How to Become an Accidental Activist (Orca Books) is the sixth book I’ve written with Elizabeth MacLeod. It’s geared for kids and adults age 8 and up and focuses on a diverse group of women and men of all ... Read More
I began writing the first draft of this novel so long ago, its working title was Frozen. Well, we all know what happened to that title, thank you very much Disney! I’d go through several more titles before settling ... Read More
Every now and then, as a picture book author/illustrator, I do the one thing that I know I should not do. I’m in a good mood, I’m feeling upbeat about my career, and the world is a cheerful, friendly ... Read More
For all the dogs I’ve known in my life, I wrote What the Dog Knows. Such a slow and pleasureful project; it took nearly ten years of revising the story and evolving the characters. No one rushed me, I ... Read More
I was devoted to my dolls from an early age, and my love of dolls has never left me. I think I have about 26 or 27 now … I’ve lost count. Most of them are tucked away in ... Read More
If the last two years have taught us anything, it's that science matters. It helps us solve problems, find solutions (or mix them!), and make life better. Read More
A conversation with my grandson was the catalyst that sent me off into the wonderful, surprising world of how animals see. One summer day we were strolling home from the park. I was pointing things out to him: flowers, ... Read More
Years ago, when my first child was an infant, I swore to myself that I could and would keep writing. I was still working part-time in a restaurant and doing bits of freelance work, but I was determined to ... Read More
If you've got young kids, probably pretty recently. If you don't?
Was it pre-COVID? Longer?
For me, definitely longer. I am a responsible, disciplined, goal-oriented adult. It has been so long since I played that when people ask me what I ... Read More
I have shared my life with cats for the last 30 years, and I could not imagine not having a feline companion at home. I adopted my first rescue cat in Harlem, when I was a student at Columbia ... Read More
If your January is anything like mine, it's all about getting organized (again). So today, we're talking about organizational structures in writing. Figuring out the best structure for your material is one of the primary benefits of outlining. This ... Read More
Two weeks into 2020-too - how is everyone doing?
It's been a mixed bag for me so far. In the YAAAAAAY column, I got my COVID booster (woo vaccines! woo science!) and The Boreal Forest won the 2021 Information Book ... Read More
Like many authors, I have many author friends. I also have all too many friends who gave writing-to-publish a shot and gave up after a short while. Some of them went on to self-publish their books. I think self-publishing ... Read More
Last week was tough, you guys. Last week I told a friend I haven't seen in over two years not to fly out for the holidays, because omicron is blowing up in Ontario and it wasn't safe for her ... Read More
“Write what you know.”
Who said that? I’m not sure, but it’s a phrase – an instruction, really – thrown around as a guideline for writers. It suggests you should draw on what you know, mine your own life experience, ... Read More
It seems to be Friday again (already), which means I'll spend tomorrow morning doing what a lot of us do - tidying up the house. Part of my tidying process involves restocking: bringing pantry items from basement storage into ... Read More
All stories are connected,
new ones woven from the threads of the old.
—ROBIN WALL KIMMERER, Braiding Sweetgrass
I used the epigraph above in Making Seaker, my latest book—a contemporary Middle Grade STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) novel. Making Seaker was ... Read More
You know those articles about how we should all be getting more sleep? The ones where the first half is dedicated to telling you all the terrifying things that happen to the sleep deprived, and the second half contains ... Read More