Saturday, October 27, 2018

Stand By Me

The film STAND BY ME had a profound impact on me as a kid. That movie and the Stephen King short story that it’s based on captivated me and drew me into coming-of-age stories. I was the Gordie of my crew—always telling stories. Perhaps you caught the homage to STAND BY ME in HEY, KIDDO?

National Book Awards!

A thing that is for real happening. See you soon, National Book Foundation!

Hey, Kiddo at Baird Middle School!

 Thank you Jordan Funke for being the amazing librarian that you are and hosting me at Baird MS for HEY, KIDDO. What a great day, my first school visit specifically for my graphic memoir

Real Life Reference

HEY, KIDDO recounts my antics with this crew. Lucky to have these guys in my life and honored they were at the launch event for the book. ‬

You may have missed this, but page one of HEY, KIDDO is filled with symbolism and foreshadowing. I am a graduate of Rhode Island School of Design in Providence--which served as a bridge between my childhood ambitions and adulthood achievements.

Had lunch at Coney Island Hot Dogs, so I brought the crew there a book and a print. ‬
Love that I can take my kids to a spot where my grandparents went on dates as teenagers. ‬

Super Secret!

Grace Lin and I had a super top-secret meeting with Ellen from The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art. ‬

I’ve already told you too much. ‬

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Hey, Kiddo at the Mark Twain House

When you ask a friend to lead a discussion on difficult topics with you, not only will they turn up, but they’ll bring you smashed-up doughnuts on stage. So many thanks to Lisa Yee for moderating a chat on HEY, KIDDO at The Mark Twain House!

Hey, Kiddo Artwork at Michelson Galleries

Last Sunday’s reading at R. Michelson Galleries in Northampton also served as an opening reception for a show featuring prints and sketches from HEY, KIDDO.

These are all for sale at R. Michelson Galleries!

Autographed Copies

Thank you to Ted from Broadside Bookshop for bringing books to The Montessori School of Northampton Fall Fair today. And Fun fact: this is the elementary school Ted attended.
And in related news, Broadside now has signed stock, should you be walking around downtown Northampton and need a signed copy.

My local indie The Odyssey is also taking autographed book orders on their website:

Scripting Hey, Kiddo

Before all of the heavy lifting that comes with sketching out sequences, I write a script for my graphic novels. This is what HEY, KIDDO looked like before I picked up a pencil and started sketching out that prologue scene…

Time Flies!

With my friend Dylan in 2012 and 2018. I absolutely love that kids have grown up as my books aged up. It is the very best!

(Also—shout it to Dylan’s yo-yo classes held at A to Z in Northampton every Tuesday. This kid is a pro—literally!)

Hey, Kiddo Press Roundup pt. 2

This book of mine has just received its sixth starred review. 6 fah 6!

Grateful to spot HEY, KIDDO in the The New York Times Book Review Editors’ Choice section this morning. 🗞🙌

Fresh Air with Terry Gross

The voice I’m hearing in my ears?
Terry Gross. Terry. Gross. 🤯
What a thrill and an honor and a surreal experience to have been interviewed by her.

 Terry Gross made no assumptions that I knew who she was or what her show was and started explaining Fresh Air to me. I told her that I was going into this assuming we would be best friends who wore matching ugly sweaters for our annual holiday card… 

Here is the link to the audio:

While my conversation with Terry Gross didn’t cover the greater world of graphic novels, I wanted to be prepared if it did. Not knowing if my mind would space out, I made these notes of books that I wanted to mention. 

I’d likely need an entire episode just to talk about these ground-breaking books. But in the meantime, here's my list: 📘❤️

This was Fresh Air outtro promoting the Hey, Kiddo episode. So incredibly grateful to share my story so widely. It’s a story that I kept guarded and hidden for so long:

Hey, Kiddo at An Unlikely Story

Thank you to everyone who came out to Plainville, MA, for my HEY, KIDDO reading tonight. A special thank you to the staff at An Unlikely Story for hosing and to Jeff Kinney for his thoughtful—seriously, they were thoughtful—questions.

Downtown Worcester.

Thursday, October 11, 2018

All Things Considered

All Things Considered, this was incredibly exciting. 
I had the honor of sitting down to chat with Audie Cornish. 

 I talk about my unique upbringing, the saving power of art, and why my book’s dedication is a recognition for all of the readers who have addiction in their families. ‬‬

National Book Award Finalist!

What you’ll hear is an author who just learned he was a National Book Award finalist. 
I was already scheduled to be in Monte Belmonte’s studio for an interview but was running late because a phone call arrived...

This crazy thing happened. A day after HEY, KIDDO publishes, it gets named a finalist for a National Book Award. A FINALIST!
Check out this thread on Twitter for a moment-by-moment recap of how it all went down. I am grateful beyond words (and pictures)!

Press Roundup for Hey, Kiddo!

Got a ahold of the print edition of the Publishers Weekly with this fantastic. So grateful for the coverage for this book that is so very different for me. I’ve spent countless years wondering how this change of pace might be received... 

You may find the article online here:

SO psyched to have HEY, KIDDO on the Indie Next List for fall. Thank you, indie booksellers, for bringing this book to your readers!
Check out all of their recommendations here:

Hey, Kiddo has received a FIFTH starred review, and I am so incredibly thankful that this story is being supported. Look for the review in the September 15th issue of Booklist!

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the making of HEY, KIDDO over at the 7 Impossible Things Before Breakfast blog:

My local papah covers all that went into making HEY, KIDDO. 🗞

HEY, KIDDO receives an official review in the New York Times!
Online now, in the papah on Sunday!

So incredibly grateful for this coverage in The New York Times. The front page of the Ahts section!
 I hope that young readers feel less alone when they read it. 

In their latest episode of the Scholastic Reads podcast, you’ll hear from me, but you’ll also get the perspective of Kim Tranell, executive editor, Scholastic Classroom Magazines, about ways she has covered topics of addiction—specifically, the opioid crisis—in Choices magazine for teen readers.

Hey, Kiddo Release Pt. 2

What an astounding launch for HEY, KIDDO. Family, old friends, new friends, applause for all of my old teachers in attendance, the mayor stopped by with the key to the city—and art.
It was a day I will forever remember.