Friday, December 15, 2017

Season's Greetings!

Wintry Shed - 12X16 oil on panel - Michael Lindstrom
Christmas will feel a bit different this year since my father fell last month, broke his hip, and had surgery. Unfortunately, my father's health is tenuous right now. Also, two of my three sons will be unable to join us since they live on the East Coast. Thankfully, our eldest son, David, and his wife, Jessica, will be in the PNW. (Our entire immediate family will get together in January!) As usual, I'll be taking a break from blogging for the next two weeks; I'll be back on Writ of Whimsy in 2017.

If you'd like to read my recent quarterly newsletter, click here.

Wishing you and yours the joy, peace, and love of the season.


Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Whimsical Word of the Week

Tidings - (n.)
news; information.
Example: The church choir proclaimed glad tidings to the parishioners on Christmas Eve.  

Monday, December 11, 2017

Bibliophile's Corner

The Christmas Boot
by Lisa Wheeler

Amazon Description:
Lonely Hannah is delighted to discover a warm black boot as she gathers kindling in the forest. A poor woman, she doesn't have proper shoes on her cold feet. "Glory be! I only wish I had your mate," she says to the boot, and the next morning, to her great surprise, there is not just one boot but two sitting by her bed! More wishes bring even better gifts—but the best is still to come: A visitor arrives at her door—a man with a big white beard, wearing a red suit and only one boot. Who could this magical visitor be? Santa Claus, of course! And he has one more surprise in store for Hannah: She wakes up the next morning to find a new puppy waiting for her! 

My Thoughts:
This beautiful picture book is a must read for children during the Christmas season! The lovely illustrations, coupled with the imaginative text, reveal the need for not only appreciating life, but for being grateful. The Christmas Boot is a truly entertaining tale for the holidays. I highly recommend it for readers aged four to seven!

Click here to learn about the author, Lisa Wheeler.
Click here to learn about the illustrator Jerry Pinkney.

Friday, December 8, 2017

Storyteller's Journey

"Snow Before Christmas" - Tasha Tudor
My Love for Winter Tales

At one of my recent book events I was asked: "Why do you like to write stories set in the snow?" At first I thought I'd have a ready answer for the woman, but then I replied: "You know, I'm not sure why."

Since that day I've been pondering that very question. Here is a partial list of reasons for my fondness of stories set in the snow:

*Snow transforms the world into a different, fresher version of itself. A place where building snowmen and sledding with friends can happen.

*Due to my love of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, by C.S. Lewis, the fantasy winter world he created is a place I'd love to visit.

*You'd think that living in the Pacific Northwest I'd see plenty of snow each winter. However, we live in a valley, so snowfall is a somewhat rare occurrence. Consequently, I yearn for it during the winter months.

*Since the holidays - and my birthday - occur in late fall and winter, that magical time of the year is always special to me, as it is to so many.

All these reasons , however, still don't answer the question:
Why do I like to write stories set in the snow?

The real answer is that I have loads of wonderful memories of spending cold, snowy afternoons with my friends. (For some reason we received more snow in the Pacific Northwest when I was a kid.)
In any event, I believe I'm attempting to recreate those magical, whimsical times in the snow that I enjoyed as a child. In addition to that, it's a ready way to collaborate with my husband to create a beautiful holiday story. Christmas/Winter children's books are the best!

Here are our two Lindstrom Wintertime Tales:

How about you? Do you also enjoy stories set in the snow?

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Whimsical Word of the Week

Shoshin (n.)
the practice of seeing life with wonder.
Example: It is easy for young children to abide in a state of shoshin.

Monday, December 4, 2017

Bibliophile's Corner

by John Rocco

Amazon Description:
Blizzard is based on John Rocco's childhood experience during the now infamous Blizzard of 1978, which brought 53 inches of snow to his town in Rhode Island.

Told with a brief text and dynamic illustrations, the book opens with a boy's excitement upon seeing the first snowflake fall outside his classroom window. It ends with the neighborhood's immense relief upon seeing the first snowplow break through on their street. In between the boy watches his familiar landscape transform into something alien, and readers watch him transform into a hero who puts the needs of others first.

My Thoughts:
This wintertime story, based on a true childhood experience of the author/illustrator, should not be missed! John Rocco's simple, yet profound, story of his memory of the Blizzard of 1978 will warm the hearts of children of all ages. The lovely illustrations in this picture book perfectly illuminate the text. Grab a cup of cocoa and enjoy!

Click here to learn about the author/illustrator John Rocco.

Friday, December 1, 2017

Storyteller's Journey

Books on the Big Screen

As a writer, it's always exciting to see one of your favorite children's books come alive on the "big screen." During the fall, and now into the holiday season, several successful books have been adapted into major motion pictures. Here are just a few, listed in random order:

Released in the U.S. on October 13, 2017

Released in the U.S. on October 20, 2017

Released in the U.S. on November 17, 2017

Due to release in the U.S. on December 15, 2017

Due to release in the U.S. on December 15, 2017

Released in the U.S. on November 22, 2017

I don't know about you and your family, but visiting a local movie theater is one of my family's favorite things to do during the holidays. (I'm always curious to see which scenes from the book are included, and which ones are excluded.) Don't forget a bag of popcorn & a soda!