Remembering the Query Daze – a Writer Looks Back with Gratitude

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Lately, I’ve been thinking back to the “query daze.” How hard it was to put my work in front of strangers who were experts and ask them what they thought. At that time, I received some pretty tough feedback. The first query/writing sample I’d ever sent out (for a book entitled Kicking the Beehive) came back with a written response—I was thrilled, believing that a hand-written comment on a rejection means you’re on the cusp of success! The note read, “I love your title. However, you never need send me anything again.”

Ouch, right?

Thing is…I knew the book wasn’t ready. That I wasn’t ready. I sent it as a Hail Mary. A hope and a wish. My head thought I had a chance. My heart knew better.

So, I began another book. The voice popped. I believed in it. Yet, there was this other voice, too. Not demanding to be written but relentlessly tugging at me. So, I began to write that one instead. It was entitled, One for the Murphys, and was later published with Nancy Paulsen Books/Penguin in 2012. The book I’d left in order to write Murphys is now under contract and due out in Fall, 2016.

Dreams come true, folks! Believe me; they do.

So, I’ve been thinking about my fellow writers in the pre-agent days. I wrote a love letter to SCBWI (Society of Children’s Writers and Illustrators) after receiving an ARC of One for the Murphys because SCBWI was so crucial in getting published.

I’ve been replaying those times with friends and critique group members I met through SCBWI who both encouraged me and kicked me in the butt–depending on what was called for that day. We were a tribe. We still are. And I am grateful to benefit from their caring, honesty, and wisdom.

And, oddly enough, I am grateful for that time of querying and waiting for the phone to ring. Knowing that 212 was the area code for New York city where many agents and publishers would call from. And hoping. Hoping that when the phone rang, it would be a 212 call. These were the days of high hopes laced with days of wondering if I should just work on something easier. Like pulling a tire through a keyhole.

However, that time taught me about grit and determination and the business of publishing. I learned what I wanted and how very much I wanted it. It was a time of feeling both alone and part of something bigger all at the same time.

My second novel, FISH IN A TREE, (avail for pre-order now ~ release is Feb 5, 2015) has many themes that remind me of my early author journey:                                                                Copy (3) of FISH IN A TREE COVER high res

  • Grit and resilience
  • Having the courage to accept help
  • Don’t play the comparison game. Recognize both your strengths and short-comings not in terms of being better or worse but in being human with your one-of-a-kind voice.
  • Let your strengths shine in the first try (draft). Work on your short-comings later (in revision).
  • Being vulnerable to your audience can be hard–but it often deepens connections with others (Here is an old post on the vulnerability of being a writer )
  • Sometimes the things that make you feel like there’s something wrong with you are actually your strengths (i.e. – never being able to follow an outline like other writers)
  • Having others on the journey with you makes for a richer ride and a happier person.
  • Yup–we’re all in this together. And we have to support each other. That’s what it’s all about. Not just writing but the whole being human thing.

So, since I am making these connections between my early writing career and FISH IN A TREE…

and bubbling over with all of this gratitude for my tribe…

and looking for a way to celebrate the release of this book…

AND knowing how much I was/am helped by others…

I’d like to try to help other writers who are longing to break into children’s publishing. So…

I am offering a giveaway where two children’s writers will be randomly chosen. The winners will be contacted with instructions re: sending me the first ten pages of their book (12 pt, double-spaced) and I will give a balanced critique and speak with the writer on the phone for 30-minutes about his/her writing sample.

To enter, you must:

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1) Be an adult who has been actively writing fiction for children

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2) NOT be published in any genre (as I am trying to help those who have not broken in YET)

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To earn entries, you may:

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~~Make a comment below. Please enter your email address OR twitter name so I can contact you if you win

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~~Share this giveaway link to FB (which you must tell me about in the comments)

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~~Tweeting or Retweeting with the hashtag,  #WritingAllies  (This will help me find your tweets in order to enter you in the drawing. You may also tag me @Lynmullalyhunt )

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The winners will be chosen at 11:59 PM on December 10th. Winners will be notified by the following morning and also announced here. Due to travel plans, I must receive your ten pages via e-mail within 2 days of winning and I will schedule the phone conversation within a few days after that.

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**Thank you and good luck. I’ll leave you with a favorite quote about being a writer:

The person born with a talent they are meant to use will find their greatest happiness in using it. ~Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Categories: author, courage, Fish in a Tree, Giveaway, Grit, SCBWI, writing | 65 Comments

Defying Logic, Fighting Gravity, and Other Lynda-esque Kinds of Things

Originally posted on EMU's Debuts:

I’ve been thinking a lot about my transformation from writer to published author—and I don’t mean signing on the dotted line or that new tiara I bought myself. I mean getting serious. Shifting perspective. Taking action. (Maybe I need my own action figure doll?)

SCBWI had become a social world for me. I’d made friends and enjoyed the conferences. For about four years, I met with editors who had enthusiasm for my work. Each time, I went home and started something new—much to the frustration of my writers’ group. “Why are you working on this new thing?” they would ask. “I thought Editor X requested the other full manuscript at Conference Q.” I would shrug, telling them I had a new “voice” in my head.

Enter Editor Z. When I sat down for a critique, she raved about my 25 pages. What direction did the story go in? Was it…

View original 950 more words

Categories: writing | 1 Comment

Thanks SO Much Global Read Aloud Readers. You are MY Heroes :-) #GRA14

ALL GRA 14 Hello, Global Read Aloud Readers! I really just wanted to thank you all for jumping in to do #GRA14 this year. Thanks to those of you who chose Murphys as your GRA–but thanks to the rest of you as well! To be honest, with the amazing choices that were offered for 2014, *I* would have had a hard time choosing! So, I’m pretty honored and humbled if you chose Murphys. Thanks, again. It was a blast!

The soon-to-be-legendary Pernille Ripp, who got this whole Global Read Aloud thing started (and who is just the nicest person ever) interviewed me yesterday. She chose from over 400 questions that all of you sent in from all over the WORLD (mind blown!) and I did my very best to answer them. Here is the video just in case you missed it. (HA! WHAT is with that picture? Am I being dive-bombed by a fly the size of a football?) As a THANK YOU, Copy (3) of FISH IN A TREE COVER high resI am posting a giveaway of an ARC of my new book–FISH IN A TREE. Please leave a comment below about something surprising that happened during #GRA14 or perhaps your favorite thing about GRA14 or ANYTHING you want about #GRA. Please tweet/retweet the link with the hashtag #FIATbook so I can find your post. By doing so, you (and your class) will be entered to win:

  • An ARC (advanced reader’s copy) of FISH IN A TREE
  • Some swag for your class (i.e. bracelets, bookmarks, wooden nickels)
  • A free 45-minute class Skype about Murphys and/or Fish in a Tree. (I’ll be happy about that–I love to speak with readers. :-)

Giveaway will end on Wednesday, November 19th at 11:59 PM. Winner will be announced Thursday morning. (However, because I leave for #NCTE14 that day, I may not get your prize mailed until the following week) Again–thanks for everything! You are the BEST readers anywhere and everywhere. ~Lynda

Categories: Ally Nickerson | Tags: , , , , | 42 Comments

Collection of Teacher-Related & Bullying Posts – NCTE14

Hello!

At NCTE, I’d referred to these two teacher-related posts and a bullying post in a few conversations w/ teachers. I had promised to post them here so they are easy to find for you–so here they are. Whether I had the pleasure of speaking with you or not, thank you for stopping by here. I appreciate it. :-)

~Lynda

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**COVER REVEAL FOR FISH IN A TREE  (About the first teacher that changed me. Saved me, really… My novel, FISH IN A TREE turned out to be a love letter to him and all teachers like him)

http://nerdybookclub.wordpress.com/2014/07/02/cover-reveal-fish-in-a-tree-by-lynda-mullaly-hunt/

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THE YEAR I MET PETER: (About the first book that changed me)

http://nerdybookclub.wordpress.com/2012/07/17/the-year-i-met-peter/

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IRON WHISPER (being bullied as a kid)

http://lyndamullalyhunt.wordpress.com/2013/10/20/of-everything-wonderful/

THANK YOU!!!

Categories: Ally Nickerson, books, Fish in a Tree, Great minds don't think a like, journey, Love of teachers, NCTE, Teachers/Teaching, writing | Leave a comment

My NCTE14 Schedule – Would Love to Meet Teachers/Readers!

Annual14Hey, Folks!

I would love to see you at NCTE in Washington D.C.! If you are there and would like to attend one of my sessions and/or signings, below is my schedule. Also, check out the AMAZING company I have on these panels; I’m so excited!

Take care,

Lynda

Friday, November 21

9:30 – 10:45 AM:

PanelA.06 – Revising the Story: Reluctant Readers Overcoming Shame

Where? **Annapolis 3**

Teachers and authors realize that through testing and well intended intervention, and reading instruction, some students have inadvertently developed a negative self–image of reading. This panel will discuss and demonstrate how they help students overcome shame and realize a love for reading again through personalized instruction and insightful text analysis.

Speakers/Teachers:

Chair ~ Justin Stygles, Guy Row Elementary School, Norway, Maine

Kara DiBartolo, Bethel Public Schools, Connecticut

Melissa Guerrette, Oxford Elementary School, Oxford, Maine

Authors:

Lynda Mullaly Hunt, Nancy Paulsen Books/Penguin Group, New York, New York. Author of ONE FOR THE MURPHYS and forthcoming FISH IN A TREE (Feb 5, 2015)

Liesl Shurtliff, Knopf books, New York, New York. Author of RUMP, THE TRUE STORY OF RUMPELSTILSKIN and forthcoming JACK: THE TRUE STORY OF JACK AND THE BEANSTALK (April 14, 2015)
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Friday, cont.

SIGNINGS: (Please come by to say hello! I love to meet readers! I’ll have swag for both ONE FOR THE MURPHYS and FISH IN A TREE)

~1:00 – 2:00 PM: Signing in the Penguin Young Readers, Booth#612, 614, 616

~4:00 – 5:00 PM: Anderson’s signing Booth #153

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Saturday, November 22

9:30 – 10:45 AM:

G.46. GROW THROUGH IT: FOSTERING RESLIENCE AND EMPATHY THROUGH STORY

WHERE? **Maryland B**

Audience: Elementary, Middle

A panel of children’s book authors and classroom teachers share ideas and strategies professionals can

use with students to build resilience and empathy. Attendees will learn conditions that help support the

development of resilience and empathy and how literature can be used to foster this development.

Presenters:

Susan Dee, RSU 5, Freeport, Durham, and Pownell, Maine;

Gigi McAllister, teacher, Gorham, Maine; Gigi McAllister, teacher, Gorham, Maine;

Leslie Connor, author, HarperCollins-Tegen Books, New York, New York;

Lynda Mullaly Hunt, Nancy Paulsen Books/(Penguin Group), New York, New York;

Jennifer Nielsen, author, Scholastic Inc., New York, New York

Categories: writing | 6 Comments

FISH IN A TREE Giveaway

It’s Halloween and ghouls just want to have fun. SO….

….I am posting a FISH IN A TREE giveaway including a signed ARC. In case you’d like to know something about the book, here is some info including a synopsis and Chapter One.

http://lyndamullalyhunt.com/book_alphabet.php

The giveaway includes:

mega giveaway

  1. A signed ARC of FISH IN A TREE  (release date is Feb 5, 2015)
  2. A Fish in a Tree t-shirt (sizes are limited)
  3. A “Great minds don’t think alike/ Got grit?” lanyard
  4. A class set of 30 “Great minds don’t think alike/ Got grit?” bracelets.
  5. A class set of 30 “silver dollar day/wooden nickel day” wooden nickels for your students
  6. A class set of 30 FISH IN A TREE tattoos
  7. A fancy FISH IN A TREE pen – because who doesn’t love a good pen?
  8. Three signed copies of ONE FOR THE MURPHYS for your classroom library. Or I will happily personalize them if you wish.
  9. A set of 30 Murphys bookmarks for your students
  10. My undying gratitude for being the kind of teacher who would enter a giveaway for your class.

You earn entries by:

  • Tweeting this post with the hashtag #FIATbook (This way I can find your entries).
  • Retweeting or quoting tweets (with #FIATbook).
  • Sharing this to FB, but please let me know in the comments below.
  • Lastly, you can enter by commenting about anything you’d like below—feel free to just say hello, tell a story of a student (yourself or another) who has persevered despite obstacles, or a story of a wonderful, life-changing teacher—because there are SO many unsung heroes out there. I know it. In fact, this book is one big thank you note to you teachers out there who are saving kids every day.

A winner will be randomly chosen Thursday, November 6th at 11:59PM. *The winner MUST have a school mailing address.*

And, thank you for your interest in FISH IN A TREE. If you ever get around to reading it, I do hope you enjoy meeting Ally, Keisha, Albert, Suki, Mr. Daniels and the others…

Categories: Ally Nickerson, Dyslexia, Fish in a Tree, Giveaway, Great minds don't think a like, Grit, writing | 58 Comments

Global Read Aloud, 2014 ~ HOORAY!

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Hello, Global Read Aloud Teachers, Librarians, Students, and Fellow Reading Enthusiasts!

Let me just say what an extraordinary honor it is to have One for the Murphys chosen as a Global Read Aloud book this year. I am absolutely stunned by the company that it is in. I think no matter which book you choose for #GRA14, you can’t go wrong!

ALL GRA 14

If you have chosen Murphys as your read aloud, I would like to try to help make the experience feel a bit more interactive for your kiddos. So here are some things that I’ve done/will be doing for GRA!

1) I have read Chapter ONE online for you. Don’t think I wasn’t nervous doing this, either, but I thought that kids may like to hear the beginning read by the author.

2) I have read the last chapter online for you as well. I’ve heard from many teachers who have cried while reading it and from many students who have watched their teacher cry while reading it. I am so grateful that readers feel connected enough to Carley to feel such emotion. But, I also feel a bit bad sometimes. Like I should start sending flowers to people. 

For you teachers who do read in front of kids even though you know you’ll cry—kudos to you! I think that’s brave and great for kids to see. I also think it’s a bonding experience for a class.


3) Some teachers have expressed wanting to order “Be someone’s hero” lanyards. I usually give these out at schools when I visit, but for GRA, I will offer them for sale at cost plus just a bit more to cover packaging and postage. They will only be for sale for a few weeks. Please e-mail me at…I’M SORRY; THERE ARE NO MORE LANYARDS FOR SALE :-( Thank you for the huge response :-)

GRA lanyards

4) I promised on Twitter that I will send out a limited number of class sets (30) of free bookmarks (see below) for *classes reading One for the Murphys for #GRA.*  Please provide your SCHOOL mailing address. I’m sorry but I won’t be able to mail to residential addresses. Thanks! (I’m sorry :-/ bracelets are not available for shipping) SORRY–OUT OF BOOKMARKS FOR NOW :-/  Thanks for big response, though :-)

5) I will be holding an in-person GRA LAUNCH CELEBRATION in Mystic CT at the fabulous BANK SQUARE BOOKS—one of CT’s best indie bookstores. It will be held on Oct 6th from 4:00-6:00. TEACHERS who attend–I will have classroom packs for you containing bookmarks and “Be someone’s hero” bracelets for your class. I’ll explain the back story for One for the Murphys and tell you about my strange writing process  There will also be raffles for cool stuff.

GRA bookmarks and bracelets

6) If you do not live near Mystic, CT., BANK SQUARE BOOKS and their awesome staff such as Kelsy or Julia are taking orders for signed copies that they will ship to you. Place your order and I will sign it the night of Oct 6th and it will then be shipped to you. Please call the store at (860) 536 – 3795 to order your book and leave instructions—I am happy to personalize! If no instructions are left, I will just do the basic signature.

7) I am already pretty booked up with Skype visits with classes, having booked MANY over the summer and early fall. I know that the phenomenal writer and person, Kate Messner, was a GRA author last year and ran into the same thing. So, borrowing Kate’s idea, I ask that students and teachers ask questions in the comments section ON THIS POST throughout #GRA and I will choose a couple of questions each week and answer them in a video. The more creative the question, the more likely it will be chosen. If you include the kid’s name who came up with the question, I will mention him/her. I will post links to those videos here. Also, you can search Youtube.com for my name and #GRA14

Also–if you are interested, here is the book trailer for One for the Murphys:

Okay! So, that’s it! I am so excited to begin Global Read Aloud SOON! Huge thanks to Pernille Ripp ( @pernilleripp on Twitter) who CREATED GLOBAL READ ALOUD. What an extraordinary thing you’ve begun, Pernille!

Read on, folks. Read on. And remember…

Hero badge

Categories: writing | Tags: , , , | 44 Comments

SCBWI Whispering Pines Retreat, 2014

 

I am blessed to be co-director of the annual SCBWI-New England Whispering Pines Retreat. I mean I could do a whole post on just THAT! Love the retreat. Love the venue. Love the people that attend. Love it all.

This year, our uber-talented and generous editor mentors were Regina Griffin, Executive Editor at Egmont USA, Sarah Dotts Barley, Editor at HarperCollins, and Christine Krones, Editor at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. Our fabulous author mentor was Audrey Vernick and our Marketing Extraordinaire expert was Kirsten Cappy of Curious City in Portland Maine.

Truly. These ladies were phenomenal. If only they could have heard the chatter after they’d left about how inspiring, intelligent, generous everyone thought they were. How grateful everyone was. It was a memorable year. One for the books :-)

Since a picture is worth a 1,000 words, here are some–you guessed–pictures :-)

 

The beginning...

The beginning…

 

 

Where we break bread...

Where we break bread…

 

 

The weekend Gang!

The weekend Gang!

 

SONY DSC

L to R: Lynda, Regina Griffin, Executive Editor of Egmont, Christine Krones, Editor at Houghton Mifflin, Kirsten Cappy of Curious City, Sarah Dotts Barley of HarperCollins, Audrey Vernick, Author, and Co-director, Mary Pierce

 

Our wonderful First Page Readers, Mary Pierce and Jenny Bagdigian

Our wonderful First Page Readers, Mary Pierce and Jenny Bagdigian

 

If it hadn't been raining, we would have done s'mores  here. :-)

If it hadn’t been raining, we would have done s’mores here. :-)

 

Instead, we made s'mores in the fireplace. Which was still pretty great :-)  As evidenced by the experts, Sarah and Jean.

Instead, we made s’mores in the fireplace. Which was still pretty great :-) As evidenced by the experts, Sarah and Jean.

 

With my Maine girls, Julie and Cameron  :-)

With my Maine girls, Julie and Cameron :-)

 

red hat

The incomparable Carlyn Beccia brought this hat and got a picture of everyone in attendance wearing it.

 

My corny thank you. :-) When a Transformers kaleidoscope speaks to the transformative nature of SCBWI - adding color to our lives.

My corny thank you. :-) When a Transformers kaleidoscope speaks to the transformative nature of SCBWI – adding color to our lives.

Moi with dear friends--and talented ladies--Mary Pierce, Laurie Murphy, and Jennifer Thermes

Moi with dear friends–and talented ladies–Mary Pierce, Laurie Murphy, and Jennifer Thermes

 

Awesome ladies--Kim Savage, Cameron Rosenblum, Annie Cardi, and Caroline Webster

Awesome ladies–Kim Savage, Cameron Rosenblum, Annie Cardi, and Caroline Webster

 

The fabulous Kirsten Cappy and her red hat picture.

The fabulous Kirsten Cappy and her red hat picture.

 

Circle of friends. Me, Penny Piva, and Jenny Bagdigian

Circle of friends. Me, Penny Piva, and Jenny Bagdigian

 

This year's get-up as Kid-lit Jeopardy emcee.

This year’s get-up as Kid-lit Jeopardy emcee. Obviously serious business…

 

Kid-Lit Jeopardy teams trying to win points for fabulous prizes and world wide prestige.

Kid-Lit Jeopardy teams trying to win points for fabulous prizes and world wide prestige.

 

Lovely Eisenhower Lake

Lovely Eisenhower Lake

 

With Nancy Tandon :-)

With Nancy Tandon :-)

The stylish and wondrous Jill Dailey

The stylish and wondrous Jill Dailey

Penny Piva rocks the red hat shot!

Penny Piva rocks the red hat shot!

 

Jill Dailey, Kristin Russo, Nancy Tandon, and Holly Howley :-)

Jill Dailey, Kristin Russo, Nancy Tandon, and Holly Howley :-)

Jennifer O'Keefe puts down her paint brushes to do the hat a favor. Thank you, Jen, for the lovely art work you did for people on the fly :-) BEST nametags we've ever had!

Jennifer O’Keefe puts down her paint brushes to do the hat a favor. Thank you, Jen, for the lovely art work you did for people on the fly :-) BEST nametags we’ve ever had!

The amazing Audrey Vernick. She spoke to picture books, but there was wisdom to be had for writers in any genre. Just wonderful.

The amazing Audrey Vernick. She spoke to picture books, but there was wisdom to be had for writers in any genre. Just wonderful.

 

kirsten

The extraordinary Kirsten Cappy of Curious City imparts tremendous marketing wisdom. *mind blown*

 

 

Christine Krones of Houghton Mifflin teaches us about herself, writing, and the business. Her visuals were awesome!

Christine Krones of Houghton Mifflin teaches us about herself, writing, and the business. Lots of fantastic info–and her visuals were awesome!

Love this picture of Sarah DOtts Barley, Editor at HarperCollins. It's just "so Sarah" - full of joy and affection for literature.

Love this picture of Sarah Dotts Barley, Editor at HarperCollins. It’s just “so Sarah” – full of joy and affection for literature. And sweetness toward writers :-) She spoke to us about revision – the rest of us scribbled wildly.

 

regina griffin

Regina Griffin, Executive Editor from Egmont was our final mentor to speak–and what a way to wrap up. I wish I’d been able to record it–such phenomenal wisdom-laden points laced with clever humor.

 

photggo

Group shot during evening portion of first pages. Mentors were awesome at this!

 

 

THANK YOU again to our wonderful mentors. This was a year for the books, as they say. :-)

THANK YOU again to our wonderful mentors. This was a year for the books, as they say. :-)

 

 

Now to start planning next year so that we may return...

Now to start planning next year so that we may return…

 

 

 

Categories: Whispering Pines, writing | 5 Comments

NCTE in Boston – Amazing Weekend!

Last weekend, I attended NCTE (National Council for Teachers of English). What an amazing weekend. And, no…I’m not just throwing that word, amazing, around. It really did amaze me.

It amazed me to see so many kid & book loving people all in one place. It amazed me to see the sea of publishers’ booths. It amazed me to meet authors whose work I’ve admired for years. It amazed me to meet friends “for real” from my online community and The Nerdy Book Club. It amazed me to attend workshops given by these people for their teaching colleagues – and it amazed me how much it all made me miss being in the classroom. Inspiration everywhere!

And I left feeling just so, so grateful. Grateful that I have been blessed with this career. And grateful that there are teachers in the world like the ones I met at NCTE. I had many teachers and librarians thank me for writing, which I so appreciated and was humbled by. But, let’s face it–without the teachers like the ones below (and tons of others!) most kids wouldn’t pick up books, discover how opening the cover of a book can open up things inside of them that they never would have dreamed. Books do change lives. I’m proof of that.

So here’s to teachers and librarians! There are so many gifted, big-hearted people in the trenches with our kids every day. Thank goodness.

Here is my picture wrap-up of the most excellent NCTE, 2013. :-)

Bostonbanner

boston

Hanging out in the Penguin Booth with the phenomenal Judy Blume. WOW! Also, there with Eileen Bishop Kreit from Puffin. Always so happy to see Eileen. :-)

Hanging out in the Penguin Booth with the phenomenal Judy Blume. WOW! Also, there with Eileen Bishop Kreit from Puffin. Always so happy to see Eileen. She’s a rock star in my book. :-)

Happy to visit with lit agency friends! (Front:) Susan Meyer, Erin Murphy (my agent), Joan Paquette, Elly Swartz  (Back:) Jennifer Nielsen, Audrey Vernick, Nancy Tupper Ling, moi

Happy to visit with lit agency friends! (Front:) Susan Meyer, Erin Murphy (my agent), Joan Paquette, Elly Swartz (Back:) Jennifer Nielsen, Audrey Vernick, Nancy Tupper Ling, moi

My fabulous agent, Erin Murphy. Doesn't she have the best name ever? :-)

My fabulous agent, Erin Murphy. Doesn’t she have the best name ever? :-)

Editor and Publisher, Nancy Paulsen, with "her girls" at NCTE. Beck McDowell, Nancy Paulsen, moi, Jacqueline Woodson

Editor and Publisher, Nancy Paulsen, with “her girls” at NCTE. Beck McDowell, Nancy Paulsen, moi, Jacqueline Woodson

Love these ladies!  Alyson Beecher and Cynthia Alaniz . SO fortunate to attend their panel :-)

Love these ladies! Alyson Beecher and Cynthia Alaniz . SO fortunate to attend their panel :-)

Alyson Beecher who has been so very sweet throughout my debut journey. Loved meeting her for real!

Alyson Beecher who has been so very sweet throughout my debut journey. Loved meeting her for real!

Who doesn't love Jennifer Nielsen? Finally got to talk with each other in person!

Who doesn’t love Jennifer Nielsen? Finally got to talk with each other in person!

Dessert with some of my favorite Maine ladies: Susan Dee, Mary , Gigi McAllister, and Mary Lou Shuster

Dessert with some of my favorite Maine ladies: Susan Dee, Mary Bellavance, Gigi McAllister, and Mary Lou Shuster

Chatting with these great ladies about books. Thanks, Heather Jensen :-)

Chatting with these great ladies about books. Thanks, Heather Jensen and Amy Romanowski :-)

Here I am with Gigi McAllister!! Yeah :-)

Here I am with Gigi McAllister!! Yeah :-)

Here, I am with my editor and publisher, Nancy Paulsen. I could write something very long about how phenomenal she is, but then she'd have to edit it. :-)  So, let's just say that I'm blessed.

Here, I am with my editor and publisher, Nancy Paulsen. I could write something very long about how phenomenal she is, but then she’d have to edit it. :-) So, let’s just say that I’m blessed.

An amazing panel on multi-cultural literature with authors, Mitali Perkins, Christina Gonzalez, and Matt de la Pena. Also, teachers, Cynthia Alaniz, Teresa Bunner (standing) and Alyson Beecher

An amazing panel on multi-cultural literature with authors, Mitali Perkins, Christina Gonzalez, and Matt de la Pena. Also, teachers, Cynthia Alaniz, Teresa Bunner (standing) and Alyson Beecher

At a fun Tweet-up with Marianne Knowles, Ann Haywood Leal, and Emily Mitchell

At a fun Tweet-up with Marianne Knowles, Ann Haywood Leal, and Emily Mitchell

Ellen Hopkins and Erin Dionne. :-)

Ellen Hopkins and Erin Dionne. :-)

I got to meet Melissa Guerrette! Yeah! :-)

I got to meet Melissa Guerrette! Yeah! :-)

Such fun to meet Colby Sharp in person!

Such fun and an honor to meet Colby Sharp in person! Nerdy Book Ambassador Extraordinaire.

Meeting the great Donalyn Miller, co-founder of The Nerdy Book Club and renowned author, was such a pleasure. A sweet author moment for me.

Meeting the great Donalyn Miller, Co-founder of the Nerdy Book Club phenomenon and acclaimed author/literacy expert, was such a pleasure. Such a sweet author moment for me.

Nerdy presenter, Teri Lesesne (AKA Professor Nana!) WOW! :-)

Nerdy presenter, Teri Lesesne (AKA Professor Nana!) :-) Teri shared a bunch of cool online stuff to help teachers turn kids onto reading and help teachers organize including vine videos and livebinder.com

Nerdy Co-Founder, Colby Sharp presents with Author, Jenni Holm :-)

Nerdy Co-Founder, Colby Sharp presents with uber-talented author, Jenni Holm :-) “We want to give kids experiences that change lives.” ~Colby “Help your students make connections to authors via Skype, Twitter, and fan mail.” ~Jenni

Nerdy presenter, Kellee Moye  :-)

Nerdy presenter, Kellee Moye :-) “Set high expectations and hold the kids to them.” “You might as well be *that* teacher that talks books.” “Give the kids choices re: books.” “Don’t just hand out books. You must book talk them!”

A Nerdy workshop!

The Nerdy audience! :-)

Nerdy presenter, Katherine Sokolowski :-)

Nerdy presenter, Katherine Sokolowski :-) Conferences with kids should be like talking around a table.” “Going forward–it’s all about relationships. I’m not talking about me–I’m talking about *them* ” “Slow down. Talk less.”

Donalyn Miller! :-) "Every reader has value and their own voice."

Donalyn Miller! :-) “Every reader has value and their own voice.”

Nerdy presenter, Cindy Minnich, and YA author, Beck McDowell

Nerdy presenter, Cindy Minnich, and YA author, Beck McDowell

cindyminnich

Cindy Minnich presents at Nerdy Workshop! :-) “Our lives are constantly changing and we need to change with them.” “Have kids keep log of their lives.” “If we know where we are and where we want to be, we can plan.”

jackie woodson

Me with Jackie Woodson. Amazing writer. Phenomenal person.

This was actually at AASL the weekend before, but I SO loved being on a panel with these ladies. We spoke on using books to teach resilience and compassion: (1st row:) Jo Knowles, Kimberly Newton Fusco, Nora Raleigh Baskin, Karen Day, (2nd row:) Leslie Connor, Erin Moulton, Me, Cynthia Lord  (not pictured: Moderator, Susannah Richards)

This was actually at AASL the weekend before, but I SO loved being on a panel with these ladies. We spoke on using books to teach resilience and compassion: (1st row:) Jo Knowles, Kimberly Newton Fusco, Nora Raleigh Baskin, Karen Day, (2nd row:) Leslie Connor, Erin Moulton, Me, Cynthia Lord (not pictured: Moderator, Susannah Richards)

Categories: agent, author, editor, friends, inspiring, writing | Tags: | 4 Comments

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