Author Interviews

Interview with TOASTY Author and Illustrator Sarah Hwang

What is better than a barking piece of toast who just wants to be a dog? It’s this kind of kid-centered, laugh-out-loud writing that makes TOASTY such a gem! Thank you Sarah Hwang for joining me to talk about your hysterical *and* heartwarming debut picture book. Here are some highlights from our conversation: 🍞How moving… Read more »

Talking Jewish Picture Books with Laurel Snyder

What a way to end this week of conversations in honor of Jewish American Heritage Month! Thank you to the brilliant Laurel Snyder for letting me learn with you— not “from you,” as you so wisely shared—today. Here are some highlights: ▪️ Seeking a self-directed identity that was outside the perceived monolith of what Judaism… Read more »

Talking Jewish Picture Books with Sarah Aroeste

Sarah Aroeste just gave a masterclass on Sephardic culture, Ladino, and the importance of inclusive picture books, music and beyond! Here are a few highlights from our conversation in honor of Jewish American Heritage Month. ▪️ The history of Sephardic Jews, those who trace their history back to Iberian peninsula before Spain expelled all Jews… Read more »

Talking Jewish Picture Books with Maggie Tokuda-Hall

Maggie Tokuda-Hall, y’all! @maggietokudahall’s relentless passion, humor and conviction are palpable on and off the page. Here are some highlights: ▪️The influence of Judaism’s reverence for narrative and the importance of using stories to understand the world around us ▪️Judaism sits at the intersection of so many identities, which makes intersectionality critical for expansive Jewish storytelling… Read more »

Talking Jewish Picture Books with Katherine Locke

What a gift to kick off this week’s Jewish American Heritage Month conversations around kidlit with the award-winning author Katherine Locke! @bibliogato talked about everything from writing characters with a similar lens to our shared fears around reciting the Hanukkah story in public. Here are a few of my favorite bits of Katherine’s experience and wisdom:… Read more »

Celebrating Children’s Books in Honor of Jewish American History Month

(Conversations previously held on 5/17/21 via @carolinepritchardwrites) I learned about Jewish American Heritage Month for the first time this past January and my mind, unsurprisingly, went straight to the world of children’s books. I remembered my worn copy of Hershel & the Hanukkah Goblins, the one Jewish book we owned & the same one that… Read more »

8 Nuggets of Wisdom from 8 Days of Mini Picture Book Craft Talks

That’s a wrappp! The 8 Days of Picture Book Craft Talks series is officially in the books (…because why NOT end on a bookish pun). After the intensity of this past year, my hope was to swirl the values I cherish from both Hanukkah and picture book writing— community, connection and resilience— into a tiny,… Read more »

Craft Talk with Joanna Ho: Digging Deep to Find Fresh Words

The #1 NYT bestselling author and lyrical guru Joanna Ho lets us peek into her mind and learn how to dig deep to find fresh, poignant words! Joanna reveals how the unique heart of your story is often buried under layers of cliches. Some of my favorite nuggets of wisdom from this conversation: đź’śAsk yourself:… Read more »

Craft Talk with David Bowles: First Person Narration

What a rush diving into first person narration with the prolific, award-winning author and translator David Bowles! David explains why first person point of view is rare in picture books, and why it may be necessary to tell a full, empathy-inducing story. Here are some of David’s many insightful gems: đź—Ł Wondering whether to use… Read more »

Craft Talk with Elana K. Arnold: Writing Difficult Topics for Young Readers

Consider me verklempt. I am overwhelmed with gratitude, inspiration and hope after this conversation with Elana K. Arnold around writing difficult topics for young readers. Elana is a craft expert, of course, but it’s her soulful approach to the world and her readers that resonates above all else. NOTE: we had some lively troubleshooting issues early on… Read more »