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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: PiBoIdMo, Most Recent at Top [Help]
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1. Illustrator Interview – Vinicius Vogel

As soon as I saw Vin Vogel’s wonderful banner for this year’s PiBoIdMo, run by Tara Lazar, and knew that Vin had written and illustrated a picture book about YETIS, I knew I had to interview him. Vin Vogel is … Continue reading

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2. Rules of BRAINSTORM

I love the posts over at Tara Lazar's site every November during PiBoIdMo! Some inspire me by presenting a new way to look at creativity, and some are reminders of things that I already knew, but seem to forget about when trying to create!

The last few on not censoring yourself inspired me to write this post. Back in the days when I was a graphic designer in the advertising/communications field, we would have brainstorming sessions for new projects. We would have to repeat the rules about 10 times each session because someone would say, "that's stupid," or "don't write that one down!" That breaks the first rule – anything goes – no censoring! You gotta get the bad ideas out somehow!

Here's a quote from the great Chuck Jones about creating art:

 

Switch out ‘drawings’ with ‘ideas’, or any creative endeavor.

Here is my list of Brainstorming Rules written in deference to the Movie Fight Club, and the Rules of Fight Club:

Rules of BRAINSTORM
  • 1st RULE:  You do not censor ANY ideas in BRAINSTORM.
  • 2nd RULE: EVERY IDEA gets written down in BRAINSTORM.
  • 3rd RULE: No Judgey Judgersons! If someone says 'that's stupid' or 'don't write that down' BRAINSTORM is over for them, and escort them out of the room. (This includes your inner voices!)
  • 4th RULE: Only 15 minutes for each BRAINSTORM. (If nothing comes out of it, take and break and come back to it.)
  • 5th RULE: In BRAINSTORM, quantity trumps quality. The more ideas, the better.
  • 6th RULE: Build upon other ideas. Take an idea you wrote down and add to it.
  • 7th RULE: Sketch you ideas out. If you just thought 'but I can't draw' please leave the BRAINSTORM. (Back to 3rd RULE of BRAINSTORM!)
  • 8th RULE: Wild ideas are welcome. This is the time to think of the wildest ideas you can imagine! Having toys and puzzles around may help get your juices flowing.

Good luck with your ideas!

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3. PiBoIdMo Day 9: Sandra Tayler’s Future Possible Tense

Sandra Taylerby Sandra Tayler

I never had an ambition to become a picture book author. I know it is a thing that many people dream of doing. Their brains burst with rhythm and rhyme. They long to have their words matched with glorious pictures and put on shelves for children to love. I tumbled into it because I had a child and she desperately needed a story. She was struggling and hurting. I knew that the right story could help her. I looked for it at the library and in bookstores. I didn’t find it, and so I wrote it instead. This was how Hold on to Your Horses was created. I thought I was done, but my daughter still struggled and I knew there was another question to answer, so I wrote The Strength of Wild Horses. Both stories came directly from the need of a child. So that is my advice to all those participating in PiBoIdMo. If you’re struggling to find ideas, go spend time with some children.

I once read an article that described children’s play as taking place in the Future Possible tense. You can hear it in the intonations of the kids. They have an idea—something they hope will be accepted into the mutual game—So they make a statement, but give it the intonation of a question.

“And then I grew wings?” says one child.

The other nods and says, “And I pulled out my rocket pack and we flew to the mountain together?”

Each is part statement, part question. It is an expression of what might be possible in the next part of the game. Many adults would do well to think in the future possible tense. PiBoIdMo writers would do well to sit down with a note pad and scribble notes as fast as the kids can imagine. The games of children will teach you magic and whimsy that you can carry with you to the picture books you want to write. Children know that sometimes the best answer is to sprout a pair of wings (or a jetpack) and take off for the next mountain.

Stories are gifts to the children who read them. Your story may be a gift of whimsy or delight. It may be a solution to a problem. It may be a necessary lesson. Like gifts, these stories can come in all sorts of wrappings. They may be full of rhyme or they may be simple prose. The pictures may be simple or elaborate. If you’re not sure yet which story you want to tell, go spend time with the people you want to tell it to. Listen to them. Learn what they love, what they worry about, what they cry over. Throw all of this into the pot from which you draw your ideas and let it simmer for a while. The result will be something delightful or useful, and perfectly suited to your audience.

guestbloggerbio2014

Sandra Tayler is a writer of essays, children’s books, picture books, speculative fiction, and blog entries, all of which can be found at onecobble.com . She has two picture books in print, two essay books, ten years of blog entries, and a novel in progress. Sandra can be found online at OneCobble.com or on twitter @SandraTayler. When she is not working, Sandra spends time with her house, her four kids, and her cartoonist husband, Howard Tayler.

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Sandra is giving away a matched set of picture books Hold on to Your Horses and The Strength of Wild Horses. Perfect reading for anyone who has a child filled with wild ideas.

holdontoyourhorses strengthofwildhorses

This prize will be given away at the conclusion of PiBoIdMo. You are eligible for this prize if:

  1. You have registered for PiBoIdMo.
  2. You have commented ONCE ONLY on today’s post.
  3. You have completed the PiBoIdMo challenge. (You will have to sign the PiBoIdMo Pledge at the end of the event.)

Good luck, everyone!


10 Comments on PiBoIdMo Day 9: Sandra Tayler’s Future Possible Tense, last added: 11/9/2014
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4. It's PiBoIdMo Time Again!

http://taralazar.com/

It's that time of year again – the leaves are turning, the weather is colder, and it's Picture Book Idea Month (PiBoIdMo)!

PiBoIdMo is a writing challenge for picture book writers and illustrators. The idea is to come up with one picture book idea every day in November, so by the end of the month you'll have 30 new ideas to help you throughout the year! I just love the adorable banner for this year, designed by Vin Vogel!

Don't miss the daily posts on Tara Lazar's site from authors, illustrators and picture book professionals to help you along on your 30-day idea journey this November.

Participants who register for PiBoIdMo and complete the 30-idea challenge will be eligible for prizes, including signed picture books, original art, critiques, Skype sessions and feedback from one of eleven picture book agents! You have until Nov. 7th to sign up to be eligible for prizes.

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5.

PiBoIdMo is just around the corner. Sign-ups have started. Are you in?






Click here to join!

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6. PiBoIdMo 2014 Registration: Sign-up Here!

 

Registration for PiBoIdMo 2014 is open! Let’s go!!!

openreg

But wait!

First, let’s review our guest blogger line-up, shall we?

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wicked

iknowright

These authors, illustrators and picture book professionals will provide daily doses of inspiration to help you along on your 30-day idea journey this November.

And don’t forget—there’s Pre-PiBo beginning tomorrow, to get you organized and ready. And then in early December, there’s Post-PiBo to help your organize and prioritize your ideas.

Participants who register for PiBoIdMo and complete the 30-idea challenge will be eligible for prizes, including signed picture books, original art, critiques, Skype sessions and feedback from one of ten picture book agents. This year’s agents are:

  • Heather Alexander, Pippin Properties
  • Stephen Fraser, Jennifer De Chiara Literary Agency
  • Kirsten Hall, Catbird Agency
  • Tricia Lawrence, Erin Murphy Literary Agency
  • Erin Murphy, Erin Murphy Literary Agency
  • Rachel Orr, Prospect Agency
  • Ammi-Joan Paquette, Erin Murphy Literary Agency
  • Jodell Sadler, Sadler Children’s Literary
  • Joanna Volpe, New Leaf Literary & Media, Inc.
  • Kathleen Rushall, Marsal Lyon Literary Agency

Plus I still hope to add a few more!

Need more info about PiBoIdMo before you register? Read this.

So are you ready to register? You need to do THREE THINGS:

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This is so you don’t miss any of the daily PiBoIdMo posts. If you already follow another way, via RSS or a blog reader, no need to do it again via email. And if you already follow via email, obviously skip this step.

2piboidmo

Be sure to comment with your FULL NAME in the TEXT of the comment. This is how you will be identified for prizes.

Please, leave ONE COMMENT ONLY on this post.

DO NOT REPLY to other comments.

DO NOT COMMENT AGAIN if you forget to leave your FULL NAME. (I will fix it and/or contact you.)

If your comment DOESN’T APPEAR IMMEDIATELY, it means I have to moderate it. Check back in 24 hours to see if your comment appears. It probably will.

3piboidmo

Here is the badge! Right click to save to your computer and then upload it anywhere you please–Facebook, Twitter, your blog or website, etc.

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If you do not have a place to display the badge, you can skip this step.

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4. Purchase PiBoIdMo merchandise, like the official journal. All proceeds ($3 per item) benefit RIF, helping to put books into the hands of underprivileged children.

5. Use the #PiBoIdMo hashtag when tweeting about the event….and follow @TaraLazar on Twitter.

6. Join the PiBoIdMo Facebook discussion group. This is a closed group meaning you must request to join and I will approve you. (Note: the name says “2011″ but it is the current group.)

7. Repeat after me:

I do solemnly swear
that I will faithfully execute
the PiBoIdMo 30-ideas-in-30-days challenge,
and will, to the best of my ability,
parlay my ideas into
picture book manuscripts
throughout the year.

 That’s it. You’re golden!

REGISTRATION REMAINS OPEN THROUGH NOVEMBER 7th. You can still follow along if you’re not registered, but remember, those who register and complete the challenge are eligible for PRIZES.

Visit this blog for daily inspiration from the guest bloggers, then keep a journal or computer file of your ideas. There’s no need to post your ideas online or send them to me. KEEP YOUR IDEAS TO YOURSELF! As Sheena Easton croons, they’re “for your eyes only.”

At the end of the month, I’ll ask you to sign the PiBo-Pledge confirming you did create 30 ideas. You’re on the honor system.

Thanks for joining! I hope you enjoy this year’s PiBoIdMo! As always, if you have any suggestions for this event, please contact me at tarawrites (at) yahoo (dot) com or post a question on the PiBoIdMo Facebook group.

I will leave you with a quote that serves as PiBoIdMo’s motto…from Roald Dahl’s THE MINPINS…

roalddahlquotepibo

*Photo credit Alessandro.


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7. Ideas

Starting on November 1, Mom will be a part of PiBoIdMo.

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Yep. November is Picture Book Idea Month. That means she will have to get a picture book idea in her head every day for 30 days.  Last year, she wrote 30 ideas, and 8 of them are now either stories or poems. And one of them will be Mom’s first ever eBook, called What If I Don’t.

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Ideas are a way of life when you’re an author. They are also a way of life when you’re a dog. Here are some ideas I have for stories….

Cupcake, the Best Dog in the World.

polka

Cupcake Gets Unlimited Treats

101 treats

When Cupcake Went for a Ride

car

Cupcake Looks Pretty

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Read to a Pet Night Starring Cupcake

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Street Naps for Cupcake

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Cupcake Turns Seven Years Old

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That’s a week’s worth of ideas, right there! What’s the big deal? I wish November was named DogIdMo. I could totally do this!


11 Comments on Ideas, last added: 10/15/2013
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8. Five Word Friday

Today’s five words are about autumn.

1. Leaves – Leaves are falling everywhere. Some of them are dull and brown. Some are gorgeous and brightly colored. They remind Mom of ideas. Ideas come in all shades, too. Some are brilliant. Some crumble when you touch them.

huh

2. Cool – Mornings and nights have been cool lately. Sweater weather for sure.

sweater

3. Ready – Fall reminds us that winter is coming. We need to be ready. Mom is getting ready for PiBoIdMo. It’s a whole month when she has to write down a new picture book idea every single day. She’ll type them into her phone, and then try to make each one into a story.

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4. School – Kids go back to school in the fall. That means I go back to working at Read-To-A-Pet-Night at the library. Sometimes, Mom and I listen to 7 or 8 stories. Some are awesome. Some are …meh.

pet night

5. Halloween – Halloween is in the fall. Mom got me 2 costumes. One of them is a turtle costume. We used to have a turtle named Leave-the-Turtle-Alone. I hope Mom doesn’t change my name to Leave-the-Dog-Alone. That would be too lonely!

IMG_2629

Does anybody want to play with me?


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9. PiBoIdMo 2013 Registration is OPEN!

piboidmo2013-participant-214x131

Well, it’s that time of year again. Picture Book Idea Month (PiBoIdMo) is almost here. Tara Lazar has another great lineup of guest bloggers and prizes again this year. To make this a more manageable project for me this year, I am only going to blog about my progress on a weekly basis. so here is my promise:

I do solemnly swear
that I will faithfully execute
the PiBoIdMo 30-ideas-in-30-days challenge,
and will, to the best of my ability,
parlay my ideas into
picture book manuscripts
throughout the year.

This has been successful for me the past couple of years, so I hope I’m up to the challenge again this year.


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10. PiBoIdMo 2013 Day 1

piboidmo2013-slogan-490x301

I have signed up for Picture Book Idea Month, and today, November 1 is Day 1. I have my idea written down this a.m. in my journal, and I will post a small scan of it when I get back home from work (I always have a drawing or two with an idea).

 

PiBo was started in 2009 by author, Tara LazarPiBoIdMo is a challenge to write a picture book idea every day for the 30 days of November. It has grown so much in participation since the first year (in which I was one of the random winners of the grand prizes). Now, we have over 300 participants and loads of wonderfully inspirational posts every day on Tara’s blog by accomplished writers, authors, and literary creatives. It has grown into a wonderful community that inspires not only through out November, but the rest of the year as well via Facebook and Twitter. I wish all of my fellow participants good luck! To my fans, please check back for updates and new sketches related to PiBo. Have a great weekend!

piboidmo2013-lightbulb-happy-200x254Isn’t this little illo adorable? This years artwork and badge were created

by artist, Joyce Wan. Check her art out, it’s so sweet!

 

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11. SkADaMo Last Day!!!

SkADaMo button 2013 monkey winner 450

Wooo hooooo! We did it, y’all!

First of all I want to give a hearty thanks to all the folks who visited my blog, Facebook, or Twitter to support and root me on. Your comments, retweets, shares and ‘likes’ were encouraging, often funny and clever and always more than welcome. Thanks also for doing the same for my fellow SkADaMoers. You guys made the journey all the sweeter and kept me going when I was tempted to just sit and eat a whole bag of chips while watching goofy, but time wasting kitty antics on YouTube.

I may have only completed 25 sketches in 30 days, but that’s 25 more sketches than I would have done otherwise.

In fact, to all my fellow SkADaMoers:

You decided to step a bit out of your comfort zone this November, dip your toe into a challenge. Maybe you did one sketch, or 5, 10 or all 30. Whatever number you managed to do… You. Are. A. Winner!

Why? “Why am I a winner no matter how many sketches I finished”, you may ask? Well, because you took a positive, productive step toward revving up your creative engines this month. Perhaps your sketchbook is a little fuller, your blog has a few more posts. Maybe you killed it and did 30 sketches or more! Maybe for those who participated in PiBoIdMo or even if you didn’t, you have some great picture book ideas percolating  now or some great new ideas for a painting or some other type of super cool project. Maybe because you dipped your toe into this challenge you’ll be more toned up to jump into something even more challenging with both feet! Whatever the case may be, you did it and that is fantastic! Good for all of you!

You rock. Take a winner badge!

SkADaMoWinnerbutton2013

Now go on and enjoy the rest of your holiday season, feeling a bit more energized. Maybe you’ll take a rest from sketching every single day, maybe you’ll continue do a wee bit every day…

OR…

Maybe you’re a masochist like myself and you’ll join the HoHoDooDa (Holiday Doodle a Day) fun that December brings (starts tomorrow, or any day you can join. Of course the sooner the merrier.)

More about the third annual HoHoDooDa later today. For now congratulations SkADaMoers! You kicked November’s butt!

And thanks again to everyone who supported us and rooted us on. You guys are winners as well. Take a badge!


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12. Inspirational Quote of the Week

All the effort in the world won’t matter if you’re not inspired.
Chuck Palahniuk

Experiences inspire ideas. Mom has completed her PiBoIdMo challenge with 35 inspired ideas for new stories.

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Some of her ideas will become picture book manuscripts. Some will become poems. One of them might become the elusive Book #2 or eBook #2. Some of them stink so bad that they will stay in her phone and rot. But somewhere, somehow, all of them were inspired for a few minutes by an experience during the month of November.

At her author visits, students or teachers often ask Mom if she ever has writer’s block. She says, “Never.” That’s because as long as she has a list of ideas, even if one story gets stuck, there are a bunch of other stories just waiting to get started.

I was inspired last night, so I started playing the piano with my paws…

piano paw

…and my face.

piano face

Mom came in to see what was inspiring me. Was I a genius and she was just finding out? No. Did I suddenly get skills that no dog in the world ever had? No. Would I play at Carnegie Hall and be famous? No. There was a fly in the house. And I wanted a closer look at it.

*Not actual fly

*Not actual fly

The fly disappeared after my concert, and later he met with an unfortunate end. Rest in peace, little fly. I think you would’ve been delicious.

clipart-rip-b846

*Not actual fly tombstone


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13. Combinations

There are lots and lots of breeds of dogs.

tv

Nobody is really sure what combination I am. Part Jack Russell for sure, and maybe some Beagle or Dachshund or Dalmation or ….Monkey or Bobcat.

tv2

Whatever the mix, I’ve turned out to be perfectly me. Not perfectly perfect, but with a bunch of good parts put together (and a little naughty streak for good luck).

tv4

Is that…? Is he…? Am I…?

I’m an original.

tv huh

Wait. What?

Mom keeps idea lists in her phone. One of the lists is called PiBoIdMo2012. It has 32 ideas.

piboidmo12winnerlarge

One is called PiBoIdMo2013. It has 35 ideas.

piboidmo2013-winnerbadge-700x700

And one is called Story Ideas. It has 42 ideas. Some of the ideas are already used up, so Mom marked them with a star. She says, “An author needs lots of ideas.” and “My phone is always nearby, in case I think of anything.” and “Do you have the hiccups?”

what

Hic….

When Mom starts a new story, she doesn’t always pick one of the ideas from her phone. Sometimes, she picks two ideas or even three and puts them together to make a combination. It’s not perfectly perfect, but it’s perfectly her. Idea mixing makes stories have some surprises and some unexpected events and unique characters in odd places doing unusual things.

And yes, sometimes I have the hiccups.


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14. Finished

photo 1

Dinner is finished. I can tell by my empty dish.

photo 2

The Nutcracker Ballet is finished. I can tell by the SugarPlum Fairy dancing…

photo 3

…and Clara waking up.

photo 5

You mean we can’t play King of the Hill??

The snow is finished. I can tell by this little pile of black mush which is called Get-Away-From-It-It’s-Filthy.

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Mom is finished with her Goodreads Reading Challenge. She read 200 books this year, just like she planned.

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She is finished with PiBoIdMo, too. She made a list of 30+ ideas, just like she planned.

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Now, 2013 is about finished, but Mom isn’t ready. She has one more thing to finish. It’s her second year of The12x12 Challenge. That means she planned to write 12 picture book manuscripts in 12 months. But she’s only got eleven-and-a-half stories finished. She needs to buckle down and get to the end of her 12th story before the end of the year.

Mom says, “It doesn’t count if it’s inside my head.” and “This is a tough time of year to catch up.” and “Dinner is finished. Get over it. You will eat again tomorrow.”

photo 6


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15. Frenzy

Sometimes, when I play with my monkey in a barrel, it puts me into a frenzy. There’s just too much going on! Too much to do. Too many possibilities. Bite the barrel? Tear off the lid? Growl at the talking? Rip the monkey’s face off? Chew his arm till he stops laughing? Shake the whole thing till I’m dizzy? I don’t know what to do first.

Since NewYears, Mom has also been in a frenzy. She’s not biting, tearing, growling, ripping, chewing, or shaking, like me. But she does have a lot going on, a lot to do, and a lot of possibilities. She may have bitten off more than she can chew. I’ve done that occasionally, too…. (And by “occasionally” I mean every day.)

photo

Gah! Why is my mouth so tiny?!

Mom has entered a ton of challenges, and made a bunch of goals for herself this year. She will read 200 picture books in the Goodreads Challenge again,

2014 goodreads

she joined 12×12 for 2014, which means she needs to write a new first draft in the next few weeks,

12-x-12-new-banner

she’ll get 30 new ideas when PiBoIdMo starts,

lightbulb

and she will write 30 poems this year.

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In between all those jobs (and a bunch of others – if you can believe such a thing), Mom decided to enter the Highlights Annual Fiction Contest this month, AND take Susanna Hill’s Making Contest Magic class this week.

So Mom is learning, mind-writing, registering, paypal-ing, reading, commenting, revising, studying, listing, rhyming, critiquing, and ….do you see what’s missing here??

Snow pea?? Blech! I may have bitten off (stolen) more than I can chew again.

Snow pea?? Blech! I may have bitten off more than I can chew again.

Rocky, over at my friend Bacon’s blog told me that January 6 was National CuddleUp Day. So I made sure Mom took some time out to celebrate. Actually, I will make sure we celebrate that thing EVERY day!!

cuddle


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16. Thank You, PiBoIdMo, Aladdin/Simon & Schuster and RIF!

Thank you, PiBoIdMo participants, guest bloggers and illustrators. Do you know what you did?

You helped me raise $433.62 to donate to RIF, Reading is Fundamental.

RIFlogo

 

Your purchases via the PiBoIdMo CafePress Shop made it possible.

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With Carol Hampton Rasco, CEO of RIF

For every $10 donated, RIF is able to distribute four books to a child in need.

FOUR BOOKS!

fourbooks

So last month I made my way down to RIF Headquarters in D.C. I toured their offices and talked with RIF staff about the important work they’re doing.

One staff member had just returned from a county in Appalachia, where 28% of the schoolchildren were officially homeless, and where even more lived in crowded trailers with multiple families apiece.

The school Principal told RIF that amazingly, their test scores rose from 9th percentile to the 22nd percentile in just one year. To what did they attribute that growth? RIF! Now that these children have books of their own, they’re able to continue learning at home and over the summer break instead of being left behind. Books are AMAZING. But you already knew that, right?

As part of my trip to RIF, my publisher, the Aladdin imprint of Simon & Schuster, donated 100 copies of THE MONSTORE to the children at Bancroft Elementary in Washington, D.C. I was honored to appear at the school to talk to the children about writing and to personally sign every copy.

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The best moment of the day? When I told the children they’d each be going home with a copy of my book. They cheered and hoorayed, and two besties in the front row hugged each other so tight they tumbled over in joy. Now that’s a great day for any author. Thank you, Aladdin and RIF!

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I have something else important to tell you.

RIF’s donations have taken a plummet in recent times. The economy has hit them hard. So please consider donating directly. Remember $10 = 4 books!

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Donate here. Or here.

And again, thank you for making the PiBoIdMo donation possible!

keepcalmkidstee

 


11 Comments on Thank You, PiBoIdMo, Aladdin/Simon & Schuster and RIF!, last added: 5/9/2014
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17. PiBoIdMo 2014 Logo Revealed!

Who can believe it’s almost November? I know, it was just November last year, right? And we had a whole buncha fun creating new picture book story concepts! (Need a recap? Look here.)

I’m still firming up the festivities for 2014 and will post the guest blogger line-up soon. But while you wait for that and for registration to begin (on October 25th, right here), here’s a peek at this year’s logo, created by the talented Vin Vogel, whose new picture book MADDI’S FRIDGE is out now from Flashlight Press, with author Lois Brandt.

Each year  I ask the logo illustrator to include an important detail—a lightbulb, to represent ideas being created. This year, Vin had a delicious idea! (Was it from the FRIDGE? Sure seems like it. Well, maybe it was from the FREEZER.)

piboidmo2014banner

Registration for the November PiBoIdMo online event will commence October 25th. Individuals AND classes are invited to register. All registration requires is your name (or teacher’s name in the case of a class) on the registration post’s comment thread, plus you must also follow my blog (handy-dandy button in the left column). The “Official Participant” logo will also be available at that time for you to download and display on your website or social media platform.

Registration entitles you to PRIZES along the way, from signed books, critiques and author/illustrator Skype visits, to the grand prize–an idea consultation with a picture book agent. Last year we offered nine grand prizes!

Also, October 25th will kick-off “Pre-PiBo”, a week-long series of posts intended to gear you up for the month of idea-generating.piboidmo2014journal

Need somewhere to record your brilliance? The PiBoIdMo Cafe Press shop is open, featuring this year’s Official Journal of Ideas. Remember that all proceeds ($3 per sale) are donated to RIF, Reading is Fundamental. So your purchase benefits an excellent cause!

If you want to discuss the event with kindred spirits, please join our PiBoIdMo Facebook Group. (Please note it *is* the current group although the name on Facebook, which cannot be changed, says 2011.)

Well, that’s all for now, PiBoIdMo’ers. Except, can we think of a better name for y’all?


10 Comments on PiBoIdMo 2014 Logo Revealed!, last added: 10/1/2014
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18. Host Your Own PiBoIdMo Kick-Off Party

I needed a kick in the pants to host a kick-off party. I never even THOUGHT about it until Leeza Hernandez asked me to host a PiBoIdMo Party for NJ-SCBWI. So to inspire you, I’ve created a three-page handout that you can use to host your own kick-off event. Writers, librarians and SCBWI devotees rejoice!

The first page contains the FAQ—what is this strangely-named online writing challenge all about? (Sorry, no instructions on how to pronounce it. I have no idea how to pronounce it myself!) This FAQ can be hung in your local library or writerly cafe to let others know about PiBoIdMo.

The next two pages provide exercises and tips from The Ghost of PiBoIdMo’s Past. I went through these exercises with my party peeps last Monday and they came up with some fabulous ideas for new stories already!

To access this free 3-page PiBoIdMo pamphlet, just click here:

piboidmopdf

And I just had another idea! Perhaps your kick-off party can include a kick ball! Hoverball, anyone?

hoverball

 

Let me know if you’re planning to KICK IT with PiBoIdMo this year! I’d love to hear what you’ve got goin’ on!

 

 

 


10 Comments on Host Your Own PiBoIdMo Kick-Off Party, last added: 10/9/2014
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19. Frozen

A couple of days ago it snowed. Snow! Right after the hurricane! There was wind that made my ears stick out like wings,

cold that went right through my pink parka,

and about four inches of the white stuff that made my feet freeze. 

Guess what else is frozen. Mom’s brain. It’s been two days since she wrote an idea in her PiBoIdMo list. The numbers are still there, but there’s nothing next to the newest ones.  

After the snow, I got a surprise. It was a package in the mail from my friend, Rumpy.

He had a contest-giveaway, and I won! I won some Frosty Paws dog ice creams, and the Frosty Paws stuffed animal! I love ice cream! And I LOVE stuffed animals! Thanks, Rumpy! What a wonderful surprise. 

Maybe Mom will get a surprise inside her head – some surprise ideas so she can catch up in her PiBo challenge. She needs 30 ideas by the end of the month. Come on, ideas!


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20. First Time

toybox

Today I picked a toy out of my toy box for the very first time. All by myself. I stuck my head in and pulled out …. none other than the dreaded mechanical hamster.  I wasn’t confused by the toy box , and I wasn’t afraid of the hamster. Mom said, “Look at you!” and “What a smart, brave girl!” and “Now what?” 

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Nothing. That’s what. I didn’t actually DO anything with the hamster. I just sat with it. But it’s a start.

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Mom is a first timer, too. This month, she joined a bunch of other writers in PiBoIdMo. That means she got a story idea every single day in November. It’s her first time ever doing that and she did great at it, except for writing down the same idea twice. Luckily she caught the double yesterday, and got a final idea just in time. She didn’t DO anything with her ideas. She just sat there with them. But it’s a start. 

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Someday soon, I will pick another toy out of the toy box. Maybe I’ll even play with it. We’ll see….

photo1

Someday soon, Mom will pick out one of her new story ideas (probably the one she wrote down twice) and make it into a story. Maybe it’ll be Book #2. We’ll see….

next to toys


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21. Countdown Wednesday

Today, we’re counting down Our Year in Review.

My Highlights in 2012

3. My picture was in a book! Chuck Sambuchino wrote a political humor book called Red Dog / Blue Dog, and he used my picture to illustrate one of the pages! I looked adorable.

photo

2. I learned how to dance. Mom taught me to twirl around on my hind feet for a cookie.

1. I forgot how to bowl! I learned bowling using empty water bottles…..

 But then Santa brought me a bowling set, and I have no idea how to bowl. So I just take a pin and bring it on the couch.

bowling1 pin

16. I found some bread that the birds dropped in front of my house. It was delicious!

Mom’s Highlights in 2012

3. Mom’s story Fly Fishing was in the final issue of Stories for Children Magazine in November. There was no dog in the story, but there was a trout.

2. Mom’s story Waiting for Petey was in the November/December issue of Turtle Magazine. there was no dog in the story, but there was a teddy bear (I love teddy bears).

teddy

1. NWEA bought Mom’s poem Talking Goldfish to use in their online test prep program. There was no dog in the poem, but there was a fish.

42. Humpty Dumpty Magazine is holding Mom’s story Show and Tell Surprise for possible publication in the May/June 2013 issue. There was no dog in the story, but there was a hermit crab.

67. Mom completed 3 challenges this year – 12x12in’12 (3 of her 12 stories featured a dog), PiBoIdMo (9 of her 30 ideas are about dogs), and Goodreads. (about 30 of the 214 books she read had a dog in them).

2012 is in the rear view mirror. Bring on 2013. Happy New Year!

new year2


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22. Sink Your Teeth into NUGGET & FANG! (plus a prize pack!)

nuggetandfangDudes, it’s new Tammi Sauer! YES!!!! *Jersey fist pump*

Ya know Tammi, right? She’s the most prolific picture book author this side of the Atlantic! (And that side, too.)

An annual contributor to Picture Book Idea Month, Tammi has dispensed invaluable picture book pointers about story structure, celebrating the weird stuff in life, and putting a twist on the familiar. She’s also a regular PiBoIdMo participant, and NUGGET AND FANG is her success story from the November 2009 event!

So the unlikely underwater duo are here today to chomp away! (Don’t worry, Tammi’s here, too. Fang didn’t gobble her up.)

Tammi, what about unlikely friendship stories makes them so fun to write?

If two characters are at odds in some big way, that immediately builds in tension and offers real deal conflict. This can provide great opportunities for humor, too. That’s fun stuff! Some unlikely friendships deal with issues such as neatness versus messiness or quiet versus loud. The quandary that my characters face is clear–sharks and minnows aren’t supposed to be friends because everybody knows sharks EAT minnows.

Sharks are popular characters these days! What makes FANG stand out in the world of storybook selachimorpha? (Yes, that is a real word. I looked it up. Honest.)

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Michael Slack’s first sketch of the carnivorous chums.

I love that I have a contender in storybook selachimorpha. It sounds super sophisticated. As for Fang, he stands out among regular sharks because he has a huge heart. Yes, he’s toothy, but, holy mackerel, my guy is irresistible. If I were a minnow, I’d be honored to be his friend.

What are some of your favorite unlikely friendship stories/books?

My Favorite Unlikely Friendship Story of 2012 was BOY + BOT by Ame Dyckman, illustrated by Dan Yaccarino. That book is brilliant in 2,465 different ways. Plus, Ame has blue hair. (Tara’s note: sometimes it’s pink or purple, or even rainbow leopard.)

A fun and endearing unlikely friendship story that just came out this past February is WOOBY AND PEEP written by my oh-so-fabulous critique partner Cynthea Liu, illustrated by Mary Peterson. (Hey, WOOBY AND PEEP are coming soon to a blog near you. Umm, this one.)

If NUGGET and FANG could endorse their book personally, what do you think they would say?

Nugget: Holy mackerel! Get your fins on this book. It’s FANG-tastic!

Fang: Sink your teeth into our book. It’s a total NUGGET of awesomeness!

Well, I’ve got a nugget of awesomeness for you, dear blog readers: a “NUGGET AND FAN” (not a typo–you’re a fan already, right?) prize pack, including a signed first edition, a teacher’s poster, and adorable tattoos you can slap on any fin (or bicep). Just leave a comment or question for Tammi to enter and a winner will be chomped up later this month! In the meantime, go visit these seaworthy sidekicks!

nuggetandfangprizes


10 Comments on Sink Your Teeth into NUGGET & FANG! (plus a prize pack!), last added: 4/2/2013
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23. Inspirational Quote of the Week

But there was one other thing that the grown-ups also knew, and it was this: that however small the chance might be of striking lucky, the chance is there. The chance had to be there.”
― Roald Dahl, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

eyeball

I struck lucky when Mom found me a few Decembers ago. Purrs n Pups found me in Georgia in a kill-shelter, where my puppies had been adopted…

puppies

….and I was left behind.

They brought me to foster care and my foster-mom brought me to an adoption event where Mom found me.

petsmart

She said some bad words like, “Too small.” and “Too old.” But then she said some good words like, “I’m taking her home!” and “This is my new dog!”

My first day at home.

My first day at home, I said, “This is my new couch!”

Mom is always waiting to strike lucky. She works on stories, revises them and revises them, makes cover letters, signs them with her lucky pen, and submits story after story to magazines, book publishers, and agents. Whenever Book #2 gets accepted, that will be her lucky day.

PiBoIdMo is helpful. Mom gets a new idea every single day during that month.

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Mom’s 12×12 Challenge is helpful. It keeps her writing new pieces every month.

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The class she took named Making Picture Book Magic was helpful. It taught her about planning a story to make sure it has all the parts it needs.

magic

Her writing group named DavidLaurieandOtherDavid is helpful. They help her stories get better and better.

Where's the work? This looks like a party!

Where’s the work? This looks like a party!

Her computer friends at RateYourStory help her by giving her a reality check about what she writes.

RYS

And of course, I help her by taking her to the park to clear her head,

under the bench

staring at her while she’s working,

face

and sometimes, I fall asleep on the iPad and type LLLLLLLL with my ear.

LLL


18 Comments on Inspirational Quote of the Week, last added: 9/17/2013
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24. New Strategy

Every day when I am halfway through eating my dinner, I slide the bowl around the kitchen until I’m able to pick it up in my mouth. Then I carry it onto the little rug in the living room. Once I get it settled there (IF it doesn’t flip over and splash food everywhere), I finish eating my food and then try to eat the bowl. So far, I have been unsuccessful with that goal.

rug dinner

The other day, I decided to try a new strategy. It’s called eating-on-the-leather-chair.

chair dinner

Mom was happy and excited when she saw me. She said the things she always says when I impress her with how smart I am – like, “Oh no you didn’t!” and “What did those jackasses in your head tell you to do now?” and “You’re going to get a spankin’.” I love when she says that. It sounds so much like, “You’re going to get some bacon.” Bacon. Yum….

fridge

I’m ready for my bacon, Mom.

Mom is trying a new strategy with her writing this week. Each day, she works on a story for a half hour and then she works on a poem for a half hour. Her idea lists from PiBoIdMo and her other lists are getting too, too long. She thinks she can use them up faster if some of them become poems. Also, she wants to enter a poetry contest, so she needs some new poems to submit. She said, “Poems are fun.” and “This one is about you, Cupcake.” and “Some of these ideas are too stupid to live another day.”

We should put those bad ideas in the garbage. Let me check and maybe clear out some of the more delicious… I mean bulky trash to make room….

trash


10 Comments on New Strategy, last added: 9/30/2013
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25. PiBoIdMo Logo, Badge and Guest Bloggers!

piboidmo2013-title-490x139

It’s NOVEMBER ALREADY?

Well, almost. October will whip by in a sugar-induced haze. Especially because a) I’ll buy candy way too early and eat it all; and b) my kids will change their minds about their Halloween costumes umpteen times. “I wanna be Frankie Stein! No, Draculaura! No, a zombie mermaid! Ooh, I know, a picture book author! I can trick-or-treat in my jammies with a story stuck to my forehead! You’re sorta like a zombie, right, Mommy?”

Um, YEAH.

October is NOT the month of jack-o-lanterns, candy corn (BLECH!) and costumes. It’s the month of PiBoIdMo-eve!

Don’t know what PiBoIdMo is? Check it.

Our 5th anniversary logo, banners and badges have been designed by the kawaii-cutie, author-illustrator Joyce Wan.

Joyce knows my penchant for hot-air balloons. (My husband almost proposed on one. But I think he was afraid I’d drop the ring.)

So this year’s theme is IDEAS TAKING FLIGHT!

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WAIT A MINUTE! DID TARA SAY 5TH ANNIVERSARY?!

Yep, I sure did. Which means I’ll have to come up with something super-snazzy for this year. So how ’bout JANE YOLEN?

Besides the legendary Ms. Yolen, here are some of the authors and illustrators who’ll be blogging all November long, helping you to fill your idea notebook with 30 picture book concepts:

  • Drew Daywalt
  • Michael Garland
  • Melissa Guion
  • Leeza Hernandez
  • Lenore & Daniel Jennewein
  • Renee Kurilla
  • Elizabeth Rose Stanton
  • Adam Lehrhaupt
  • Wendy Martin
  • The McQueen Brothers
  • Pat Miller
  • Pat Zietlow Miller
  • Anne Marie Pace
  • Paul Schmid
  • Annette Simon
  • Tammi Sauer
  • Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen
  • Dianne de las Casas
  • James Proimos
  • Laurie Keller
  • Katie Davis
  • Zachariah Ohora
  • Kelly Light
  • Steve Barr
  • Greg Pizzoli

And even more to be announced…

Official registration will begin on this blog on OCTOBER 24th and run through NOVEMBER 4th. Watch for it! (It’s easy-peasy-lemon-squeezy if you just follow this blog. See left column.) Only officially registered participants will be eligible for PRIZES, like a consultation with a picture book agent!

But you can grab the “Official Participant” Badge NOW and proudly slap it on your blog or social network site. Kindly link it back to taralazar.com/piboidmo so folks know where to join the challenge. You can also grab the “Ideas Taking Flight!” slogan above.

piboidmo2013-participant-214x131

Do you Tweet? Add a PiBoIdMo Twibbon to your Twitter avatar. Just visit the PiBoIdMo 2013 Campaign to upload it.

And here’s some adorbs lightbulb balloons! Use them when you’re blogging about PiBoIdMo to express yourself!

piboidmo2013-lightbulb-proud-200x254piboidmo2013-lightbulb-happy-200x254

piboidmo2013-lightbulb-laugh-200x254piboidmo2013-lightbulb-crazy-200x254

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piboidmo2013-lightbulb-smile-200x254

The only thing that’s missing is the PiBoIdMo 2013 merchandise to benefit RIF—like your official idea notebook—so I’ll be announcing that soon.

In the meantime, let us know how YOU’RE gearing up for PiBoIdMo. Blog about it or leave a comment below. What are you looking forward to this November?

Me? Tonight I’m hosting one of NJ-SCBWI’s PiBoIdMo kick-off parties at the Manville Public Library. Maybe I’ll see some of you there? I promise I won’t be a zombie.


11 Comments on PiBoIdMo Logo, Badge and Guest Bloggers!, last added: 10/1/2013
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