Tuesday, May 31, 2011

This Sunday at the Carle Museum - 11:30AM

On Sunday, June 5th, I'll be at the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art for the Carle Bookshop's video interview series. If you'd like to be in the audience for the filming, the conversation starts at 11:30 AM. For all you educators out there, you can even get 1 PDP for attending! 

Coincidentally, this event takes place exactly one week before Good Night, Monkey Boy, my first published book, turns ten years old! 

Talking about Words and Pictures with
Jarrett J. Krosoczka

June 5, 2011
11:30 am
Doors open for this event at 11:00 am
Museum opens at 12:00 pm
Free; Museum Admission extra

(1 PDP) Join The Carle’s bookseller, blogger, and book-lover, Andy Laties as he engages picture book artists and authors in conversation about their beginnings and their books. Please note, this program will be filmed by Northampton Community Television.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Through the magic of the Internet, sit in on the Guys Read panel at BookExpo

Photo by Paula Willey  

Weren't at the Javits Center in NYC for BEA? Don't worry, the Internet is here. BookExpo just uploaded a video of the whole shebang. Hang with Jon Scieszka, Jack Gantos, Mac Barnett, Matt de la Peña, Eoin Colfer and some weirdo in a red pleather Thriller costume as they talk about Guys Read and the Guys Read Library anthologies.

Check it out:

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

LL art for two great causes

There are two ways that you could win some art from Lunch Lady and the Bake Sale Bandit this week and both events happen on Wednesday, May 25th.

If you are at Book Expo America, I have donated a piece to the ABC Children's Group to support indie book shops. There, you will find this page:

If you are in Washington DC, I have donated a piece to the Reading is Fundamental gala. There, you will find this page:

I am very proud to suport both organizations. Happy bidding!

I am so embarrassed

Turns out Scieszka meant GUYS READ: THRILLER, not the Michael Jackson album.

Wish he'd of said something when I offered to wear my red pleather Thriller suit...

But a good time was had by all. And check out GUYS READ: THRILLER this fall and check out a brand new comic by yours truly as well as great stories by Matt de la Pena (the handsome guy in the above pic) and so many more fantastic authors, like Anthony Horowitz, Walter Dean Myers, Margaret Peterson Haddix, Bruce Hale, James Patterson, Gennifer Choldenko, Patrick Carman, and M.T. Anderson. WOW! Still can't believe I was invited to the party.

AND - get this - the cover art and chapter openings were illustrated by none other than Brett Helquist. I was and am bowled over to have see Brett's interpretation of my work for the opener of my piece.

Guys Read: Thriller is available 9/20/11.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Easily one of the greatest days at a public library

Comics Fest in Durham, NC was beyond spectacular. The hosting librarians thought of everything and covered all of their patrons. I flew in to talk about Lunch Lady for this kids. Jason Lutes was there to talk about comics for the teens and grown-ups. And at the end of the afternoon, a cosplay prom for the teens.

Here are some scenes from the day:

How awesome is this? Celeste made a Lunch Lady and the Summer Camp Shakedown board game! I love it!

And look who was signing books next to me! Young cartoonists Max, Caroline and Joshua. As a way to promote the event, the library hosted a comics workshop a few months ago. The kids' comics were printed as mini-comics and the cartoonists were invited to sign copies that were given away. I was lucky enough to nab personalized copies of everyone's books.

This was beyond amazing.

They also had a super-hero dress up kit (for those who didn't bring their own costumes) and a nifty backdrop for photo taking. Kids left with copies of the photos. Well, kids and me...

I had to leave before the cosplay prom began....

...said my goodbyes to cartoonists Jason Lutes and Jan Martijn Burger....

...before dashing off to the airport.

HUGE thank you and many props to librarians Amy and Patrick for dreaming this day up and making it happen!

And if all that isn't enough, what's not to love about librarians who make pamphlets like this to hand out to parents:

Sketchbook Saturday

Teens preparing for the Cosplay Prom at Southwest Regional Library's Comic Fest in Durham, NC:

Friday, May 20, 2011

Our Lady of Lunch

Today I had a first. I presented in a chapel! I can now check that off my bucket list. I had a great time visiting with the kids at River Oaks Baptist school!

What do you get the Ambassador Emeritus who has it all?

Well, a bobblehead, naturally. To thank Snookieszka for his..er...her willingness to goof around at the 2011 Children's Choice Book Awards, I sent this:

A small memento for a legendary performance!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011


Jon Scieszka called and asked me to be on a panel about THRILLER at BookExpo America. I'm pretty psyched, this is one of my favorite albums of all time!

I'll be signing with Jon and the very talented Matt de la Peña on Tuesday, May 24th at 9:30 AM at Table 15. (Please note this event is free, but requires a ticket.)

And then at 11 AM that same day, I'll be on the Midtown Stage yucking it up with Jon and Matt, along with authors Eoin Colfer, Mac Barnett and Jack Gantos.  

A good time shall be had by all! See you there!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Durham, SC - Comics Fest

This Saturday, May 21st at 1PM, I'll be presenting at the Southwest Regional Library in Durham, SC and talking all things Lunch Lady and comics. All the information you need is in this link.

See you there!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Who was the biggest diva?

Yesterday, a film crew descended upon the studio for a top-secret documentary. (More on said top-secret documentary later.)

In the meantime, guess who was the biggest diva of the day?

Was it...

A) The author/illustrator who demanded only organic, cage-free bottled water?

B) The pug who refused store brand peanut butter?

C) The desk lamp who refused to cooperate and just wouldn't sit still?

If you guessed C, the uncooperative desk lamp, you are CORRECT!

They eventually needed to just tape it to the wall. And retape and retape...such a diva!

I'll tell you more about this awesome project in a few months, in the meantime, enjoy these behind-the-scene pics:

Many thanks to Peter and his amazing crew!

Thursday, May 12, 2011


Punk Farm and Punk Farm on Tour are now available as eBooks! They are available on all devices, wherever eBooks are sold. (Click on the titles for more information.) 
Did you know that your local indie bookstore may be selling eBooks, too? Click here for a full list of indies that sell eBooks.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

CCBA Gala recap - the host's perspective

I think I have now fully come down from the momentous high that was hosting the Children's Choice Book Awards. What a night! It could not have gone better. Which is a relief, because I'd been thinking about the night since I was invited to host back in November! That's six months of thinking, planning and pitching jokes to my my poor wife. My monologue went off without a hitch and if you were there and thought it was funny—thank my wife. Because there were plenty of jokes that I would throw out there and she'd look at me and say, "Please don't tell that joke." We watch a lot of "Modern Family" in our house and the episode where Phil Dunphy was invited to host the Southern California Realtors Banquet hit especially close to home.

But thankfully, I listen to my wife, scrapped the lame jokes and it was such a wildly successful night for all involved. Huge props to the Children's Book Council and Every Child a Reader for throwing such a fabulous party. It seems just about everyone with an ISBN was there that evening. Here are a few photographic highlights:

In the weeks leading up to the CCBA gala, I threw lots of stuff out on the social networks, mostly in jest. One week, I posted that I would demand only yellow M&Ms backstage and asked if people could give me more suggestions for my hosting contract. Imagine my surprise then, when before the program began, the CBC crew presented me with this gift for hosting the festivities.

This brings the diva level to a whole new level—that's my face!

First rule as host, coordinate your outfit with the set.

Just before the ceremony began, I ran into Jeff Kinney's editor, Charlie. "Hey what do you think Jeff would think of this joke?" I asked. "You have to do it!" he responded. It made me a little nervous, because I don't know Jeff personally. But poor guy has been nominated for "Author of the Year" three times running now and hasn't won. So I called him the Suzan Lucci of children's books and told him he wasn't the only guy in town with a fancy balloon. I met Jeff after the event and he not only appreciated the jokes, but told me his kids liked my books. What?! That hardly seems to make sense.

It was such a thrill to not only get to meet so many amazingly talented legends of the field, but to get to introduce them, too. I was star struck with all the presenters, which included Hilary Knight, R.L. Stine,  Walter Dean Myers, Laurie Halse Anderson, Erin E. Stead, Clare Vanderpool and Katherine Paterson. Here I am chatting with Madame Ambassador before the awards presentation began:

By the time rehearsals rolled around, I still had no idea if I had won or not. In fact I didn't until seconds before it was announced. But in rehearsals, RL Stine looked down the list of nominees, looked at me and said, "Oh you're not going to win, look at all of these nominated books." I responded, "I know, I don't expect to." Turns out he was ribbing me. Who knew he could be as funny as he can be scary! Seriously one of the funniest people I've ever met.

But just in case, I gave away cash to the fine youngsters who assisted with the presentation.

When it came time for me to introduce this year's Newbery and Caldecott medalists, Snooki stormed the stage. She always seems to be turning up where those award winners are . . .

Snooki was, of course, Jon Scieszka. Now Jon gets a lot of credit for getting dulled up like this, but his wife Jeri made him look like this and his daughter Casey lived through this. How did this happen, you might ask? Well when Snooki was on the Today Show back in January, I knew this would be ripe for lampooning. And I knew Scieszka was the man for the job. So right before he took the Meltdown stage back in March, I made sure to ask him in front of his wife. He wasn't so sure, his wife thought it was hysterical. And there you go . . .

Another fake social media update that I threw out there was that I was planning a musical number. And The Flannery Brothers responded with, "Let us know what you need!" Little did they know . . .

. . . that LeVar Burton would be attending. And wouldn't it be cool to lead the crew in a rendition of the Reading Rainbow theme song?

LeVar was every bit as awesome as one would hope he'd be. More so! In rehearsals, he asked, "What tone are you singing in?" I replied, "Tone deaf." Afterwards, LeVar pulled me aside and told me my voice was better than I was giving myself credit for. Wow - if LeVar can make me feel better about my voice, he really is the nicest person in the world. (Hear my voice for yourself in the video below.) What a thrill for me though—I grew up with Reading Rainbow. As a kid, when I saw the Reading Rainbow logo on a book, I knew that book was for me!

Congratulations to all of the winners. Here's a full list:

Author of the Year 
Rick Riordan for The Lost Hero (The Heroes of Olympus, Book 1) (Disney-Hyperion) 
Illustrator of the Year 
David Wiesner for Art & Max (Clarion/Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)                                                                      

Kindergarten to Second Grade Book of the Year 
Little Pink Pup by Johanna Kerby (Putnam/Penguin)                                                 
Third Grade to Fourth Grade Book of the Year  
Lunch Lady and the Summer Camp Shakedown by Jarrett J. Krosoczka (Knopf/Random 

Fifth Grade to Sixth Grade Book of the Year  
The Red Pyramid (The Kane Chronicles, Book 1) by Rick Riordan (Disney-Hyperion) 

Teen Choice Book of the Year 
Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green and David Levithan (Dutton/Penguin) 

A few videos did surface on the Internets. I will warn you ahead of time, I do not have a good singing voice. And this seriously was a huge act of bravery on my part to sing in front of people, but here I am singing the Reading Rainbow theme song:

And here's Snookieszka trying to hijack the show: