Monday, May 22, 2017

Ann Arbor Comic Arts Festival


I designed the poster for the Ann Arbor Comic Arts Festival! (My kiddos drew the flowers.) This is a great, FREE comics fest for young comics creators and readers. Perhaps we'll see you in June?

I mean, holy moly, check out this lineup!http://a2caf.com/guests

Different Kinds of Intelligence

During Q&A at a school visit, a student asked me if I was smart when I was a kid.
This question took me back some because I wondered where this might be coming from for this child. I've also never been asked this particular question before.
This is how I answered. I told him that everyone has intelligence and that there are different kinds of intelligence. Some people are really smart when it comes to science, some people are really smart when it comes to athleticism, some people are really smart when it comes to understanding behaviors and relationships. When I was a kid, I had artistic intelligence, but mathematics never came easily to me.
I hope that my answer helped this student recognize the intelligence within him.

Love



This is what love looks like to an author. ‬

Monday, May 15, 2017

Questions from Readers

KID AT SCHOOL VISIT: Who controls the rights to a character after the author dies?
ME: *slowly backs out of room, maintaining eye contact*

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KID AT LIBRARY: You said you'll be making books forever, so will you be writing books when you're in your grave?
ME: Hopefully I'll have enough in-progress work to be published posthumously.
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KID: How old are you?
ME: I'm so old that when I was your age, it was the late 1900s.
KID: Then how are you still alive?

Seneca Falls Public Library


‪Thank you to this fine-looking crew who filled the Seneca Falls Public Library. A special shout to the family who drove three hours to see me. I'm honored‪!

School Lunch Hero Day 2017!

I had a GREAT time celebrating School Lunch Hero Day in Dorchester, MA, at Trotter School! I used to live just around the corner back when I started writing the Lunch Lady series. 

The students made incredible projects for their Lunch Mothers, as they are called at the school. All of the poems and letters were read aloud by the kids in both English and Spanish—it brought people to tears. 

I hope that you all enjoyed whooping it up at your school's cafeteria. Wherever you celebrated, we'll do it again on May 4, 2018!









Monday, May 01, 2017

Naptastrophe! giveaway!



My latest picture book is here! Please read Naptastophe! to any kid who doesn't like to nap. This story is based loosely on real events with my own daughter...except we aren't rabbits. Whenever my little girl refused a nap, I would proclaim, "This is a total naptastrophe!" Because then we would run errands, and things always went awry with so much overstimulation at every turn.


“Parents and children will recognize themselves and their own frustrations.” —School Library Journal


I hope that caregivers and children will enjoy reading this book and laughing together! Amazon just selected Naptastrophe! as one of their Best Books of the Month for baby- Age 2.

I'll be giving away some sets of picture books and some original artwork. Please see below to learn how you can win!


a Rafflecopter giveaway









Interviewing Jeff Kinney at Carnegie Hall!

If you'd like to watch two knuckleheads banter back and forth, talk cartoons and draw, this is your video:







Jeff Kinney outlines his speeches with cartoons to help prompt topics. This is our script from today's event. Can you tell which part was about Lunch Lady?

And here is a closer look at that painting that I made for Jeff to celebrate ten years of Wimpy Kid!


Monday, April 24, 2017

Punk Farm Nursery!


The greatest thing about being a published author over these past several years? Seeing my readers grow up. That ten-year-old girl on the left? She had a nursery themed after Punk Farm when she was a baby. (Yes, THAT Punk Farm nursery!) At the LA Times Festival of Books today, she brought a Platypus Police Squad book to be signed and her brother had a Jedi Academy book. It is always so nice to see the Sabi family, no matter what city they catch me in!

And for cultural reference, here is my blog post about seeing the Punk Farm nursery via MySpace: http://thejjkblog.blogspot.com/2007/02/punk-farm-themed-kids-room.html?m=1

LA Times Festival of Books

I was only in Los Angeles for a few hours for the LA Times Festival Of Books, but I managed to cram in some time with several author pals. How many of their books have you read?


James Burks, A.S. King and I defaced our author photos at the Once Upon A Time bookstore booth. 


With Cecil Castellucci, Ben Acker and Ben Blacker at the Star Wars panel! 


Salina Yoon signed a book for my kiddos!


Mr. Matt Phelan!

 

Jacqueline Woodson!


Fancy (Nancy) Robin Preiss Glasser! 

Monday, April 17, 2017

Wonderful School Visits


It's not every day that I get to speak to students in grades Kindergarten all the way through twelve. But man, I love these kinds of days! Thank you North Manchester, Indiana, for a great visit.


My visit to Pierceton Elementary was like walking into a real-life Pinterest board! So many creative little details. Thank you to the library and media team in the Learning Commons for making this happen!
Sharing these photos with a disclaimer:
Now remember, if you are hosting an author visit, all that is ever hoped for is ENTHUSIASM—so don't start sweating it if you're thinking you need to come up with such a display.










School Lunch Hero Day!


Check out this creative thank you card!
School Lunch Hero Day is on May 5th this year. Consider making some fun art projects for your school's lunch team!


Monday, April 10, 2017

Article in Boston Globe



Honored and tickled to be included in one of the illustrations accompanying the Boston Globe article on authors and illustrators living in Western Massachusetts.

Art by David Leonard

http://www.bostonglobe.com/magazine/2017/04/05/how-western-mass-became-kids-lit-central/8Mb4D8IGqEEkk6Lpc0bWxN/story.html?event=event25


Fun Fact: When I was living in Boston and starting my book career, I would take part in focus groups to make extra cash. Sometime in the early 2000s, I participated in a focus group for the rebranding of the Globe Magazine. I was excited to get the print edition this week to check out this great article.

Library of Congress Panel



What an incredibly INSPIRING afternoon at The Library of Congress chatting with Laurie Halse Anderson, Barry Lyga, Kekla Magoon & Meg Medina about the role children's literature can have in helping kids through some tough times. This panel was recorded and will be online at some point in the coming months.
It'll be a conversation you won't want to miss.



That Laurie Halse Anderson. What a gift to children's literature and the world in general.

A Visit to NPR


Ran into this Guy at NPR today. (See what I did there? I bet he's never heard that one before.)
In case you didn't guess, this is Guy Raz from the TED Radio Hour!

As I was leaving the NPR offices today, I passed by this gentle soul. I said, "Scott Simon?! I'm Jarrett Krosoczka. Thanks for mentioning the Lunch Lady books on air last year." He asked if we could take a photo for his kids. I asked if we could take a photo for ME!

School Visit

I got to meet the coolest kids down in South Carolina!
Photo by Valerie Byrd Fort.

Monday, March 27, 2017

Meltdown 2017!


These are some of my favorite pictures from Meltdown!


Our friend Quin is a huge Wimpy Kid fan. He's also a DJ. ‪Here he is as DJ Quintessential warming up the crowd for Jeff Kinney's appearance at Meltdown! ‬


A HUGE thank you to Jeff Kinney for signing all of those books, thank you to all of those awesome readers for waiting in line so patiently and thank you to our incredible volunteers for making it all work! 



"I never thought I'd ever get the chance to meet Jeff Kinney!"—our friend Jaiden, a young cartoonist at Meltdown who we gave the title of Personal Assistant to Mr. Kinney.


The Star Wars Drawing Party with Tony DiTerlizzi was a ridiculous amount of fun! 

Tony and I have friends near and far, far away....‬ ‪Thank you for coming to Meltdown, 501st New England Garrison.


Thank you Kevin Sherry for bringing your incredible spirit to Meltdown 2017!



‪We are so grateful to Selina Alko and Sean Qualls for bringing their talents to our community! ‬



And thank you to Lisa Yee and her personal assistant, Supergirl, for coming to Meltdown 2017!




Lunch Lady Paper Chandelier!


My friend Michelle makes these beautiful paper chandeliers out of her studio here in Western Mass. She just came by the house with this beautiful gift—a paper chandelier made out of an old Lunch Lady book!
I absolutely love it.


Check out Michelle's work on Etsy and on Facebook at Z Paper Studio.