Hello, friends. I’ve been on the go-go-go these past few weeks, but I have just enough time right now before the little one wakes up from his nap to update you on a few things…

  • Check out this article about Disney and Pixar’s Animation Studios Artist Showcase Program, which spotlights NO SLURPING, NO BURPING!
  • I’ve been Skyping up a storm, and I LOVE IT. Lately I’ve been doing 3-5 visits a week, and the teachers and librarians and kids have been amazing. The kids have such terrific questions! My favorites so far have been, “What is your neighborhood like?” “What do you do for fun?” and “Are you rich?” (That last one made me laugh out loud.) If you’re a librarian or educator and you’d like to set something up, please let me know!
  • A few weeks ago, I did a live, 40-minute reading via Google Hangouts and Qlovi, where I read from NO SLURPING, NO BURPING and UGLY FISH and talked a lot about what inspires me as I write. Also, I provide the proper pronunciation of my name, for the uninitiated. Want to take a look? The video is available on YouTube here. (Be patient. It takes a minute to load.)
  • Last week, I visited the hallowed halls of Google’s offices in Cambridge, MA and performed a reading as part of their Take Your Child to Work Day festivities. Super-fun, and my husband and little one came along for the day, so we were able to visit some of our old haunts…I even swung by Candlewick Press and said hello to my fabulous editor and many of my former colleagues! (I also enjoyed a glass of Prosecco and a croque madame for lunch, which is just about my favorite meal ever.)
  • I wrote about time management over at The Little Crooked Cottage, which has been a big issue for me lately. That time change last month really threw me for a loop. In order to get myself back on track as an early riser, I’ve been experimenting with different tweaks to my lifestyle, including eliminating processed sugar from my diet, not eating anything within a few hours of bedtime, and going to bed at 9:30 (which means I have to DVR MadMen and Game of Thrones, pure torture). That last one is the hardest. I actually had to put a reminder into my calendar that pops up at bedtime each night and says “GO TO BED RIGHT NOW, OR YOU’LL REGRET IT.”
  • In addition to all this, I’ve set up some outside writing venues for myself. On Saturdays, while my husband watches the baby, I take a few hours in the morning and write in a nearby coffee shop. And on Sunday mornings, I’ve started going next door to write at my neighbor’s house. (More on who she is and the crazy coincidence that brought us together here.) The change of scenery on the weekends really seems to help; I’ve been really productive, to the point where I’m nearly done revising a new story.
  • I’m looking forward to attending the NESCBWI conference this weekend. Will you be there? If so, hope you’ll say hi!
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