Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Whimsical Word of the Week

Coddiwomple (v.)
to travel in a purposeful manner toward a vague destination.
Example: The wayward duckling seemed to coddiwomple around the lake's shoreline.


Monday, November 28, 2022

Bibliophile's Corner

Let's Celebrate!
Special Days Around the World
by Kate DePalma and illustrated by Martina Peluso

Back Cover Description:
Let's bake some treats! Let's light the lights! We just can't wait for fun days and bright nights. Celebrate special days in 13 countries.

My Thoughts:
At this time of year, there are so many special days celebrated by so many wonderful groups of people. It's important for children to learn - at an early age - about the different ways people celebrate. It's an important step in learning to respect others different than ourselves. I highly recommend Let's Celebrate for children aged three to seven.

Click here to learn about the author, Kate DePalma.

Friday, November 25, 2022

Storyteller's Journey

Grateful, Thankful, Blessed!

Each year I use the Thanksgiving season to review all that I have to be thankful for - this year I find I'm more thankful than ever. From the safety our family found during a frightening forest fire, to the American people stating their strong beliefs about democracy during the past election, this year has given me much for which to be thankful. As always, the relationships with my dear family and friends are my biggest blessings. 

Wishing you and your family a very Happy Thanksgiving Weekend!🦃 

Wednesday, November 23, 2022

Whimsical Word of the Week

Panegyric (n.)
a public speech or published text in praise of someone or something.
Example: The mayor's panegyric for the community's outreach to the homeless at Thanksgiving was well received.

Monday, November 21, 2022

Bibliophile's Corner

Just a Special Thanksgiving
by Mercer Mayer

Back Cover Description:
Little Critter is about to have a Thanksgiving he'll never forget. From the school play to a surprise dinner for all of Critterville, celebrate along with Little Critter and his family as they give thanks this holiday!

My Thoughts:
The classic Mercer Mayer Little Critter books are so much fun, and this one about Thanksgiving is no exception! This paperback book even includes stickers for your child to place at the appropriate place in the story. I highly recommend Just a Special Thanksgiving for children aged two to six.

Friday, November 18, 2022

Storyteller's Journey

Livvi Biddle Comes to Life

Eleven years ago, I began researching, outlining, and ultimately writing a middle grade novel about a young girl I named Livvi Biddle. (The simple sketch at the left was something I created for my own use as I proceeded with my manuscript.)

Since that time, I've grown as a writer, learned a lot about the publishing world, submitted queries to over two dozen agents, and continued to research and outline additional stories in what I've always hoped would be a middle grade series. My husband and I even traveled to Europe, in large part for me to do the research needed for the stories set in different countries. We also collaborated to create and publish a small, separate series of books we call Lindstrom Wintertime Tales. To be able to publish them the way we wanted to, I formed a publishing company: Thistleberry Books. We had them printed, at our expense, by one of the same printers that major publishers use.

In all that time, Livvi Biddle has always been my main focus, if not in public, at least in my heart as a writer. One exciting thing that has happened in the last decade is the improvement of how an author might publish her own work. It used to be that independently published books could only be created as paperbacks in portrait format. (Unless you did what we did with our Lindstrom Wintertime Tales.) Now, you can finally have a children's novel printed on demand in hardback via Amazon. While, of course, Create Space takes their cut, the author's portion is comparable to what she'd make via a traditional publisher - after the agent and illustrator took their cut. Since I have my own wonderful illustrator - my fine artist husband, Michael Lindstrom - and I don't need an agent, publishing independently has suddenly not only become an acceptable choice, but it's also become my first choice.

So, today I'm announcing that Livvi Biddle - The Sibylline Scroll will be published next year! The release date will be sometime in the fall of 2023. To receive occasional updates, follow this blog, or subscribe to my quarterly newsletter via my website here on the Contact Page.
Now comes more work with my editor, book formatter, cover designer, etc. It's so exciting to know that Livvi Biddle will finally come to life.

I'm looking forward to you meeting my protagonist, Livvi Biddle!

Wednesday, November 16, 2022

Whimsical Word of the Week

Hygge (n.)
The cozy feeling you get when you're enjoying simple things in life with friends.
Example: The holiday season was always a time for the writer to enjoy a sense of hygge with family at home.

Monday, November 14, 2022

Bibliophile's Corner

The Leaf Thief
by Alice Hemming

Goodreads Description:
Squirrel is so cross. Yesterday there were loads of beautiful leaves on his tree, but today? Today some are missing, and Squirrel is convinced that someone has stolen them...there's a leaf thief on the loose! 
Join Squirrel on a mission to find the culprit, and meet so many fun animals along the way, while you find out how the world takes on different colours as the months pass by.

My Thoughts:
The Leaf Thief is a charming picture book, the perfect read for kids this autumn! It's funny, informative, and beautifully illustrated. I highly recommend The Leaf Thief for children aged three to seven.

Click here to learn about the author, Alice Hemming.

Friday, November 11, 2022

Storyteller's Journey

Inspiration Away from Home

Last week my husband and I flew to Arizona to visit family. While there, we stayed at this charming casita. As usual, we found time to work on our creative projects.

I kept busy one afternoon by working on my LIVVI BIDDLE series of middle grade books. It's always a treat to write in the out of doors. (I have big news to announce next week!)

I also found time - in between visits with my family - to sit by the pool and read a bit from a wonderful new adult novel: The Whalebone Theatre, by Joanna Quinn. It's a captivating read!

It was difficult to leave my family and the beautiful weather, but we returned home earlier this week to sunny skies, despite rain being in the forecast. It's always important to take time out to recharge!

Wednesday, November 9, 2022

Whimsical Word of the Week

Pettifoggery - (n.)
a quarrel about petty points; a squabble. 
Example: The politician's debate skills were nothing more than pettifoggery.

Monday, November 7, 2022

Bibliophile's Corner

Forgotten Fairy Tales of Kindness and Courage  
by Mary Seabag-Montefiore

Back Cover Description:
Meet wicked goblins, a captured prince and a talking cuckoo in this beautifully illustrated collection. Seven magical yet forgotten fairy tales will sweep you from the depths of the ocean to the far side of the moon, but they all share one thing: a celebration of kindness, courage and the importance of being true to yourself.

My Thoughts:
This collection of forgotten fairy tales has been lovingly adapted from the original stories. While sometimes vintage fairy tales include a variety of inappropriate elements for today's world view, these stories are not only full of magic and wonder but are safe for even the youngest of children. I highly recommend Forgotten Fairy Tales of Kindness and Courage for children of all ages!

Friday, November 4, 2022

Storyteller's Journey

Remember to Vote!
If you're of voting age, please remember to vote. While this year's U.S. election will not choose our President, it will determine many members of Congress - and so much more. However, in recent years what really concerns me is the fragility of our country's democracy. 
Being a history buff, I'm well aware that the current negative state of our politics is unparalleled in our nation's 246 years. As a writer, I'm well aware of the power of words. We must elect officials who speak the truth, with kindness. 

Wednesday, November 2, 2022

Whimsical Word of Week

Querulous - (adj.)
complaining, whining.
Example: The querulous politician found himself in a quagmire.