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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: Carolyn Crimi, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 1 - 5 of 5
1. PUGS IN A BUG! A Jaunty Joy-Ride with Carolyn Crimi and Stephanie Buscema (plus a giveaway!)

Ever heard of the picture book THE LOUDS MOVE IN? It’s one of my all-time favorites, with a cast of unique characters like Miss Shushermush, who eats quiet meals of leftover mashed potatoes. When the Loud family moves onto Earmuffle Avenue, the chaos begins and friendships are eventually [noisily] forged.

Ever since I read THE LOUDS I have been a huge fan of author Carolyn Crimi. So when I heard about her newest book PUGS IN A BUG, and then saw the illustrations by Stephanie Buscema, I nearly fell off my chair with an attack of acute cuteness. Punch-buggy green! Gotcha!

PUGS is a “catchy canine counting book” with a jaunty joy-ride rhyme and a groovin’ get-up-and-go beat. It’s so much fun to read aloud with its twists and turns in language—and in the road. Chugging along, the pugs meet up with a pooch parade, so there’s not only pugs in a bug, but bulldogs in a taxi and poodles on skateboards. This book proves that it’s not always about the destination but the journey. Beep, beep! Bow wow! I know you want to win it now!

So Carolyn and Stephanie are both here today to talk about the creation of PUGS…and yes, you can win it!

TL: Carolyn, are pugs your favorite kind of dog? Do you own a pug? Why PUGS?

CC: I actually love all kinds of dogs. I met a Newfoundland yesterday that I was ready to take home with me. Alas, she was a big dog and probably would not have fit in my car. But pugs are probably my favorite. They’re the comedians of the dog world. When I walk down the street with my pug Emerson people laugh. I kind of love that about him—he brings laughter with him wherever he goes.

Not that he cares about that. All he really cares about is food. If he had to choose between me and a bucket of Kentucky Fried Chicken I’m afraid there would be no contest. KFC would win, paws down.

Not only do I own a pug, I also own a VW Bug. It’s even green, just like the one in the book. I came up with the entire idea for PUGS IN A BUG the very first time I took Emerson for a ride in my car. That was way back in 2001. I still have both the pug and the Bug. I highly recommend both!

I’ve attached a pic of Emerson for your amusement.

TL: Aww, I love Emerson! His tongue is hilarious.

So you had the idea for the book over 10 years ago. How long did it take you to write it?

CC: Boy, I wish I had a timeline for this book, but I don’t have a clear idea of when I wrote the first draft. I don’t think it was submitted until 2003. Of course the whole submission process takes forever and a day. I also probably revised it a bunch of times to no avail. Then I think it took a while to find the right illustrator.

In other words, same ole same ole.

My first drafts don’t usually take long at all. Maybe just a couple of days. It’s the many revisions I do that take years. Yup, years. I’ll put something away for a while if it doesn’t sell right away. I’ll take another look at it years later and will sometimes be able to see the changes that need to be made. Some

11 Comments on PUGS IN A BUG! A Jaunty Joy-Ride with Carolyn Crimi and Stephanie Buscema (plus a giveaway!), last added: 4/23/2012
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2. Salina Yoon KALEIDOSCOPE Winner! (Plus a preview of upcoming giveaways!)

Thanks to everyone who visited Salina Yoon’s post about her newest and most challenging novelty book, KALEIDOSCOPE. The winner of the signed copy is:


Congrations, Donna! Be on the lookout for an email from me…

Didn’t win? No worries. There’s more giveaways coming in the next two weeks. Yes, it’s a busy Spring over here! Here’s a sneaky peekie (what my five-year-old calls it):

Ame Dyckman and Dan Yaccarino’s BOY + BOT

Sarah Frances Hardy’s PUZZLED BY PINK

Carolyn Crimi and Stephanie Buscema’s PUGS IN A BUG

Ammi-Joan Paquette & Marie Letourneau’s THE TIPTOE GUIDE TO TRACKING MERMAIDS

Plus, don’t forget, if you’re not already subscribed to my blog via email, join today to be entered into a three-picture-book-prize-pack giveaway on April 1st. I’m not foolin’! Just enter your email address in the left column.

11 Comments on Salina Yoon KALEIDOSCOPE Winner! (Plus a preview of upcoming giveaways!), last added: 3/29/2012
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3. Un-forgettable Friday: The Louds Move In! by Carolyn Crimi; Illustrated by Regan Dunnick

photo by Randy Son of Robert www.flickr.com

*Contemporary picture book for preschoolers through 2nd graders
*The LOUDS (a very fun family) as main characters
*Rating: The Louds Move In! is a funny picture book full of cute illustrations.

Short, short summary:

The Louds Move In! by Carolyn Crimi starts when guess what? The Loud family moves into a very quiet neighborhood on Earmuffle Street. The Louds walk loud–”stomp, stompity, stomp”–and eat loud–”chomp, chompity, chomp”–and even play loud–”thump, thumpity, thump.” All the quiet neighbors just can’t take the loudness anymore, and so they call and then write the Louds a note. However, it doesn’t seem to make a difference. One night, the quiet neighbors go over to the Louds’ house to talk to them about their loudness, and there is nothing but quiet. They figure the family must have FINALLY gotten the message. However, the neighbors start to hate the quiet, and they have to figure out a way to get the Louds back to being loud again.

So, what do I do with this book?

1. One of the 6 + 1 traits of writing is word choice. This is a great picture book to use with children to discuss word choice. From the sound effects to the characters’ names to the action verbs, Carolyn Crimi has used specific word choices that makes her picture book sparkle. Ask children to tell you some of their favorite words in the story. Point out how she is making the characters shout or bellow or yell, and how these words match her story. Make a list of specific words she uses that children like, and hang these words in the room for them to use in their own writing.

2. Before children discover that the Louds really didn’t change but went on vacation, ask them to predict what they think will happen at the end of the story? Why are the Louds so quiet? Did they listen to the letter? Did they want to change to make their neighbors happy? Ask students to use clues from the illustrations and text to make a realistic prediction.

3. Children can do a fun art and writing project with this book. Take a piece of drawing paper and divide it in half–on one half students draw themselves doing a loud activity they like. On the other half, they draw a quiet activity. Discuss how most people are both quiet and loud, depending on the situation. Then ask students to write a sentence or paragraph (whichever is age-appropriate) explaining their illustrations.

Are you part of the Louds?

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4. Tessa's Tip-Tapping Toes Make Me Smile!

My two girls and I spent a few weeks with my mom in Florida this summer. After moving away from California a few years ago, I was more than happy to be back in a sunny place for a while. The girls had a wonderful time with their "Grammy" and "Gramps," swimming in the pool, touring the town, and making tons of fun arts and crafts. 

I wasn't quite as much fun as Grammy and Gramps, since I was traveling a bit for work and otherwise glued to the computer a good part of the time, but the girls and I did at least have some great times hanging out at bookstores and the local public library together. I was especially impressed by the local library, which had a huge room devoted to picture books AND had a fabulous selection. 

We found so many books worth writing about, but today I'm going to share my favorite dance book that we discovered. It's called Tessa's Tip-Tapping Toes, written by Carolyn Crimi and illustrated by Marsha Gray Carrington. I can't believe I hadn't heard of it before. It is such an adorable book!

Tessa had swinging arms, skipping feet, and tip-tapping toes. 
She was built to dance. 

You might not be able to tell from this excerpt (although you can probably tell from the book cover) that Tessa is actually a mouse. But she's not like all the other mice. She doesn't like to scurry and she doesn't like to hurry. She just likes to dance. Even when Tessa's family is supposed to be raiding Mrs. Timboni's kitchen at night, Tessa just can't stop dancing. And then Mrs. Timboni gets a cat...

Most cats liked dozing on windowsills or curling up on fresh piles of laundry. 
6 Comments on Tessa's Tip-Tapping Toes Make Me Smile!, last added: 9/9/2011
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5. PiBoIdMo Day 25: Carolyn Crimi’s Three Favorite “Idea” Things

by Carolyn Crimi

Here are three of my favorite things to do to generate picture book ideas. Pick one and try it out!

1) One of the first things I do is look at problems I’m dealing with in my own life to see if I can turn them into a story. For instance, my husband and I sometimes have “disagreements” about how tidy things need to be. I am, well, a bit of a messy person. He is a neat freak. I have had this problem with neat freaks my entire life. (Why do they always think they’re right?) Anyway, I decided to turn this problem into a book titled BORIS AND BELLA. It’s about a very messy monster named Bella LeGrossi who lives next to a very tidy monster named Boris Kleanitoff. Nothing has more emotional resonance than writing about your own problems. I wrote ROCK ‘N’ ROLL MOLE after experiencing extreme stage fright. I still get stage fright every once in a while, but at least I’ve gotten a book out of it, too, and it’s a lot cheaper than therapy!

2)  I love picture books. Being surrounded by them feels like home. So I’ll often read all the books on the Barnes and Noble picture book wall. Reading them leaves me feeling buzzed and ready to create my own great book. I also like to see what books moms pick out for their children and what books the kids themselves want to buy. I’ve heard some writers say they don’t read picture books because they don’t want to be influenced by other writers. I think that if you’re writing enough you won’t have that problem.  Read the new books and the classics. Keep up with the genre.  And if you find a book you love, buy it, take it home and type it up. You discover all sorts of things about a picture book when you do this.

3) Keep an Image Board. I have dry erase board in my office. I stick greeting cards, magazine clippings, poems and titles on it. It sits right in front of me as I write. Whenever I find a card that seems like it might have the seed of a story in it I buy it and stick it up on my Image Board. I may not think of a story for it for years, but the act of collecting inspiring images is just plain fun and it fills the well. Even if you don’t want to make your own Image Board, I encourage you to look through the greeting cards at your local drugstore and buy a few for inspiration. The illustration style is often very similar to picture book illustration style, and of course they are usually about major life changes.

If all else fails, go for a walk! Ask yourself at the beginning of the walk for a story idea and see if you get one by the end of the walk. I get ideas this way all the time!

Have fun!

Carolyn Crimi writes about things that make her laugh, or about things she loved when she was young. Sometimes that leads her down strange, twisted paths, since the things that she loves, like monsters and Pop Tarts, tend to be a bit odd. In addition to writing books, she also teaches adult education courses on writing for children, visits schools for Author Talks, and writes stories and articles for children’s textbooks and magazines. Her picture books include HENRY AND THE BUCCANEER BUNNIES, THE LOUDS MOVE IN (one of Tara’s favorite picture books), WHERE’S MY MUMMY? and many more. Check them all out at CarolynCrimi.com.

10 Comments on PiBoIdMo Day 25: Carolyn Crimi’s Three Favorite “Idea” Things, last added: 11/25/2011
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