With the swine flu outbreak, everyone should know about Connie Goldsmith’s book, Influenza: The Next Pandemic? (Twenty-First Century Books). Goldsmith discusses the historical impact of the flu; how flu viruses mutate; today’s flu viruses; and preventing the flu. She reported on bird flu in this book before it hit the major news outlets. In fact, she’s even been commissioned by the editors of NurseWeek, a periodical for practicing nurses, to write an article on the flu this week. Influenza: The Next Pandemic? has received excellent reviews from librarians and the medical community. The NSTA Children’s Book council called it “a seamless blend of history and science.”
Connie’s book may be found on Amazon at:
http://www.amazon. com/Influenza-Pandemic-Twenty-First-Century-Medical Connie advises: “I’d encourage all of you who are interested to check the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention website at :
for common-sense precautions to follow and for additional information. This particular flu contains elements of human, bird, and swine flu and has never been seen in humans before. Therefore, no one has any natural immunity, and of course, current flu shots offer no protection against it.”
Last weekend at the Kiwanis Easter Egg Hunt I realized that children at an egg hunt are very much like writers searching for publishers. We all want to fill our baskets.
Picture a football field covered with color-coded plastic Easter eggs. (within view of the stage I might add, where authors Lynn Hazen and Phil Silver (photo below R) and I were scheduled for Storytime. Not the easiest gig, but fun just the same.) OK back to the field. Each color of egg had age appropriate goodies inside. A perfect match for all, right?
The littlest kids went first and they were instructed to pick up the yellow eggs ONLY. But many were so eager to fill their baskets, they grabbed whatever eggs (ie publishers)they could find while patient Moms and Dads (ie agents) dropped the blue and orange eggs back onto the ground for the next round of egg hunters. "Why can't I have that one?" one confused toddler (ie writer–You getting this metaphor?) asked. "Because the yellow ones are for you," mom/agent said.
Picture the next two age groups chomping at the bit. Their eyes on that special egg /editor of their dreams. "I want that blue one!" one 6 year old boy announced with such Hands-off-It's-mine detrmination a few fellow egg hunters backed away. But alas, the blue ones were earmarked for the oldest kids. "When our turn comes, we're heading for those cool orange ones over there!" his Dad/agent said, knowing the best deal for his client–err son. Note: a meltdown over the right egg is not an easy parenting gig. We all want the kid to succeed. And sadly, blue-egg boy's tunnel vision (and yeah, the meltdown) kept him from seeing that. "Trust me, dude, the orange ones are the best," Dad tried again. (somebody give this agent–err Dad–a medal!) And, when it was their turn, the blue-egg guy followed Dad's lead. Happy Easter, right?
Picture the very sad child arriving late to find an empty football field. No eggs at all. The writer–oops–child had taken so long getting her basket ready, they'd missed the whole thing. Well, except for the petting zoo, and our author tables–which have nothing whatsoever to do with this over-extended metaphor.
The moral of the story? You decide–I was over signing books when the kids plopped on the grass to open their eggs.
The message? A sincere thank you to my wonderful agent, Deborah Warren of East/West Literary who always makes sure I get the right eggs in my basket. : ) And hugs to those weary Egg Hunt parents. You rock. The kid won't remember the melt-down–only the chocolate kisses inside his egg.
PS Thanks also to my high school helpers (Jordan and her pals) for manning the booth during my storytime!
THE Group—(we still don't have a name) meets every other Thursday, with writing pals (L to R) Linda Joy Singleton * Dead Girl series, The Seer series and more. www.LindaJoySingleton.com , Connie Goldsmith * Invisible Invaders , SuperbugsStrike Back and other cutting edge science titles. www.lernerbooks.com , and Patricia Newman *Jingle the Brass, and soon to be releasedNugget on the Flight Deck (Fall 2009) www.patriciamnewman.com at a local Border's. (Yes, I said the B-word. They've been good to us. Plus, it's the closest mid-point we could find, and no Indies around for miles.)
This week we had the usual chapters to critique, news about editors and agents and SOUND THE TRUMPETS Patti shared the first glimpses of Nugget, with cool illustrations by Aaron Zenz and military jargon and facts about life aboard an aircraft carrier.
We KNOW this book's gonna TAKE OFF and SOAR, Patti. (and not just because we've known Nugget since it was a mere gleam in your writer's eye…)
Today’s goal was to make sure I had ErinDealey as my Twitter id before any other Erin Dealey’s aced me out. Are there any others, you ask? I know there’s an Erin (or wait a minute it’s Kat Deeley (So You Think You Can Dance?) but just in case I have name-twins out there, I signed up. Which then lead to creating my profile. And downloading a photo. And then I found that little Find A Friend button… Honestly, I do write books–not just blogs and Twitters and emails. And actually I haven’t officially Twittered yet because I can’t figure out how. Or maybe I have and I don’t know how to read my own post–ha! Then there’s re-tweeting someone else’s Tweet. And DMs and Tags. But what am I worrying about? I only have one Twitter follower (thanks to my writing pal Linda Joy Singleton!) and one What’s the DEAL(ey)? follower (thanks to another writing pal, Lynn Hazen) TAG, you’re it!
One of the best parts about doing Author Visits at schools is the opportunity to encourage kids to read and write. Thank you to all of the wonderful students and teachers, and amazing Librarians I've met recently. As you can see, my golden retriever MAX likes to read the fan mail, which comes in various shapes and sizes. (Thanks Mrs. Gee and her 22 sheep! See other photos for a look inside their book…) But hereare some letters that Ridgeview Elementary students wrote to the often unsung heroes, their PTA, who sponsored my visit.
Thank you PTA for having Erin Dealey. She is so cool and fun and nice. Please let her come again. She is fun to watch. I like her noises and it is fun to listen to her. she is wonderful. She made LITTLE BO PEEP CAN'T GET TO SLEEP and GOLDIE LOCKS HAS CHICKEN POX. I like her books. They are cool. She is a cool author. Love, Hannah
Thank you PTA for having an author come in….One thing I learned is that your sloppy copy is your friend. Write your story. (How do you make those noises?) Jack and Jill were funny. I had the best assembly ever. Fondly, Tejbir
Dear PTA, …thank you for raising money. I'm going to write a book about you. I love Erin Dealey. Love, Zak
Dear PTA, the author was pretty funny. I wish she would live here. My class and I will do our best and work the hardest. All the graders will do their best. The more the teachers keep teaching us, the more we will do. Erin Dealey's book was amazing! from Jabari
Here's one for me: Dear Mrs. Dealey, Good morning! How are you today? Your books are the greatest! You're AWESOME! You made us really smart! Thank you for coming to our school. Will you come back sometime? Your big fan, Liam