Kidlit County, Little Elliot's Neighborhood

An Award, A Collection, and the Best Shrimp & Grits Ever

Last week I headed down South to accept the Ezra Jack Keats New Illustrator Honor at the 48th Annual Fay B. Kaigler Children’s Book Festival at the University of Southern Mississippi. My partner in crime, Ruth Chan, and I landed in New Orleans, Louisiana, and ate our way to Hattiesburg, Mississippi.

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Ruth and I at City Park in New Orleans

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Kidlit County, Little Elliot's Neighborhood

Little Elliot plush now available!

The wait is over! You can now have your very own Little Elliot plush to cuddle and hug and read with! Many thanks to my friends at MerryMakers for bringing him to life!

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My grandmother gave me an elephant for my first Christmas. He had a wind-up lullaby that would play “It’s a Small World.” For many years, I would wind it up and let it play the sweet song when I was going to sleep. We had many adventures together, and I am so excited to think about all the adventures Little Elliot will have with his new friends.

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My little white and blue friend would later serve as one of the inspirations for Little Elliot.

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Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to find my old elephant friend for many years (he is rumored to be living in my parents’ attic). I found this cousin of his online. He and Elliot have become fast friends. They have a lot to say to each other–they’re all ears!!

Little Elliot has been kid-tested, author-illustrator approved! He’ll make a great friend for kids of any age. Trust me, I did not give final sign-off until he met all of my huggability requirements.

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for scale and adorableness…

You can order your Little Elliot online, or ask your bookstore if they carry him (and if they don’t, they will likely order him for you).

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Kidlit County, Little Elliot's Neighborhood

Foreign Editions: Spanish, Catalan, & Bulgarian!

¡Buenas noticias! This week three of the first foreign editions of Little Elliot, Big City release! Today, March 16, is publication day for Spanish and Catalan versions with Ediciones B, and Wednesday, March 18, the Bulgarian version comes out with Prozerets. Check with the publishers to see where you can get a copy.

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Illustration Station, Kidlit County, Little Elliot's Neighborhood

Ezra Jack Keats New Illustrator Honor

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When I was in second grade, I remember reading The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats for the first time. The colors and shapes wove a spell over me. This was a world that I wanted to play in. Now, as a grown up, I get to live, play, and march through the snow in Brooklyn, where Keats set his story. This past month, I was privileged to receive the Ezra Jack Keats New Illustrator Honor for Little Elliot, Big City. The little boy in me who grew up reading The Snow Day is quite proud. I hope to follow in Keats’ snowy footsteps, creating meaningful books for young readers.

Elliot and peter are friends! You can purchase them both from MerryMakers.

Elliot and Peter are friends! You can purchase them both from MerryMakers.

I am also humbled to be included amongst these other talented people:

Chris Haughton
EJK New Illustrator Award for Shh! We Have a Plan

Evan Turk
EJK New Illustrator Honor for Grandfather Gandhi

Chieri Uegaki
EJK New Writer Award for Hana Hashimoto, Sixth Violin

Adam Auerbach
EJK New Writer Honor for Edda: A Little Valkyrie’s First Day of School

Alan Rabinowitz
EJK New Writer Honor for A Boy and a Jaguar

Misty Copeland
EJK New Writer Honor for Firebird

You can check out the Ezra Jack Keats Foundation’s website for more details.

 

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Illustration Station, Little Elliot's Neighborhood

Original Art Show now in Memphis, TN

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If you happen to be in Memphis between now and March 16, you can see original art from Little Elliot, Big City (and many other children’s books) on display at Memphis College of Art as part of the Original Art Show. The exhibit began at the Society Of Illustrators in New York City and is now traveling the country. Little Elliot, Big City received the Founder’s Award at the show last October. The opening reception at MCA is this Friday, February 20, 6 to 8PM. Click here for more information.

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Illustration Station, Kidlit County, Little Elliot's Neighborhood

Little Elliot, BIG FAMILY REVEAL!

I’m so excited to share the cover of Little Elliot, Big Family with you! I’m very proud of this book, and I can’t wait for you to read the whole thing!

LittleElliot.Jacket3-lores-797x1024When Mouse heads off to a family reunion, Little Elliot decides to go for a walk. As he explores each busy street, he sees families in all shapes and sizes. In a city of millions, Little Elliot feels very much alone–until he finds he has a family of his own!

You can read Elliot’s new story on October 6, 2015. I know, it’s such a long ways to wait! But if you want even more sneak peeks of the interior, head on over to these friends’ blogs:

Kidlit Frenzy 

Librarian in Cute Shoes

Read, Write, Reflect

Sharp Reads

Watch. Connect. Read.

 

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Kidlit County, Little Elliot's Neighborhood

Celebrating My Big Kidlit Family

LittleElliot BlogTour

I may be a bit late on the whole 2014 recap, but since the cover of Little Elliot, Big Family is being revealed this week, I’m taking some time to reflect. In the new book, Elliot learns that sometimes family can have a broader definition: it can include anyone you love. 2014 was much more than my picture book debut, it was the making of my kidlit family! Meanwhile, I want to share a sneak peek at some of the sketches from the second book!

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