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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: Simon &, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 1 - 25 of 96
1. TED Partners with Simon & Schuster to Publish ‘TED Books’

ted logoTED Conferences LLC and Simon & Schuster will partner together to publish a 12 title series called TED Books. Renowned book designer Chip Kidd, a past TED speaker, will create the cover art for all of the projects.

The publisher plans to release one book every one-to-two months beginning in September 2014. Some of the books set to be published include The Virtue of Stillness by Pico Iyer, How We’ll Live on Mars by Stephen Petranek, and Follow Your Gut by Rob Knight.

Here’s more from the press release: “The books will be available in hardcover, e-book, and in audiobook from Simon & Schuster. The co-publishing agreement is for world rights, and the books will be published by Simon & Schuster in the United States and worldwide by its companies in Australia, Canada, India and the United Kingdom, as well as in foreign-language editions.”

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2. The Little Magic Box for School Visits and Signing

Debbie 2My Little Magic Box by Debbie Dadey

It took me about twenty years to figure it out, but making a magic box to take with me to book events was a great idea! Okay, it’s not magic but it does have everything I need to make a book signing or school visit go smoothly. What does my little plastic container have inside? Here’s what I’ve collected for my little 6.5 by 4.5 inch box (a left-over from my teaching days):

1. Business cards (Because the minute you don’t have one, you need one.)

2. Tissues (Because boogers are not pleasant with 200 kids watching!)

3. Book plates (Someone will always cry because they forgot their book.)

debbiebox2004. Award winning author stickers (Which I bought in a silly moment, but kids like stickers.)

5. Sticky notes (Because kids have the strangest names these days and it’s better to write it first on a note than ruin the book-better yet have the school or bookstore do it for you while the kids are waiting in line.)

6. Tic Tacs (Bad breath is not an author’s friend.)

debbiecontent2007. Protein bar (Let’s face it, sometimes school lunches are horrible.)

8. Candy (see above)

9. Cough drops (A coughing fit really doesn’t work well with my presentation.)

10. Hand lotion (It makes me feel better!)

11. Hand sanitizer (It keeps me from catching every illness because schools are breeding grounds!)

12. Chap stick (I am prone to fever blisters and they aren’t pretty.)

13. iPad adapter (I started taking my iPad on school visits instead of my laptop and I love it.)

14. Clips to hold up something (Just a handy thing to have for posters.)

15. Memory stick with presentations (Some schools have their computers far away. I also have a clicker to advance slides. There is an app available to advance Keynote-the iPad version of PowerPoint. PowerPoint will convert to Keynote, but there are always a few adjustments to be made.)

16. Slips for information (These are leftovers from a giveaway and everyone likes free stuff.)

17. Rubber band (These come in handy for keeping my rolled up posters tidy.)

18. Markers or ink pens (Some people like Sharpies to autograph with, but I’m not picky).

Missing from my box are my fun red Author pin, camera, book signs, bookmarks, a bottle of water, and school visit brochures. Not all of them will fit inside my box, but I have them listed in marker on the inside of my box so I don’t forget them. Something I’ve been wanting to get is a tablecloth with my logo and maybe some book covers on it. On my scheduling page (http://www.debbiedadey.com/Events/Scheduling/index.php)

debbieDream of the Blue TurtleI have an Author Visit Checklist that lists everything I could think of to help a school prepare for my visit. Click Here to View. 

Perhaps there is something on it you can adapt for yourself. Do you have more suggestions for my box? Please let me know, I have more book events coming up soon!

Check www.debbiedadey.com for one near you.

My newest book is Dream of the Blue Turtle (Mermaid Tales #7) with Simon and Schuster. Treasure in Trident City (#8) comes out in May. I hope you’ll like me on Facebook.com/debbiedadey. I’m hoping it doesn’t take me twenty years to get the hang of Facebook!

Thanks Debbie for sharing your idea for having a handy box that you can grab whenever you do a book event. It will definitely help everyone who has a hard time juggling everything that has to be done in our busy lives.

I love the idea of getting a table cloth made with your logo and covers. They don’t cost very much and it really adds to making you look exciting and professional.

Talk tomorrow,


Filed under: Advice, Events, inspiration, list, Tips Tagged: Debbie Dadey, Dream of the Blue Turtle, Simon & Schuster, Tresaure of Trident City

4 Comments on The Little Magic Box for School Visits and Signing, last added: 4/8/2014
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3. Becca Fitzpatrick Inks Deal For New YA Thriller

beccaBecca Fitzpatrick, the young adult author behind the Hush, Hush saga, has landed a deal for a new book called Sapphire Skies.

Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers plans to publish this stand-alone thriller novel in Fall 2015. Executive editor Zareen Jaffery negotiated the deal with Inkwell Management literary agent Catherine Drayton. The story stars a 17-year-old girl named Stella Gordon who ends up in the witness protection program due to extraordinary circumstances.

Fitzpatrick had this statement in the press release: “I’m delighted to be writing another young adult thriller for Simon & Schuster—this about a girl who’s running from dangerous men and a haunted past. I’m drawn to stories that weave heart-stopping suspense with broiling romance, and Sapphire Skies is no exception.”


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4. Transgender Advocate and Author Janet Mock Talks About Her Memoir


Janet Mock has known she wanted to be a storyteller since she was a fifth grader in Honolulu who escaped to her local public library to devour books by Maya AngelouTerry McMillan and Zora Neale Hurston. ”I knew that words would be my refuge and words were where I could create a composite of the dreams and the life that I wanted to live,” she recalls.

Years later, the now 30-year-old moved to New York to pursue her writing career. And after coming out as a transgender woman in a 2011 Marie Claire article, Mock became an ardent advocate for other transgender women, especially those who are young and struggle financially. Her newly released memoir, Redefining Realness: My Path to Womanhood, Identity, Love & So Much More (Atria Books/Simon & Schuster) delves into the self-identify struggles that many trans people face. Mock recently spoke to Mediabistro about her book and offered some advice on writing your own memoir:

Anchor yourself in your own experience and write from that place. And you’ll find your voice. You’ll find out what you want to do. You’ll find your purpose. And I think that everything comes out of that. It’s [about] being able to sit still with yourself and really excavate those parts of yourself that were shut off or silenced or put into the dark a long time ago. I know that when I actually sat down with myself to do that work… that’s when my life began transforming.

To hear more from Mock, including what her literary idol, bell hooks, thought of her book, read: So What Do You Do, Janet Mock, Writer, Transgender Advocate and Author?

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5. Simon & Schuster Launches Book-Dedicated Review Site & Daily Email

simonSimon & Schuster has created a new website and daily email dedicated to book reviews called Off the Shelf.

The site will publish an original book review or essay about a book every day. The site will feature books that were published at least one year earlier. They must also be currently available for purchase in some format.  The site will feature books from any publisher in fiction, nonfiction for both adult and young readers. Readers can sign up to receive the daily review as an email.

“With Off the Shelf, we aim to bring attention to books that were bestsellers you might have read or wanted to, books that you may have missed in the often overwhelming number of titles that get published every year, or simply books that have touched us as readers, left an indelible mark on us, and become friends that we revisit often,” explained Carolyn Reidy, President and CEO of Simon & Schuster, in a statement.

Simon & Schuster employees will be writing reviews, as well as occasional guest writers.

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6. Scott Westerfeld Lands Deal For ‘Afterworlds’ YA Novel

scottScott Westerfeld has landed a deal Pulse, an imprint of Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing, for his new young adult novel, Afterworlds. The story follows Darcy Patel as she moves to New York City to establish her writing career; readers will follow both Darcy’s actual life story and the fictional one she hopes to publish.

Publisher Bethany Buck negotiated the deal with literary agent Jill Grinberg; Buck has secured North American, audio, and ebook rights. The book is scheduled to be released on September 23, 2014.

Westerfeld (pictured, via) had this statement in the press release: “Readers of YA are also lively and energetic producers – of fanfic, of original work, of reviews and blogs and manifestos. Afterworlds is an homage to all those who write to make themselves better readers, or the other way around.”

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7. Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 Trailer Released

Sony Pictures Animation has released the official trailer for Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2. We’ve embedded the trailer above–what do you think?

Here’s more from Deadline: “It’s directed by Cody Cameron and Kris Pearn from a script by John Francis Daley, Jonathan Goldstein and Erica Rivinoja. Bill HaderAnna FarisNeil Patrick HarrisTerry Crews, Will Forte, Andy Samberg, Kristen Schaal, and James Caan, among others provide voices for the movie that Sony will release September 27th.”

The first movie came out back in 2009; it’s based on Judy Bartlett‘s popular picture book which shares the same title. Simon & Schuster’s Atheneum Books for Young Readers imprint published it in 1978 and also released the sequel, Pickles in Pittsburgh, in 1997. A third book entitled Planet of the Pies will hit bookstores in August 2013.

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8. Simon & Schuster To Share Piracy Stats with Authors & Agents

Simon & Schuster will now share piracy statistics with authors and agents.

The publisher has worked with Attributor since 2011, a company that searches millions of pages for pirated copies and sends takedown notices every day. Authors can report piracy by using the publisher’s Online Piracy Report Form to report piracy to Attributor. In a letter, Carolyn Reidy explained the new reports:

The reports that you will see provide information about the number of infringements identified and takedown notices sent to infringing sites, success rates in removing infringements, the types of sites where infringement is occurring, the specific urls and geographic distribution of sites where unauthorized copies are offered and more.  (We expect that in the future we will expand upon the information currently available.) We have also provided a set of Frequently Asked Questions to increase your understanding of how piracy occurs and how we are combatting it. All the information we are providing is confidential and private, but please note that we are making the same information available to agents at the Simon & Schuster Agent Portal.


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9. Curriculum Guides for Books


Why create a Curriculum Guide for your books?  

“A discussion guide and/or activity guide is a valuable way for teachers, librarians and parents to give a book more depth and breadth,” says illustrator Melissa Sweet who collaborated with me on SPIKE, THE MIXED-UP MONSTER. Today, there’s more interest than ever in these guides. Why? Two words: Common Core. Educators everywhere are looking for ways to incorporate this new mandate.

And once you have a guide, it’s a win-win-win situation!

  • For kids, the games, crafts and activities are fun. They encourage kids to play with ideas they’ve learned from the book and to dive deeper into the subject matter.
  • For teachers, the guide helps them incorporate your book into lesson plans, especially if the guide aligns with the Common Core.
  • For you, the guide increases your book’s exposure and lets you elaborate on ideas you’ve introduced. It makes a dandy handout for school and library visits and can drive traffic to your website.


What are the different kinds of guides?

Activity Guides

These offer interactive activities, such as cut-out masks, holiday cards, finger puppets, bookmarks and so on. They may include directions for games, activities, songs, recipes, and crafts.

Discussion Guides

These guides have more text, fewer cut-outs.  They might provide interviews with the author and illustrator, discussion prompts, projects and extension activities. They list questions to ask kids and suggest additional books, websites and resources.  See Michelle Markel and Melissa Sweet’s Discussion Guide for BRAVE GIRL.

All of the Above 

Our SPIKE, THE MIXED-UP MONSTER Curriculum Guide has something for everyone—pages of interactive cut-out, crayon and drawing activities for kids, plus book-related questions that align with the Common Core for educators.

How do you create a Curriculum Guide?

Talk to your publisher. More and more houses are interested in developing them.  Some will work with the author and illustrator. Others will hire an outside reading specialist to write discussion questions, illustrated with pick-up art from the book.

For our book SPIKE, THE MIXED-UP MONSTER, Melissa Sweet and I agreed to work on the guide together.  I came up with the games and wrote the copy. (As the former Children’s Content Director of Nick Jr. Magazine, they were right up my alley!) Melissa did sketches for some pages and we used pick-up art from the book for other pages. We submitted the “manuscript” and later sketches to our editor and then worked with the Simon & Schuster marketing department to have the guide designed and copy-edited.  Simon & Schuster also hired a literacy specialist, Tracie Vaughn Zimmer to add a discussion guide with questions that align to the Common Core. Tracie says, “I’ve been writing guides for 10 years. My focus is to really try to find what’s unique about the book and bring that forward for teachers to use in their classroom. The new push is the alignment with The Common Core Standards, which I’ve been trained in extensively over the last two years.”


Who pays the costs?

Sometimes the publisher, sometimes you! For my book JUST SAY BOO,

I worked with my illustrator Jed Henry to create Halloween cards, masks, paper dolls, a charades card game, and more.  Jed agreed to create some original art and we used some pick-up art as well.  We both donated our time and then I hired a former Nick Jr. designer, Jennifer Starr, to put it together. This is key. Without a good designer, your guide won’t look professional or be as appealing.

How long does it take?

It depends on the scope of the guide. Our SPIKE guide is 15-pages long and includes original art so the production process took several months.  Guides that are mostly text or use pickup art will take less time. 

How does it get distributed?

You, your illustrator and your publisher post the guide as a free downloadable PDF on your websites, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest accounts. I also take copies along to school and library visits, conferences and other venues. To keep costs down, I might copy one or two pages, do those activities with the kids, and then provide the school the link for more. Or you can email your school contacts ahead of time and have the school download the guide before your visit.


To download the SPIKE, THE MIXED-UP MONSTER Curriculum Guide, visit: www.susanhoodbooks.com

For wonderful ideas for teaching SPIKE developed by the professors of Lesley University, see http://march23rdhandout.blogspot.com/p/panel-i.html

Have more questions? To get more information about creating guides, contact Susan@susanhoodbooks.com.

Talk tomorrow,


Filed under: authors and illustrators, Interview, Marketing a book, Process, Tips Tagged: Curriculum Guide, Melissa Sweet, Paula Wiseman Books, Simon & Schuster, Spike the Mixed up Monster, Susan Hood

12 Comments on Curriculum Guides for Books, last added: 4/17/2013
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10. Ellen Hopkins: ‘Experiment with all types of poetry’

Happy National Poetry Month! All throughout April, we will interview poets about working in this digital age. Recently, we spoke with New York Times bestselling author Ellen Hopkins.

Hopkins (pictured, via) has been writing poetry throughout her entire life. She first established her professional writing career by penning nonfiction children’s books.

After Simon & Schuster Children’s Books published Crank in 2004, she became well-known for writing novels in verse. Many of her hit titles focus on dark topics including addiction, mental illness, and prostitution. Check out the highlights from our interview below…


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11. Agent Louise Fury – L. Perkins Agency

louise Furytwitter_pic_205163742_stdLouise Fury is attending the NJSCBWI June Conference and doing critiques. She is with the L. Perkins Agency that was founded in 1987 by Lori Perkins, a former newspaper publisher and editor. They specializes in many different genres. Currently there are five agents representing approximately 200 authors to the publishing industry.

The Agency has agents in 11 foreign countries and works with an established film agency. The L. Perkins agency works hard to stay ahead of the curve and makes it a priority to help their authors stay ahead of the pack. In 2010 they broke new ground by being the first (and currently ONLY) agency to hire a literary agent who works exclusively in the digital marketplace.

Louise Fury is a senior agent at the L. Perkins Agency and specializes in romance, all kids and young adult material and pop culture nonfiction. She has sold books to both traditional and electronic publishers including Random House, Harper Collins, Simon & Schuster, Samhain and others. Louise encourages authors to have one foot in traditional publishing and the other in the digital-first arena. Actually Louise has reported 26 deal to Publishers Marketplace during the last 12 months, which is extremely good.

Here is Louise’s Wish List.

I am looking for writers with a unique voice and an unforgettable story.  I’m particularly drawn to stories with a strong protagonist.

I want delicious adult romances with creative plots, sexy liaisons and unique characters that sweep me up in their love story and leave me smiling and sighing and longing for the romance to last forever.

In Young Adult, I look for manuscripts that are written with an unforgettable voice – this can be deep, dark and gritty or literary, lyrical and emotional. Every sentence should be there for a reason, every word should matter.

The YA sci-fi, thriller and realistic/gothic horror should have a bone-deep sense of danger that haunts me from page 1 and doesn’t let go of me for days.

And I like to cry. Or laugh. I want to feel something unforgettable when I read your pages. I want manuscripts that I can’t stop thinking about.

I believe in the power of marketing and I look for authors who know how to promote themselves. I only work with people that are pleasant online, on the telephone and in person. I want an author who knows that this is a business and is a professional, who understands the value of an agent in all mediums of publishing.

To break it down further:

  • Well written, emotional and touching novels for teens.
  • Deep, dark contemporary YA–where the smallest of choices have the greatest of consequences.
  • Select MIDDLE GRADE fiction with a literary feel– it must be realistic and  thought provoking and the characters must be authentic and original.
  • I love romance, especially Regency and Victorian. 
  • In nonfiction: humor and pop culture manuscripts.
  • NO memoirs!!

Louise also answered some interview questions I had.  Here they are:

1. Your bio states that you specialize in romance, all kids and young adult material and pop culture nonfiction. Could you tell us a little bit about what really grabs your attention in these areas?

Strong characters who take risks, push boundaries and fight for what they believe in, whether it is in a quiet dignified way that sneaks up on the reader or a stronger more obvious build that keeps our hearts pounding. I like to be emotionally shocked. Have a character break my heart and you are half way there.

2. I assume you are also interested in picture books when you say, “all kids.”

Yes. I have sold a picture book to Random House and have not found one to match its success since. But I am always looking.

3. Is there any genre that you are not drawn to, such as: fantasy, paranormal, gothic, horror, suspense, magical realism, and humor.

I am drawn to literary, moving and thought-provoking middle grade and picture book manuscripts, not light or humorous. But I am open to most things – whenever I say that I don’t want a certain genre, I am always shocked when a manuscript changes my mind. I love that!

4. Is there a common mistake that you see in the submitted stories you see?

When I get unsolicited queries, they are often for genres I do not represent. The biggest mistake is not doing enough research.

5. How often do you take on a new client?

There are times when I go for months without signing an author, but since being closed to submissions, I now only find authors through conferences, competitions and referrals. I have been very lucky to meet some amazing authors who are dedicated to honing their craft by attending conferences and learning from other writers and industry professionals.

Since 11/25/12 I have signed seven new/unpublished authors and two published authors.  I am currently talking to three others.

6. Do you work with your clients to improve the story before sending to an editor?

I do a round or two of light edits, but the all these amazing authors on my list have set the bar pretty high, so new manuscripts need to very polished.

7. Are you willing to represent unpublished authors?

Absolutely. I actually seek out not-yet-published authors. I love unique, strong debut manuscripts. There is nothing better than finding that new author with a special manuscript.

8. Do you have any advice for writers who submit to you?

Follow submission guidelines. Be polite and professional at all times.

Louise believes in staying ahead of the pack by embracing change, not just adapting to it and is a huge advocate for exploring secondary rights. She’s sold audio, film and foreign rights for her clients, including a recent deal with the cable channel, STARZ. Louise, a native South African, lives in NYC, but travels to Cape Town every year, where she spends time educating South African writers, meeting with international publishers and distributing books for women and children in need.

Thank you Louise for taking the time to answer my questions and help people get to know you a little better. I am looking forward to meeting you in June.

Louise still has spots left for critiques at the NJSCBWI June Conference. If you would like to jump on this opportunity to get a critique with a highly successful agent (26  deals in the last 12 months) you only have until April 30th to register.

Talk tomorrow,


Filed under: Advice, Agent, Editor & Agent Info, Interview, opportunity Tagged: Agent Louise Fury, HarperCollns, L Perkins Agency, Random House, Simon & Schuster

1 Comments on Agent Louise Fury – L. Perkins Agency, last added: 4/25/2013
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12. Illustrator Interview – Elizabeth Rose Stanton

By popular request, they’re back! Every Wednesday, I shall be interviewing illustrators from the world of children’s literature, those you know well and also introducing you to pre-published future Caldecott potentials! Today’s guest is my go to pig-me-up on FB when I need a smile and a bit of whimsy to brighten my day. Welcome to Elizabeth Rose Stanton, whose debut picture book, HENNY, will be published next January by Simon & Schuster.

[JM Illustrator or author/illustrator? 

[ERS] Author/illustrator

[JM] What’s your nationality and which and how have certain cultures/regions influenced your work?   

[ERS] I am “all” American. Multiple lines of my family go back to the early 1600s in North America, and I have a touch of Native American.  It’s probably more accurate to say that my work has been influenced more by children’s literature, in general, than any specific culture or region. That said, I admire the work of many artists and illustrators, including:  Beatrix Potter, Lisbeth Zwerger, John R. Neill, John Tenniel, Edward Gorey, James Thurber. 

I could go on and on . . . 

[JM] Tell us a little of your beginnings as an artist.

[ERS] I studied art history in college, and then went on to get a graduate degree in architecture.   After I got married and had children, I decided to set aside my career as an architect to be a full-time parent.  I began to work as an artist, as time permitted, when my youngest child started kindergarten.  I did portraits, fine art (was represented by a gallery here in Seattle), some graphic design, and became a certified scientific illustrator.  It is only recently, now that the nest is empty, that I have been able to dive full-time into writing and illustrating for children.   

[JM] Do you have a preferred medium to work in? 

[ERS] I work mostly with pencil and watercolor, and sometimes with pen and ink and/or colored pencils. 

[JM] What does your workspace look like?        

Studio_ERStanton[ERS] It Usually looks messy! :-)   I have a cove in the basement lined on one side with bookshelves, and a desk at the end.  I call it “The Trench.”

[JM] Can you share a piece or two with us, maybe of a WIP, and the process of creating them?

[ERS] My process varies a little, depending on where the final image(s) end up. For my books, I work completely on paper.  HENNY was rendered in pencil and watercolor, and the final art was packed up and physically sent to Simon & Schuster in New York.    For posting on-line (such as my Facebook “daily” sketches or for blog posts), I always begin with pencil/paint on paper, scan it, then often do some touch up.  I have a very old graphics program that I use that is quite adequate for what I usually need to do—cleaning up stray lines or enhancing color here and there.  But the short of it is, I prefer to work old-school.  


Begins with a simple pencil sketch

Then I begin to paint, using a variety of watercolor, and sometimes gouache.

Then I begin to paint, using a variety of watercolor, and sometimes gouache.

I go back and forth with color and pencil until I feel the picture is balanced

I go back and forth with color and pencil until I feel the picture is balanced


Then, in this case, I scan it in, clean it up a little, and send it on its way.

Then, in this case, I scan it in, clean it up a little, and send it on its way.

[JM] I know you have your debut picture book coming out in January of 2014. Can you tell us a little about the inspiration and development of HENNY? 

[ERS] Most of my ideas pop out spontaneously by way of the characters. A couple of years ago, I drew a fanciful bird with arms. He morphed into a chicken.  Then I started to think about all the challenges, and fun, a little chicken with arms might have, and Henny’s story unfolded from there.

Armed Chicks

Armed Chicks


Jacket cover for HENNY (Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books)

 [JM] What’s with all the pigs? :-)  

[ERS] The book I’m working on now is about a pig.

EPSON scanner image

[JM] How do you approach the marketing/business side of the picture book world?

[ERS] Having a fabulous agent, Joanna Volpe of New Leaf Literary & Media, helps.  I couldn’t have asked for a better person to represent me. She is helpful, responsive, and she really knows the business. I also have the benefit of the expertise of the talented team at Paula Wiseman Books. Meanwhile, I’ve been working to build up my social network platform. I try and keep my blog current, as well as post sketches and little paintings on Facebook as frequently as I can.  I use Twitter occasionally, too.  Specifically for HENNY, I will be having the book launch here in Seattle the first week of January, and will then be working hard to make the rounds, so to speak, singing her praises! :-)

EPSON scanner image[JM] What has been your greatest professional challenge?

[ERS] Staying focused. I always want to do other things (I have a pretty long bucket list).

Five Fun Ones to Finish?

[JM] What word best sums you up? 

[ERS] Quirky.

EPSON scanner image

[JM] If you could live anywhere for a season, where would you go? 

[ERS] Paris–because I’ve never been.

[JM] What’s your go-to snack or drink to keep the creative juices flowing?

[ERS] Strong tea and the darkest of dark chocolate.

[JM] Cats or dogs? 

[ERS] Both!  I have an ancient one-eyed dog and two Scottish Fold cats.

[JM] If you could spend a day with one children’s book illustrator, with whom would that be? 

[ERS] Current: Lisbeth Zwerger    Past: Beatrix Potter

[JM] Where can we find/follow you and your work, Elizabeth?





[ERS]  Thank you for the interview, Joanna!  It’s been fun!

[JM] Thank YOU for being on Miss Marple’s Musings, Beth. To your continued success. I am looking forward to seeing HENNY when she comes out!

EPSON scanner image 

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13. Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing to Launch a New Science-Fiction, Fantasy, & Horror Imprint

ssSimon & Schuster plans to create a new imprint specializing in science fiction, fantasy, and horror books “for readers of all ages.”

Jon Anderson, executive vice president and publisher of Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing, will oversee the not-yet-named imprint. In an interview with Publishers Weekly, he revealed that this imprint will acquire books for readers of “YA and above.”


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14. ‘The Harvard Lampoon’ Parodies ‘The Hobbit’

9781476763675The Harvard Lampoon has written a Hobbit parody entitled The Wobbit.

Simon & Schuster’s Touchstone imprint will release the book in paperback format on November 26th. A reading event for this title will take place on December 12th at the Harvard Coop.

Here’s more from the press release: “When Aaron Sorkinshield and his band of Little People embark on a quest across Widdle Wearth to reclaim the hoard of Academy Awards stolen from them by the lonely Puff the Magic Dragon, senile wizard Dumbledalf suggests an unlikely and completely unqualified accomplice: Billy Bagboy, an unassuming wobbit dwelling in terrorist-riddled Wobbottabad. Along the way, the company faces internet trolls, moblins, one really big spider that must be at least an inch and a half wide, and slightly worse.”


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15. Abbi Glines Lands Book Deal for Self-Published Novels

After dominating our Self-Published Bestsellers List, YA novelist Abbi Glines has signed a deal with Simon & Schuster’s Simon Pulse imprint for The Vincent Boys and The Vincent Brothers.

According to the publisher, Glines has sold more than 150,000 digital copies of the books since October 2011. Simon Pulse editorial director Jennifer Klonsky negotiated the deal with Dystel & Goderich’s Jane Dystel.

Simon Pulse has already released both books in eBook format. The Vincent Boys will come out in both hardcover and trade paperback format on October 30th. The Vincent Brothers will follow on December 18th.


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16. Ross Perot Inks Deal for Memoir

Ross Perot — the rogue Texas business man who shook things up during the 1992 presidential election by winning 19 percent of the popular vote as an independent with a campaign dedicated to balancing the federal budget — is writing a memoir.

Simon & Schuster will publish the book, which is called, Ross Perot: My Life, and is slated for release in January 2013. In the book, Perot will tell his tale which includes building high tech businesses, rescuing POWs and being the most successful third party candidate in the country.

In 2002, Tapestry Press published a book of Perot’s philosophies written by Perot called Ross Perot: My Life & The Principles for Success.


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17. Becca Fitzpatrick Lands Deal for YA Psychological Thriller

YA author Becca Fitzpatrick has landed a deal for her “stand-alone psychological thriller” called Black Ice. Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers plans to release this novel in fall 2014.

Publisher Justin Chanda negotiated the deal with Inkwell Management literary agent Catherine Drayton. At the moment, Fitzpatrick is promoting the final installment of the Hush, Hush sagaFinale. That book will hit bookstores on October 23, 2012.

Fitzpatrick (pictured, via) gave this statement in the release: “Black Ice is about a girl who backpacks the Teton Range over spring break of her senior year of high school but things go terribly wrong. Like Hush, Hush, the inspiration behind Black Ice comes from my own experiences during my teen years. It’s very satisfying to finally be working on a project that has been floating around my head for so long.”


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18. Octavia Spencer Lands Book Deal at Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers

The Help star Octavia Spencer inked a book deal with Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers. Spencer’s debut novel, Randi Rhodes, Ninja Detective: The Case of the Time-Capsule Bandit, is scheduled for release in fall 2013.

It is the first installment of a two-book middle grade series. Executive editor Zareen Jaffery negotiated the deal with William Morris Endeavor literary agent Andy McNichol. Jaffrey will edit the manuscript.

Here’s more from the release: “Randi Rhodes isn’t your average twelve-year-old. She’s a Brooklyn vigilante with a Tae Kwon Do black belt. But circumstances take a turn for the worse when Randi’s mother passes away and her father decides to move to the small and sleepy town of Deer Creek, Tennessee. Randi couldn’t be more unhappy—until a mystery arises: the town’s two-hundred-year-old time capsule, which is rumored to contain hidden treasure, inexplicably disappears. Randi must solve the case, as the town’s fate hangs in the balance.”


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19. A Thank You To Justin Chanda and Simon & Schuster Children's


Today's print issue of The New York Times Sunday Book Review has their list of Notable Children's Books Of 2012. There are six YA books, eleven middle grade books, and eight picture books….and I'M BORED (written by Michael Ian Black, illustrated by me) is included!! I'm about to head out this morning to hunt down a copy of The New York Times  in Toronto but first, I wanted to write this post:

It's been a truly extraordinary year for me.

Not only did my very first children's book come out in bookstores, but Simon & Schuster also gave me contracts for two more books - one of which I'm also writing. I am grateful to so many people who have encouraged and supported me in the past as well as during the I'M BORED creation process, but today I'd like to mention one person in particular: Justin Chanda.

JustinChanda bySonyaSones credit

In 2010, Justin saw my portfolio in the SCBWI Summer Conference Showcase and decided that I'd be the perfect illustrator for Michael Ian Black's newest picture book. Later on (after it was too late for him to change his mind), I asked Justin more about why he picked me; you can read some of his answers in the I'M BORED Scrapbook.

S SKids

Justin had never heard of me when he first approached me at the conference. He didn't know anything about my "author platform" or the fact that I had been focusing on writing up to that point ... it was all about my art. From Justin, when I asked him:

There was a sense of whimsy and definite style. I loved the assorted cast of characters, but I loved your point of view just as much. I remember there was an illustration of a robot who had lost his arm and one of a little girl looking at these tiny monsters. In both instances I got a clear sense of character, a sense of humor, and a sense of style.

Over the years, I've had a wide range of rejection letters from a wide range of children's book publishers…from the bare form letter for my early efforts up to much more personalized "we like her writing but the story's not quite there" or "we love her mss but it doesn't quite fit our list right now". I've been appreciative of all feedback and I can tell by the quality of the rejections that I've been getting much closer…. but they're still rejections. :-)

Justin Chanda was the first children's book editor to believe in me enough to offer me a contract, and I will always be grateful to him and Simon & Schuster Children's. I'M BORED has opened up other opportunities at S&S, with two more picture book contracts. Justin says he'd also be happy to take a look at anything else I've done, including my middle grade and young adult writing (YAY), so I've  been working hard on some new projects.

2011 01 31 SS Sign


I'm going to be writing a series of short gratitude posts over the coming months, thanking some of the people in my life as well as those involved with the creation of I'M BORED, but for now... I'm going out to get a print version of The New York Times Sunday Review so I can get ink on my fingers and spend way too much time marvelling at the extraordinary fact that my name is included.

Photo below was taken by my husband Jeff, when The New York Times reviewed I'M BORED back in September. Below the photo, I've posted the comic I created after reading the review. 


NYTimesBoredComic 600

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20. Osama Bin Laden Hunt Retold in Graphic Novel

Simon & Schuster’s Gallery Books partnered with indie comics publisher Bluewater Productions to create a graphic novel entitled Killing Geronimo: The Hunt for Osama Bin Laden.

The book focuses on the Navy SEAL Team Six mission that killed Osama Bin Laden. The book has been released today. Artist James Boulton illustrated. Writers Jerome Maida and Darren G. Davis collaborated wrote the story.

Maida had this statement in the release: “This is an epic story nearly ten years in the making. It’s like a true-to-life Jason Bourne novel. And like those Ludlum books, it’s a complex labyrinth of intrigue, danger and politics culminating in an action-packed ending.” (Via CNN)

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21. I'M BORED Process: How a picture book is translated into other languages


 I was thrilled to find out that the French version of I'M BORED was available for ordering online, and then got curious about the process.

How does a picture book get translated? Are there any issues that children's book writers and illustrators need to be aware of, when working a project?

I interviewed Tracy Philips from the S&S UK Translation Rights team about the process, over the I'M BORED Scrapbook Blog.

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22. Fahrenheit 451 Cover Design Contest Winner Revealed

Matthew Owen has won the  Fahrenheit 451 cover design contest from Simon & Schuster and the American Library Association’s Office for Intellectual Freedom.

The winning cover (embedded above) was revealed at the ALA Midwinter Meeting.

Owen, who hails from Little Rock, AR, created a cover that beat out more than 360 submissions. Both the Simon & Schuster staff and the Bradbury estate participated in judging the entries.


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23. Hachette, Penguin and Simon & Schuster Launch Bookish

Hachette Book Group, Penguin and Simon & Schuster have launched Bookish, nearly two years after the site was first announced in May 2011.

The site will recommend books and let readers shop for books. It also shares book excerpts and features essays from its editors and authors (we’ve included some excerpts below).

According to Digital Book World sources, the publishers have invested “about $16 million” in the new venture. Bookish also counted the participation of 16 other major publishers, including Random House, Inc., Scholastic, HarperCollins Publishers and Perseus Books Group.


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24. Hanging out with Neil Flambé writer/illustrator Kevin Sylvester

For more info about Kevin Sylvester:


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25. Books, Promotions, & Kudos

a_ CoopercroppedSr. Editor Alexandra Copper at Simon & Schuster has moved over to HarperCollins as executive editor position.  She will be working on YA and middle-grade novels and some picture books.

At HMH Children’s, Mary Wilcox has been promoted to the newly-created position of vp, editor in chief.  In addition,  Adah Nuchi has been promoted to associate editor.

Christa Heschke has been promoted to agent within the children’s department, handling all foreign, domestic and subsidiary rights for children’s clients while actively building her own list.

At Penguin, Katherine Tiernan McCahill has been promoted to assistant director of the digital products group.

In Canada, former senior executives at D&M Publishers Chris Labonte, Peter Cocking and Richard Nadeau have founded Figure1 Publishing, devoted to books in the art & architecture, food & wine, lifestyle, illustrated history and business book categories. The reason I point this out is because of this quote: “Our goal is to become the premier publisher of high quality illustrated books in the country.” Think Chronicle Books, or Rizzoli.” Even though they are not invloved in children’s books, it might be a good place for illustrators to query for work. Cocking has been named creative director.



Hazel Mitchel who was featured on Illustrator Saturday http://wp.me/pss2W-2pf 

has a new picture book “1, 2, 3, By the Sea” is available to buy on line.

Hazel is having a book give-a-way, too.  Use this link for a chance to win: http://tinyurl.com/c8donqt


ballad of jesse pearl

Shannon Hitchcock debut YA book The Ballad of Jesse Pearl came out in February – Published by namelos.



If you follow this blog and would like to announce a success or book coming out, please let me know.  If you sent me an e-mail and I missed it, please remind me.  I get hundreds of e-mails everyday.

Talk tomorrow,


Filed under: Agent, authors and illustrators, Editor & Agent Info, Kudos, Publishing Industry, success Tagged: Alexandra Copper, Christa Heschke, HarperCollins, Holt Mifflan Harcourt Children's, Simon & Schuster

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