Kidlit Social #73: Wildlife Author Laurel Neme on Building a Writing Career Around Your Passions
Meet wildlife author and journalist Laurel Neme, author of ANIMAL INVESTIGATORS: How the World’s First Wildlife Forensics Lab is Solving Crimes and Saving Endangered Species, which has been featured on ABC News Nightline and NPR’s Science Friday.
She was just nominated (by National Geographic) for a Pulitzer Prize in International Reporting, together with her colleague, Jeff Barbee, for their series of articles on oil drilling in the Okavango. Laura and Laurel chat about how to use your passions to establish yourself as a specialist/expert in magazine and book publications (and build a career around those passions) and Laurel’s research techniques.
CBI Interview: Picture Book Author Johnny Ray MooreAuthor Johnny Ray Moore is a dual threat in kidlit: he can write in verse and in prose. The author of six published picture books, Moore’s newest book is a diverse, heartfelt lyrical celebration of winter, spring, summer and fall along with the joys of fatherhood in the aptly titled Seasonal Adventures (Reycraft, June 2021), illustrations by Cbabi Bayoc. The book was hailed by Kirkus as “a pure ode to nature and sincere Black boy joy.”
Kidlit Social #65: Melissa Stewart on Creating Nonfiction for the Classroom
On this episode of The Kidlit Social, meet Melissa Stewart, author of “5 Kinds of Nonfiction: Enriching Reading and Writing Instruction with Children’s Books”, along with dozens of kidlit nonfiction titles currently in use by school districts as part of their curricula.
Melissa discussed creating nonfiction for kids while keeping educators’ needs in mind – a vital skill as schools and libraries are the biggest market for children’s nonfiction.
Kidlit Social #63: Writing Books w/ STEM Tie-Ins & Crafting Realistic Animals
Meet illustrator, explorer and children’s book author Katy Tanis. Katy’s work bursts with color, and a true love for every creature on land, in air and under sea. In this episode of The Social, Katy talks about her writing/illustration process, and gives her advice for aspiring illustrators. She also touches on the necessity for authors and illustrators to do their research and accurately reflect the behaviors of animals in children’s book texts (fiction and nonfiction) and illustrations, as well as the environment.
Katy gives some examples of how to do that research, and why this accuracy is important since so many publishers are looking for books with STEM tie-ins (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math).
Writing Nonfiction for Children – Where the Opportunities Are Right NowIn this meaty excerpt from “The Children’s Nonfiction Market: How To Break In & How to Succeed”, Lionel Bender breaks down the major kidlit nonfiction markets and niches, the categories of children’s nonfiction and where writers can find paying work in the nonfiction market. Lionel is the author of over 70 books for children, and the editorial partner of Bender Richardson White, an editorial, design, and production team serving major book and magazine publishers in North America and Europe. He is also a regular speaker on children’s book publishing and self-publishing. He was the co-director of the 21st Century Children’s Nonfiction Conference from 2013-2016.
Kidlit Social #59 Replay: Beth Anderson on the Changing Face of Picture Book Biographies
Award-winning author Beth Anderson joins us to discuss the wonderful category of picture book biographies. Laura and Beth talk about the “new” picture book biographies and how the genre has changed, and what types of approaches are most appealing to editors today. If bringing history to life for young readers excites you, you need to meet Beth!
Kidlit Distancing Social #52 Replay: Sneed B. Collard III on Nonfiction & Writing Mysteries for Middle Graders
In this episode, meet Sneed B. Collard III, award-winning author of more than 80 books. He’s best known for his science-based nonfiction for readers ages 5-12, and his middle grade and YA mysteries and thrillers. In 2006, Sneed was the recipient of the Washington Post Children’s Book Guild Children’s Nonfiction Writer of the Year Award for his body of work. In 2010, Sneed sought to address the shortage of quality regional children’s books by launching his own publishing company, Bucking Horse Books.
Kidlit Distancing Social #49 Replay: Teen Readers Tell Us What They Like (and Don’t Like) in YA & Middle Grade
This week, a panel of teen readers tell us what they like – and don’t like – in middle grade and young adult books. They’re joined by Sallie Lowenstein, award winning author/illustrator of children’s and young adult books.
Kidlit Distancing Social #40 Replay: Jennifer Swanson, Melissa Stewart & Cynthia Levinson on Why Kids Love Nonfiction a *Lot* More Than You Probably Think
Three top children’s nonfiction authors talk about the growing significance of nonfiction and why “the nonfiction books of today are not the textbooks of yesteryear”.
Kidlit Distancing Social #36 Replay – Kirsten W. Larson on Writing Nonfiction/STEM Picture Books
This week, meet Kirsten W. Larson, author of over 25 kidlit nonfiction titles. Her picture book biography ‘Wood, Wire and Wings’ was just named a 2021 Best STEM Book by the National Science Teaching Association.
Kirsten shares her thoughts on writing compelling nonfiction picture books, incorporating STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) into picture books, and discuss her success writing for the school and library market. STEM and the school/library market continue to provide tremendous opportunities for kidlit writers – so you’ll want to hear what Kirsten has to say.