, I am writing of something that is central to the law in Aboriginal legal systems where (at its broadest) law is the processes of living in the world that sustain the world.

You clearly articulate the impact of white privilege on writing and writers, noting the negative impact on the work of Native voices and POC voices. What would you say to those Native and POC writers who may find themselves angry, frustrated, hurt or discouraged by these dynamics?

First: it’s not you. Exclusion is not something you are inventing in your head and you are neither unlucky nor unworthy.

It helps in this context to form connections with other Indigenous writers as well as with writers of colour, LGBTI writers, and writers with a disability.

You are likely to hear stories of authors getting similar comments across different contexts (e.g: you’re not writing to the Indigenous experience … this story is too Asian … gay books don’t sell … we’ve already published a ‘disability book’ this year).

It matters to have a network of people with whom to share both the good and bad experiences; and perhaps most importantly, to understand that you are not alone.

Second, never forget how to laugh. Some of the comments I’ve listed above have been part of the experience of other writers that they’ve laughed about with me – not because these comments are not discriminatory and hurtful, but because laughter has always been one of the ways in which marginalised peoples have dealt with pain.

Third, define success in your own terms. We all know what ‘success’ is supposed to be in literary industry terms: book sales and/or critical acclaim (preferably both). I’m not saying we shouldn’t aspire to that. But I also think that if marginalised writers define our success solely in the terms set by an industry that consistently privileges white, straight, cis-gendered people who don’t have a disability, we are also buying into an underlying lie.

The lie is that if we can just prove we are good enough we will be treated equally. But once equality has to be earned, it is no longer equality.

So I think it’s important that each of us define success according to what matters to us – and for me, it’s being a person that my ancestors would be proud of.

Book sales wouldn’t overly interest them. But honouring who they were, and who I am; treating cultural knowledge with respect; helping other Indigenous writers whenever and wherever I can – these are the kinds of things they’d be concerned about.

Fourth: be hopeful. I am. I locate my hope in people, and there are many, many people working towards a world in which all voices have an equal opportunity to speak and all stories are equally heard.

I think change will come, and in the meantime, I’m proud to be a part of a global community of voices, marginalised and privilege alike, that are speaking out for justice.

While you don’t feel it’s appropriate for non-Indigenous writers to reflect your community in first person or deep third, you are open to them writing secondary characters. Why does your opinion differ depending on how centered the character’s perspective is in the story?

Ambelin's desk
I don’t think it’s appropriate for non-Indigenous people to speak as if they are Indigenous, especially given the operation of privilege which means that non-Indigenous voices will be heard in a way that Indigenous voices are not.

For me, writing from an ‘outsider’ perspective (so not in first or deep third) is to respect boundaries; to accept there are limits on what we can know of others and how we should represent others in our own work.

When I write of experiences of marginalisation not my own, I do it from an outsider perspective – reflecting that this is much as I can understand and that understanding may of course be wrong; I am not suggesting that I know what it is to see the world from an ‘insider’ view of a group to which I don’t belong. I think the spaces must be created for everyone to speak to their own worlds, and I want to be part of making those spaces a reality.

What advice do you have for non-Indigenous writers in crafting those secondary characters?

I think something you’ve said is the best place to start – you’ve spoken of the need for writers to read 100 books by Indigenous people before writing about us.

I agree. No one should be writing an Indigenous character without being familiar with Indigenous stories (not the ones told about us but the ones told by us).

It’s also important to ensure that any stories people are reading are ethically published because there is a vast body of Indigenous stories that were taken by anthropologists and others and are now in the public domain without the informed consent (or sometimes even the knowledge) of the Indigenous peoples concerned.

The easiest way to check that a story is appropriately published is to see who holds the copyright; where Indigenous peoples hold copyright in their own stories it is at least some indication that they control the text.

In addition to reading stories, I’d say, become familiar with representation issues. Engage with the online dialogue happening around representation and children’s literature as it relates to Indigenous peoples. There are no shortage of voices speaking in this space.

And finally: words spoken about marginalised peoples have a weight and a cost. But if you are not a member of that group, then it’s a weight that you don’t carry and a cost that you don’t pay.

So don’t measure the impact of your words by how they will be read by people like you. Measure them by how they’ll be read by the people you’re writing about.

How did you learn your craft as a writer and illustrator?

By doing! I have no formal training in writing or illustration. But nor do a lot of Australian Indigenous writers and illustrators, and we have been storytellers for thousands of years.

So to learn craft I look to the work of Indigenous writers and artists, both within Australia and elsewhere, as well as to the ancient teachings of my people.

What inspired you to direct your talents toward creating stories for young readers?

In my YA series, I was writing about a superhero, so it had to be about a teenager. I don’t believe grown ups have it in us to save the world, because we are spectacularly failing to do so.

But in the young I see all the hope for the future – they are more interconnected, quick to embrace new ideas, and passionate about fighting anything they perceive as an injustice.

They’re also more honest, especially the children for whom I write picture books. When they like a book, they write me lovely letters telling me how they sleep with the book under their pillow and begging me to write more. When they don’t like it they’re equally forthright.

People ask sometimes whether its difficult as an author to deal with bad reviews, to which I say: try writing for six-year-olds. Every once in a while, children send me letters about one or the other of my picture books that begin something like this: “My teacher made me read your book. I didn’t like it.”

I’ve had a few of these letters that went on for ten pages or more, and since that length is like War and Peace from a six-year-old, it means I’ve had kids hate my work enough to send me the child equivalent of Tolstoy.

Adverse reviews from grown-ups are nothing in comparison.

What was your initial inspiration for The Tribe series?

Sample chapter from Candlewick Press
My brother Blaze. He came up to me one day and said, “I’ve got an awesome title for a book. It’s called The Interrogation of Ashala Wolf.”

I said, “That’s a pretty good title – what’s the story?’

To which Blaze replied, “Oh, there’s no story. Just the name, and I can’t be bothered writing it so I’m giving to you.”

Having bestowed the title of the novel upon me, he wandered off, leaving me to start thinking about the story. (And for anyone who’s read any of the Tribe series, the character of Jaz is very like my brother Blaze).

What were the challenges—literary, research, psychological and logistical—of bringing the stories to life?

I think the primary challenge is this: in so many ways, I wasn’t writing fiction. A post-apocalyptic world is not a fantasy for Indigenous peoples; the colonial apocalypse has already happened and much of The Tribe series is drawn from Australian colonial history.

Much of it too is drawn from the experiences of my ancestors and that is why hope runs so strongly through the narrative. They held on to hope through hard, cruel times when all their choices were taken away from them.

Indigenous peoples are so often spoken of as victims and I certainly don’t wish to minimise the suffering and the multi-generational trauma inflicted upon us by the colonial project. But the very fact that the Indigenous peoples of the world survived determined efforts to destroy us demonstrates our great strength.

I think the ability to hold onto hope is part of that strength and its something I try to honour.

You’ve created several picture books with Sally Morgan. Could you tell us about your work together?

Ambelin with her creative family
So, Sally is my mum. I’ve also done books with my two brothers, Blaze and Zeke, and the four of us have written together as a family. We’re all authors and artists, and we always give each other an honest opinion – sometimes this results in one of us storming off (usually me or Zeke, we’re both excellent stormers).

Generally, once we’ve had a chance to think about the criticism we come creeping sheepishly back and agree that yes, actually, that particular portion of the narrative (which we were previously so proud of) does indeed need more work.

I think from the outside our working process probably looks chaotic; we all talk at the same time and over each other; generally, the person with the best story gets to hold the floor until they get boring and someone else interrupts. If you want a place in the conversation in my family, you have to be prepared to earn it.

What can your readers look forward to next?

I’m working on three YA novels right now, but the one I’ll finish first is a book I’m writing with my brother Zeke.

It’s a mystery with fantasy elements that’s told from the perspective of three Indigenous female protagonists. It’s been a difficult book to write in places because terrible things happen in it, but its ultimately a story about the power of young Indigenous women and how they find their way home.

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7. ‘A New History of Animation’ Could Become The Definitive Textbook History of The Art Form

This new animation history textbook is based on the animation history courses that author Maureen Furniss teaches at CalArts.

The post ‘A New History of Animation’ Could Become The Definitive Textbook History of The Art Form appeared first on Cartoon Brew.

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8. The Great Antonio by Elise Gravel, 64pp, RL 2

The Great Antonio is Elise Gravel's loving tribute to Antonio Barichievich, the Croatian born strong man who was a Montreal fixture for many years. The Great Antonio is also yet another superb beginning reader from the fantastic TOON Books. Gravel begins this fanciful story of the life of this giant of a man speculating about his possible parentage and wondering about his childhood in Croatia. This may seem like an odd subject for a beginning reader, but Gravel tells Antonio's story with a playful tone that is immediately engaging.

To show readers just how HUGE Antonio was, she shows his clothes (a cat could sleep in his shoe, but it was quite smelly) and his eating habits. She also shows reader the various opponents he wrestled and the many enormous, heaving things he lifted and pulled.

 Antonio was larger than life and stories about him border on the unbelievable. Reading Gravel's author notes at the end of the book helped me get a perspective on this strange - for a beginning reader, anyway - story. Gravel shares that one of her favorite authors is Roald Dahl, who "got her interested in unusual people and animals," saying that she is, "attracted to anyone who is STRANGE or FUNNY." Growing up in Montreal, Gravel was very familiar with this strange and funny man. Like Sampson, Antonio had magnificent hair - long, thick dreadlocks that fell to the ground and were often used to pull buses. Or, Antonio would put metal in his braids and use them as golf clubs and more.

Gravel gives The Great Antonio the feel of a tall tale, speculating about his life and his feats but also respectfully sharing the stranger aspects of it. Near the end of his life, Antonio chose to live on the streets of Montreal, using a donut shop as his office. Gravel tells readers that, when he died, a mountain of flowers was left at his favorite table at the donut shop. Antonio himself may have created this air of mystery about himself, lending to his larger than life persona. In her author notes, Gravel shares that, after his death, many of his "wild stories" were proven to be true!

Source: Review Copy

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9. Presidential Polar Bear Post Card Project No. 268 - 10.25.16

I'm a little behind on the everyday #inktober2016 creations, but thanks to staying on task through last week I'm actually right on target for my five post cards per week to President Obama :) Onward and upward, a school visit day in Wenatchee, WA coming up!

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10. I Am A Story

I Am A Story. Dan Yaccarino. 2016. HarperCollins. 40 pages. [Source: Library]

First sentence: I am a story. I was told around a campfire, then painted on cave walls. I was carved onto clay tablets and told in pictures. I was written on papyrus and printed with ink and woodblocks, then woven into tapestries and copied into big books to illuminate minds.

Premise/plot: The story's autobiography. The concept of 'story' is personified and communicated in very simple, basic terms that readers of all ages can appreciate.

My thoughts: LOVED it. Loved, loved, loved, LOVED it. It's so simple yet so brilliant. Would recommend to anyone and everyone who loves stories and storytelling. It's not just for people who love books and libraries, but, for anyone who celebrates storytelling and communities.

Text: 5 out of 5
Illustrations: 4 out of 5
Total; 9 out of 10

© 2016 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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11. Monthly Book List: Our Five Favorites for October

First Book’s book experts picked their favorite spooky stories that will frighten and delight young readers. Don’t be afraid to pick up any of our recommended titles!picmonkey-collage-5-favs

Pre-K –K (Ages 3-6):

Ghosts in the House! written and illustrated by Kazuno Kohara
At the edge of town lives a clever girl with a spooky problem: Her house is haunted! Luckily, she happens to be a witch and knows a little something about taking care of ghosts.

We love this book because: it’s got just the right amount of sweet and scary for the youngest trick-or-treaters. Fresh and charming illustrations in dynamic orange, black and white bring this resourceful heroine and these spooky ghosts to life.

For 1st and 2nd Grade (Ages 6-8):

Los Gatos Black on Halloween written by Marisa Montes and illustrated by Yuyi Morales
Follow los monstruos and los esqueletos to a Halloween party in a fun and frightful bilingual poem. Accompanied by illustrations that are as gorgeous as they are creepy, this is a great Halloween-themed read-aloud book that kids will want to read and re-read all year long.

We love this book because: this book introduces young readers to a spooky array of Spanish words that will open their ojos to the chilling delights of the season.


For 3rd & 4th grade (Ages 8-10):

Attack of the Shark-Headed Zombie by Bill Doyle
After Keats and Henry lose their bikes, they need money – fast. So the help-wanted ad at the supermarket seems ideal for them. All they have to do is weed Hallway House’s garden, find some light bulbs in the attic, sweep the garage…and battle a shark-headed zombie.

We love this book because: With an imaginative youngster as its main character, this book weaves the tale of an exciting and fun adventure that will keep kids turning pages and entertain even reluctant readers.



For 5th & 6th grade (Ages 10-12):

Ghost Fever / Mal de fantasma (Bilingual, English/Spanish) by Joe Hayes
Elena Padilla’s father didn’t believe in ghosts, and that’s a shame, because his disbelief ends up making Elena a very sick girl. The story starts in an old rundown house in a dusty little town in Arizona. Nobody will rent that house because … well, a ghost haunts it. The landlord can’t even rent it out for free! That is, not until foolish old Frank Padilla comes along thinking he can save some money.

Lucky for Elena that her grandmother knows all about the mysterious ways of ghosts. With her grandmother’s help and advice, Elena solves the mystery of the ghost girl, recuperates from her ghost fever and, in the process, learns a valuable lesson about life.

We love this book because: It’s really scary! The incredible details of this story – with English and Spanish on opposite pages – will stay with readers after the story ends. Children who enjoy a good fright will really love this book.


Grades 7 & up (Ages 13+):

Lockwood & Co. #1: The Screaming Staircase by Jonathan Stroud
A sinister Problem has occurred in London: all nature of ghosts, haunts, spirits, and specters are appearing throughout the city, and they aren’t exactly friendly. Only young people have the psychic abilities required to see—and eradicate—these supernatural foes.

We love this book because: Complex and endearing characters navigate an alternate reality wherein the dead don’t die – what’s not to love? The book’s fantastic world is sure to hook readers – even we can’t wait to pick up the next title in the series!

The post Monthly Book List: Our Five Favorites for October appeared first on First Book Blog.

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12. Writer Wednesday: Writing For Adults

Today's topic comes from Mirka, who said, "...tell us some more about your adult suspense book, and how writing for grown-ups is different than MG or YA, beyond the MC's age."

Great topic, Mirka! Thanks!

Okay, well my adult books are very different from my YA or MG novels. It almost seems like there are different rules for writing for adult. Let me start with what I've noticed from reading adult books. First, things are described in much more detail. Second, backstory is common and often told upfront. Third, there are more dialogue tags. 

I could go on, but these three blew my mind. For years, I listened to everyone say, "No info dumping!" and "Try not to use dialogue tags!" Yet every adult book I've read does both. Now I don't mean pages of backstory. Not at all. But a brief paragraph of who the MC is and how they go where they are is totally common. I've even see the dreaded "My name is..." format. Again, this blew my mind. And no, I'm not doing that. I've been conditioned not to.

So writing for adults is tough for me. I have to remind myself to step back, observe the scene, and give more details than I would to a teenager whose attention span isn't very long. I also need to make sure my characters are all introduced in ways that the reader will remember them from one book to the next, which means reintroducing them in books two, three, four, etc. Again, this is so different for me. But my adult beta readers are telling me this is normal, and from the books I've been reading, they are correct.

The easy things for me are writing characters who are closer to my age. Mine tend to be in the mid/late twenties to early thirties. I know how people this age speak, act, think, etc. Teens can be challenging because they change so much! Adults, not so much. I also think it's fun to write about adults in different professions. I'm exploring some that I've considered but never followed through on for various reasons, and that's kind of amazing. 

In many ways, writing for adults is freeing. I feel like a rebel, breaking rules I've always been told to follow. ;) Who doesn't like to break a few rules, right? And the dialogue and actions come more naturally for me. So yeah, I'm enjoying it, and I think I'll keep writing for adults.

*If you have a question you'd like me to answer from the other side of the editor's desk, feel free to leave it in the comments and I'll schedule it for a future post.

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13. Give Please a Chance!

I am excited to announce that my artwork, along with several other illustrators from MB Artists, will be featured in Bill O'Reilly and James Patterson's new book "Give Please a Chance."  My illustration is the one shown here at the bottom, with the girl and the trampoline.  This title will be released on November 21st.

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14. महिला और समाज – भारतीय समाज में नारी का स्थान

महिला और समाज – भारतीय समाज में नारी का स्थान – हाल ही में हम महिलाओं से जुडे दो बेहद खास त्योहार गए. करवा चौथ और अहोई अष्टमी का. पर नेट पर तो मानों मजाक बनाने वालो की बाढ सी आ गई. बहुत ही ज्यादा मजाक बनाया गया. कुछ अच्छा भी लगा तो कुछ बुरा भी… महिला […]

The post महिला और समाज – भारतीय समाज में नारी का स्थान appeared first on Monica Gupta.

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15. Loosely based on some folks I saw today. #inktober2016 #sketch

0 Comments on Loosely based on some folks I saw today. #inktober2016 #sketch as of 10/26/2016 1:42:00 AM
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16. Cybils Speculative Reader: WHERE FUTURES END by PARKER PEEVYHOUSE

Welcome to the 2016 Cybils Speculative Reader! As a first run reader for the Cybils, I'll be briefly introducing you to the books on the list, giving you a mostly unbiased look at some of the plot.Enjoy! Synopsis: A year from today, Dylan will... Read the rest of this post

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17. Inside of Me

Poetry is what I’d see
If I could peek inside of me.
It pulses, with a beat sublime,
Converting random thoughts to rhyme.

The words secure me, just like roots
But let me float, like parachutes,
So anytime I write a poem,
No matter where I am, I’m home.

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18. PACKAGING - sainsbury's

Talking of Sainsbury's I noticed that they have recently repackaged their own label bakery products using repeat pattern designs. Just a little mention really but it caught my eye as I love to see pattern in use wherever it pops up.

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19. Storyboarding Your Picture Book

There are several methods to choose from in creating a storyboard for your picture book.


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20. Coloring Page Tuesday - Halloween Story Time

     Halloween is Monday - are you ready? If you don't want to hand out candy, and you aren't a business, feel free to hand out my coloring pages instead! CLICK HERE for more Halloween-themed coloring pages!
     CLICK HERE to sign up to receive alerts when a new coloring page is posted each week and... Please check out my books! Especially...
my debut novel, A BIRD ON WATER STREET - winner of six literary awards. Click the cover to learn more!
     When the birds return to Water Street, will anyone be left to hear them sing? A miner's strike allows green and growing things to return to the Red Hills, but that same strike may force residents to seek new homes and livelihoods elsewhere. Follow the story of Jack Hicks as he struggles to hold onto everything he loves most.
     I create my coloring pages for teachers, librarians, booksellers, and parents to enjoy for free with their children, but you can also purchase rights to an image for commercial use, please contact me. If you have questions about usage, please visit my Angel Policy page.

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21. Instagram: Finds from the Field – Sea Ranch Edition

Grain Edit Instagram

In this edition of Finds from the Field, we feature our trip to Sea Ranch – a modern housing community established in the mid-sixties along the Northern California coastline. Featured on and within several of these structures are supergraphics and icons by Bay Area designer Barbara Stauffacher-Solomon. In addition, she designed the logo which can be easily seen on the signage at the Sea Ranch Lodge and welcome center.


Grain Edit Instagram

Sea Ranch was designed by Moore, Lyndon, Turnbull, Whitaker and a significant smidgen of Escherick


Grain Edit Instagram

Super fun exit sign


See all of our Instagram finds here.


Also worth viewing:

Eye Sea Posters
Bulgaria Black Sea Resort Stamps 1972

Script and Seal Posters

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Thanks to this week's Sponsor // Foto Sushi

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22. Celebrating Tomi Ungerer in Style (Artists Need Apply)

Oh, where to begin.

So the other day, I got to thinking that my kids have had an insufficient dosage of Tomi Ungerer in their daily diets.  Ungerer, if you are unfamiliar with him, has always been the enfant terrible of children’s literature.  Having dared to publish children’s books for kids at the same time as his wildly erotic adult art for (obviously) adults, he was run out on a rail from the States, though he continued to make his books.  The only story of his I’d ever read the children is Crictor, and I was toying with the notion of showing them No Kiss for Mother (which I don’t think I’m emotionally cohesive enough to tackle at this time) or The Beast of Monsieur Racine.  In the end I took the easy route out and borrowed The Three Robbers from the library (partially inspired by that Salon post about the kid who only like to read about “bad guys”).

ungererNext thing I know, Phaidon is republishing eight of Tomi’s books in this new, gorgeous, collection called Tomi Ungerer: A Treasury of 8 Books.

But even better than that is what they’re planning for Tomi’s 85th birthday.  On November 28th (and they’re announcing this widely so I guess it won’t be a surprise) Phaidon will hand to the man a virtual birthday tribute “filled with drawing and written messages from friends and fans. The birthday greetings will be displayed on a dedicated page on the Phaidon website — www.phaidon.com/CelebrateTomi — and then printed and presented to Tomi for his birthday.”

They’re accepting entries for this right now, librarians, artists, writers, and fans.  Do you want to submit?  Submit! [looking at you, Sergio Ruzzier]  Definitely check out some of the submissions so far.  I like the Eric Carle, the Milton Glaser, and the suggestive one from Sarah Illenberger, but the Jean Jullien is my favorite by far.


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23. Inktober Day 25: Birds and Trees

Birds and Trees. Day 25 of #Inktober2016.

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24. Bee jokes!

bee flying backwards going zzub zzub

Bee children in a school buzz (bus)

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25. KIDS DESIGN - sainsbury's TU A/W16

Today I have some snapshots of the latest Autumn/Winter children's clothes at Sainsbury's. They retail their clothing under the brand TU and for Autumn Sainsbury's have brought us Owls, woodland flora and fauna, and ducks in the rain. For winter there are plenty of bear designs for boys, either camping style, skiing, or in woolly hats. For girls their are Scandinavian style birds. Here are my

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