Archive for the 'Uncategorized' Category

Early Sketches and Outtakes and Art and Such
from Peter Brown (Who is Not Really a Monster)

h1 Thursday, August 28th, 2014

That’s right. Despite photographic evidence from last week, Peter Brown is not actually a monster.

Since I chatted (here) last week with Peter about his newest book, My Teacher Is a Monster! (No, I am Not.), published by Little, Brown, I’m following up today with some images he sent — some final art from the book but also early sketches, an outtake, etc. The early sketch above cracks. me. up.

Enjoy …

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Velvet Devils & Kung-Fu Girls

h1 Monday, August 11th, 2014

Take a moment, if you’re so inclined, to head over to the Wild Things! site today and hear about precisely which wines you can read while reading our book! All that is here.

Until tomorrow …

It’s here!

h1 Wednesday, August 6th, 2014

I guess I failed to mention here at my very own blog yesterday that I had a book release! I blame the bunny on the left. Yes, he knows he’s in trouble.

Wild Things! Acts of Mischief in Children’s Literature, written with Betsy Bird and the late Peter D. Sieruta, is out from Candlewick Press. If you’re at all interested in reading it, the website we created for the book has ordering information here. And we’ve been posting daily over there stories that were cut from the book. It’s been fun. I’ve enjoyed writing at that site with Betsy, though of course we wish Peter were still with us. So super bad do we wish that. (On that note, don’t miss this special event, if you live near Oak Park, Michigan.)

Starting today, we are also sharing videos from authors and illustrators over at the Wild Things site. They’ll be telling behind-the-scenes stories about their upcoming 2014 books. We’re doing that, because … well, Wild Things is really a celebration of the children’s books we know and love, so this seems a fitting way to celebrate. Today’s video is from author N. D. Wilson, and boy howdy is it a treat (especially around moment 2:43 where N. D. quotes Beowulf’s opening lines, which pretty much just made my week).

For those of you near Nashville, I will have a book launch tomorrow night at Parnassus Books. Here’s the low-down. There will be wine, thanks to Dan Hutchinson at The Wine Shoppe at Green Hills. (I cannot WAIT to see which wine he chooses for our book — and why!)

Also, I’d like to quickly add that this has been one of my favorite write-ups about the book. Tracy is a talented writer.

Until tomorrow!

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WILD THINGS!. Illustrations copyright © 2014 by David Roberts. Reproduced by permission of the publisher, Candlewick Press, Somerville, MA.

Flop Sweat and Butt Trampolines

h1 Thursday, July 17th, 2014

This week over at the Wild Things! site, my co-author and I are doing the following:

  • Taking a look at the phenomenon that is the author school visit — the good, the bad, and the ugly. (You’ll see, if you read this post over at Wild Things!, that the title of this post today here at 7-Imp tips its hat to that.)
  • Asking whether or not Beatrix Potter really yelled at young children. (The Horn Book’s Lolly Robinson gives us the low-down.)
  • Udder Indecencies of one sort or another; or, The Saga of the Unobtrusive Monster Penis (pictured above).

Tomorrow, we’ll have a post Leonard Baskin fans, in particular, will appreciate.

On Saturday, we’ll look at two of children’s literature’s most cryptic picture books.

On Sunday, we’ll look at some true tales behind famous awards speeches.

That’s my story, and I’m stickin’ to it.

* * * * * * *

The above image is used with permission of Sergio Ruzzier.

7-Imp’s 7 Kicks #390: Featuring E. H. Shepard

h1 Sunday, July 13th, 2014

Good morning, all. The illustrator to be featured in today’s post (E. H. Shepard is just filling in) needed a bit more time to get her work and thoughts together, and I said, hey, I’m a busy lady myself these days, so take your time. And so the post is delayed, but I can tell you that when I do post the art of this talented illustrator, you’re in for a treat.

I’m not without content, though, because as I’ve already mentioned a couple times here at 7-Imp, over at a new site (called Wild Things!), my co-author and I are sharing stories that were cut from our upcoming book, Wild Things! Acts of Mischief in Children’s Literature — stories, that is, that didn’t make it to publication, on account of length.

And I have to say: It’s been a lot of fun to share the stories. Yesterday (here), we had some stories related to The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, and today we have some stories related to the Winnie-the-Pooh books. The story, in fact, about the real Christopher Robin, a.k.a. Billy Moon, always breaks my heart, especially the ending and his ability to come to terms with his fame. (“[T]o my surprise and pleasure, I found myself standing beside them in the sunshine able to look them both in the eye.” Oof. Gets me every time.)

So, I’m so sorry I don’t have art for you today (other than a bit of E.H. Shepard), but I can certainly point you to that post over at Wild Things!

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What I’m Doing at Kirkus This Week,
Plus What I Did Last Week, Featuring Amrita Das

h1 Friday, July 11th, 2014

“A child’s life is hard, especially if you’re cursed to be poor. It’s gone even before you start on it. … If you dream for a moment,
you’re asked why you’re twiddling your thumbs.”

(Click to enlarge and read full text)

This morning over at Kirkus, because I’m preparing for a presentation about the best picture books of the year thus far, I thought I’d weigh in my with tippy-top favorites.

Thank link is here.

* * *

Last week, since I wrote (here) about Amrita Das’ Hope is a Girl Selling Fruit, an April release from India’s Tara Books, I’m following up with some art today.


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Catching up with Author-Illustrator Matt Phelan

h1 Thursday, July 10th, 2014

I’m never consciously thinking ‘wispy’ when I draw, but my line (and especially my pen line) does have an intentional sketchy quality. I like the term ‘lost and found line’ as a description.”

* * *

Over at Kirkus today, I talk to author-illustrator Matt Phelan, pictured here, about his 2014 projects, Burleigh Mutén’s Miss Emily, released back in March, and his own picture book, Druthers, coming in September. Both books are from Candlewick.

Matt’s response to the what’s-next question may or may not have made me squeal. (I think the Snow White project sounds pretty great.)

That Q&A is here.

Next week, I’ll have some art from each book, as well as some sketches and such from Matt.

Until tomorrow …

* * * * * * *

Photo of Matt Phelan used with his permission.

Finding the Right Illustrations with Melissa Sweet

h1 Tuesday, July 8th, 2014

(Click to enlarge)

Last week in my Kirkus column, I mentioned Jen Bryant’s The Right Word: Roget and his Thesaurus, illustrated by Melissa Sweet, coming from Eerdmans in September. It’s such a superb picture book, and today Melissa visits to share a bit about what went into creating the art for it.


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Wild Things!: Website and Book Launch

h1 Monday, July 7th, 2014

Just a quick note to say two things:

First up, Betsy Bird and I have launched a website for our upcoming book, Wild Things! Acts of Mischief in Children’s Literature, coming from Candlewick Press in early August. It will have handy info, like appearances, book order info, etc., but together, for every day until our release date, Betsy and I will reveal a story that didn’t make it into our book. It’s, as Betsy describes it, the Director’s Cut.

Saturday’s post (when the site went live) was an introductory/hello post. Yesterday, we shared what has to be, hands down, the best ALA Conference photo ever. And today’s story is a tribute to the generosity Maurice Sendak had for up-and-coming illustrators and includes a story from author-illustrator Barbara McClintock about calling him up out of the blue in 1975:

I thought…well, he’d know how I should get involved in children’s books. He could give me advice, which is a little like thinking you could call Meryl Streep and ask for advice about becoming an actress. But I decided that I would call him. And I thought that I didn’t really have much to worry about, because he would do only one of two things: He would either tell me what I wanted to know or he’d hang up.

All those posts are at the new site, and again, we will post daily for a while.

Secondly, I’ll have a book launch for the book at Parnassus Books on August 7, 2014, at 6:30 p.m. The public is invited. Here’s the info.

Until tomorrow …

Rascal and Nana: Following Up
with Lauren Castillo with Art and Sketches …

h1 Thursday, June 19th, 2014

Pictured above: The final illustration from The Troublemaker
and images from
Nana in the City
(Click last two images to enlarge)

Since I chatted here at Kirkus last week with Lauren Castillo, I gotta follow up with some art. Thanks to Lauren for sending some images along for today’s post. We have here things like early sketches and character studies from The Troublemaker (Clarion, June 2014), and she’s also giving us a sneak-peek at Nana in the City, coming this September (also from Clarion).

If you want more of Lauren’s work, she also recently visited Mr. Schu, as well as Joanna Marple.

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