Devas T. Rants and Raves

The Blog of Children's Book Author-Illustrator Don Tate

Seeing stars for 2015!

Posted on July 2nd, 2015 by Don Tate – Be the first to comment

I have two books out this year. The Amazing Age of John Roy Lynch (Eerdmans), written by Chris Barton; and Poet: The Remarkable Story of George Moses Horton. So far, both books have garnered two starred reviews. I couldn’t be happier! Here’s what reviewers are saying:

Poet: The Remarkable Story of George Moses Horton, (Peachtree, 09/01/2015)


The Amazing Age of John Roy Lynch


“[Tate’s] decision to illuminate this remarkable man’s life offers a new perspective with remarkable clarity.”

School Library Journal

“A lovely introduction to an inspirational American poet.”


The Amazing Age of John Roy Lynch, written by Chris Barton, (Eerdmans, 04/01/2015)

FrJohn-Roy-Lynch-final-coverom Booklist

[F]ascinating story . . . Tate’s often expansive illustrations emphasize important incidents in the text. . . . faces, full of emotion add to the power of the telling and the rich soft tones of Tate’s palette welcome the eye to linger.”
***Starred Review***

Publisher’s Weekly

“Barton offers an immersive, engaging, and unflinching portrait of the difficulties of the Reconstruction era, while Tate’s cartoonlike artwork softens moments of cruelty and prejudice without diminishing them.”
***Starred Review***

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Don Tate on Kidlit Superhero Dan Santat #LA15SCBWI

Posted on May 26th, 2015 by Don Tate – 3 Comments

unnamed-11Children’s book creators are my superheroes. They create stories for children that inspire and change lives. That’s important work in my book.

I’ve had the fortune to meet (and in some cases become friends with) many authors and illustrators, it’s one of the coolest fringe benefits of my career. Later this summer, at the #LA15SCBWI Summer Conference, I’ll get the pleasure of meeting Dan Santat and hearing him speak—and I can’t wait!

I first became aware of Dan Santat through his presence on social networks. I found the artwork he posted to be brilliant and exciting and clever and funny and, well . . . all of the above and a bag of chips. That’s not my opinion only, though, the Caldecott folks thought so too. Dan’s THE ADVENTURES OF BEEKLE: THE UNIMAGINARY FRIEND is the 2015 Caldecott winner, in case you didn’t know!

As a member of Team Blog, I get the pleasure of interviewing him here before I meet him in person later this summer. So here goes:Screen Shot 2015-05-26 at 7.36.34 AM

Tate: First of all,  seems like you produce a gazillion books or more per year—best-selling, award-winning books. Do you sleep?

Santat: I’ll admit that for the last ten years I got very little sleep. I averaged about 5 hours per night to be precise. When I would go to bed I would think about stories in my head right before I fell asleep. Life was possible by streamlining my art process and drinking copious amounts of coffee.

Tate: What drew you to the field of children’s books, as opposed to, say, advertising, visual journalism, or other areas of the commercial arts?

Santat: When I went to art school I originally had plans of going into animation. After I took my first 3D Animation class I realized that I loathed the process of animating (especially on a computer) and I started looking for a more efficient means of storytelling. There was a children’s book illustration class which I thought was a great segway from animation and so I enrolled in the course and I immediately fell in love with it. By the time I graduated I realized it would probably take a while to get myself established in book publishing  and so I got the first job I could find which was as an Environment Artist at a video game company while doing editorial illustration after work and working on my art portfolio. I was also doing gallery art, some freelance animation, and other things to just get any kind of experience and get a taste of the whole art world. Two years out of school I got my first two book deal.

Screen Shot 2015-05-26 at 7.53.20 AMTate: As you developed yourself (your style) as a young illustrator, who were your inspirations?

Santat: In art school I loved the work of folks like Chris Van Allsberg, NC Wyeth, Dean Cornwell, David Shannon, and William Joyce. As a kid growing up I loved many comic artists like Hayao Miyazaki, Katsuhiro Otomo, Masamune Shirow, and Bill Watterson. Honestly though, as a storyteller and artist the biggest influence in my life was my advertising teacher Roland Yung. He made me view illustration less about simply making something look beautiful and more about seeing things as problems that have to be solved and there are effective ways to enhance the communication of those ideas. It was less about how I drew things and more about why I drew things they way I did. Form follows function is more of a product designers philosophy but I swear by it a an illustrator.

Tate: I love your illustration work. It’s computer generated but totally passes for natural media. Has the computer always been your tool of choice?

Santat: I used to be an ink and acrylic kind of guy. I was always stronger with my line work than painting because I had never painted anything until I got to art school. Acrylic was great because it dries so quickly that I could draw on top of it, sand it down, glue things down over it, etc. At art school it was required that all students were proficient in Adobe Photoshop but as an illustration tool people were still trying to figure out how to get that “digital” feel out of things. I loved the computer because it was quick and clean. You could scan in paper and images and things and incorporate it into your work. I fell in love with the Wacom tablet and I still use one today (an 8 X 12 Intuos 5) I’m not a Cintiq guy mainly because I like using my monitor to watch TV shows and sports while I work. I can also easily throw my Wacom into my backpack for travel so I can work on the road. Digital art was still quite taboo in many illustration fields and so when I entered the freelance world I began mainly working in acrylic. Eventually, I ended up getting so much work (especially in editorial illustration) that I would start doing the jobs digitally trying to hide the fact that they were digital by integrating textures (which I did horribly) and then at a certain point I realized that no one really cared if it looked digital and so I did the transition to full digital. The computer actually gave me the courage to experiment more with my work. It improved my sense of color, too. Now, I actually have a 50/50 method where I make art textures by painting swatches on paper and then scan them into the computer and I integrate them into my artwork. I also don’t use custom brushes because I don’t want to be in a spot where if I had to work on a computer and didn’t have access to them then I couldn’t work.

Tate: I’d like to talk diversity. As a child, what was the first book that you encountered that featured a character that looked like you? How did that book make an impact on the Dan Santat we know today?

Santat: Gene Luen Yang‘s “American Born Chinese” was the first book I read where I thought I was looking thin a mirror of myself. Although I’m Thai, I still related heavily on the issue of being an Asian kid in a predominantly white community and somewhat feeling uneasy with my own cultural traditions. I mean, I’m sure I had previously read books with Asian characters but I wasn’t so mindful of the fact until I read his book. Gene’s book was like personal threrapy in a way. There was a part of me that felt like I wasn’t being a good Asian because I didn’t fully embrace my Asian-ness and it was nice to know that there were others who felt the same struggles.

Tate: Have there been challenges along the way related to being a creator of color?

Santat: I’ve never had any struggles whatsoever in terms of getting work, or getting my foot in the door of any business. I did notice in some industries, like TV animation at the time, where folks were still a little weird about having main characters of a different ethnicity, but I’ve seen that change over the years. I do notice how much more mindful folks are in certain fields like textbook illustration where it’s so aware that it gets a little annoying. They want to represent everyone equally, which I appreciate, but to a point where it’s trying too hard. For example, if I had to draw a classroom of kids I would get art notes back like, “OK, make that boy Hispanic, make that one an African American girl, and make that Asian boy look MORE Asian, oh and put the African American girl in a wheelchair and the Asian boy in crutches.” Suddenly, I have an illustration that represents a diverse cultural leper colony.

Tate: I’m sure you’ve been asked this question a hundred times, but where did Beekle come from? Was he your childhood imaginary friend?

BEEKLE_2Santat: I actually didn’t have an imaginary friend when I was a kid but I always loved the concept. I also found it interesting that imaginary friends never have a say in the matter. They are the ones who are destined to be friends with some kid whether they like it or not. It’s much like kids with their parents. There is an unconditional love that is present although you as a child don’t get to choose who your parents are (though many of us wish we could.) Beekle originally existed as a story about an imaginary friend who was so odd that no one could imagine him and so he went out of his way to look and act like the other imaginary friends so he could find a friend. My editor and I discussed that this was more of a behavior that an older teen would perhaps embrace and so we shifted the thinking to the thoughts I had about my first son and the thoughts that ran through my mind about the anticipation of becoming a first time parent. You don’t know who this person is going to be but you’re curious, and you fill your mind with ideas of what they could be like. It isn’t until you finally hold your kid in your arms when it all becomes a reality and you give your child his/her name much like Beekle did in the book. From a child’s point of view it’s the anticipation of your first day at school and making your first friend. Beekle was my son’s first word. It was his word for bicycle, and my wife and I thought it would be a great name for a character in a book and so, I wrote this book for him as a love letter. I wanted to make a clear message to my son that even though I may be strict, or that maybe we don’t see eye to eye on things, even years down the road, this will be a thing that he can read when he is older, and maybe share with his kids (or grandkids) and it can be read for generations down the line as how I would love my family to be defined.

Tate: Dude, you won a Caldecott! That’s beyond cool. How has life changed—if at all—since winning the highest award? Are you able to get any new work done, or are you constantly under interview pursuit from th-1folks like me?

Santat: I’m much more relaxed. In fact, now that I reflect on the last ten years of my life, I wonder how I even got through it all. I don’t think I realized how intense I was at my craft until now. I think, it quite possibly even saved my life, because I struggled my whole life to feel like I did something significant. Something that felt worthy of my peers. This is the one time I get to embrace that. It’s less about showing others my worth but, in fact, proving to myself that I belonged in this business. I sleep more (which still isn’t saying much) but work isn’t constantly on my mind anymore. I don’t worry about things as much as I used to, for now. I do have other concerns that come from winning, but that’s a different matter. I’ve been asked to many more events and I’ve had to travel much more. This is even with the fact that I’ve turned down half the things I’m offered. I’ve done more interviews, been asked to participate in more panels, and contribute art to auctions, etc. Getting back into the groove of work has been a struggle, but publishers keep reminding me of my contractual obligations. It’s clear to me that publishers want to get in on this train, as well, but my agent has been very good about regulating all of that. She’s been my best friend in all of this. She wants me to take the time to enjoy this moment and soak it all in.

Tate: Now, concerning the summer conference, I understand that you will co-lead the Illustrator Intensive. I wanted to sign up for that, too, but I decided to polish my word chops. I signed up for the writer’s intensive. Without making me regret my decision, can you give me a hint as to what I will miss?

Santat: The illustrators intensive, I feel, has always been the best thing for illustrators at SCBWI. I feel it’s the whole conference for them. I do admire you venturing into the writers side of things, however, because I feel that having that knowledge just makes you a better craftsman as a whole. I think your illustrations will improve by the way you communicate as a result. I’m doing an intensive about how your work needs to address the problem at hand and not marketing yourself as just a style. I’ll also be doing two break out sessions during the regular conference. The first is about how to write books from the point of view of an illustrator, the other is about how to improve your illustrations simply by being a better graphic designer and composing your images more thoughtfully. Then there’s also the keynote. You have no idea. Keynoting at the Summer conference has always been a dream of mine.

Tate: Thanks Dan!

Click here for more information about the SCBWI Summer Conference and to register for the full day Illustrator’s Intensive.


Posted on April 1st, 2015 by Don Tate – Be the first to comment


Fun in Nac!

Posted on February 16th, 2015 by Don Tate – Be the first to comment

I spent four days presenting to students in Nacogdoches, Texas (here’s a writeup). It’s north east of Austin, a five hour drive, but well worth the road trip. I truly loved my time in the city, where I could get everywhere in less than five minutes. And the students, teachers, and librarians were blast! One librarian even tweeted pictures, and the newspaper there covered it. Here are a few photo highlights from my trip:



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Due to technical difficulties, I developed a new hipster fad: the beard microphone.

Due to technical difficulties, I developed a new hipster fad: the beard microphone.










































































Blogging for SCBWI

Posted on February 9th, 2015 by Don Tate – Be the first to comment
SCBWI Team Blog, lead by Lee Wind

SCBWI Team Blog, lead by Lee Wind

Throughout my career, I’ve worn many hats: graphic artist, illustrator, designer, author, cartoonist, and speaker. I now have a new hat: blogger! This past weekend, I served as a blogger for The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) Winter Conference in New York. The experience was exhilarating and fast paced. I had to be alert and on my toes at every second, or chance missing a quotable moment, photo opportunity, or funny comment. I also had the pleasure of attending the pre-conference portfolio showcase and wine and cheese party—which was a who’s-who of children’s literaure authors, illusrators, editors, agents, everyone! Here are a few photos from the event.

There were 375 illustrators in attendance!

There were 375 illustrators in attendance!

Pre-conference writers' intensive workshop

Pre-conference writers’ intensive workshop

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Day of Diversity, Pop Top Stage, Winter Storm: My ALA Midwinter Recap!

Posted on February 3rd, 2015 by Don Tate – Be the first to comment

Me along with author/publisher Wade Hudson of Just Us Books

The past two weeks have been busier than normal in terms of travel. The previous weekend, I traveled home to Des Moines, Iowa to say goodbye to my grandfather. This past weekend, I went to ALA in Chicago. Next weekend I head to NYC to blog for SCBWINY! Here’s a recap of my time at ALA:

On Friday I participated in the Day of Diversity: Dialog and Action in Children’s Literature and Library Programming. It was held at the American Library Association Midwinter conference in Chicago, hosted by Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC), in partnership with the Children’s Book Council (CBC). It was an invitation-only event, a who’s-who of influential industry giants bought together to discuss strategies to ensure that all children have access to diverse literature.

Initially I’d been invited as a facilitator to a discussion group, but I passed. This being my first time to participate in an event like this, I wanted to sit back, take it all in and learn. There will be other opportunities, and now that I know how things work, I’m confident that I could lead discussions at events like this in the future.

Debbie Reese and Cynthia Leitich Smith

Debbie Reese and Cynthia Leitich Smith

The day involved listening to lively panel discussions, speeches, presentations, and breakout sessions where conversations continued. The day ended with a call for action where attendees were asked to set goals in order to move diversity forward. Little did we know that the ALA Youth Media Awards in the following days would move the needle forward a bit.

On Saturday I spoke about my upcoming book, POET: THE REMARKABLE STORY OF GEORGE MOSES HORTON OF CHAPEL HILL on the Pop Top Stage. The stage was on the side of the exhibit hall, but was large enough to be a centerpiece and clearly visible from everywhere on the exhibit floor. My audience began relatively small but grew to a full house as attendees were drawn to my words and images. One guy came over to say that he was drawn to my voice! Thank you, Dara Allen, my voice coach.

Immediately following my presentation, I signed unbound ARCs and posters that my publisher printed up especially for the event. A brisk signing continued later at the Peachtree Publishing booth.


On Monday I had the honor of attending the ALA Youth Media Awards in Chicago. It all happened by accident though. I was supposed to leave Chicago on Sunday afternoon, but due to the snowy weather, my flight was canceled. I couldn’t get out of Chicago until Tuesday! No worries though, my publisher extended my hotel room for two days, which allowed me to attend the awards ceremony.

After listening to an invigorating speech by Dr. Cornell West at an early morning program, I got in line for the awards. The line stretched the distance of the convention center, wrapped around again and again. I estimated that I was about at the 500 mark, but that still put me at the head of the line. Inside I sat near the front with Gayle Brown and Anita Eerdmans of Eerdman’s Publishing (who won several awards including a Caldecott honor!).

I must admit, as I looked around at a sea of mostly white attendees, I felt a sense of doom concerning diversity among award winners. But something strange happened as the awards began to get called off. One by one, winners were announced, and I recognized the names of diverse authors and illustrators. I felt confused when the mostly white awards committee members stood following each award announcement.image2

I’ve been a founding member of the Brown Bookshelf for almost eight years. I’ve been involved with We Need Diverse Books for the past few months. I felt like our call for more diversity in children’s literature (and awards) had been heard. What a great day for children, children’s literature, and authors of all backgrounds, cultures, races, sexual identities, and disabilities.

There were many highlights throughout the weekend, but I think one of the most exciting things was getting to meet Ellen Oh and other team members of We Need Diverse Books. Oh!–and meeting Debbie Reese!


Signing my new book, Poet!



Me with my ‘pure joy’ editor, Kathy Landwehr of Peachtree


Me with one of my art directors, Gayle Brown, and publisher, Anita Eerdman of Eerdman’s Publishing, watching the ALA awards live!


Ellen Oh and I. W. Gregorio are super people. Glad to know them.


Firing up the ol’ blog, headed to NYC

Posted on January 6th, 2015 by Don Tate – Be the first to comment

unnamed-1Okay, so I haven’t blogged here in awhile. It’s difficult to keep up with so many social networking options. But it’s time to fire up this blog again, as it will soon be linked to the national SCBWI blog. What? Yes.  So here’s some very cool news: Lee Wind, “Captain” of the National SCBWI Team Blog, has invited me to join his team. My assignment will be to cover the upcoming New York conference. And if that goes well, I’ll return later in the summer to cover the LA conference. It’s my understanding that for awhile, the posts will link up from here, and then move to the national blog on the days of the conference. So tune in!

I am the lucky recipient of an SCBWI 2014 Launch Grant

Posted on July 28th, 2014 by Don Tate – Be the first to comment

blogpost_scbwiI am pleased to announce that I am the recipient of an SCBWI Launch Grant Award. The award provides two grants of $2,000 each to an author or illustrator, to be used to promote an upcoming book. As a recipient, the award will make it possible to launch my forthcoming book, POET: THE REMARKABLE STORY OF GEORGE MOSES HORTON OF CHAPEL HILL (Peachtree, fall 2015), in North Carolina, right in the community where George Moses Horton once lived. The award will also allow me to take the book on tour with author Kelly Starling Lyons. The tour, tentatively entitled “Freedom Tour: Celebrating 150 Years of Emancipation and Reconstruction,” could include stops in places such as the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center (OH), the National Civil War Museums (PA), the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture (NYC), others. Plans are under way.

POET: THE REMARKABLE STORY OF GEORGE MOSES HORTON OF CHAPEL HILL, tells the inspiring story of George Moses Horton, a young cow-boy who was enslaved on a N.C. farm, who taught himself how to read and later became the first African American to publish a book in the south.

In addition, two other books that I illustrated will be included in the tour: THE AMAZING AGE OF JOHN ROY LYNCH (Eerdmans, spring 2015), written by Chris Barton, and HOPE’S GIFT (Penguin), written by Kelly Starling Lyons. ELLEN’S BROOM, by Kelly Starling Lyons, will also join the tour.

Thank you to the SCBWI for helping to make these plans possible. And, thank you, SCBWI, for supporting diversity! POET can also be classified as a diverse title. Industry-wide, there has been a lot of talk lately about the need for more diverse books. But talk is cheap. Money is what encourages change. The SCBWI Launch Award will allow me to launch my book on a national level, especially within communities of color.










My ALA14 Recap: Fun-fun-fun-fun!

Posted on July 1st, 2014 by Don Tate – Be the first to comment

ALAAnnual14_zps4215473bI had a magical time this past weekend in Las Vegas, hanging out with librarians at the American Library Association (ALA) conference in Las Vegas.

I flew in late on Friday and had the pleasure to hang out with author-illustrator Arree Chung (NINJA!) We met in Paris, dined over crepes, and then he shared artwork with me from some of his upcoming books. What a treat!

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On Saturday, anticipating a long, draining day ahead, I fueled up with an hour of power yoga in my hotel room, and then I zapped myself right over to the convention center. First I signed IT JES’ HAPPENED: WHEN BILL TRAYLOR STARTED TO DRAW (Lee & Low), as well as a few older L&L titles, including SUMMER SUN RISIN’ and BLACK ALL AROUND. Believe it or not, two years after this book published, this was my first signing with Lee & Low, so this was especially meaningful. And guess what, Lee and Low possessed the hottest commodity at the conference: #WeNeedDiverseBooks bling!

Me with my Lee & Low Books family.

Me with my Lee & Low Books family.

Lee & Low Books with #WeNeedDiverseBooks bling

Lee & Low Books with #WeNeedDiverseBooks bling

Next I signed THE CART THAT CARRIED MARTIN with my publisher, Charlesbridge. I was especially excited to meet my editor, Yolanda Scott. I’ve worked with Yolanda on two books, DUKE ELLINGTON’S NUTCRACKER SUITE, and THE CART, but this was our first face-to-face meeting.

Signing THE CART with my Charlesbridge peeps!

Signing THE CART with my Charlesbridge peeps!

That evening, I hopped a cab over to a Paris ballroom, where I had the pleasure of attending LET OUR REJOICING RISE! A celebration of 45 years of the Coretta Scott King award. The panel discussion was moderated by none other than Andrea Pinkney. Panelists, including Patricia McKissak, Theodore Taylor, Nikki Grimes, Rita Williams-Garcia, Bryan Collier, and Kadir Nelson, fielded questions such as: Are the Coretta Scott King Awards still relevant and necessary? The answers were resounding, and unanimous: Yes!

Prior to the discussion was a reception for past winners. I was dumbfounded to find myself in the mix of Christopher Paul Curtis, Jacqueline Woodson, Bryan Collier, Kadir Nelson, Nikki Grimes, Rita Williams-Garcia, in addition to others like Frank Morrison, Jan Spivey Gilchrist, Christian Robinson. And leave it to me to greet everyone with cheese stuck in my newly grown beard. Doofus.

Celebrating 45 Years CSK Awards, LET OUR REJOICING RISE! Panel discussion

Celebrating 45 Years CSK Awards, LET OUR REJOICING RISE! Panel discussion. From left: Theodore Taylor, Nikki Grimes, Rita Williams-Garcia, Bryan Collier, Kadir Nelson, Andrea Pinkney. Not pictured, Patricia McKissak, far left.

Sunday morning was the Coretta Scott King Awards breakfast. The most touching moment was when Patricia McKissak accepted the Virginia Hamilton Lifetime Achievement award, her three son’s at her side. She gave a heartwarming, emotional — and funny! — speech. And then it was off to sign my iRead posters!

One thing I have forgotten to talk about here, is that I am the 2015 iRead artist . That afternoon, I signed posters to enthusiastic librarians. The highlight: my mother-in-law, who lives in Vegas, fought her way into the convention center and came to my signing. Very sweet.

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The very cool, 3-D popup banquet program, featuring art by Brian Floca

The very cool, 3-D popup banquet program, featuring art by Brian Floca

I capped the day off by attending the Newbery/Caldecott banquet, in which I escorted my editor at Charlesbridge. For a children’s literature fanboy like me, it was like being in a candy store. Too many names to call off. It was a classy evening, and the 3-D popup banquet programs were definitely a keeper.

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My editor and I were too tired to hang around for the lengthy reception line, so we dragged ourselves back to our respective hotels, and I got a couple of hours of sleep before heading back to Austin.

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My editor, Yolanda Scott, and I enjoy the scenery!

My advice to authors and illustrators: Even if you are not going to participate in an ALA conference, I highly advise you attend one simply for the magical experience.

Here are a few of my favorite selfies with children’s literature celebs (forgive the dry beard, I forgot to take my beard care stuff, so I’m looking like Wolfman McGee):

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Workshopping in Wisconsin

Posted on May 10th, 2014 by Don Tate – Be the first to comment

Assistant professor Ethelene Whitmire and I at the Center for the Humanities

It’s been a long time since I posted on my blog. I won’t even try to post an update on everything I’ve done over the past few months, the details are enough to fill a novel. But I would like to talk about the past two days that I spent in Wisconsin.

On Thursday, I flew to The Badger State, where I had the pleasure of participating in a very special workshop experience at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Ethelene Whitmire, an associate professor at the School of Library and Information Studies, received a Mellon Foundation scholarship. The funds made it possible for her to invest in having her scholarly biography reimagined by industry professionals, with a goal of it reaching a broader audience. In this case, a picture book, hopefully!

On the evening before the workshop, the university hosted an author’s panel, “Creating Children’s Books about Real People.” Panelists included myself and authors Jan Pinborough (Miss Moore Thought Otherwise) Ann Bausum (Freedom Riders), Jacqueline Houtman (The Reinvention of Edison Thomas). The panel was moderated by K.T. Horning of the Cooperative Children’s Book Center. Topics discussed included how authors go about finding the heart of a story in research, as well as how to write children’s stories involving historical figures with controversial, um, side-lives, for lack of a better word. The discussion was informational, humorous, engaging.

The actual workshop took place the next morning on campus, at Center for the Humanities. Participants included myself and author Jan Pinborough, as well as K.T. Horning and other faculty members Allison Kaplan, Madge Klais, Rebekah Willett and Sara Guyer. For two hours, we tore through the manuscript, offering suggestions that addressed story arc, page turns, character development, voice, and so much more. It was a lively discussion, and I think we all learned about as much as we contributed.

After the workshop, I toured the CCBC library, where recent Charlotte Zolotow winners and honor books were on display. The best way to describe the CCBC library? Children’s book heaven!

I had a wonderful time. The only downer was on my flight home, when the airlines stranded me in Chicago. Oh, well, I got a hotel and a good night’s sleep. But I likely won’t fly United again.


Recent Charolette Zolotow winners are on display at the Cooperative Children’s Book Center.


Moderator and authors, Creating Children’s Books About Real People, from left: K.T. Horning, Jacqueline Houtman, Ann Bausum, me, Jan Pinborough.




Me with the big guy at the CCBC.


The CCBC’s Choices 2014 list, which includes(!) the book I illustrated, THE CART THAT CARRIED MARTIN.