[author chat + recipe + giveaway] Things to Do by Elaine Magliaro and Catia Chien

One of my very favorite things to do is to feature children’s books by first time authors, especially when they’re written by dear online friends.

I’ve been a fan of Elaine Magliaro’s poetry and blog Wild Rose Reader for about ten years now. I first began reading her wonderful posts at Blue Rose Girls before she launched Wild Rose Reader in April 2007.  A retired elementary school teacher and librarian, Elaine is extremely knowledgeable and unfailingly passionate about children’s poetry, which she shared in the classroom for over three decades, and which she herself has written for many, many years.

Though I’ve loved the insightful book reviews, fascinating interviews, and general wealth of amazing educational resources available at Wild Rose Reader, I was always most excited when Elaine posted her own poetry. Over the years, her poems appeared in several anthologies, but now (hooray, hooray!), she finally has her own book!

Things to Do (Chronicle Books, 2017) is an absolutely stunning debut and I’m thoroughly delighted to sing its praises. The fourteen list poems, paired with Catia Chien’s evocative acrylic paintings, chronicle the small, sweet moments of a child’s day. Most illuminate wonders of the natural world: sun, moon, sky, rain, a bird, an acorn, a honeybee, crickets, a snail — from a uniquely childlike perspective that is refreshing, innocent, and thoroughly charming.

I love Elaine’s sparkling diction, spot-on sensory details, and inventive use of dynamic verbs, rhyme, personification, alliteration, and onomatopoiea. Good things abound in these small packages, which are like lyrical mini-science lessons infused with whimsy and enchantment.

(click to enlarge)

Things to do if you are DAWN

Shoo away night.
Wash the eastern sky with light.
Wake the sleeping sun:
Rise and shine!

Rouse resting roosters.
Set songbirds singing.
Let dream drift away.
Start a new day.

Catia Chien’s dreamlike illustrations with their gauzy layers of color feature a dark-haired child and a dog constantly in motion — flying a kite, swinging high, splashing in rain puddles, running through a meadow. Clever use of different typefaces for key words amplifies emotion and playfulness, making the poems even more fun to read aloud.

I know you’ll enjoy hearing what Elaine has to say about her writing and revision process, the book’s path to publication, poets who’ve had the most influence on her work and more. Because she’s a good cook, of course I had to ask for a favorite recipe, too. 🙂

We’re thrilled for you, Elaine. Congratulations on your first book baby!!

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🐝 AUTHOR CHAT WITH ELAINE MAGLIARO 🐌

How does it feel to have published your very first collection of children’s poetry? What are you most proud of?

It’s almost unbelievable! I was elated when I received my advance copy of Things to Do last August. I never thought I’d actually publish a book of poems. Poetry is not the most popular literary genre. Yet it is the genre that I feel suits me best as a writer. It’s MY artistic medium. I feel proud that–after decades of writing poetry–I didn’t get discouraged by rejections and that I continued to write because it seems to be a calling. I followed my dream…and my dream finally came true. I feel a bit like the Grandma Moses of children’s poetry–having published my first book at the age of seventy.

When and why did you start writing poetry for children?

I began writing poetry when I was in my late twenties. I got hooked on children’s poetry while sharing it with my elementary students. I had had a “writing bug” from the time I was ten-years-old. I wrote funny plays when I was in grammar school, short humorous poems and skits for school performances in high school–as well as a parody of Oedipus Rex. What I really wanted to be was a comedy writer–but I became an educator instead. I doubt that I would ever have written children’s poetry if I hadn’t been a teacher.

Part of Elaine’s enormous poetry picture books collection.

Is the list poem your favorite poetic form? What is your writing process like?

“Things to do” list poems and mask poems are my favorites. I especially like writing animal mask poems. I enjoy pretending to be a grizzly bear, lion, blue whale, garden snake, beetle, or a bunch of termites. It’s fun imagining what they might say if they could to speak to us. My elementary students wrote wonderful animal mask poems. I think they enjoyed writing them as much as I did!

My writing process? Let me think. It has changed over the years. I compose many of my rough drafts in my head–often while I am out walking or taking a shower. Sometimes the beginning line of a poem just pops into my head.

Elaine’s neat and tidy workspace.

Back in the day, I used to write all of my poems out in longhand. Then my husband bought me a typewriter. I love having a word processor now! I can cut and paste, move lines around. It really makes writing and revising poetry so much easier.

Here is what is most typical of my writing process:

  • I get an inspiration/idea for a poem and begin composing it in my head.
  • I type the poem on my computer.
  • That poem may inspire me to write a collection of poems on the same subject/theme.
  • I usually jot down more poem ideas for the collection in a notebook or on an index card.
  • Then I write more poems for the collection.
  • When I am satisfied with the first draft of a collection, I print it off.
  • I reread the poems and make my revisions on paper.
  • Next, I revise my poems on the computer.
  • Sometimes I set the poems aside for a period of time.
  • Later, I return to my poems with “fresh” eyes…and revise those that need work.
  • Then I print off my second draft and follow the same process that I did with the first draft.

What inspired this particular collection, and what were some of the ups and downs on its path to publication? Anything surprise you?

Let me start at the beginning–circa 1995: Bobbi Katz’s book Upside Down and Inside Out (1973) was the inspiration for my writing “things to do” poems. There are six “things to do” poems in that book. I liked the idea of those list poems. I led my students in writing some collaborative class poems modeled after Bobbi’s. It was a really successful creative writing activity. Later, my students wrote their own individual “things to do” poems. Theirs were so good they inspired me to write my own “things to do” poems on a variety of subjects: dawn, moon, grandfather clock, mole, grass, the sun, night, etc. I eventually sent my manuscript to a publisher. It was rejected. The collection was too broad. It didn’t have any focus…or “hook.”

Then my good friend Grace Lin suggested that I take the collection through the arc of a day from dawn to night. I thought it was a great idea. After further thought, I decided to take my collection through a “child’s day.” I deleted some poems from the collection and wrote new poems about school: things to do if you are an eraser, scissors, spelling test, school lunch, etc.

Grace Lin sent my Things to Do manuscript to Melissa Manlove at Chronicle Books. (Grace informed me later that she had done it.) Fortunately, Melissa loved the idea of my “things to do” poems–but asked if I’d be okay with eliminating the poems about school. She wanted the book to appeal to young children who had no school experience. That said, she really liked the scissors and eraser poems–so they stayed.

(click to enlarge)

Once your manuscript was accepted, did you have to revise many of the poems? Were any poems left out of the original manuscript, any new ones written?

Did I have to revise the collection? Oh, yes! The final product is quite different from the original manuscript. I am SO glad Melissa asked me to scrap the school poems. I think the collection is much better with its main focus on the natural world.

As I mentioned earlier, I eliminated most of the school poems. There were also a few others that were eliminated.

I revised a number of poems:

  • The original bee poem was much longer. I kept just two lines…and added two more.
  • I changed the last two lines of my snail poem–as well as the last four lines of my sun poem.
  • I deleted one word from the dawn poem…and one word and a line from the acorn poem.
  • I changed two words in the eraser poem.
  • I revised the rain poem. The original didn’t rhyme.
  • I wrote a few new poems for the book: Birds, Sky, Boots, and Crickets.
  • In addition, I decided to send Melissa the spider poem that Grace and I had cut from my manuscript. Melissa liked it…and decided to include it in the collection.

Which poem in this book was the most challenging to write and why? What’s your favorite poem in the book?

To the best of my recollection, it was the poem about birds. I had to revise it several times…until Melissa gave it the okay. The boots poem, however, needed no revision. It’s funny how every now and then I’ll write a poem that seems just right in its first draft.

Things to do if you are BOOTS

Splish in puddles.
Splash on the walk.
Make the fallen
raindrops talk.

I’m not sure which is my favorite poem. I really like the spider poem and was so happy it found a home in my book. It may be because it reminds me of Charlotte the spider in E.B. White’s Charlotte’s Web. I LOVE that book–and all of the characters in it. I also like the rain poem because I was able to use lots of interesting verbs in it–polka dot, freckle, whoosh, gurgle, patter, tap dance.

I should note that my second-grade students had quite a bit of experience writing “things to do” poems in my classroom–collaborative class poems as well as individual poems. A main focus in writing the poems was to get my students to use the strongest and most appropriate verbs. In addition to being an excellent creative writing activity, it was a wonderful language arts and vocabulary exercise.

What do you love most about Catia Chien’s illustrations? Do you have a favorite spread?

What do I love most? Everything! When I saw the finished illustrations, I nearly swooned. They are beautiful…and a perfect complement to my text. Both Grace and Melissa described Catia’s art as “dreamy.” She captured with her pictures exactly what I was trying to convey with my text.

(click to enlarge)

I’d like to add that I was like the young child written about and pictured in this book. I spent a lot of time “living” in my imagination…my own world. I enjoyed collecting wildflowers, watching grasshoppers springing through tall grass, observing ants climbing in and out of anthills. I’d bring home all kinds of things in my pockets–including rocks that I thought were interesting specimens.

Learning how to be a careful and thoughtful observer and taking time to think and ponder are things I tried to encourage in my students when I was teaching. Unfortunately, these days education is more focused on prepping children to take high-stakes standardized tests. That is NOT how we engage children in the learning process! It is the reason I decided to leave teaching in 2000. Fortunately, I was able to spend the last three years at my school as a teaching librarian. I really enjoyed being an elementary teacher–but I absolutely LOVED being our school’s librarian!

My favorite spread? It changes from day to day. I love them all!

(click to enlarge)

Any tips for using this book in the classroom?

I created some curriculum activities and exercises for Things to Do for Chronicle. It will be available at the Chronicle website. NOTE: It is part of a Poetry Picture Book Teacher Guide that includes curriculum activities for other collections: Marilyn Singer’s A Strange Place to Call Home, Kate Coombs’s Water Sings Blue, J. Patrick Lewis’s When Thunder Comes: Poems for Civil Rights Leaders, and J. Patrick Lewis and Kenn Nesbitt’s Bigfoot Is Missing!.

(click to access guide)

I did cull out all of the activities and exercises related to my book because I plan to distribute my curriculum guide for Things to Do to teachers when I do presentations for them. Amy Ludwig VanDerwater was kind enough to convert my guide into a Google Doc.

Which children’s poets do you think have been the most influential on your writing?

There are so many! It would be hard to name them all. I’d say that dozens of the children’s poets like Bobbi Katz who came before me have had an influence on my work. That said, I have to acknowledge a few:

  • David McCord: David was my good friend and mentor. We met in the early eighties..and became fast friends. He visited my classroom every year until he was unable to drive. He introduced me to Myra Cohn Livingston, Karla Kuskin, and John Ciardi. He pushed me to do my best. He’d criticize what he felt wasn’t good enough. (BTW, We shared the same birthday–November 15th.)
  • Myra Cohn Livingston. I own most of her poetry collections. I have also read her other works, including Climb into the Bell Tower: Essays on Poetry and The Child as Poet: Myth or Reality? Her book Poem-making: Ways to Begin Writing Poetry became a Bible for me. Reading it was like taking a course in poetry. It was specifically written for kids aged 8-12. It is clear and concise…and introduced me to mask/person poems, apostrophe/poems of address, cinquains, etc. It became an invaluable classroom resource for me. I should add that the book also includes poems that provide examples of the different types of poetry that Myra wrote about in her book.
  • Karla Kuskin: When I read Karla Kuskin’s book Any Me I Want to Be, I immediately fell in love with mask poems. I loved that book SO much that I bought myself a second copy–in case I lost the first one.

I’d also like to acknowledge a few more people:

  • Janet Wong: Janet is always there for me when I need someone to give me advice or to critique my work.
  • Anthologists like Lee Bennett Hopkins, Paul Janeczko, and Jack Prelutsky: Their books provided me with poems written by hundreds of different writers. The books often included poems in collections that are out of print. I’d often find a poems that I loved in their anthologies. Then I’d check out the poets who wrote them and try to find poetry books written by them.
  • Joanne Ryder: I like Ryder’s picture books about animals and nature–including My Father’s Hands, Step Into the Night, Under Your Feet, and Dancers in the Garden. I enjoyed reading her books to my students–books that helped them get a close-up look at the lives and experiences of particular animals from their point of view in titles such as Where Butterflies Grow, Sea Elf (sea otter), The Snail’s Spell, and Chipmunk Song. So many of her books are about taking a good long look at the natural world. Her prose is often lyrical…poetic. I think her books probably had a subtle influence on my writing and my appreciation for nature.

What are you working on now?

The beginning of 2017 has been difficult for me. I lost my beloved mother and a very dear friend on the same day in January. My creative juices haven’t been flowing the way they normally do. In addition, I have been battling my third respiratory infection since late November.

Last year, however, I was much more productive. I completed work on two books of mask poems. In Farm Talk, the poems are told in the voices of a farmer and his wife, their domestic animals, and a few wild animals. The collection takes the reader through the arc of a day on a farm from dawn until evening. Voices All Around Me is a seasonal collection told in the voices of plants and animals–including a crocus, spring peepers, a beetle, dandelions, migrating geese, a snowshoe hare, and a spruce tree.

In addition, I returned to an older manuscript titled Docile Fossil, a collection of poems about fossils, extinct animals, the La Brea Tar Pits, and the coelacanth–a fish that was once thought to have gone extinct many millions of years ago. I revised some poems, eliminated others, and added a few new ones. I also added back matter with information about the subjects of the poems–including the megalodon, megatherium, Beelzebufo (devil frog), dodo bird, and coprolites (fossilized dung). I learned a lot while I was doing research for that collection. It has been rejected twice. I do hope it sees the light of day at some point in time. I love intertwining science with poetry.

In early December, I completed work on a picture book in verse about winter titled In Wintertime. It is composed of sixteen rhyming couplets. It is loosely modeled after Cynthia Rylant’s book When I was Young in the Mountains–a book that I used as a writing prompt for my students with great success.

Late last year, I also finished a collection of nighttime poems titled Moonlight and Starry Nights. I envision it being illustrated to show diverse children from a variety of places–the city, country, suburbs, different locales across this nation–experiencing night, observing the sky, snuggling with stuffed animals in bed, etc. No matter where we live, we all look up at the same night sky in the Northern Hemisphere.

This year, I’m hoping to return to work on a collection of humorous fairy tale poems–most of which I wrote more than twenty years ago.

One more thing: I wrote a follow-up to Things to Do…with poems about winter. My editor loves it–but said we’d have to see how my first book sells.

Could you please share a favorite recipe?

I LOVE smoked salmon! I have a “semi-recipe” for smoked salmon tartare with horseradish sauce that is always a big hit at parties/get-togethers.

Elaine's Smoked Salmon Tartare with Horseradish Sauce

  • Time: 30 minutes
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Ingredients

For the Salmon Tartare:

  • 4 ounces smoked salmon, finely chopped (I buy sealed packages of salmon that I get at my fish store or the supermarket)
  • capers
  • a lemon
  • a purple, red, or Vidalia onion, finely chopped
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • fresh dill, snipped (optional)
  • *I have no specific amounts for any of the ingredients except the salmon. I always go by taste testing.

For the Horseradish Sauce:

  • Sour cream or creme fraiche
  • horseradish (but not the kind that is too coarsely ground)
  • *Here again, I have no specific amounts, I just go by taste.

Directions

For the Salmon Tartare:

Put the chopped salmon in a bowl. Add some freshly squeezed lemon juice, ground pepper, chopped onions, and capers. Mix well.

For the Horseradish Sauce:

Scoop a few large spoonfuls of sour cream into a bowl. Add a tablespoon or two of horseradish and mix well.

Serving Suggestion:

Spoon the tartare on top of a cracker or crute and then top it with some of the sauce.

Sometimes, I just slice up cracker-sized pieces of salmon and serve them with sliced onions, capers, lemon slices, and the sauce.

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THINGS TO DO
written by Elaine Magliaro
illustrated by Catia Chien
published by Chronicle Books, February 2017
Poetry Picture Book for ages 3-5, 40 pp.
**Starred Review** from Publishers Weekly

❤️ Check out this fabulous podcast at All the Wonders with Elaine and Matthew Winner

❤️ Nice review by Julie Danielson at Kirkus

❤️ Lovely blog review by Linda Baie at TeacherDance

❤️ Delightful post at Laura Purdie Salas’s blog that explains how Elaine’s use of the list poem inspired Laura’s new book, If You Were the Moon (Millbrook Press, 2017).

❤️ Things to Do Teacher Guide (Google Doc)

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📕 SPECIAL BOOK GIVEAWAY!! 📘

The publisher has generously offered a copy of Things to Do for one lucky Alphabet Soup reader. For a chance to win, simply leave a comment at this post no later than midnight (EST), Wednesday, March 1, 2017. You may also enter by sending an email with “THINGS TO DO” in the subject line to: readermail (at) jamakimrattigan (dot) com. Giveaway open to residents of the U.S. and Canada only, please. Winner will be announced next Friday. Good Luck!

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As is our tradition here at Alphabet Soup for debut authors and cool illustrators, please join us now in slurping your thanks and good wishes to Elaine and Catia for a job well done. Put on a dapper bib, use your favorite soup spoon and dip dip dip, or dive right in if you’re a diehard poetry lover. Make a splash!

Today’s Special: Poetry Potage with Cheddar Leaf Garnish (seasoned with honey, snail slime, and a touch of ground acorn, sunshine and raindrop). For maximum flavor, stir vigorously with scissors before eating.

 

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poetry fridayThe shockingly clever coffee maven Karen Edmisten is hosting the Roundup today. Sashay on over and check out the full menu of poetic goodness being shared in the blogosphere this week. Do you have some good things to do this weekend? 🙂


*Interior spreads from Things to Do posted by permission of the publisher, text copyright © 2017 Elaine Magliaro, illustrations © 2017 Catia Chien, published by Chronicle Books. All rights reserved.

**Copyright © 2017 Jama Rattigan of Jama’s Alphabet Soup. All rights reserved.

78 thoughts on “[author chat + recipe + giveaway] Things to Do by Elaine Magliaro and Catia Chien

  1. Jama, thank you so much for featuring Elaine. I am pinning this post to my poetry pinterest board.

    Elaine, first, feel better soon. I’m sorry you’ve been down with bugs….but also losing dear ones is really tough. Be gentle on yourself. I’ll bet your creative juices need a nap and some vitamin C just like your physical self. Hugs and high-fives that all is on the mend.

    I listened to the pod cast of Elaine at All the Wonders a week ago or so. It is FABulous. I love that Elaine really knows kids as an educator and writes specifically for this very smart and creative audience. The background knowledge kids gather canNOT be underestimated. And, we so need to develop a kinder world.

    Many, MANY congratulations on this book and hopes for more to follow.

    Like

    1. Yes, it is obvious from her poems that Elaine truly knows kids inside and out — how they think, feel, what appeals to them. Her poems are a breath of fresh air.

      Like

  2. Jama, I feasted on this post as I enjoyed my first cup of coffee. It was a wonderful way to start my day. Elaine- It’s difficult for me to combine the words to share sympathy and celebration and I imagine that your experience of both simultaneously is most challenging. I’m so sorry for your recent losses. I hope that over time you find peace and comfort in memories. Congratulations on your publication and thank you for sharing your creative process and some pages from your wonderful book of poetry. It’s delightful.

    Like

  3. Talk about swooning!
    Jama & Elaine, I am swooning over the poems shared, with magical art in “Things to Do.”

    As serendipity would have it, yesterday our college daughter called me in excitement, from the La Brea Tar pits (spring break.) I am rooting for Docile Fossils & all the future books in the works and hoped for. (A poem writer & reader, who still enjoys picture books, she’s getting D.F. when it is alive.

    We share longtime love of MCL’s POEM MAKING & WHEN I WAS YOUNG AND IN THE MOUNTAINs. Now I see more books to discover, because this post is a spiffy “things to do” list.

    Thank you for being with us today Elaine ,despite your recent life journey challenges. Kind thoughts.

    Like

  4. I shared Elaine’s book last week. Through her words and Catia’s art, the book will be loved by children for years to come. I hope many teachers discover it as a “way into” poetry for their students. Congratulaltions again, Elaine, for your first wonderful book. And thanks for the interview, Jama, with so many great resources. Wow. I have some, but others are new to me.

    Like

  5. This book is gorgeous! I’ve already added it to my next book order and can’t wait to see it in person. CONGRATULATIONS, Elaine! It is indeed extra special to celebrate someone from the Poetry Friday community, and I am thrilled for your debut.

    I’m also rather in awe of how many other manuscripts you are working on. I don’t know what it’s like to be prolific, but just reading about all your projects has been inspiring and fire-igniting. I better get crackin’!

    By the way, mask poems are my favorite too. Congrats again!

    Like

    1. Always extra exciting to see a new book by a longtime PF person. I’m also impressed by Elaine’s many projects. No doubt more of them will find their way in print.

      Like

  6. Elaine, I can’t wait to see your lovely book and to read some of the books you mentioned by your wonderful mentors. I’m sorry for your recent losses. Few things in life are as difficult as losing a mother. I, too, have arrived at the age where friends begin to leave this world and without them we feel lost. Thank you for sharing so generously here, and thanks, dear Jama.

    Like

      1. I wanted to add that Elaine’s students must have been lucky kids indeed, also that I always love a story about a late bloomer. Elaine, you have paid your poetry dues and I hope you enjoy your success to the max. Here’s to many more published books!

        Like

  7. Elaine, so happy that your “things to do” poems have been released (and in such a lovely way)! It sounds like you have fun ones coming down the pipeline, too.
    Take it easy on yourself as you make your way through your grief and illness. So sorry for your loss. xo

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Thanks, everyone for your kind comments!

    Jama, I forgot to tell you that February 24th is my mother’s birthdate. I’d say that makes it an auspicious time to post your interview with me. I am so happy that I got to share the advance copy of THINGS TO DO with my mom last August.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Big congrats on THINGS TO DO, Elaine, and best of luck on its success! Yours is a very inspiring story! I really hope that DOCILE FOSSIL will be published, too. It sounds wonderful!

    I make a recipe for Gravalax that is similar to your Salmon Tartare. Yum!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I really enjoyed your interview with Elaine. I’ve followed her poetry for years, and I’m so happy to see her work getting the recognition it deserves!

    Like

  11. Elaine, hooray, your book is out! I have it in my shopping cart at Amazon but lost track of the date. Now I will have to restrain myself for another week thanks to Jama’s giveaway. I’m sorry your year began in such a hard way. I’m impressed by the scope and creativity of your poetry projects. And I’m so thrilled you included Water Sings Blue in your teacher guide!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Kate, I love your book WATER SINGS BLUE! Don’t you have another poetry book coming out with Chronicle soon?

      Melissa, is a great editor. The published book is much better than the Things to Do manuscript she was sent. Of course, Catia’s illustrations bring my poems to another level. They are a feast for the eyes.

      Like

  12. I just put this book on hold at the library! Thanks for all the suggestions of other books to get. I am kicking myself right now, as I had copies of so many of those titles and left them “for the next poetry lover” at school when I retired. I hope someone appreciates those books.

    Like

  13. Grace Lin sent my Things to Do manuscript to Melissa Manlove at Chronicle Books. (Grace informed me later that she had done it.)

    Hahaha, I would have loved to hear the SHRIEK when that was discovered!!
    I am very happy for Elaine, because I have liked her style her since she snarked on the Bush administration with her Political Verses blog and I am so pleased for her success in print as well. Cheers and what a beautifully laid out book! (I like Dawn best, I think, so far, but obviously, Rain is a state favorite for her poems just now!!)

    Like

  14. Another fabulous post, Jama! This is the kind of book that makes a great gift. I hope LOTS of people buy it–so that Chronicle will want to publish more of Elaine’s poetry manuscripts! (We also need you to feature Elaine in another post here, Jama, so we can get her recipe for potato pancakes.)

    Like

  15. Oh my goodness! I’ve been reading the poems Elaine shares on her blog for years. I’m thrilled she finally has a published collection. Congrats, Elaine!

    Like

  16. Jama,
    Thanks for a great interview. I especially liked the answer about influences. That is a history of children’s poetry in itself. Well done. and yes, can I please be entered in the free book give-away draw?

    Like

    1. Elaine wrote such wonderful, thorough answers to the questions. I learned a lot and agree with her assessment of influential poets. MCL is often mentioned by others too. You’re in the draw for the giveaway, Joy. Thanks for commenting!

      Like

  17. What a marvelous interview! Congrats to Elaine and Catia. Such a beautiful book! It’s on my “must get” list. I also want to curl up on that red couch and spend a day with that picture book collection. 🙂

    Like

  18. This is the first time I’ve had a glimpse inside this book and it looks divine! Elaine’s words are so joyful, and Catia’s art and perspective are a treat. I’d never heard of a mask poem, before this. Very keen to try one… Thanks Jama for showing this book off so adorably, as always.

    Like

  19. I am SO thrilled for you, Elaine! Congratulations! I’m also a fan of Bobbi Katz’s book — the poems are playful and fun. There was only a sneak peek at the Marble Orb Spider page and poem from your book, but she is my favorite spider. Can’t wait to read that poem.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Despite being out of town (and away from a computer) for the last several days, I always have “visit Jama’s blog” on my ‘Things to Do’ list! Now I will add “read Things to Do”! Congrats to Elaine and Catia! This book looks dreamy!

    Like

  21. Thank you so much for sharing, Jama–this book looks sweet and lovely. There’s almost nothing worse than microwaved tea–no!!

    Congrats, Elaine! Feel better soon! Looking forward to reading your book 🙂

    Like

  22. Things to do if you are terribly late to a blog post, but (fortunately) don’t miss out altogether… clap your hands with glee and sing yippee!!! So glad I caught this post, Jama. I can’t wait to read this book! Congratulations, Elaine!

    Like

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