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Thursday, September 29, 2011

Jim Henson on making puppets

OMG - this is magic. Not only are the ideas simple (and great for classroom activities), but Jim sounds like Kermie as his little puppet creations come to life. How SWEET is this!? (Worth your time.)

Apparently this appeared on Public TV in 1969, BEFORE Sesame Street! (I wonder if this is pre-Kermie?)
Thanks to The Kid Should See This for the... hands up. *ahem*

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Coloring Page Tuesday - Alien!

Sign up to receive alerts when a new coloring page is posted each week and/or click here to view more coloring pages!
     A satellite is coming down. An illustrator caught flack for using the words to Bowie's Space Oddity. And space is well, just cool. I've got aliens on the brain! (With luck, they aren't after it.) Here's a friendly alien for you to color!
     Be sure to share your creations in my Coloring Page Tuesday GALLERY at! (Click the icon below.) It's not just for card-makers - it's for everybody!
     Click here to view the entire Coloring Page Tuesday collection.
     Click the image to open a .jpg to print and color. Send your colored image (less than 1mb) to and I'll post it to my blog!

     Click the iPhone to learn about my app - Lula's Brew - also available for the iPad, Nook and Kindle!

Monday, September 26, 2011

The Kid Should See This

There's a new blog with a great premise called The Kid Should See This.
     Photographer, Rion Nakaya posts about all kinds of things kids should see. Y'know, great art, music, inventions, history, science, tech, you name it. There is just a lot of awesome stuff in this world that kids may not learn about in school, but which they just shouldn't go without! Maybe they'll eventually be exposed to it, maybe not. Rion is out to make sure they are.
     And there's plenty of cool stuff in there that I missed when I was a kid... so its for adults too!
     Thanks to SwissMiss for the heads up!

Saturday, September 24, 2011

It's a bike, it's a stroller...

Taga has come up with something truly inventive that I think a lot of my readers will be interested in. It's a stroller/bike. And after watching the videos, it looks super easy to use. And if you don't have kids, you can put a basket on it instead - use it to go shopping! How cool is this!? I love it when people are brilliant. (Click the image to go learn more.)

Friday, September 23, 2011

How My Home Affects My Writing

I was recently a guest poster on author Janni Lee Simner's blog where I wrote about "Place" - how where I live affects my writing. I went on about the Southern Appalachian Mountains and my inexplicable pull to North Georgia. I talk about Cicada swarms, floods, and rolling hills. Must admit, I was feeling rather romantic and nostalgic when I wrote it. I hope you'll go have a read! Click here: Guest Dispatches: Elizabeth O. Dulemba / Southern Appalachians.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

SCBWI Midsouth Conference Wrap Up

Last weekend, I had the pleasure of speaking at the SCBWI Midsouth conference in Nashville, Tennessee. The Midsouth region (Tennessee and Kentucky) is dear to my heart partly because I lived in Chattanooga for ten years, but also because they're a lot like my Southern Breeze region (Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi). They have some incredibly awesome, talented and dedicated people running their region making it a tight-knit group of highly supportive folks. I've gotten to know many of them over the last few years when I spoke at the Southern Festival of Books, and well, frankly, I'd been dying to get up there for an actual conference.
     Their Regional Advisor Genetta Adair asked me to talk about "Technology and the Future of Reading," which I did on Sunday to a full room (and will do again at our upcoming Southern Breeze Fall conference in Birmingham). Saturday, I was on a panel, "To Published Work and Beyond," with fellow creators: Newbery winner Linda Sue Park; illustrator Robert Blake; former RA and author Tracy Barrett; and author Ruta Sepetys. I also gave manuscript critiques to five new writers - one of whom won a prize for her work (yay!). It was a busy weekend!
     Best of all, I got the chance to spend some quality time with the visiting speakers, including Alexandra Cooper (Senior Editor, S&S), Jim Hoover (Art Director, Viking), Emily Mitchell (Senior Editor, Charlesbridge), Michelle Poploff (VP/Exec.Editor Delacorte Press), and agents Tina Wexler (ICM) and Erin Murphy (Erin Murphy Literary). It's always a treat to get to know publishing folks behind the scenes, then also hear them speak about the work they love. I'm terrible with photos, but I did catch a few good quotes.
"If you want to get good at writing, you have to put in the time." - Linda Sue Park
     She said this in relation to how long doctors study to do what they do, and lawyers and construction workers. Anybody who is really good at what they do, has had to put in serious time. Considering I just reached the ten year point in this industry, that was especially profound to me.
"It's not about you, it's about the story."
     Another one from Linda Sue about getting out of your own way. Stop saying "I" and just concentrate on the story. More relevant advice that was timely for me.
     Along with hanging out with great people, I stopped in Chattanooga on my way home and drove by my old house. Not much has changed, and yet everything has. It was fun remembering and realizing how different my life is now - and how I never could have predicted it. I can't help but wonder what the next ten years hold!
     Meanwhile, I hope there will be more conferences like this one. Being surrounded by peeps (like Genetta, Sharon, Susan, Courtney, Kristen, JD, Candie, etc. etc.) talking about things we all love, well, it don't get no better than that!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Coloring Page Tuesday - Fish Tales

Sign up to receive alerts when a new coloring page is posted each week and/or click here to view more coloring pages!
     Swim by your local library to find the best fish tales ever!
     Be sure to share your creations in my Coloring Page Tuesday GALLERY at! (Click the icon below.) It's not just for card-makers - it's for everybody!
     Click here to view the entire Coloring Page Tuesday collection.
     Click the image to open a .jpg to print and color. Send your colored image (less than 1mb) to and I'll post it to my blog!

     Click the iPhone to learn about my app - Lula's Brew - also available for the iPad, Nook and Kindle!

Check out this sweet fish colored by Kartikay Krishnakumar.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Talk Like a Pirate Day!!!

Aye matees, September 19th is Talk Like a Pirate Day! And I have lots of pirate-themed coloring pages to help you celebrate! Click here. And did you know you can change the language on your facebook page to "Pirate"? Arrrrr.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

George Kareman Variety Hour: RL Stine

Might this be a new cult classic? It's a VERY ODD interview (of sorts) with RL Stine. This George guy is, well, I'll let you judge for yourself...

Thanks to 100 Scope Notes for the link.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Enormous Post-it Note Animation

This is too cool! And I love that all the notes are actually... notes. So sweet.

Thanks to Daily Dawdle for the heads up.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011


Mr. Sharp starts his students off with an inspirational talk called I LOVE READING! I wish I could hear him a little better - but dang - gotta love his enthusiasm and the message!! Apparently he does this every year and his last year's students asked him to film it this time. Sounds like it worked on this year's students too. I dare you not to smile and go pick up a book!

He also gives a big shout-out to Laurel Snyder's new BIGGER THAN A BREAD BOX.
Thanks to 100 Scope Notes for the heads up.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Coloring Page Tuesday - Businessman

Sign up to receive alerts when a new coloring page is posted each week and/or click here to view more coloring pages!
     With all the talk about jobs this week, I was inspired to create a slightly different sort of coloring page for you this week. Please give me some feedback on my blog and let me know if you like him! I'm feeling lucky...
     CLICK HERE to find Back To School Images!
     Be sure to share your creations in my Coloring Page Tuesday GALLERY at! (Click the icon below.) It's not just for card-makers - it's for everybody!
     Click here to view the entire Coloring Page Tuesday collection.
     Click the image to open a .jpg to print and color. Send your colored image (less than 1mb) to and I'll post it to my blog!

     Click the iPhone to learn about my app - Lula's Brew - also available for the iPad, Nook and Kindle!

Monday, September 12, 2011

2011 ILlustrators' Day Wrap-Up - Guest Post

The 2011 Southern Breeze Illustrators' Day was a hit! As Illustrator Coordinator, I was so pleased by the responses. Here is a guest post - a wrap-up of the day by Kristen Applebee

     Illustrator’s Day is a real treat for the non-writing members of Southern Breeze, because it focuses entirely on the craft and career of illustrating, hence the name: Illustrator’s Day.
     The learning actually started weeks before the September 2nd meeting, with a mentor assignment by illustrator, Michael Allen Austin. Michael took on the role of art director, emailing ideas on how to add emotion, action, or connectivity to rough sketches. I found this process immensely helpful.
     Mike Lowery, SCAD professor and illustrator gave the following advise to those who wish to become professional illustrators. 1. Keep a sketchbook. 2. Promote self. 3. Don’t compare yourself with other illustrators. 4. Don’t talk about your projects. Just do them! He recently illustrated the book, THE GINGERBREAD MAN LOOSE IN THE SCHOOL, written by Laura Murray. She was there to discuss the process of illustration from the author’s point of view.
     Kristen Nobles, Art Director for Candlewick Press, taught that all children’s book illustrators should be professional, technically proficient, and do work appropriate for children. Besides having a unique style and an understanding of visual pacing, there must be an element of magic about the work, for publishing houses to really take notice.
     Robert Agis, Editor of Sterling Children’s Books, went through the basics of how work is acquired by a publishing house and the types of deals offered. He contrasted types of books from board books to interactive ebooks.
     Our speakers critiqued each attendee’s portfolio, which was very insightful. But the most gratifying part of the day for me was being with people who share my dream and love of children’s books.

The Portfolio Review with Kristen, Robert, Mike and Michael Austin...

Laura showing Mike's sketches, and Mike signing copies...

Kristen with some Candlewick titles, and Robert on stage...

Attendees listen intently to Robert's talk...

Robert with some attendees (including Kristen Applebee on the left - author of this article).

The mentor students with their projects. (Click to see larger.)
Your Illustrator Coordinators, Elizabeth and Kathleen...

Regional Advisor, Jo Kittinger, Kathleen, and Joe Davich of the Georgia Center for the Book (our tech hero)...

Our former Regional Advisor, Donna Bowman, and our current Regional Advisor, Claudia Pearson...

Sunday, September 11, 2011

One Plastic Beach

A little inspiration for a difficult day...

One Plastic Beach from High Beam Media on Vimeo.

Richard Lang and Judith Selby Lang are found object artists. But not just any found objects - they work with plastic that washes up on a nearby beach in Northern California. I love their vision, but I especially love the attention they draw to the overwhelming problem of plastic trash in our world. You can learn more about them at and Learn more about the Gyre at
Thanks to The Kid Should See This for the link.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Clay Illustration for

Check out how Susan Eaddy works. I'm always amazed by artists who work in 3 dimensions - whether it be cut paper or... plasticine. Wow.

Friday, September 09, 2011

Random Acts of Publicity (Giveaways!)

This week is all about Random Acts of Publicity! One of the hardest things in publishing is getting your books FOUND. So a few years ago, author Darcy Pattison came up with the great idea to randomly shout about the books/authors we love.
     And there are GIVEAWAYS!!!
     September 9: Guest Dana Lynn Smith: How to Get Your Book Reviewed by Dana Lynn Smith of The Savvy Book Marketer. One-day chance for you to enter your Friend to win a FREE copy of How to Get Your Book Reviewed by Dana Lynn Smith
     ALL WEEK: Post your Friend’s name/book title on the Facebook page for Random Acts of Publicity to be entered to win a FREE The Book Trailer Manual by Darcy Pattison. One ebook given away daily; must post Friend’s name that day to be eligible and you can post it each day if you like. (Today is the last day - so get thee to facebook!)
     Twitter: Use #RAP2011
     My current fave? CLEOPATRA'S MOON by Vicky Alvear Shecter!
     What's YOUR favorite book right now? Give it some love in my comments!

Thursday, September 08, 2011

#KidlitPRChat - transcript

We had a great first twitter chat last night at #KidlitPRChat as we talked about "Author Platform" - Building an Author Platform. What it is, and how to do it and what should you avoid? Couldn't stop by? You can find the transcript at

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Coloring Page Tuesday - School Bus!

Sign up to receive alerts when a new coloring page is posted each week and/or click here to view more coloring pages!
     Time to go to school! Do you have a thing for big yellow school buses? I know I do!
     CLICK HERE to find lots more Back To School Images!
     Be sure to share your creations in my Coloring Page Tuesday GALLERY at! (Click the icon below.) It's not just for card-makers - it's for everybody!
     Click here to view the entire Coloring Page Tuesday collection.
     Click the image to open a .jpg to print and color. Send your colored image (less than 1mb) to and I'll post it to my blog!
Learn about proper parenting language and the power of choice in, Ready for Bed! , Ready for the Day!, and Ready to Play! - click the covers!

Monday, September 05, 2011

Come join my Twitter Chat on Self Promotion!

Announcement! Authors Katie Davis, Dianne de las Cassas, and Elizabeth O. Dulemba will be hosting a twitter chat every first Wednesday of the month from 6 pm to 7 pm EST to discuss ways to promote yourself and your books. The twitter tag will be #kidlitPRChat and the first one will be held Wednesday, September 7th.
     Did you enjoy my article "Marketing - the Snowball Effect", "Blog Book Tours", or "Build an Easy Website (Using a blog)"? Or maybe you've attended some of my conference talks on "Online Promotion for Authors and Illustrators"? If so, this is the tweet chat for you! Because I know NOTHING compared to Katie and Dianne and you are sure to learn tons.
     And while I've dropped in on twitter chats from time to time, this is the first time I'm helping to host one. So please visit - ask questions - maybe learn a thing or two. Hope to see you there!

Saturday, September 03, 2011

2011 Decatur Book Festival!!

Today kicks off the 6th annual Decatur Book Festival in lovely downtown Decatur, Georgia!
     DBF is the largest independent book festival in the nation and draws tens of thousands of book lovers to our little barrio every year. Many of them are children's book creators, and those of us who love them blaze a deep trail between our local independent children's book store, Little Shop of Stories, and the children's stage on the main square all weekend long.
     So much so, there's a table in front of The Brick Store Pub which I have dubbed the "magic table." An hour or two at that table and you will see everybody you've ever cared to see!
     I had the great honor of being on stage for the first four years of the festival - even opening for Judy Schachner of Skippyjon Jones fame (which was the largest crowd I've Ever addressed!).
     This year I have the pleasure of moderating a panel discussion on Sunday at 1:15 at the Decatur Presbyterian Sanctuary Stage: "Creating the Magic: Kids' Author-Illustrators Discuss Their Craft" with Andy Runton (Owly), Susan Stockdale, and the prolific Judy Sierra! I'm really looking forward to leading the discussion on a topic near and dear to my heart.
     So, if you're in the neighborhood (or can travel) I hope to see you there!

Thursday, September 01, 2011

Slaughter to the Rescue!

New York Times Best Selling author, Karin Slaughter, saw a need at our local library and decided to do something about it.      Turns out, there was NO MONEY in the budget to buy new books this year. So Karin put on a fundraiser (which I happily attended) for the DeKalb County Public Library. The event raised $50,000! But that was only the beginning...
     Karin has released a Kindle Single, Thorn In My Side, Amazon's Thomas & Mercer's first mystery/thriller imprint release. 100% of her proceeds will go to SAVE THE LIBRARIES and THE READING AGENCY. (This is an adult story - not for kids.) Click the cover to buy the story.
     As if that weren't enough, Karin addressed the Georgia House of Representatives during a special legislative session on SAVE THE LIBRARIES - pitching directly to those in charge of our library budget. House Speaker David Ralston (R-Blue Ridge) is "proud to recognize Karin in the Georgia House of Representatives for her accomplishments which she has achieved all over the world.”
     I'm happy to have Karin as a guest today at

Q. Karin, what was the initial seed that set you on this journey to help our library?
A. I'm sure you're like me and most authors I know--you got your start at your local library. This was very much the case when I was a kid. Every Saturday, my dad would drop me off at the Jonesboro library on his way to work. I got to spend the whole day there surrounding by books. It was bliss!

Q. I was so proud to be a part of the fundraiser. Can you tell my readers a little more about it?
A. Dekalb County, like many counties across the nation, experienced drastic cutbacks in the last few years, none more so than this year, when their budget was cut by almost two-thirds. Hours were slashed. Staff were fired. This was a really bad situation. As a resident of Dekalb, I thought I could do something good, so I talked them into letting me throw a fundraiser, and of course local authors like you, Denene Millner, Kathryn Stockett and Mary Kay Andrews were kind enough to help support the cause. To date, we've raised over $75,000 for the Dekalb Library Foundation.

Q. What do you hope to accomplish through SAVE THE LIBRARIES, THE READING AGENCY, and by addressing the Georgia House of Representatives?
A. My main hope is to take the message to the folks who control the purse strings. Firstly, digital books are not the death knell for libraries. People still need books. And when they want digital books, many library systems (hopefully Dekalb will soon be one of them) offer digital books to check out. Secondly, more people are using the libraries than ever. The bad economy is just one factor. For many folks who don't have a computer or internet access, the library offers them the only venue through which they can submit online applications. ESL classes, AA meetings--you name it, you can meet about it at the library. Politicians need to know, also, that every dollar invested in a library system yields an average of five dollars in return. Kids who read do better in school. Smart kids go to college. College grads make more money and pay more taxes and employ other people like gardeners, nannies, etc. They go to restaurants more. They buy fancy cars. All of this generates healthy tax revenue for the state. It's a win/win proposition--and a better way to spend our cash as opposed to more police officers, more juvenile court cases, and more remedial school courses. It's really one of the last nonpartisan issues. People need libraries no matter their religious or political affiliation.

Q. Are you getting a positive response to your efforts so far?
A. It's hard to find a human being living in America who has never stepped foot in a library. What's surprised me is the different types of folks who want to support our efforts. Home schoolers, for instance, are very pro-library because many of the expensive texts they need are part of the collections. Our history is stored in libraries. Our national archives are there. Libraries touch so many people on a personal level. Authors, especially, are eager to do their share. I haven't had one author tell me no when I've asked for help.

Q. Tell us about THORN IN MY SIDE. How did that come together?
A. Well, it's kind of a crazy story. It's dark because that's my thing--lots of crime and a good murder. It's also about sibling rivalry, and how sometimes two brothers might think they are polar opposites, but find out the hard way that they're just two sides of the same coin. I hope people enjoy it, and if they don't, I hope they lie about it on Amazon anyway because I know if this story is successful, I'll be able to talk more authors into doing it and donating their part to Save the Libraries.

Q. Finally, what can my readers do to help?
A. This is the question everyone wants an answer to and I love it because the answer is so simple. Don't try to save all the libraries in the world. Pick the branch down the street from you. Adopt them. Donate money if you can, or if you aren't inclined to do that, then write to your local representative and let him or her know how much the library means to you. In many cases, more people have library cards than voted in the last election--a sobering statistic for any politician. Barring these choices, you can always look on your shelves and find some good books to donate. Don't be like the stingy family who only donates beets and old creamed corn to the food drive. Give them the books that you love--the New York Times bestsellers, the books that everyone is talking about. Lastly, the Dekalb system has a great online feature where you can "adopt" a book in your name--or give an adoption as a gift. Instead of giving a gift basket to your kid's favorite teacher, why not adopt a book in her name? All of my Christmas presents this year are going to be book donated to the library.

Thanks so much Karin!
And remember - y'all are free to use my SAVE THE LIBRARY coloring page in the effort as well!! (Click the image to go to it's original post for download.)


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