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Happy November!

I'm a few days late in the wishing, but that doesn't make it insincere. Tomorrow is Guy Fawkes day and, more pertinent to current politics, perhaps, election day here in New Jersey.

At present, autumn is showing off here in South Jersey, in that last, startling blaze of color just before everything turns brown and/or falls to earth. There is an astonishing gingko tree in my neighborhood that could be an advertisement for the color yellow, and some maples that are vying to be named prettiest shade of red or orange. With the recent dip in temperatures here, and the coming rise at the end of the week, I expect all the leaves to become confused and jump ship soon, but until then, they are a sight to behold!

As it is November, I am participating in Picture Book Idea Month over at Tara Lazar's blog. There were a few posts counting down to the start of the month, and now there's a post a day, sometimes with a writing prompt (or 30) and sometimes with an inspirational story. The official goal of most participants is to come up with one idea each day, so you have 30 by the end of the month. Then later, you go through your ideas and write picture books. Below is the list of authors and illustrators posting this month:

I am running my personal practice a bit differently. (I hear your lack of surprise, people of the internet!) I have decided to designate a full hour a day to this task. First I read the Picture Book Idea Month post of the day, then I take notes on a page in my composition book. Then I read the Picture Book Month post of the day, which is something completely separate run over at picturebookmonth.com, which consists of authors and illustrators posting about why picture books are important. And then I take notes on that on the next page in my composition book. Then I turn to the NEXT page of my composition book and try to come up with at least three ideas per day. After all, I have the balance of a full hour to do so, and they don't have to be awesome ideas, necessarily, but I do try to make sure that they are actually possible as a picture book. And hey, after day 4, I'm at 20 ideas, so obviously it sort of works. (I should confess, though, that I came up with 11 on the first day thanks to Tammi Sauer's (tamarak's) awesome prompt, and then it's been three a day.)

I also spent part of the first day of November signing books at Children's Book World's Author and Illustrator Night in Haverford, PA. It was lovely to sign copies of AT THE BOARDWALK for readers, and to mix and mingle with so many authors and illustrators!

And speaking of books, I'm anxiously waiting for my copy of Jeannine Atkins's latest book, Views from a Window Seat: Thoughts on Writing and Life to arrive. It's a distillation/expansion of Jeannine's thoughtful, inspiring posts from her blog, and I cannot wait to get it in my hands. Here's a link to her announcement about the book, though I note that the book is now available for Kindle, too.

So, tell me: Are you writing this November? Are you doing Picture Book Idea Month? (If you aren't doing it officially, you can read the posts and find inspiration anyhow.) Are you reading the Picture Book Month posts? Are you (dare I ask?) doing NaNoWriMo? (I rather expect nobody who is doing NaNo to answer, since it requires a rather dedicated time commitment, but hey, I thought I'd ask!)

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( 9 comments — Leave a comment )
Nov. 5th, 2013 12:14 am (UTC)
Wow! PIBOIDMO sounds awesome! I'm not participating, but I may check it out! I am doing the 30 Days of Thanks and NABLOPOM, which kind of go together nicely. *grins*

Awesome news on the 20 ideas already!

It sounds like you had a lovely time at the book signing.

Best wishes for the rest of the month on your picture book ideas!
Nov. 5th, 2013 09:20 pm (UTC)
I keep a gratitude journal year-round, so I just keep on keeping on there. Didn't realize it was National Blog Post Month until you said so, and I'm too late to start right, but that's okay. :D

Enjoy your projects this month!!
(Deleted comment)
Nov. 5th, 2013 09:20 pm (UTC)
As you know from our conversation, I haven't been great at the "always writing" thing for the past couple of years. But I am finding my way back, albeit slowly. And that is good.
Nov. 5th, 2013 01:51 am (UTC)
That's so great! I can just see you, signing books for dozens of little ones, your beautiful smile just BEAMING. I love it.
Nov. 5th, 2013 09:21 pm (UTC)
Your image is one I'd like to share and hold onto, Terri! In reality, I signed something like 4 to 5 books, all but one of which were for pre-orders, and there were no little ones in sight at this particular event. But still, I love the way you think!!
Nov. 5th, 2013 04:07 am (UTC)
Good for you ;) I'm only kind of doing NaNo (which is why I can answer, right?) :)
Nov. 5th, 2013 09:22 pm (UTC)
Yes! NaNo sounds overwhelming to me. If I ever tried it, I'd probably just play along at home and not register and such. Hope your writing is coming along!!
Nov. 5th, 2013 02:07 pm (UTC)
I love the way you're handling PB month -- starting with a creative spur, then kind of deepening that great play with the why of it all, creating a unique quasi-collaboration. Your notebook sounds like a treasure.

Like Jenn, I'm writing because that's what I do, and slowly. Always loved the idea of NaNo but could never do it -- but I feel like we all get to enjoy the brisk wind of energy they're creating off in their heads-tucked-down places.

Thanks for ordering my book. I look forward to your reading it!
Nov. 5th, 2013 09:26 pm (UTC)
I am starting to become impatient with the good folks at Amazon because it is NOT HERE YET! Your book, that is.

I counted once, and when I did the Brush Up Your Shakespeare events, I was producing 5,000 to 8,000 words a day and it was no problem. But that was for blog posts, and was commentary on somebody else's work, and not new thoughts out of my own head that had to be dug out with a pick axe and then polished and such. I'm pretty certain that NaNo is not for me, although as I haven't tried it, I can't say so definitively. Maybe some year, if I have a something hankering to be written that might fit? Dunno.

I am enjoying my little notebook so far. And today, I took some time and started to noodle around with one of the ideas, so I am about halfway to a first draft of something. Which feels good.
( 9 comments — Leave a comment )

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