Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Jean Little Library! July 16 at Matheson Memorial Library in Elkhorn, Wisconsin

I first became aware of Jennifer Wharton's brilliant book reviews on the Jean Little Library blog a couple years ago, when she mentioned an Ellie McDoodle book and my awesome friend, children's book author Carrie Pearson alerted me.
It occurred to me, why not look up Jennifer's library and see if my travels would bring me near it sometime? And to my utter shock, I was indeed going to be within sketching distance in just a few months.
I attended my agent's retreat in Lake Geneva, and the Jean Little Library isn't more than a pebble toss away.

We drew penguins, owls, Ellie McDoodle, Ben-Ben, dragons, cats, dogs, ... all sorts of stuff.
Here's Ben-Ben:

I like to draw on a document camera and project it onto the wall so people all over the room can join in easily. We were in a big room, and that crowd really filled it up.
One girl gave me a drawing with an impressive use of spirals:

This is my favorite kind of event: connecting with enthusiastic kids. What a great author life I lead.

Thank you SO much, Jennifer and Jean Little Library!

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Nerd Camp 2015! July 6 and 7

Wow, what a terrific event -- teachers and authors and kids and librarians and lots of talk about books of all kinds... and it's all FREE. Of course I carried around a sketchbook the whole time.

Here are some sketchbook pages from Nerd Camp 2015, our second year of participation:

These are the authors on our panel. Wow!! Big names!

After talking and sharing ideas with teachers for two days, we bring in the kids. 
Below, my group is drawing themselves as characters. Next they drew themselves as rabbits.
Then we started writing and drawing a story together.

In between sessions I got to hang out with fellow Bloomsbury author Erin Soderberg, creator of THE QUIRKS -- what fun she is!

Thank you so much to the organizers of Nerd Camp, especially Colby Sharp and his family.
Thank you to Bookbug, Kalamazoo's terrific independent bookstore, for handling sales at Nerd Camp. How great to see the overwhelming support for your store, from the crowd.
What an amazing resource this program is! I'm so happy to be part of it.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

July 20: Potterville Benton Twp District Library!

On Tuesday we visited Potterville Benton Township District Library,
We brought an easel and drew bats, dogs, penguins, and my first-ever cat on a bike.
Before our audience arrived I showed off the art from Leopold the Lion.

Pictures from the event:

 We always draw Ben-Ben.

We brainstormed characters, then started a story.

Poor Lex the dog! Cat has swiped his bones and is getting away.

Can Lex's best friend the squirrel help?

Cat skids into a mud puddle. Will Lex stop to help him?
But what about those scary bats?

Librarian LuAnn helps with the easel pages.

Thank you, Potterville Benton Township District Library! 
That's a long name and you are long on hospitality, as always. We had a great time.