Reading for Research: Reforemo Challenge Wrap Up

At the beginning of March, when I began the Reforemo challenge, I had no idea that the libraries would be closed and much of the world shut down. Here’s my March 7th post, before the world changed. The first half of the month, I was able to check out many of the books and I still have many of them at home with the library currently closed and the loan period extended. Honestly, the whole world pandemic thing threw me for a bit of a loop, how about you?

Thank you Carrie Charley Brown and Kristi Call for doing this challenge; I hope to catch up and read through the daily posts I’ve missed over the coming weeks.

Here’s a list of the books I’ve read over the past 2 weeks, some of which I’ve researched using You Tube read alouds:

  1. Professional Crocodile by Giovanna Zoboli
  2. Vroom by Barbara McClintock
  3. Twinderella by Corey Rosen Schwartz
  4. Here We Are by Oliver Jeffers
  5. The Bear’s Garden by Marcie Colleen
  6. The Curious Garden by Peter Brown
  7. Maybe Something Beautiful by F. Isabel Campoy and Theresa Howell, illustrated by Rafael Lopez
  8. The Gardener by Sarah Stewart, illustrated by David Small
  9. Tar Beach by Faith Ringgold
  10. Truman by Jean Reidy
  11. How to Catch a Star by Oliver Jeffers
  12. Nine Months by Miranda Paul
  13. Pirasaurs! by Josh Funk
  14. Whale in a Fishbowl by Troy Howell and Richard Jones
  15. On Gull Beach by Jane Yolen
  16. Little Frog and the Scary Autumn Thing by Jane Yolen
Truman

How did I do with the challenge?

So keeping it real, I didn’t quite make it through the Reforemo challenge to read 100 picture books in the month of March, but I did discover a bunch of fabulous picture books in my research and what strikes me above all is the sheer diversity and variety of books out there available to children. It opens up new possibilities for creating books for young children and inspires me to keep writing as each writer has a unique voice that contributes to our diverse and changing world.

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The Lullaby Monsters: Book Swag

I’m excited to tell you, I’ve been working on some other manuscripts while waiting for the final edits and book design for The Lullaby Monsters, a night time adventure about facing fears with Kelsey, Thomas and a bunch of cute monsters. This will appeal to 5-8 year olds and is divided into short chapters for beginning readers.

Today, I decided to do something fun; create some book swag for my readers! With the gorgeous artwork of Paula Nasmith, I’ve created some adorable stickers and book plates to go along with the book. And I’m giving you a preview right here, right now! Check it out…

Book plate sticker
Book plate sticker

I can’t wait for this book to be ready! We’re hoping for May or June. When it comes out I’ll be happily sending out books and stickers. I have a bunch more character stickers that I will reveal closer to the release date. Sign up for my newsletter and learn more.

Thank you for stopping by my blog. You are welcome here any time!

Picture Book Research

If you’re a picture book writer, you know that in order to write great picture books, you must also read great picture books. And that’s the thinking behind Kristi Call and Carrie Charley Brown’s ReFoReMo Challenge.

The goal is to read 5 picture books per weekday in the month of March for a total of 105 picture books.

Book pile for week #1

Keeping it real, here’s a list of the books I’ve read during week #1: (Is it cheating if I started a day or two early?)

  1. This is the House that Jack Built by Simms Taback
  2. Around the Table that Grandad Built by Melanie Heuiser Hill and Jaime Kim
  3. There Was An Old Dragon Who Swallowed a Knight by Penny Parker Klosterman and Ben Mantle
  4. Snappsy the Alligator Did Not Ask To be in This Book by Julie Falatko and Tim Miller
  5. Chloe and the Lion, by Mac Barnett and Adam Rex
  6. Z is for Moose, by Kelly Bingham and Paul Zalinsky
  7. The Very Impatient Caterpillar by Ross BurachAre
  8. We Pears Yet? by Miranda Paul, illustrated by Carin Berger
  9. Moon: Earth’s Best Friend by Stacy McAnulty, illustrated by Stevie Lewis
  10. My Happy Year by E. Bluebird by Paul Meisel
  11. Pluto Gets the Call by Adam Rex, illustrated by Laurie Keller
  12. Sea Bear: A Journey for Survival by Lindsay Moore
  13. Stonewall: A Building. An Uprising. A Revolution by Rob Sanders, illustrated by Jamey Christoph
  14.  The Secret Garden of George Washington Carver by Gene Barretta; illus by Frank Morrison
  15. Black Is a Rainbow Color by Angela Joy; illustrated by Ekua Holmes 
  16. MOTH: AN EVOLUTION STORY by Isabel Thomas, Illustrated by Daniel Egneus
  17. GIANT SQUID by Candace Fleming, illustrated by Eric Rohmann
  18. Most Marshmallows by Rowboat Watkins 
  19. River by Elisha Cooper 
  20. ONCE UPON A GOAT by Dan Richards, illustrated by Eric Barclay

Reading the blog posts that go along with the challenge make it insightful, highlighting what can be learned from looking at mentor texts.

I expect to be making a few more trips to the library this month! And I must say, I am so grateful for the ability to place holds on the books so that they are there waiting for me when I stop in at the library.

What mentor texts are you reading? Feel free to share in the comments.

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Thank you for stopping by my blog! You are welcome here any time, wherever you are in the world.