Kidlit County, Little Elliot's Neighborhood

Children’s Book Week 2016

Little Elliot and I are hitting the road with our Macmillan friends, Ruth Chan and Georgie, for Children’s Book Week (May 1st to 7th)!

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I will be sharing Little Elliot, Big Family, while Ruth will be sharing her debut picture book, Where’s the Party?

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Here’s a list of all of our public events. We’ll be reading our books, doing drawing demonstrations, and signing. If you’re in the area, please join us! We encourage folks to purchase books from these awesome indie bookstores who are supporting us, rather than bringing in copies purchased elsewhere.

5/1 Portland, OR: Green Bean Books, 11AM-12PM
5/1 Beaverton, OR: Powell’s Cedar Hills Crossing, 2PM-3PM
5/2 San Fransisco, CA: Books Inc Laurel Village, 6PM-7PM
5/3 Seattle, WA: University Bookstore, 4PM-5PM

If you’re in the area, but still can’t make the event and would like a signed book, please get in touch with the store to pre-purchase. We’d be happy to personalize a copy for you that you can pick up later!

 

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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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Illustration Station, Little Elliot's Neighborhood, Mikesville

2014 Society of Illustrators Founder’s Award

photo credit: Society of Illustrators

photo credit: Society of Illustrators

Last night I was deeply honored to receive the 2014 Original Art Show Founder’s Award at the Society of Illustrators. It was a wonderful evening. It’s amazing to be counted among so many talented people working in children’s books today. Benjamin Chaud won the gold medal for Bear Song, while 2 silver medals went to Carson Ellis  for Wildwood Imperium and Gary Kelly for Harlem Hellfighters. Lane Smith won a Lifetime Achievement award, as well as Arnold Lobel (posthumously). My heart swelled when the award was given to Lobel’s daughter. He has been an illustrator and storyteller who I have looked up to for many years.

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Frog and Toad has been one of my most cherished books, and it’s been loved by countless others.

I’m still feeling overwhelmed by all of the beautiful pieces that Elliot is (literally) hanging out with. I need to get back to the show to see everything up close and personal, without hundreds of people crammed into the gallery. I’m proud to call some of these artists my friends. You can click here to see a full list of all of the artists who were accepted into the show. Also, the Original Art Show will be traveling the country for the next year, making stops in Memphis College of Art, Peninsula Fine Arts Center, and more to be announced.

Kelly Light and me at a show that our books got into, holding a Publisher's Weekly article about our books. #Metaland

Kelly Light and me at a show that our books got into, holding a Publisher’s Weekly article about our books. #Metaland

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Celebrations ended with cake bigger than Ruth Chan’s head…and maybe a few other treats.

 

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Little Elliot's Neighborhood

Little Elliot, BIG WINDOW

 

BOW_windowYesterday was the culmination of many weeks of preparing. I installed a window display at Books of Wonder, a fantasy-land of children’s literature located in Manhattan on 18th between 5th & 6th Avenues. I was asked to create a display for my impending book release (August 26th!), book release party (September 5th!), and author panel (September 7th!). It was such an honor to be asked to create a window display at such a well known and beloved store. I was kind of freaking out about what to do, especially after seeing some pretty amazing displays. Then I had a little idea that turned into a big project: What if I recreated Elliot’s apartment/world in the window? In 3-D? With cupcakes??? Here is the original sketch.

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Once I confirmed that everyone was OK with that idea, I started to recruit people who actually knew what they were doing. I hadn’t made anything out of paper mache since grade school. My friend Les St. Leon worked on various sets for Universal Studios, Disney, and zoos in multiple cities, so I thought he might be a good person to check in with. Les helped me build the foundation for Little Elliot, which is what terrified me the most. Here’s how he started out! Continue reading

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