News, Notes & Inside Info from a Children’s Book Author

Archive for January, 2010

Music Video Weekend: “Shakin’ All Over”

Saturday, January 30th, 2010 Posted in Family, Music | No Comments »

My son Gavin, ten years old, is a true musician. He's played piano for seven years and started playing guitar two-three years ago. It's fascinating to watch him slowly develop his own personal taste in music. The big hurdle is that ...


Thursday, January 28th, 2010 Posted in Current Events, Interviews & Appreciations | No Comments »

"I hope to hell that when I do die somebody has the sense to just dump me in the river or something. Anything except sticking me in a goddam cemetery. People coming and putting a bunch of flowers on your ...

“Teachers Make A Difference,” performed by Taylor Mali

Thursday, January 28th, 2010 Posted in In the Classroom, Interviews & Appreciations | 1 Comment »

I understand that in some exotic cultures poetry -- actual poetry -- is celebrated on Fridays. For example: here, and here, and here. This week I decided to play along. But with a difference. Here at, we're all about ...

Fan Mail Wednesday #74-75

Wednesday, January 27th, 2010 Posted in Fan Mail, Uncategorized | No Comments »

I'm feeling pushed these days -- mostly in a good way -- so it's hard to get to these letters. The demands of standard mail can be time-consuming and expensive. I'll admit it: sometimes I get behind and never catch ...

Stories Behind the Story: The Case of the Snowboarding Superstar

Tuesday, January 26th, 2010 Posted in Jigsaw Jones, the writing process | No Comments »

As part of a continuing (read: sporadic) series of posts, I take a look back at old Jigsaw Jones titles with the intention of providing my Nation of Readers with more "extra juicy" background info. If you are like me, you ...

One Minute Blast of Inspiration

Monday, January 25th, 2010 Posted in Around the Web, the writing process | No Comments »

Some days, you find exactly what you need. "Keep going." [youtube:]

Music Video Weekend: “The Dark End of the Street”

Friday, January 22nd, 2010 Posted in Music | No Comments »

I usually begin these things with approximately the same sentence: I've been listening to this song all week, and I see no reason to change that pattern now. "The Dark End of the Street," written by Chips Moman and Dan Penn, ...


Wednesday, January 20th, 2010 Posted in Around the Web, Fun Clips | 1 Comment »

Okay, has everybody gone to the bathroom? You all strapped in? It's going to be a long trip. [] The video above, "The Known Universe," attempts to convey would it looks like to travel across the known universe. Here's some background info: It takes ...

Fan Mail Wednesday #73

Wednesday, January 20th, 2010 Posted in Fan Mail | No Comments »

Here's a quick one . . . Dear James Preller, My name is Justin W. and this is my friend Dan S. We are sixth grade boys and we would like to compliment you on your book Six Innings. We  read it ...

Fan Mail Wednesday #72 (Monday Edition)

Monday, January 18th, 2010 Posted in Fan Mail, Jigsaw Jones, the writing process | 1 Comment »

Forgive my sporadic postings of late, it's been a hectic time, and deadlines loom. This week I'll be away for three full days on school visits. Always a positive experience that definitely helps keep the wolf from the door, but ...