This past Saturday, Spencer and I got to visit the truly incredible children’s book store, Once Upon a Storybook, in Tustin, CA. Susie, Erin, and Tina there have created an absolutely beautiful store and an even more amazing community, bringing in authors, hosting weekly book readings, and truly building something special in just a few years.
Of course, the Cactus had to come with us, and sat proudly at the store entrance to take pictures with people coming in. Upstairs, Spencer and I got the opportunity to hang out, read poetry, and even make new illustrations with some awesome kids and their families.
If you get the chance to check out Once Upon a Storybook, I highly recommend it. It’s a prime example of why local bookstores and businesses are so important and an absolute treat to peruse.
Super cool. I’ve been accepted into the field of 64 (again) for the 2017 March Madness Poetry Competition, hosted by Ed DeCaria at ThinkKidThink!. It was a ton of fun in 2015, and I’m looking forward to doing better this year than my first round exit in 2015.
Whoa. Amazing news! Could You Hug a Cactus? was selected as the gold medal winner in its category for the 2016 Moonbeam Children’s Book Awards! It’s amazing to see the book recognized, and to put a gold foil sticker on the arm of this prickly bad boy. Thank you!
Happy Independence Day, friends! The poem below, “Sounds”, gained so much heart once Spencer added his pencil illustration to it. It’s pretty amazing how much more meaningful it is thanks to his care and talents.
Hoping you all have a safe and fun July 4th holiday!
It’s nerve-racking to send your book out for review. As much as I believe in this book and I’m proud of it, I’m still putting it in someone else’s hands, under someone else’s microscope and getting someone else’s honest opinion. Luckily for us, Jen seems to have liked it!
Again, the process of getting Cactus out into the world is slow-going at times, but when we’re able to get feedback like this, it makes the waiting and the regular effort so rewarding.
Spencer and I did a Q&A with Ruby at Westside Mommy and it just went up HERE. She asked some great questions about the difference between living in Michigan and California through the lens of the book – accepting and loving someone even when it is difficult.
Thanks to Dan Dabrowski at Stadium Drive Elementary, Gregg Valley at Orion Oaks, and Leah Karagosian at Pontiac’s ATAP, I was able to spend some time back in Michigan to share Cactus and speak to a whole lot of amazing students before the school year ended. This was an amazing opportunity and I’m so glad I got the chance to go!
If you’d like to learn more about my author visits, or reach out about scheduling one for your school or a school you know, you can check out my Author Visits page.
What an awesome surprise today! Amazon named Could You Hug a Cactus? their #1 New Release in our category! (Children’s Humorous Poetry)
Considering how much I shop on Amazon for everything from home goods to groceries to books and media, seeing my book recognized to some degree on the site is kind of surreal. Just another example of the world opening up it’s arms!
Could You Hug a Cactus? is officially on sale in downtown LA at Hennessey+Ingalls, the largest art, architecture, and design bookstore in the western US!
But why is our book in an art and architecture bookstore?
In good company!
Well, according to Brett Hennessey (the founder’s grandson and store manager), due to the closing of so many physical bookstores, customers are finding it harder and harder to find other types of books in local stores. Due to this reason, Hennessey+Ingalls expanded to include both cookbooks with exceptional photography and children’s books with exceptional art. After looking at Could You Hug a Cactus?, he decided that it would fit right in among their other beautiful children’s books, a testament to the amazing talents and hard work by Spencer.
We’re so happy to have our book available at such an esteemed bookseller. The process and the reach of Cactus continues to grow and we couldn’t be prouder.
One of the hippest kids’ book and fashion accounts on Instagram just put up an incredible post about Could You Hug a Cactus?. @AliSantiago shared such an amazing picture and had such kind things to say about the book and her son’s reaction to the book – I’m blown away.
The response that Could You Hug a Cactus? has received just continues to amaze me and make me so grateful for all of the people that helped it all happen.