What’s Happening With the Monsters???

More School Visits & NCTE

This week I visited Holy Infant School in Ballwin, Mo and shared writing tips with the 5th & 6th grade students. They enjoyed listening to a clip of INTO THE SHADOWLANDS as well, and they asked insightful questions about writing. Scary on!

Next I’m on the National Council of Teachers of English Conference at St. Louis where I’ll be enjoying hanging out with awesome teachers and authors. Plus, I’m teaming up with fellow authors, Vicki Erwin, Stephanie Bearce, and Jeanie Ransom for a presentation encouraging teachers to write as well!

N.07 – The Write Life: Authors Empowering Teachers to Find and Share Their Authentic Voice with Students Come join us if you can! My books will be available there at the Left Bank Books booth. Check it out!

An Evening with Author/Illustrator DAV PILKEY


How does an evening with children’s author Dav Pilkey begin? (well,after waiting in a looooong line wrapping all the way around Headquarters library…)

Waiting for Captain Underpants

Waiting for Captain Underpants

With, of course, a loud “Tra-la-laaaa!” yelled in unison by all the kids (and many of the parents) in the audience. It’s Captain Underpants’ typical call to action.

I had the fun opportunity to be part of this attentive and rambunctious crowd last night at the St. Louis County Library’s Author Event, celebrating the release of CAPTAIN UNDERPANTS AND THE SENSATIONAL SAGA OF SIR STINKS-A-LOT. (# 12 in the series)

Screen Saver for Captain Underpants

Screen Saver for Captain Underpants



Dav Pilkey, who will have 60 books to his credit with 2016’s THE ADVENTURES OF DOG MAN, has revolutionized reading for boys especially. USA Today called him the “savior of the reluctant reader.” His short, graphic chapter books with their silliness, fast pace, and bathroom humor are a perfect fit for young readers. The kid-friendly author creates his tales based on his own elementary school experiences.

The Adventures of Dog Man

The Adventures of Dog Man

As a child who suffered from ADHD and dyslexia, he understood the power of pictures to tell a story. Even though he often found himself doing hallway detention for drawing in class, he couldn’t resist making more clever comics—to the delight of his fellow students and the dismay of his teachers.

“Underwear is not funny!” said Mr. Pilkey’s second grade teacher. “Grow up!” she cautioned him. “You can’t spend the rest of your life making silly books!”

Drawing favorite characters

Drawing favorite characters

Oh, how little she knew, and how very far Mr. Pilkey has enriched young readers with the delights of his underwear crew.

Some of his other titles include:

The Ricky Ricotta Series 

Dog Breath

Paper Boy

The Adventures of Ook and Gluk

Super Diaper Baby



Nowadays, the author prefers drawing in more natural spots, like along the beach in Japan when visiting his wife’s family. But even there, he still suffers criticism—from some monkeys that is. Mr. Pilkey shared a video of himself at work sketching, while several monkeys attempted to confiscate his pens and offer vocal commentary on his work-in-progress.

Dav Pilkey Attempts to Draw Despite Monkey Antics

Dav Pilkey Attempts to Draw Despite Monkey Antics




At the end of his presentation last night, Mr. Pilkey made a point about perseverance. He showed a picture of a scowling egg and a happy potato in boiling water. “Don’t let adversities overcome you,” he said. “Rather use them to build on. In boiling water, a potato softens but an egg becomes hard.”



Many young readers in the crowd wore red capes, similar to Captain Underpants. On back of the capes was the message, “Reading is Power!” Thanks, Mr. Pilkey, for enhancing children’s literature with your comic characters and delightful illustrations and proving that strong reading muscles really do rock!

Pitch Wars Mentee Bio


I’ve decided to participate in Brenda Drake’s PITCH WARS contest, which is ramping into action even as I type. The contest allows mentees to submit a work for consideration by numerous literary mentors (MG-Adult). If a mentee wins a mentor with his/her fabulous entry, then the two will collaborate on the manuscript, polishing it to perfection with the hope of garnering favor with an agent during the second round. I love the idea of working with a talented writer and bringing new life to my story. This year the mentors have requested some bio info on perspective mentees, so here is mine.

DSC03252  Writer-in-trainingJr. Hi Picture_adobe

I can’t really remember a time when I wasn’t reading or writing (as depicted above by a local grade school artist. Yes, that’s me on the right in middle school.) So in pursuit of all things literary, I majored in English Lit in undergraduate school and then earned a Masters in Library Science. We moved fairly often, so I’ve shared my love of books with students in numerous states in both school and public libraries where I’ve worked.

Writer BOOK


For the past 10 years or so, I’ve actively pursued my writing career. I’m a member of SCBWI and ALA. I try to attend as many writers’ conferences and classes as possible. I belong to a couple of critique groups and continue to learn the craft. Some of my short stories and poems have been published in children’s magazines, like HIGHLIGHTS and LADYBUG. I’ve won the SCBWI Missouri Mentorship and a few other regional awards, earning spots in anthologies. Earlier this year, I signed a two-book deal with Jolly Fish Press for my MONSTER OR DIE series.

FROM THE GRAVE is slated for publication in Fall of 2016.from-the-grave



I like to make magic with words.

I love writers like

Kate DiCamillo


Louis Sacharabracadabra_jean_maurice_

Ransom Riggs

Cornelia Funke

Richard Peck

Jonathan Stroud….the list could go on and on.



I try to flex my writerly muscles, taking on new challenges and improving my technique.


I’m creative and love the language of words, priding myself on creating musical prose.





I’m an attention-to-detail person and open to revision. I know that good writing can become even better.


danceBOOKI love to write stories that appeal to

reluctant readers, especially boys. What can I say, I was sandwiched between two brothers growing up. I had two sons of my own and now two grandsons.

20150319_105951I like action, adventure, silliness, laugh-out-loud humor, magic, and spooky stuff. I want readers to finish my book and ask the librarian, “Do you have another one like that?”



Thanks, Mentors, for volunteering and your pay-it-forward attitude!

Hats off to everyone entering!

39 Years

National Novel Writing Month

Sorry it’s been a while since I’ve checked in here. November was a busy month. I signed up for the National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) and finished the rough draft of a middle grade historical fiction story. So I was quite busy.

I’ve been asked, “Now what do you do?” Well, a rough draft is just that–rough. It still needs lots of work. I’ve already started to analyze the plot for weak spots, as well as the characters. Since this is historical fiction, I also need to do much more research to insure the accuracy of the time period.

But the initial readings of the story by some of my writer colleagues has been favorable. In the next few months, I hope to get feedback from a few industry professionals at Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators events I’ll be attending.

Darcy Pattison has a great website offering writerly advice. She sent out updates throughout the month of November with plot tips. They were wonderful. You can sign up to receive her weekly updates. Plus, she has a great book on revising a story, Novel Metamorphosis: Uncommon Ways to Revise. I’ll be referring to that for help with improving my new story.

Now back to my writing…

Interview with Kim Chatel

Today, author Kim Chatel shares some insights on writing–for both children and adults. She is busy promoting her new picture book, RAINBOW SHEEP, from Guardian Angel Publishing. Look for my review of this book here on my blog as well.

Interview with Kim Chatel
by Mayra Calvani

Why don’t you begin by telling us a little about yourself?

My name is Kim McDougall. I write adult fiction under that name and children’s fiction under my married name, Kim Chatel. I am also a photographer, fiber artist and mom, all of them self-taught. As Kim Chatel, I have published a YA novella, The Stone Beach and a picture book Rainbow Sheep. I was born in Montreal, Quebec, but I now live in Pennsylvania. I love animals, crafting, and just about any outdoor activity.

When did you decide you wanted to become an author?

I have always written. I have a book of poems that I wrote when I was 8 or 9 (Cats have fur. They often purr…) In high school, I won an award for a descriptive flash I wrote about someone drowning. Then in college, I was lucky enough to have several encouraging professors who inspired me to continue writing. After my daughter was born, writing slipped by the wayside, but when she started school, I decided it was now or never. I put aside all my other projects (photography and crafting) and became a full-time writer. It took 3 years, but I’m finally reaping the rewards, with several projects being published in the next few months.

Were you an avid reader as a child? What type of books did you enjoy reading?

I read all the time as a child and teenager. I could spend hours by myself with a good book. As a young child, I loved the Bobsy Twins series. Later I fell in love with fantasy fiction when I read Madaleine L’Engle’s A Wrinkle in Time. I remember how she explained time could be folded like a blanket to travel over its surface faster. It was a true WOW moment for me. I had never read anything like it. Then my brother gave me the Belgariad series from David Eddings and I was hooked on fantasy.

Tell us a bit about your latest book, and what inspired you to write such a story.

Well, one evening during a storm, my daughter couldn’t sleep. I started a game with her that would last for years. I gave her a dream. This funny story was something she could latch onto while she tried to sleep, and I told her to finish it in her dreams. The first of these story-dreams was an early version of Rainbow Sheep. Of course, it wasn’t as simple as that. The plot and characters went through many revisions before it was ready to submit for publication, but the basic story is the same one I told on that rainy night so many years ago.

How would you describe your creative process while writing this book? Was it stream-of-consciousness writing, or did you first write an outline?

I get so excited when I start a new project that I need to create an outline, because I worry all my great ideas will get lost if I don’t put them on paper. Rainbow Sheep was different though because it evolved from an oral tale. It did require extensive revising. The original version was much too long for a picture book. I wrote it down in full, and then put it away for a few months. When I took it out again, the initial excitement was gone, and I could look at it with a critical eye. I think, like many authors, I’m often enamored with my own words, when they first materialize. I need to distance myself a bit before I can revise. This is where crit groups come in, and I have been very fortunate to be a part of good writers groups, with wonderful, supportive friends who have helped me improve my writing over the years.

Did your book require a lot of research?

I always research. For The Stone Beach I interviewed two veterinarians to make Casey’s illness as realistic as possible. For Rainbow Sheep I learned some interesting facts about sheep. There is also an article on needle felting at the back of this book, so I researched the origins of this craft. I’ve learned that research doesn’t end with publication either. Finding unique ways to promote a book also requires research. I am currently looking into different venues, such as craft and specialty gift shops, to sell Rainbow Sheep.

How did you come up with the idea of using felting (is this the technique?) to create the pictures in the story?

I was always fascinated by picture books illustrated with alternate forms of art such as Eric Carle’s collages or Barbara Reid’s plasticene-relief illustrations from The New Baby Calf, (author Edith Newlin Chase). These books worked on my subconscious, inspiring me to merge my own art with my fiction.

Tell us a bit about this special technique?

Felting happens when wool is shrunk down. Rubbing wool with warm water and soap is called wet felting. Needle felting is the art of sculpting wool with a special needle. Wool roving (unspun wool) is poked repeatedly, until it compacts into a solid shape. The results are fun, whimsical and fuzzy.

I first discovered this craft in 2004, on the Carol Duval show on HGTV. At the time, I dabbled in all kinds of crafts, but the first time I picked up a felting needle and a hunk of wool roving, I was hooked. I knew I’d found my medium. I can’t draw or paint. I don’t like to sew or knit, but needle felting lets me express my imagination with ease. Needle felting is fast becoming a mainstream art. When I first started, I could find only two books on the subject. Now there are dozens of books and chat groups for needle-felters.

Is this something young children could do at school? Where may parents and teachers find more information about this craft?

I suggest needle felting is suitable for children 8 years and older with adult supervision because the needle is quite sharp. My daughter has been felting since she was 6 years old though. Kids love it, even boys. There are many wet felting projects that don’t require a needle and these would be great for school projects with children as young as 4 or 5.

While needle felting hasn’t quite reached the big box craft stores yet, there are many good online stores for felting supplies and books. I have a list of them on my website at http://www.kimchatel.com/Felt_Suppliers.html. The DVD version of Rainbow Sheep will also include a short home movie of me making a little felted sheep, as per the instructions in the book.

What type of writer are you—the one who experiences before writing, like Hemingway, or the one who mostly daydreams and fantasizes?

A bit of both. I find scenes from my life appear in my stories, Montreal; Nice, France (I went to college there). For the rest, I’m a story collector. I listen and read, watch the news and find stories everywhere. Often two or three stories will combine to make one plot. I keep a file of “Story Sparks.” This could be anything from a name of a character or a conversation, to a video of a news story.

From the moment you conceived the idea for the story, to the published book, how long did it take?

Rainbow Sheep took about two and a half years from that first rainy night when I lulled my daughter to sleep with the story of a sad rainbow, to holding my first copy in my hands. As I mentioned, I put it away for several months before revising it. About the same time, I made my first needle-felted pictures. I had no idea if any publisher would be interested in such a thing. And because each frame took about 8 hours to complete, I made only three to begin with. Then I started the long process of trying to find a publisher. Luckily, I met Lynda Burch, from Guardian Angel publishing at the Muse online conference in October of 2007. She was interested in not only in the story, but in the art as well. I quickly got busy making another seven frames! By the end of November, I had completed the artwork. Then I suggested to Lynda that we include the Fiber Art activities. So, my job wasn’t really done until January. The book was released in May 2008.

Describe your working environment.

I am lucky enough to have my own office at home. I usually have a cat draped across my lap as I type and a dog snoring loudly on the floor at my feet. I recently bought a laptop so I can work anywhere, but I prefer my office. I keep it quite cold in there, to stay awake through my sleepy time (2 to 4pm). I also have all my reference books handy.

They say authors have immensely fragile egos… How would you handle negative criticism or a negative review?

I have enough rejection letters to paper my office. And I think that’s how it should be. Taking creative writing in college really helped to thicken my skin. While I had some supportive professors, others were only interested in finding the next Alice Munroe; they weren’t impressed by my brand of literary fantasy. In my classes, students critiqued other students’ work. This was my first exposure to peer review. It was baptism by fire. There is no harsher critic than a fellow student. It was good experience for me. When it came time to send my stories to editors, I was ready to hear no. I realize that my writing style is not accessible to everyone, but I write what I like to read, and hope there is an audience.

Are you a disciplined writer?

I am very disciplined. I think any writer who is serious about this business needs discipline and talent in equal proportions.

For writer moms:

How do you divide your time between taking care of a home and children, and writing? Do you plan your writing sessions in advance?

I write in the morning, as soon as my daughter is off to school. This is when I’m freshest. I work right until 4pm, when she gets off the bus. I stop to help her with homework, take care of the house, make dinner and do all million others things a mom needs to do. I try not to work on the weekends. That’s family and house time.

Do you have an agent? How was your experience in searching for one?

I did try to find an agent when my first novel, Caul, Shroud and Veil, was complete. I was offered contracts from two agents, but when I researched them further, I discovered they had very little experience. Though it was tempting to jump on the agent bandwagon anyway, I felt that having a bad agent would be worse than having no agent. I have not regretted that decision. Shortly afterwards, I was offered a contract from Double Dragon for not only the first book, but also the entire trilogy. Shortly after that, I won contracts from Eternal Press and Guardian Angel Publishing. I may one day pursue an agent again, but for now, I am happy with the state of my career.

What is your opinion about critique groups? What words of advice would you offer a novice writer who is joining one? Do you think the wrong critique group can ‘crush’ a fledgling writer?

I have been fortunate enough to belong to some amazing crit groups. I have also made the mistake of joining too many crit groups and not being able to keep up with the required reviews. I’ve learned to say no, and not join every group that pops up even when they sound intriguing. I have been overwhelmed by the generous support from the online writing community. Not just crit groups, but writers’ chat groups and forums too. Between interview opportunities like this one and invitations to blog, I’ve been able to bring Rainbow Sheep to a wider audience than I could have alone. I have friends all over the world (whom I’ve never met face-to-face) offering to promote Rainbow Sheep to local stores, libraries and schools. I feel so privileged to be part of this community.

As for new writers, I think the benefits of crit groups far outweigh the chance of a bruised ego. In my experience, most critiquers are caring and honest. And the few that aren’t…well that’s part of the business, and any writer who wants to be successful had better learn to take what the critics dish out.

Technically speaking, what do you struggle the most with when writing? How do you tackle it?

For my children’s fiction, I struggle with keeping my stories contemporary. I love all things old-fashioned and these tend to creep into my stories. I want to bring the joy of reading to kids, but I know the first step is to hook them with an idea that is relevant to their time and place. If I could, I would write like Anne of Green Gables or the original Winnie the Pooh, but I suspect that brand of narrative prose wouldn’t fly with many of today’s kids.

How was your experience in looking for a publisher? What words of advice would you offer those novice authors who are in search of one?

When I first started writing, I read that to be published you need to make contacts. Being a bit of a recluse, I didn’t believe it, and I started blitzing editors with little success. Then I joined several chat groups and crit groups. I started my own ezine and helped to promote other authors. What goes around comes around. Soon I had friends recommending me to their publishers. Of my three current publishers, two of my contracts came about from contacts made in writers’ groups. So that’s my advice. Get out there. Help your fellow writers. Critique other stories. Go to conventions and conferences. Make a name for yourself.

What type of book promotion seems to work the best for you?

I’m new to the promotion side of publishing, so I can’t really say what works best. I can tell you what I have planned for Rainbow Sheep: Books signings, school and library visits, craft fair appearances, direct mailing to fiber stores. I have sent out multiple review copies and I take advantage of the world of blogs. I enjoy making trailers for all my books and they appear on YouTube (http://www.youtube.com/profile_videos?user=klchatel) and other venues. Today I did errands and dropped off postcards printed with the Rainbow Sheep cover and blurb at the bank and the post office. I sold 7 books!

What is the best writing advice you’ve ever received?

It only takes one editor to say ‘yes.’

Do you have a website/blog where readers may learn more about you and your work?

Between the Cracks fiction at http://www.kimmcdougal.com/
Children’s fiction at http://www.kimchatel.com/

Do you have another book on the works? Would you like to tell readers about your current or future projects?

I am currently working on another picture book for Guardian Angel Publishing entitled A Talent for Quiet. This is the story of a shy little girl who bonds with her new step-dad while they photograph critters in the creek. It will be illustrated with my photographs, and include a short nonfiction section with photography tips for kids.

I am also working on the sequel to my fantasy novel Caul, Shroud and Veil coming soon from Double Dragon Publishing. So far, it’s untitled. Double Dragon will also be releasing my novella, Angel Venom, this summer, and I have two stories in their recently released Twisted Tails III Anthology, Pure Fear.

I also enjoy writing short stories and flash fiction. In the next few months, I have stories appearing in Albedo One Magazine, Hobart, Everyday Fiction, Flashshot, Necrotic Tissue, and a Coffee Break Short from Eternal Press.

I have several works in progress, but I intend to dedicate my summer to promoting Rainbow Sheep.

A Wonderful Website for Children’s Authors

Robyn Opie–Author, Children’s Books (an Australian author with more than 70 books to her credit) has a great website for children’s authors. She offers numerous how-to articles on writing children’s stories from picture books to YA. In her online Writing Tips, she shows all the ways to “make your story sparkle.” I especially liked her article, “How to Edit Your Children’s Book.” She explained all the ingredients for writing a winning story– pace, word choice, transitions, endings, and more. And in her presentation on “Plotting a Children’s Book,” she provides a plot map–a visual on how she plots her stories. Another of my favorites was her article, “Creating Ideas for Children’s Books.” Ms. Opie explains the way to never run out of story ideas is to be always on the lookout for them–open to new possibilities at every turn in your everyday life. It means “thinking and behaving as a writer” in every moment.

Ms. Opie’s site was chosen as one of Writer’s Digest 101 Best Websites for 2008. You can learn more about her at this YouTube interview. She offers online writing courses, as well.

And for more writing helps, visit my TIPS FOR WRITERS.

Interview with JODY FELDMAN

Author of The Gollywhopper Games, HarperCollins, 2008.
ISBN: 0061214507
320 pages
Yesterday I had the wonderful opportunity to catch a quick lunch with author Jody Feldman, whose new book—THE GOLLYWHOPPER GAMES—has just been nominated for the American Library Association’s 2009 Best Books for Young Adults.

Jody was on her way to a school visit and feeling in a bit of a whirl from her busy personal life and recent book promotion events which have offered numerous travel opportunities.

As we munched on our Asian-flavored entrees, I asked if she knew that THE GOLLYWHOPPER GAMES was being considered for the YALSA list.

“I had no idea,” she said. “The book is listed by my publisher for ages 10-14. I guess that makes it borderline young adult.” She explained that she’d been in total shock for at least 10 minutes when she first heard the news.

“How has your life changed since your book has come out?” I asked.

“I’ve not been able to write,” she said immediately. “I’ve been spending more time on publicity, but I’m really looking forward to getting back to writing.” She told me of her new plan to write every morning and leave her afternoons open for publicity work.

When I asked her what had been the most fun and exciting part of her book’s release, Jody said, “Being here and seeing it all happen—the whole bundle of going through what a regular author does. Holding the book in my hand. Getting that connection with the kids. The sense of fulfillment.”

Jody has waited a long time for her well-deserved fulfillment. The idea for THE GOLLYWHOPPER GAMES first entered her mind nearly 20 years ago as she overheard an unhappy child in the school library trying to find another book with the same feel as Roald Dahl’s CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY. She became determined to create a book for adventure-minded young readers. Readers who like puzzles and games and quick-witted contests.

THE GOLLYWHOPPER GAMES’ journey to print was itself a great adventure—not for the weak of heart. Jody wrote and rewrote the story; she submitted it and received rejection after rejection. She put the story away for a long time, until finally she joined an online writers’ group and began revamping the story yet again. When she finally found an interested agent, Jennie Dunham of Dunham Literary, Jody still had to wait another three years before an editor, Virginia Duncan, at HarperCollins’ Greenwillow imprint ultimately perceived THE GOLLYWHOPPER GAMES’ great potential and helped Jody shape it into the amazing story it is today.

Currently, Jody is working on a new middle grade/young adult book with another seventh-grade boy main character. The book will border on the fantastical—“like you might experience in dreams,” she said.

As we wrapped up our lunch, I asked, ”What advice do you have for writers?”

“If you don’t really, really want to do it (write), don’t do it! Find something else.” She explained how determined writers have to be. “Willing to get down on their knees and scrub the floor sometimes”—knowing that there will be lots of hard work involved in the publishing process. It’s not the glamorous lifestyle so often portrayed in the media.

“And a writer needs to be open to knowledge from wherever you can get it,” Jody said. She likes to listen to kids and adults, to those who like and don’t like her stories. She explained that using all this information can help her write a better story.

I said my goodbyes to Jody as she refilled her to-go cup, fueling up for her school visit in just 15 minutes. She seemed a bit harried but quite happy with her new role as successful children’s author.

Muse It Up

Today I’m offering a review of Lea Schizas’ book, ASSAULTING A WRITER’S THINKING, as well as the opportunity to receive the Ebook FREE! Look for the details following the review.


In this humorous motivational how-to Ebook for beginning (or reluctant) writers, Lea Schizas—award-winning author and editor—tells it like it is. No holds barred. She de-mystifies the writing life and provides real insights into the profession.

· Chapter 1: Explains many of the “roller coaster” ups and downs inherent for those who choose to weld the pen.
· Chapter 2: Offers numerous suggestions for seeing story ideas everywhere—even in a dresser drawer. A great bonus in this chapter, especially for children authors, is a list of questions which helps the writer enter back into the childhood mode.
· Chapter 3: Provides tips on finding a critique group and emphasizes the importance of doing so.
· Chapter 4: Advises writers to use research material to create more than one story and submit stories and articles to various magazines and publishers to increase market presence.
· Chapter 5: Encourages writers to keep plugging away despite rejections and failures—to keep believing.
· Chapter 6: Reiterates the need for writers to be as professional as possible by setting (and meeting) goals, maintaining a writing schedule, networking, and following publishers’ guidelines.
· Chapter 7: Emphasizes the rallying cry to “Keep at it!”
· Chapter 8: Lists a variety of links for writing-related associations, agents, editors, publishing houses, and much more.
· Bonus Chapter from her full-length book on writing: Muse It Up. If this first chapter is any indication, the book must be jam-packed with hands-on helps and encouragement for beginning authors. This one chapter alone provides a wealth of suggestions to motivate any reluctant writer.

Here is more information on Lea Schizas:

Author of the award-winning Young Adult Fantasy Novel

Co-author & Editor of THE MUSE ON WRITING
http://leaschizasauthor.tripod.com Email: museitupeditor@yahoo.ca

Lea Schizas is an award-winning author/editor, a short story competition winner,
living in Montreal with her husband Jimmy and their five children. She describes herself
as “finally woke up after a 23-year self-induced coma taking care of the family, and
re-discovered my passion for writing.”

She is the co-founder and Editor-in-Chief of two Writer’s Digest 101 Top Writing
Sites of 2005 & 2006 and recipients of the Preditors and Editors Most Useful Writing
Sites Award: Apollo’s Lyre, an online writer’s Zine: http://www.apollos-lyre.com and
the online writing critique community The MuseItUp Club,

-Founder of The Muse Online Writers Conference,
-Founder of The Muse Marquee, http://themusemarquee.tripod.com
-Founder of The Muse Book Reviews, http://themusebookreviews.tripod.com
-Co-founder of Coffee Cramp eZine http://coffeecrampmagazine.tripod.com
-Reviewer for the award-winning site AllBooksReviews.com
-copy editor for Double Dragon Publishing

You can read more of Lea’s bio and accomplishments at: http://leaschizaseditor.tripod.com/

To receive your FREE copy of ASSAULTING A WRITER’S THINKING, send me an email via the Contact section here on my website.

BLOG FEST for Children’s Writers

Be sure to stop by Lea Schizas’ BLOG FEST at The Writing Jungle http://thewritingjungle.blogspot.com/

Starting the week of March 29, she is hosting a large group of children’s writers. They’ll be sharing snippets of their stories and characters as well as tips on writing.You won’t want to miss it. Plus, there will be prizes awarded to some of the lucky visitors who post comments. I’ll be stopping in at the Blog Fest…why not join me!

Website Additions & a CONTEST

Greetings All!
Please pass the word around that I’ve added the following new treats to my website.
In the WRITINGS section, you’ll find:

BUGGY ALPHABETICS with illustrations by NIKKI SCHAEFER (www. nikkischaefer.com) This poem is an ABECEDARIAN–an alphabetical poem which uses the letters from A-Z for the first letter in every line. (https://www.cynthiareeg.com/writings/alphabetics.html)

A DAY in TASMANIA with photos–taken from my travel journal over the holidays. (https://www.cynthiareeg.com/writings/tasmania.html)

In the TIPS FOR WRITERS section, you’ll find:
INTERVIEW with NIKKI SCHAEFER–the very talented author/illustrator soon to be joining the GAP team (https://www.cynthiareeg.com/tips/nikki_schaefer.html)

More RESOURCES — helpful websites for writers (https://www.cynthiareeg.com/tips/resource_2.html)

In the FOR TEACHERS & PARENTS section, you’ll find:
BOOK SUGGESTIONS for DIVERSITY–a quick list to help celebrate the uniqueness in each child. (https://www.cynthiareeg.com/teachers/diversity.html)

In the FOR KIDS section, you’ll find:
BE A NEWS REPORTER–an easy break-down of the 5 W’s and a link to a Weekly Reader page to start the young news hound on his/her story. (https://www.cynthiareeg.com/kids/reporter.html)

SOLVE A MYSTERY–be the first to unravel the clues and answer the questions, and you’ll win a prize. (https://www.cynthiareeg.com/kids/mystery_questions.html)