Thursday, February 28, 2019

Poetry Friday: Snowman - Cold = Puddle by Laura Purdie Salas

Welcome to Poetry Friday. This week's round up is hosted by TeacherDance blog. Be sure to click over to enjoy all of this week's poetry goodness.

I received a very special package in the mail this week. I was lucky enough to win a copy of SNOWMAN - COLD = PUDDLE: SPRING EQUATIONS (Charlesbridge, 2019) written by Laura Purdie Salas and illustrated by Micha Archer.
In this picture book, Laura offers a unique take on the spring season with equation poems. Here are just a few of my favorites.

riverbank + otters = playground

Laura accompanies each equation poem with a brief fun explanation: 

Some animals play all year long. In spring, otters slip and slide in the dirty, slushy snow. No mittens. No hats. Just messy, muddy, mucky fun.

seeds - umbrella = flowers

Have you heard the saying "April showers bring May flowers"? Animals might hide from spring rain, but plants drink it up! Seeds need soil, air, and plenty of water to grow.

Laura even left me a special equation poem when she signed the book.
The book ends with a wealth of back matter including  author's and illustrator's notes, information on how we know when spring actually starts, and a list of books for further reading. 

I challenged myself to create a few equation poems of my own. I added this one to Laura's Equation Poem Padlet:

grandma's chocolate chip cookies + milk = sweet memories

Here is my equation poem ode to winter:

salt + ice + snow = potholes

As I look out the window next to my desk, I'm hoping to see signs of Laura's spring equations very soon!

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Poetry Friday: Peekity Boo- What You Can Do Heidi Bee Roemer Interview

Welcome to Poetry Friday! This week’s Round Up is hosted by Check It Out blog. Be sure to click over and enjoy all of the poetic goodness being shared. This week, I’m so honored to bring you an interview with poet/author Heidi Bee Roemer. I began writing poetry after taking a class with Heidi, and she has been someone that I admire both personally and professionally ever since. She is as sweet as she is incredibly talented. Heidi has a new rhyming picture book, PeekityBoo- What You Can Do (Henry Holt, March 2019), coming soon to a bookstore near you, and today, she is sharing a little bit about this wonderful new work.

Hello, Heidi! Welcome to the blog and thank you for joining us for Poetry Friday!

1. How did you get the idea for your latest rhyming picture book, Peekity Boo- What You Can Do?

The idea for Peekity Boo! was sparked by two things. One was sweet memories of my two little boys (long since grown) splashing in the tub, snuggling up with a book, and kissing them goodnight. The second was musing how fun it would be to experience those moments with grandchildren someday. Babies are so precious! After all, "There are ears to nuzzle. Towel to snuggle. Belly to tickle. Toesies to wiggle!"

2. What was the writing process like for this book? Did it come together quickly, or were there lots of revisions? Did it find a home right away, or did that take some time?

It was all rather miraculous. Once I stumbled upon the lovely word pattern, the story came easily, the sale was quick, and revisions were minor. I submitted the manuscript to my former editor at Henry Holt. Christy Ottaviano is the wonderful editor who snatched another manuscript of mine from the slush pile a few years ago and published my debut book in 2004, Come to My Party and Other Shape Poems.

3. This book has lots of fun language. What’s your favorite line? Any particular reason for that choice?

Blippity Blub! I'm glad you asked that question, Kim! My favorite line is "Buggity boo! Now what do we do?" which is paired with an illustration of a toddler looking crestfallen as the bubbles in his bathtub disappear down the drain.

The reason? I love playful words and silly nonsense phrases. As a toddler myself, I went wild every time I heard a song called "The Hawaiian War Chant." The lyrics were, "Whicky whicky WHACK! Whicky whacky WOO! Bugbug BOOO hoo! BOOO hoo!" My mother said she couldn't believe my reaction when she played that old 45. I would roll and flop around on the floor in a hysterical heap of giggles and wiggles. When the song ended, I begged her to play it again. And again. Until I was happily exhausted. I liked that song apparently.

4. Tell us about the illustrations. Did you include any illustration notes with the manuscript? Was there any collaboration with the illustrator, Mike Wohnoutka?

I didn't feel the need to include illustrator's notes and had no collaboration with my illustrator. Mike instinctively knew just how to capture the characters with simplicity and sweetness. His illustrations bring this little boy and his family to life with a glowing warmth and coziness. The endpapers feature smiling teddybears, bunnies, ducks and whales. Mike's artwork is delightful!

5. Who is your audience for this book? Where can we pre-order our copies?

Peekity Boo What YOU Can Do!is geared for wigglers, droolers, pint-size poopers, toddlers, crawlers and chewers and all readers ages 5 to 105. Available March 19, it can be pre-ordered through Anderson's Bookshops (,, Amazon or Barnes and Noble.

6. Do you have some other books in the pipeline? What’s on the horizon for you?

Ah! I'm expecting again! New books, that is. Two board books Who Says Uh Oh? and Who Says Peekaboo? will be published this fall. Hide-and-Seek at the Construction Site: A Lift the Flap Book is a companion book to Hide-and-Seek on the Farm (2018). Lastly, The ABC's of Kindness will be available in 2020. All are published by Highlights Press.

From the moment Heidi hatched from her chrysalis, she was an itty bitty bookworm who devoured books. Heidi fell in love with children's books for a second time when she began reading to her two little boys. In 1992, Heidi sprouted her wings, joined the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators, plugged in her shiny new word processor and began writing for children in earnest. She has since sold over 400 children's poems and stories to dozens of children's magazines and anthologies and has several picture books to her credit including Come to My Party and Other Shape Poems, What Kinds of Seeds are These? and Whose Nest is This?. She is a former instructor for the Institute of Children’s Literature and a writer-in-residence for Chicago Public schools. "Heidi Bee" has given hundreds of presentations at schools, libraries and other literary venues. For more information, visit

Thursday, February 7, 2019

[Poetry Friday] Magazine Markets: Poetry Written For Children

Happy Poetry Friday to you all! This week's round up is hosted by Laura Purdie Salas at her Writing the World for Kids blog.  Laura is asking us to write Equation Poems for her padlet. Once you've finished up here, be sure to click over to enjoy all of this week's Equation Poems and poetically inspiring posts.

I recently presented a short poetry workshop to my local SCBWI writer's group. During the course of putting my talk together, I updated my list of magazines that consider poetry specifically written for children. I'm sharing that list here. I'll be adding it as a linked page on the side bar next week. If you know of any oter markets that consider poetry written for children, please share those links in the comments. I would like to keep an up-to-date comprehensive list. 

BALLOONS Literary Journal publishes material for readers age 8-10. Submission Guidelines.

The Caterpillar is a literary journal for kids ages 8-11. Submission Guidelines.

Cricket Media publishes the following magazines for different age groups: Babybug, Ladybug, Spider, Cricket, Cicada, Click, Ask, Muse, Cobblestone, Dig, and Faces. Submission Guidelines.

Ember is a semi-annual journal written for readers age 10-18. Submission Guidelines.

FrostFire Worlds publishes poems with fantasy and sci-fi themes. Submission Guidelines

Fun For Kidz is a magazine created for children ages 6-13. Submission Guidelines.

Golden Gleece Press publishes two magazines- Wee Tales -(ages 7-12) and Refractions (13+). Submission Guidelines.

Guardian Angel Kids publishes material for children ages 2-12. Submission Guidelines.

Highlights for Children publishes Highlights, High Five, and Hello magazines. Submission Guidelines

Hunger Mountain is an annual print journal. Submission Guidelines.

Spaceports & Spidersilk is an online magazine for ages 8-17. Submission Guidelines.

U.S. Kids publishes two magazines- Humpty Dumpty (ages 2-6) and Jack and Jill (ages 6-12). Submission Guidelines.

YARN Literary Journal publishes material for ages 14+. Submission Guidelines.

As always, thanks for stopping by and Happy Poem Making!