Winners of Newbery, Caldecott and Printz awards announced | Children’s books | The Guardian

A re-blog from the Guardian. I always love to see the winners of this prestigious award each year. Congratulation to all.

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Congratulations to Sophie Blackall, Matt de la Peña and Laura Ruby for winning the most prestigious awards in US children’s literature

Source: Winners of Newbery, Caldecott and Printz awards announced | Children’s books | The Guardian

Fairy Tales! Happy Birthday Charles Perrault! 

A re-blog from a super middle-grade author of the SkyCastle Series and online friend, Andy Mulberry.

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Quick Happy Birthday shout-out to Charles Perrault! If you ever think you’re too old to start writing, Charles Perrault was almost 70 years old when he wrote his first fairy tales in 1697! They were instant hits, and it is from Perrault Fairy Tales that we get the most famous versions of some classic stories. …

Source: Fairy Tales! Happy Birthday Charles Perrault! – something smells fishy here…something smells fishy here…

A Picture Book for Newbery! (REJOICE!) | Writing for Kids (While Raising Them)

This is a re-blog of Tara Lazar”s wonderful post on the Newbery Metal winner for 2015. It’s been a long time since a picture book won this prestigious award.

Source: A Picture Book for Newbery! (REJOICE!) | Writing for Kids (While Raising Them)

MOYH_New ETSY Soft

How to get your self-published picture book illustrated.

 

Self-publishing children’s book authors always ask how they can get their children’s book illustrated. They also ask how long will it take and how much will it cost.

If you are planning on self-publishing, print on demand (POD) like CreateSpace or Ingram Spark or a vanity printer like Lulu, Blurb, BookBaby, AuthorHouse, OutSkirts, Balboa Press or other publishers (that you pay to print your book) you WILL need professional illustrations for your children’s book. I would love to work with you.

 

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A lot depends on what results you want and your taste level. Some self-published authors are perfectly happy having their illustrations done by  a young relative or friend or illustrators from  Fiverr.comElance or UpWork featuring illustrators from 180 countries around the world. Sometimes these online services work out just fine. Sometimes there is a language barrier and delivery time problems. Other times the images you purchase are just reworked images from a previous illustrating job. It takes time to develop unique characters for a story, if an illustrator is only charging $5 or $10 per illustration, they don’t have time to read the whole book and design characters to fit YOUR story’s characters.

Or do you prefer to work one-on-one with a professional illustrator in the United States,  an illustrator who will actually read your story and create characters unique to your vision? I would then suggest you visit SCBWI’s (The Society for Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators) illustrator’s Gallery, you can find me listed under my name Dayne Sislen or do a search for illustrators in your city or state. Children’s Illustrators.com is also a great site to find professional illustrators.

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With today’s high-speed Internet and the ability to send high resolutions files back and forth, location doesn’t make a lot of difference, but the ability to communicate clearly and make deadlines is very important.

Here is a link to my website where you can see more of my work. I like to send rough sketches to my clients for approval before moving onto finished color illustrations. This gives you an opportunity for feedback and direction.

Illustration price depends on the type of book the illustrations will be used in, how many illustrations and what type of illustrations the book needs. I can give you a price after I read your manuscript and knowing more about the type of book. I will gladly sign a Non-disclosure contract if you are worried about privacy and piracy.

The time it takes me to illustrate a complete 32 page picture book  usually takes between 3 months and 6 months. This includes reading the book, creating characters, research for costumes and background, doing pencil roughs for each page for discussion with author, doing the finished illustrations, coloring the illustrations and also laying out the pages with custom type in place. I can also design and illustrate your cover with custom type. I can also work directly with your printer to make sure you get the best possible printed book.

DON’T FORGET: If you are thinking about submitting to one of the top 10 traditional publishers, you do NOT need to submit your manuscript with illustrations.  The traditional publisher will choose an illustrator for you. They will provide the illustrations and pay for them, but you probably will not have any control over the process. Showing a traditional publisher your manuscript with illustrations may hurt your chances of being traditionally published. I love to work directly with publishers and art directors of these large publishers, but they are the ones who control this process and hire the illustrators.

Hope this helps you in your self-publishing journey.

Contact me directly through my website, I’d love to read your book.

Dayne Sislen

 

 

6 Tips to Encourage Your Child to Read

These six steps will start your children on the road to a lifetime of learning and reading.

  1. Read to children as often as possible. If you expose them to reading early and often, it will become a pleasurable experience they will want to repeat when they read on their own.
  2. Picture books can help struggling readers to comprehend a story before they can read all the words. Let them enjoy the process, without getting bogged down with the exact words. Let children ‘pretend to read’ using the pictures for guidance.SCBWI_Postcard_sm_sq_WP
  3. Encourage young children to write and illustrate their own stories. Children have great ideas, make sure they are able to express these ideas freely.
  4. Set aside family reading or story time. This can be a read-aloud by the parent or by an older child. As children get older, this time can set aside just for independent reading, for adults (yes, you too) as well as children. It doesn’t matter so much what they read, as long as they enjoy it. When children see their parents finding enjoyment in reading, it helps them to see the benefit.
  5. Discuss books. Encourage children to talk about the books they are reading, what they like about a book and even what they don’t like.
  6. Get your child a library card. Reading doesn’t have to be an expensive pastime. Take them to the library often. Make it as much fun to them as a trip to a toy store. Let them choose their own books to read.

MOYH_New ETSY SoftRead “There’s a Mouse on My Head!” with your child. Imagination is fun. Below is a quote from one of our reviewers.

“Mouse!” is the story of a special relationship between a grandparent and a grandchild. The grandmother is the protagonist. She’s a caring caregiver, a tough but cagey disciplinarian. The grandchild is the antagonist. He’s a clever kid who has no intention of eating his peas but has no such issues with pie.

A stuffed [toy] mouse comes to life, and a wisecracking sister enters the picture. High jinks ensue, and lessons are learned.

St. Louis Jewish Light review

We are now scheduling school and library visits for March and April.

Donna Warwick and I are now scheduling author and illustrator visits forMOYH_New ETSY Soft schools and libraries featuring our children’s picture book “There’s a Mouse on My Head!” Donna loves to work with children combining  interactive play, music and acting using her ArtFusion Method. I like to work with grades 2 to 5 in a classroom or art room to demonstrate and encourage kids to create funny characters to illustrate their own stories.

We are now scheduling visits for March and April of 2016. Visit the “School Visits” page on Donna’s website to schedule your own class visit. www.DonnaWarwickAuthor.com

 

Book Launch Party Has Started!

Hey, today is the start day of our #SCBWIparty launch for the children’s picture book “There’s a Mouse on My Head!” Here is the link for our Book Launch Site.

You can get a free signed bookmark and download coloring pages, games and activities. We would love to have you drop by to visit. http://bit.ly/1NjSOnE Don’t forget to sign our guest book and leave your email address, we will send you a bookmark.

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Below is an image of Donna Warwick’s Author web page where you can find “There’s a Mouse on My Head!”coloring pages, games and activities.

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SCBWI Book Launch Party

December 1st is the opening day of the SCBWI Book Launch Party #SCBWIparty. Donna Warwick the author of “There’s a Mouse on My Head!” and I have a special webpage for the Launch Party: http://bit.ly/1NjSOnE

Each SBCWI member who signs up for the book launch get their own webpage for their book. There will be promotions going on for three months. You can order our book from the launch page or sign-up for a give-away. Lets PARTY!!!

#SCBWIparty

#SCBWIparty

This the week I pause to give thanks

Every year about this time,  I stop and look back on past the year and all the things I am thankful for. I am fortunate in life to have a wonderful loving husband, two fantastic children, two incredible grandchildren, a mother who is healthy and still lives near by and many fun and supportive friends. When you really get down to what’s important, it’s friends and family. Oh yeah, and that other important thing– health. We have been healthy also.

Soaring_Sislen_300Let me make a short list:

  • Sunrises
  • Sunsets
  • Baby’s cute little toes and noses
  • Puppies and kittens
  • Mittens
  • Snowflakes
  • Good friends
  • Good food
  • Good health
  • Fireplaces
  • Long walks with someone you love
  • Picture books

I also feel very lucky to work at a job that I love so much, I don’t even consider it working. I have met a lot of new friends through the Society for Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) by attending conferences, workshops and meeting with my critique group every month. I also meet fellow children’s book writers and illustrators online using social media that share my love of children’s books. Since I work alone each day in my studio, I enjoy the companionship of a large group of dog walkers and their delightful dogs every morning at 7am in the park across the street from where I live. We walk 3 to 4 miles every morning in all but the most inclement weather (ice storms and thunder storms, we stay home).

This year I was fortunate to illustrate a children’s picture book called “There’s a Mouse on My Head!” with my good friend, Donna Warwick. I have worked with so many authors to illustrate their picture books and chapter books and we usually become friends by the end of the project. But this is the first time to start out as friends at the beginning. It’s been a fun experiment in self publishing. Other authors I have worked with have self-published, but I have never been so involved in the process of marketing the book. It’s a lot of work, but also a lot of fun.

School visits, presentations, readings, signings, and give-aways keep us busy. I feel like I need to take a breather to start work on another picture book. I keep writing manuscripts and sending them off into the world and I keep illustrating, it’s what makes me happy.

I hope everyone who reads this has a Happy Thanksgiving and a warm and wonderful  Holiday Season.

I am praying for the victims and families of victims senselessly murdered in terrorists acts in Nigeria, Yemen, Paris, Turkey, Tripoli, Israel, Philippines, Ukraine, Pakistan, Mali, Tunisia, Libya, Syria, Somalia, Kenya, India, Afghanistan and Cameroon. And home grown terrorism (shootings) in the U.S. I pray we can all learn to live together in peace.

 

New Etsy Shop for our books!

Screen Shot 2015-11-06 at 1.18.43 PMI just set up a brand new Etsy shop called Glass Pen Press so everyone can buy the SIGNED versions of Donna Warwick’s and my book, “There’s a Mouse on My Head! The signed books can be purchased locally around St. Louis at: The Jewish Book Festival Book Store until November 12th, Imagination Toys in Ladue, Webster Groves Book Store in Webster and Sound Mind in Creve Coeur, Missouri. The books can also be ordered from Amazon.com and B&N.com in hard cover and soft cover, but the books ordered online are not signed by us because they are shipped directly.

The books in the Etsy shop will be signed by both of us.

I also plan to add art prints suitable for framing using a few of the illustrations from the book. I still need to figure out the logistics of having them printed and mailing them safely. So books are ready now, the art prints in a few weeks.

Hope you can drop by the shop. Let me know if you see any glitches. It’s brand new and untested.

30 days, 30 new Picture Book Ideas!

PiBoIdMoI love November. What fun it is to have permission to dream away for a little while each day. Dreaming of new picture book ideas that is. I have a slight head start with 9 ideas right now. I like to get ahead and store up ideas, because there are sometimes dry days with no ideas or busy days without time for ideas. I also find great ideas come in bunches.

My best time for great ideas is in the morning when I’m sort of awake, but still dreaming. It’s easy to remember these ideas. The great ones I get when I’m falling asleep either keep me up all night or disappear when the Sandman shows up.

My ideas come to me as visuals because I am an illustrator first. I see the character in my mind and later comes the story. I also have a list of spare characters hanging around looking for a story. It’s so much fun being able to invent characters and the world they live in.

I just love being an author and illustrator of children’s books.

Here is the link to my website: www.daynesislendesign.com, I just added some new work. If you need an illustrator for a picture book or chapter book, contact me through my website. I would love to talk to you about your story.

I also have a Behance.com portfolio page: www.behance.net/DayneSislenDesign

The first of November starts Picture Book Idea Month or PiBoIdMo!

PiBoIdMoI’m counting down the days, November first can’t get here soon enough. I just love Tara Lazar’s Picture Book Idea Month. It gives me a fun reason to come up with 30 new ideas for picture books. Last year I came up with more than 30. I was so excited to start working on them. But, for some strange reason I misplaced my list and could only remember about a third of them. Maybe this year some of those lost ideas will come back.

Tara sets up inspirational and informative blogs and guest-bloggers for participants. There are exciting contests with fantastic prizes. Here is the registration page on Tara’s Blog. Everyone should try it at least once. You don’t have to write the whole book, just jot down a few notes or insight on characters. You might find you have a picture book in you. If you do and you need an illustrator, contact me and we can work together to make your picture book the best it can be. Go to my website to see my children’s book illustrations and find my contact information.

National Day on Writing!

Why do I write? Why does anyone write?

MOYH_9780996561518-Perfect.inddIt’s a form of personal and artistic expression as well as communication. Writing is important to our lives because information is passed from one person to another and to future generations through the written word.

I like to write and illustrate children’s books because I love to impart lessons of life in a fun entertaining way. With picture books, it is not necessary to scold or preach to children. Children can easily learn lessons by reading or being read stories with actions and consequences. They see their favorite characters solving life’s problems in entertaining stories. #whyIwrite, #picturebooks, #Kidlit

My newest book with author Donna Warwick is: There’s a Mouse on My Head! is available on Amazon.com, Barnes and Nobel and can be ordered from independent book stores.

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I love this quote.