Friday, December 20, 2013

Poetry Friday

Poetry Friday is hosted today by Buffy's Blog.

For Poetry Friday -- "A Fuzzy-Fast Blur: Poems about Pets" by Laura Purdie Salas.
Salas offers young readers an entertaining introduction to poetry in this collection of verses.  Children and pets are a perfect pairing as are the bright photographs that illustrate a variety of forms.


Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Writers Wednesday

Worth reading --

This post at MacGregor Literary blog -- An Open Letter to my Fellow Authors (a guest blog from novelist Richard Russo).

Russo received the Pulitzer Prize for his fabulous novel "Empire Falls."

Monday, December 16, 2013

Nonfiction Monday

For Nonfiction Monday  --  "Growing Patterns: Fibonacci numbers in nature" by Sarah C. Campbell with photographs by Sarah C. Campbell and Richard P. Campbell.

The Fibonacci sequence begins: 1 1 2 3 5 8 13.  Starting with one, each number is the sum of the two numbers that precede it. Campbell notes that one of the mysteries of this number sequence is how frequently it appears in nature -- at the center of a sunflower, on the skin of a pineapple, in the spiral shell of the Nautilus -- for example. 

Campbell introduces readers to the sequence via photographs of flowers with petals that represent the numbers.  This visual aid invites readers to predict the next number in the series as they proceed from a picture of a single-petaled lily to the two-petaled crown of thorns which is then visually linked to the three petals of the spiderwort and so on.  Having established the basic pattern of numbers, Campbell then explores more complex examples.

Colorful photographs and reader-friendly text offers teachers a simple way to introduce the Fibonacci sequence to elementary students.

Friday, December 13, 2013

Poetry Friday

Poetry Friday is hosted today by Tabatha Yeatts: The Opposite of Indifference.

For Poetry Friday -- "Sharingthe Seasons: a book of poems" selected by Lee Bennett Hopkins and illustrated by David Diaz. 
Hopkins collects 12 poems for each season.  The verses include familiar names such as J. Patrick Lewis "Alone in Winter" -- Marilyn Singer "April is a Dog's Dream" -- Carl Sandburg "Summer Homes" and works by Hopkins.  Some of the poets may be less well known to readers providing an opportunity to discover new favorites.

Caldecott Medal winning illustrator and graphic designer, David Diaz brings his signature style to the artwork with illustrations that move through the seasons in shimmering colors that add a brilliantly imagined dimension to the text.

Friday, December 6, 2013

Poetry Friday

Poetry Friday is hosted today by Robyn Hood Black.

Just for fun -- My selection is "I've Lost My Hippopotamus: more than 100 poems" by Jack Prelutsky with illustrations by Jackie Urbanovic.
For those of you who are familiar with Prelutsky's verses, I could probably stop here. Funny, silly, absurd and imaginative are just a few of the words to describe the variety of work gathered in this volume.  Prelutsky offers his young readers an array of forms from haiku to concrete. Topics range from the believable to the impossible as in the imaginary melding of animals and fruit that appears in "The Pelicantaloupes." 

Urbanovic's fun-filled cartoon style artwork is a perfect reflection of the verses.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Writers Wednesday

Feeling rejected?
Check out Best-Sellers Initially Rejected posted at Literary Rejections Official Website.
Yes, it is comforting to read about how writers went on to successful careers after having been rejected, but it is too easy to simply blame the rejection on the editor or agent not appreciating the manuscript. 
It's true that manuscripts are rejected for a variety of reasons: it's not a good fit for an editor's or agent's interest, a similar work has recently been contracted or published, etc. I want to be as sure as possible that the quality of my writing isn't one of those reasons.
The fact that caught my attention in the post was that authors remarked that they had done a revision as a result of having their manuscript rejected. 
I always look at a rejected manuscript for ways to improve my work before submitting it elsewhere. 
An opportunity for a rewrite creates a better manuscript.  I can evaluate my work from a fresh perspective when some time has passed between readings. 

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