Thursday, March 3, 2011

Picture Book Lesson #4, Baby Says “Moo!” Week, & Book Giveaway!

It's Baby Says, “Moo!” Week at Teaching! To celebrate the publication of my new rhyming picture book, we’re giving away an autographed copy. Entry details below!

As my contribution to the picture book topic the other Teaching Authors have already addressed, I’m sharing some lessons I learned by looking back at the writing and publishing process for each of my five picture books. I’ll post one each day this week.

Waiting Out the Storm (Candlewick, 2010) began with my desire to say something comforting to kids after the terrible events of September 11, 2001. Like many other writers at the time, I struggled to figure out what I could say to children that might help them cope during difficult times. I couldn’t write about terrorism in a book for young children, but when I thought about fear from a child's perspective, I realized that I could address the common childhood fear of a thunderstorm.

Lesson #4: Consider your audience. What do you want to say, and what’s the best way to say it for your readers?

Baby Says “Moo!” Giveaway

School Library Journal says, "The rhyming text reads smoothly, and the acrylic illustrations are childlike and cheerful, making the book exactly right for toddlers. Each time a new animal is seen, the parents reiterate the names of the previous creatures and their sounds, inviting participation. . . . A winner for the youngest listeners." To enter the drawing for an autographed copy of Baby Says “Moo!”, follow these steps:

1. Post a comment on any post this week and tell us about a learning game you’ve played with children. Enter only once, please!

2. Include your contact information in your comment. If you are not a blogger or your e-mail address is not accessible from your online profile, provide a valid e-mail address in your comment. Feel free to disguise your address by spelling out portions, such as [at] and [dot].

3. Post your comment by 11 p.m. (CST) Monday, March 7, 2011.

The winner:
• must have a mailing address in the United States.
• will be determined using the random number generator at
• will be announced on Tuesday, March 8.
• automatically grants us permission to post his or her name on our Teaching Authors web site.
• will also be notified by e-mail.
• must respond to the notification e-mail and provide a mailing address within 72 hours, or the prize will be forfeited and an alternate winner will be chosen.

Good luck!
JoAnn Early Macken


Cindy said...

One game I played with my children, especially when riding in the car, was to name a letter of the alphabet and its sound and then take turns naming things starting with that letter/sound. "dog, doll, daddy, druck (truck)" We didn't always get it right, but we had fun trying!

Jewel Sample said...

Important lesson here, "What do you want to say, and what’s the best way to say it for your readers?" I have written many stories learning along the way that at times it wasn't the best way to reach my young readers. I wouldn't have learned this lesson if it wasn't for putting the story to ink and reading it out loud.
Thank you for sharing your writing struggles and lessons!

April Halprin Wayland said...

I love that you're sharing the reviews with we can celebrate with you! (Can you tell I'm catching up on my TeachingAuthors reading today?)