Click on "News" above and you'll find out more information about Networking Day in our area. I'm hosting and bringing something chocolate, something caffeinated, and something interesting. You'll have to come to find out what. RSVP required to firstname.lastname@example.org or 906-228-4465 (so I know how much of the stuff to bring.)
This is a great opportunity to share, get new ideas, and move forward on your dream of writing and/or illustrating and publishing children's books.
Just wanted to give a shout out to people who offer their quiet spaces to writers (whose lives are anything but quiet) to create. I have a person like that in my life. Because she has written a book (a very scientific and important textbook) and because she is a shameless promoter of other's dreams, she understands how valuable this quiet space is to me. Thank you, P.S.
Heavy: If you are interested in middle grade historical fiction (the genre in which my chapter book will live), you must read Milkweed by Jerry Spinelli. Lisa Wheeler (www.lisawheelerbooks.com) recommended it to me and she was right on. It's a powerful, heart-pounding, shocking account of the atrocities of WWII told by a 6 or 7 year old orphan.
Light: Check out this book writing rap by Erin Dealey. Cute!
Yeah! Completed the first draft of the first two chapters of my (as yet untitled) manuscript!
The more I learn and talk about the Pedro Pan mission, the more incredulous I become about how many Americans have never heard this part of our history. Fourteen thousand forty-eight children (14,048!!) flew clandestinely to the United States UNACCOMPANIED by any adults to be cared for (by complete strangers in many cases) until their parents could join them here or bring them back to (a more safe/free) Cuba. It seems this mission and the impact it made on our country, on Cuba, and on the children and their families, has been overshadowed in chronicled US history by the Bay of Pigs invasion, Cuban Missile Crisis and the Cold War. While those are certainly worthy topics for the history books, where is the chapter about these 14,000 children?
My eyes are blurry from reading everything I can about the Pedro Pan mission. I want to understand what was going on in the minds of Cuban parents, American politicians, foster families/orphanages, and of course, the exiled children, prior to starting the manuscript. There are several good adult books written about this subject, each representing the authors' biases and perspectives. I'm hoping to piece together my own interpretation of what happened and why using this information. Right now, I'm just confused.
I've decided to tell this story in alternating chapters of an American orphan and a Cuban exile who become friends at the orphanage. Today, I worked on my character study for the American orphan. I feel like I know him already and appreciate his resilient spirit. However, I feel so sad for him and his little life.
This blog shares insights on the craft of writing children's books and the publishing industry, and supports creators on their journey.