Posted by: Kathy Temean | February 25, 2018

Book Winners & Scott Treimel’s Grumble Bucket

Lindsay Maeve wins Gazpacho for Nacho by Tracey Kyle

Claire W Bobrow wins Astronaut-Aquanaut: How Space Science and Sea Science Interact by Jennifer Swanson

Heather Pierce Stigall wins My Pillow Keeps Moving by Laura Gehl

S©ott Treimel NY is a full-service boutique agency representing the intellectual property rights in the work of authors and illustrators of books for children and teens, only: Picture books – Chapter books – Middle Grade books – Young Adult novels – Non-fiction and fiction – all genres. He also represents selected children’s illustrators.

STNY’s client list includes well-known talent and novice creators they believe can sustain long-term careers and are especially proud of the original talent they’ve discovered and the careers they’ve launched.

As members of the Association of Authors Representatives, the Authors Guild, and the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, they adhere to the principle that our clients’ interest is always paramount. Our chief responsibility is to maximize the value of our clients’ work and protect their fiduciary interests. They maneuver their clients’ careers within the context of the quickly shifting book market. 

SCOTT’S GRUMBLE BUCKET:

SOLICITORS:

I dislike correspondence from strangers addressed Dear Scott.

It is presumptuous to load a manuscript/excerpt in the body of correspondence that purports to be a cover letter.

EDITORS:

It bugs me when an editor says ‘you got a good contract’.  Editors have not negotiated contracts for twenty-five years and are not qualified to comment.

REVIEWS:

Book descriptions presented as Book Reviews gripe me.

CONTACT NEGOTIATIONS:

I bristle having to argue business items with go-betweens for the decision maker: I will always advocate my positions better.

I hate hearing corporate policy in place of reasons when I do not get my way.

OPINION MAVENS:

I dispute, as anti-art, the position that an author be the ethnicity of his or her characters or inhabit an identical environment. A writer’s imagination is his or her contribution to the world. A writer who cannot transcend his or her experience is a journalist.

MANUSCRIPTS:

Qualifiers: some, a lot, a few, etc.

Directionals: left, right, next to, around, over, under, etc.

Over-narration

Standard-issue characters

MISCELLANY:

Why won’t everyone stop second-guessing everyone else? Allow booksellers, librarians, reviewers, and the hoi pollioi to represent themselves: self-censor is present danger.

Talk tomorrow,

Kathy

 

Posted by: Kathy Temean | February 24, 2018

Illustrator Saturday – Gladys Jose

Gladys Jose is an illustrator and storyteller. She graduated from the University of Central Florida in 2012, where she earned a Bachelors in Fine Arts degree, specializing in graphic design. She has worked with clients such as Scholastic Book Fairs, Tangerine Press (a Scholastic imprint), SunDance Graphics and many others.

Gladys lives in sunny state of Florida, with her husband and daughter. They spend most of their days trying to recall if they had carpet or tile underneath the mountains of toys and books. Time will tell… unless it gets worse. It doesn’t get worse… does it?

Here is Gladys explaining her process:

I normally start off with rougher sketched but I couldn’t find my sketch book. 

I do most of my work in Photoshop. But really any of these steps can be applied to most drawing software.

step 1: once I have a rough idea and composition of the illustration, I make a sketch that has most of the details that I want in my final piece.

step 2: I then take the sketch in Photoshop, set it to “multiply” and start coloring in a layer underneath it. I don’t care too much for it too look perfect at this stage.

This is something I didn’t always do when I first started, BUT mocking up the colors actually saves me a lot of time and keeps me from getting to finished piece and NOT liking the color palette i end up with.

step 3: I start laying out the flat colors for all of the shapes. I don’t add a ton of details at this point.

step 4: For the shadows I add a layer set it to “soft light” and in a dark blue or dark purple start adding in the shadows.

step 5: I add another layer I add details I may have missed. I add textures, fur, blush etc.

step 6: For the “highlights” I add a new layer, set it to “overlay” or “soft light” and use the either white, or an very soft yellow. for this particular piece its hard to really see it because the opacity for this layer was set to 15%.

Here is a video to see it in action:

Interview Questions for Gladys Jose

How long have you been illustrating?

I’ve always loved art and drawing. But I got serious about honing my illustration skills about 6 years ago.

What and when was the first painting or illustration that you did where someone paid you for your artwork?

Before I graduated I had painted the new music/theater building at the University of Central Florida, and the Dean bought it.

What made you choose the University of Central Florida to study graphic design?

It had a good program and was close to home.

Did the art school present any opportunity to delve into children’s illustrating?

Not really. There was one illustration class, but I never had the opportunity to take it because I was so focused on graphic design at the time.

Did the school help you find illustration work?

Yes, through networking events. But the work was more graphic design related.



Do you feel art school influenced your illustrating style?

Not really, at UCF since everything was more fine art or graphic design related. After graduating I took a ton of online classes through SvsLearn.com with Will Terry and Jake Parker when they first started offering their online classes and honestly I think 75% of my growth as an artist was from that.

What type of job did you do right after you graduated?

I got freelance work doing graphic design and building props for scholastic book fairs photoshoots.

When did you decide you wanted to illustrate for children?

During my last semester when I realized I wasn’t as excited about designing logos and websites as I thought I was. I’ve always liked telling stories and illustrating gave me the freedom to create new characters and worlds.

Have you illustrated a picture book or book dummy?

Yes, I’ve Illustrated a few dummies.

How did you find representation with the CAT Agency?

I met Chris Tugeau at a Florida SCBWI portfolio event a few years ago. And Have been in close contact with Chris and Christy since then.

Have you done any book covers?

I haven’t but would love to if given the opportunity.

Do youhave any desire to write and illustrate your own children’s book?

Yes!


Would you illustrate a book for an author who wants to self-publish?

Unfortunately, at the moment, no.



Have you worked with educational publishers? Which ones?

No

Have you done any illustrating for children’s magazines? Which ones?

I’m working on my first one with Highlights Magazine now!

Have you ever thought about illustrating a wordless picture book?

The first dummy I ever created was wordless.

What do you think is your biggest success?

My biggest success would have to be managing a freelance career while taking care of a toddler! Haha

What is your favorite medium to use?

I love gouache, markers, pastels! I love everything, I can’t really pick! But most of my Illustrations are actually done digitally!

Has that changed over time?

Yes. I think having a toddler running around means you need to adjust your routine and way of doing things. I don’t get huge 10 hours of uninterrupted time to work like I use to. It’s easier to stop and save a file digitally and pick it up later when I have another small window to work.

Do you have a studio set up in your home?

I have two studios at home! My office and the dinning room table! I wake up ridiculously early and get more focused work done in the office. During the day I work  on my laptop in mini chunks of time (or whatever my daughter allows) I save emails and easier tasks for dinner-table-day-time work.

Do you try to spend a specific amount of time working on your craft?

I try to spend the quiet morning hours doing creative work. Usually I’ll wake up between 4a and 5a and work till 8a.

Do you take pictures or do any type of research before you start a project?

I have a Pinterest board for every single project I work on. Also, for the dummy I’m working on I actually recorded myself acting out each character to get poses to look as “natural” as possible. If I can go out I take pictures. I do that as well.

Do you think the Internet has opened doors for you?

The internet is really great. But I feel like meeting people in person is still best. I love attending conferences and workshops and getting to know people in “real life”.

Do you use Photoshop or Painter with your illustrations?

I use photoshop.

Do you own or have you used a Graphic Drawing Tablet when illustrating?

Yes, and it’s the best investment you can make!

Do you have any career dreams that you want to fulfill?

My dream would be to have long career in writing and Illustrating picture books!

What are you working on now?

Right now I’m working on a really silly humorous picture book dummy! I’m really excited about it!

Do you have any material type tips you can share with us? Example: Paint or paper that you love – the best place to buy – a new product that you’ve tried – A how to tip, etc.

Don’t be too attached to your sketchbook. I know a lot of artist who just sketch and sketch but never take any work to final art. Sketching I great don’t get me wrong, but you need to get to a point where you’re also creating finished pieces. Also, I don’t own a sketchbook. I’m too much a perfectionist and end up not drawing in them because I want to draw something nice. Instead I use regular printer paper, it makes making ugly drawings easier, hehe.

If you can afford a drawing tablet, get one! It makes working on digital stuff feel more natural.

Any words of wisdom on how to become a successful writer or illustrator?

Just put in the hours. Like everything in life, it takes time and hard work. Will you have to balance your day job and working on honing your skills in the beginning? Yes. Will you have to sacrifice your spare time? Yes. Will you cry out of frustration? At least once a week! Will you want to give up? Probably. Should you? NO! Keep going! Please keep going! If it’s something you are serious and passionate about don’t do yourself the injustice of not giving it your all and giving up.

Thank you Gladys for sharing your talent, process, and expertise with us. Make sure you share you future successes with us. To see more of Gladys’ work, you can visit her at her website: https://gladysjose.com/

If you have a minute, please leave a comment for Gladys. I am sure she’d love to hear from you and I enjoy reading them, too. Thanks!

Talk tomorrow,

Kathy

Posted by: Kathy Temean | February 23, 2018

February Agent of the Month – Scott Treimel – Results

S©ott Treimel NY is a full-service boutique agency representing the intellectual property rights in the work of authors and illustrators of books for children and teens, only: Picture books – Chapter books – Middle Grade books – Young Adult novels – Non-fiction and fiction – all genres. He also represents selected children’s illustrators.

STNY’s client list includes well-known talent and novice creators they believe can sustain long-term careers and are especially proud of the original talent they’ve discovered and the careers they’ve launched.

As members of the Association of Authors Representatives, the Authors Guild, and the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, they adhere to the principle that our clients’ interest is always paramount. Our chief responsibility is to maximize the value of our clients’ work and protect their fiduciary interests. They maneuver their clients’ careers within the context of the quickly shifting book market. 

HERE ARE THE FIRST PAGE RESULTS:

 FAMILY MATTERS by Rosi Hollinbeck— Middle Grade Novel

The bat sliced through the air and the ball slammed into the pocket of Nick’s worn catcher’s mitt, stinging his palm.

“Steee-rike!” the umpire shouted behind him. Nick glanced at the scoreboard – ninth inning, two out, 1-0. He held up his hand, turned, and said, “Time, Blue?” The ump nodded.

Nick jogged to the mound. He put his glove in front of his mouth and spoke as quietly as he could. “Listen, Snake, I think the guy on second is stealing signs. I’m going to signal for a curveball high and outside. I’m going to set up outside, but throw it low and in. I’ll be ready.”

Snake nodded. “Got it. Low and in.”

The Wildcats had played together since T-ball and would start high school soon. The Warriors had always beaten them. But now the Cats finally had a chance to beat them. All they had to do was hold this lead.

Snake shrugged to loosen his muscles, wound up tight, kicked high, and let the ball go. His release was early and the ball floated a little, right over the center of the plate, belt high.

The runner on second took off before the batter swung and missed, but the ball came in hot. Nick slammed his hand shut, but not before the ball popped out and rolled toward third base.

The batter took off for first. Nick dove for the ball but bumped it with his mitt, sending it farther up the baseline. He scrambled forward, reaching for the ball. The runner from second headed right for him. Nick snagged the ball and swept his mitt at the runner’s leg, catching his flapping uniform pants, and the runner stepped way out of the baseline. He heard the ump yell,

“Yer OUT!” as the runner hit home plate.

Nick looked up into the stands to see his father standing hunched over, hands shoved deep into his pants pockets, his face twisted into a snarl of disgust. Yeah, Nick had screwed up. Big time.

HERE’S SCOTT:

I want to comment on the open and closing.

On a first page, we need a more immediate hook than a play-by-play device can supply, although I appreciate the clarity of the sports writing. For a sports-minded readership, which the title does not signal, the details will be welcome; but they still need trimming right here.

The final sentences are excellent intrigue: Nick’s dad is introduced with the info that not only can his son “disgust” him but also for no more than fumbling— because in fact he makes the play.


 

MASHA MUNCHING by Amalia Hoffman – Picturebook

Masha was tired of eating hay for breakfast, hay for lunch and hay for dinner.

She dreamed of munching on fancy food.

So when she heard Farmer Finny and his wife talk about the new restaurants in town, Masha had an idea.

Masha dressed up, said goodbye to her goat friends and left the farm.

Walking up the road, she noticed a lit-up sign.

Le Bistro Magnifique. That’s a fancy name, Masha thought as she stepped in. I bet the food is fancy too.

On the table, Masha spotted something white and fluffy. She took a big bite.

“Sir, what do you call this delicious dish?” she asked.

The waiter laughed, “That is a napkin mademoiselle, for wiping your mouth.”

Why would I wipe my mouth with such delicacy? Masha wondered.

After gobbling up her napkin, the waiter served the biggest meal Masha had ever seen. At first, it was a bit too crisp. But, after munching and crunching, chewing and chomping, Masha loved its tart flavor which was very different from fluffy napkin.

“Mon dieu,” the waiter gasped. “You ate the menu!”

“It was divine,” Masha replied,”but sir, may I also sample your other signature dishes?”

The waiter piled platters on the table.

Masha stuffed herself.

Burrrrrrrrrrrrp.

“Mademoiselle, it is not polite to be loud at a restaurant,“ whispered the waiter.

HERE’S SCOTT:

I love when Amerlia Bedelia mix-ups happen because animal and human cultures clash. But the ms is flawed, fatally, because Masha’s horse-ness vs. human-ness manifest arbitrary.

Masha 1) dresses up; 2) appreciates that a restaurant is “new”— and even knows about such things as a “signature dish”; 3) talks, reads signs, and is savvy enough declare Le Bistro Magnifique a “fancy name”; and, finally, her vocabulary stretches to “divine” and “delicious”. Q: how can she mistake a napkin for food? 

Separate is Masha off on a lark or starting a new life? Saying “good-bye” to her goat friends, suggesting her leaving is permanent— in which case the emotional ‘reality’ of the situation is ignored.


 

TIEN LEARNS TO WRITE by Terry Lim Diefenbach – Middle Grade

It was Mahk’s idea for me to teach Tien how to write. Tien likes to watch me while I practice the fancy letters that Mother makes me do. Not that I really need to, but she says it will keep me from forgetting how to now that schools are closed. Writing is good for my hands and my head.

“Ledigheid is des Duivels oorkussen, idle hands are the devil’s workshop,” Mother loves to mention proverbs.
Mahk, Tien’s grandma says the earlier a child starts learning a skill, the better.

“I learned to embroider with beads when I was Tien’s age. I barely could hold a needle correctly then,” Mahk told me once. “But it was a good skill for girls to know.”

Mahk can’t teach letters to Tien herself as Mahk can’t read or write. Not everyone her age knows how to, especially women. Mahk said that her father told her no one was going to marry her if she was too educated.

“That’s the old way,” Mahk said. “Of course, no one told me that reading would be a good skill to know, like for reading newspapers if the radio doesn’t work.”

“There are no papers, and no radio,” I reminded her – all the radios had to be handed in at the police station when Japanese soldiers arrived almost three years ago now. The only broadcasts we hear these days are the morning exercises in Japanese, called taiso, through the loudspeakers on our street corner. Sometimes there are Malay announcements and songs that say that Holland, America and England are bad countries. We used to hear sirens for air raids too, but those have stopped, now that the Japanese soldiers are everywhere. No worry about attacks from the air any more. We have no weapons and the Japanese wouldn’t bomb themselves.

HERE’S SCOTT:

I would be crazy for a story set in this time and place because they are largely ignored in m-g fiction and could be fascinating. Alas, this writing is disappointing. The dialog serves expositional rather than emotional objectives: it precludes the reader’s becoming immersed in the story and invested in the characters. The novel instantly feels didactic. Separately, sigh: the narrator does not come alive, at least yet. I would not forward to experiencing a life, only reading an account of one.


 

JUNE BOONE SUMMER CAMP AND OTHER NATUAL DISASTERS by Sally Spratt – Middle Grade

This is not what I had planned for my summer vacation. But no one asked me if I wanted to go to summer camp. Dad clenches the steering wheel of Esmerelda, our Army Surplus Jeep, so tight; his knuckles are white. Mom sniffles and wipes a tear from her cheek with the back of her hand.

“If you two are that upset, you don’t have to drop me off,” I venture. “You can keep on driving to the airport and take me along with you. I have my passport with me. I’ve had all the required shots, even though I don’t get human diseases…” I stop.

Dad’s eyebrows go up in the mirror. “June, you’re not supposed to talk about that,” he frowns.

“Sorry,” I mumble and slide down the seat out of his view, the backs of my legs making a strange wet squeak as they peel away from the cracked vinyl. I run my thumb along the piece of smooth metal I wear around my neck on a leather cord, a remnant of my arrival on earth. Mom gives dad a knowing look and turns back to me.

“You should put that beneath your shirt,” Mom says, eyeing the necklace. I slip it back under my Camp Wah-See-Wa-Gah t-shirt with a frown. “We don’t need anyone asking questions. I wish we could take you. It’s just not possible this time.”

“I thought we’d settled this. This expedition is for professors and teachers only, no students,” Dad says. He pushes his hair back off his forehead and goes back to clenching the wheel.

I gulp down the lump in my throat. “You take me every year. I’m not exactly a student. You know I can take care of myself,” my voice cracks. “And who’s going to keep track of Dad?”

HERE’S SCOTT: 

Although it is not the freshest scenario, I am happy the story opens with an argument in the car, rather than lots of exposition— although I wish the dialog were less expositional.

On the first page, the reader learns June 1) is not from Earth, 2) wears “a remnant” of her “arrival” beneath her shirt, which minimal cover is to prevent “anyone asking questions”, 3) is en route to summer camp but wishes she could travel elsewhere with her parents, and 4) is immune to human diseases. Items 1, 2, and 4 are provocative; Item 3 is standard issue.

Where is June from? Is June human? What are the parameters of her differentness, besides immunity to “human” disease? Is she vulnerable to non-human diseases? What would happen if June’s “origin” was discovered? How did the “family” come to be? I want to read to answer these questions.

Because June says “You know I can take care of myself” I suspect the strictures of camp supervision will be a hitch in the story, perhaps become the principal plot.

I would be willing to read one or two more pages before deciding to consider the whole.


 

Still a few days to submit:

Scott Treimel is closed to unsolicited submissions, but if you are a follower of my Writing and Illustrating blog you can submit a full picture book manuscript or a query with the first three pages of a chapter book, middle grade, or young adult novel in the month of February.

To take advantage of this opportunity, please use this email address: kathy(.)temean@gmail(.)com. You MUST put SCOTT TREIMEL FEBRUARY SPECIAL SUBMISSION in the subject box and note you are a follower (you automatically receive a daily email).

Of course format your submission using one inch margins, 12 point New Times Roman font, double spaced, plus don’t forget your name, address, and contact information. Please include genre, word count, and paste text into the body of the email.

DEADLINE: February 28th. 

Thank you Scott for sharing your expertise with us. Your help is really appreciated.

Talk tomorrow,

Kathy

Posted by: Kathy Temean | February 22, 2018

Two Contests: February 28th Deadline

Everything Change Climate Fiction Contest 2018

The Everything Change Climate Fiction Contest, presented by the Imagination and Climate Futures Initiative at Arizona State University.

We are looking for stories that illustrate, explore, or illuminate the impact of climate change on humanity and/or the Earth. We enthusiastically invite submissions in all genres of short fiction, including speculative, realistic, literary, experimental, hybrid forms, and more. Work will be selected and judged by Kim Stanley Robinson, The New York Times bestselling author of Shaman, the Mars trilogy, and New York 2140. The winning story will receive a $1000 prize, and nine finalists will receive $50 prizes. Selected work will be published in an anthology by the Imagination and Climate Futures Initiative at Arizona State University.

Submission Guidelines
Submit up to one (1) work of short fiction with a maximum length of 5,000 words.
Your submission must be under 5,000 words and contain no identifying information anywhere within the document.
Submissions that exceed 5,000 words or contain any identifying information about the author will be disqualified.
Submissions must be original work that has not been previously published in-print or online.
While the presence of other languages in the text is acceptable, the majority of the work must be written in English.
Participants must be 18 years or older. U.S. and international submissions are welcome. ASU students and employees are welcome to participate.
The deadline for the submission is February 28, 2018. Our judging process will be blind: judges will not have access to any identifying information about the authors, including their names, places or origin, or ages.

To read Everything Change: An Anthology of Climate Fiction, which collects the grand prize winner and finalists from our 2016 contest, visit http://climateimagination.asu.edu/everything-change.

To learn more about the Imagination and Climate Futures Initiative, visit http://climateimagination.asu.edu.

Submission Guidelines

  • Submit up to one (1) work of short fiction with a maximum length of 5,000 words.
  • Your submission must be under 5,000 words and contain no identifying information anywhere within the document.
  • Submissions that exceed 5,000 words or contain any identifying information about the author will be disqualified.
  • Submissions must be original work that has not been previously published in-print or online.
  • While the presence of other languages in the text is acceptable, the majority of the work must be written in English.
  • Participants must be 18 years or older. U.S. and international submissions are welcome. ASU students and employees are welcome to participate.

The deadline for submission is February 28, 2018. Our judging process will be blind: judges will not have access to any identifying information about the authors, including their names, places or origin, or ages.

Additional Things to Consider

  • Imagining Climate Futures: Your submission in some way should illustrate or explore the impact of climate change on humanity and/or the Earth, in the present or the near- or moderate-term future.
  • Scientific Accuracy and Understanding: Your submission in some way should reflect current scientific knowledge about climate change, though you have full artistic freedom to exaggerate, embellish, and invent fictional conditions and situations.
  • Climate Challenges, Human Responses: Your submission may illuminate and invite reflections on a climate-related challenge that individuals, communities, organizations, or societies face today, or might face in the near- or moderate-term future. Examples include (but are not limited to) daily decisions and behaviors, policy-making and politics, strategy and planning, moral responsibility to the future, investment in R&D or technologies, and public health issues.

CLICK HERE TO SUBMIT

BCALA’s 2017 SELF-PUBLISHING LITERARY AWARDS (powered by SELF-e)

The Black Caucus of ALA (BCALA) honors the best self-published ebooks by an African American author in the U.S. in the following genres: Fiction and Poetry.

ATTENTION: If your book is not in one of these genres, you can still submit to SELF-e using our standard submission form.

The judging committee will be comprised of a BCALA-appointed panel. They will select one winner in each genre.

PRIZES

Each genre prize Winner shall receive: $500.00.

  • Two (2) $500.00 awards: one for adult fiction, one for adult poetry;
  • Formal recognition at the Black Caucus of ALA Literary Awards;
  • BCALA Literary Award Seal to use in marketing.

ELIGIBILITY

Entries must have been written by an African American author born in the U.S. The competition is open to all English-language self-published ebooks for which the author is the copyright holder of the Work, and holds the rights to digital distribution. Entries will be evaluated on content, writing quality and overall quality of production and appearance; and must be an original work.

These awards acknowledge outstanding achievement in the presentation of the cultural, historical and sociopolitical aspects of the Black Diaspora. The purpose is to encourage the artistic expression of the African American experience via literature and scholarly research including biographical, historical and social history treatments by African Americans.

The final submission date is February 28, 2018. The awards will be presented in New Orleans, LA during ALA’s Annual Conference in June 2018. Authors will be advised of the Literary Award Committee’s decision in advance of the annual conference.

The submission process takes about 10 minutes.

(1) VIEW AND ACCEPT THE TERMS OF AGREEMENT

After accepting terms and conditions and entering the BCALA Self-Publishing Literary Awards contest, you will then be able to opt-in to make your ebook(s) available in your state’s public libraries in addition to being considered for the Library Journal-curated SELF-e modules.

(2) PROVIDE GENERAL INFORMATION

Enter a few basic items of information, including your Name, Local Library, and Email Adress.

(3) SUBMIT YOUR FILE

We currently accept ebooks in ePub2 and ePub3 formats, as well as PDF (authors can submit Print-on-Demand files if they are in PDF). We are currently only accepting ebooks published in English.

(4) ENTER BASIC METADATA

We use this information to manage the curation process, manage the judging process and to help readers discover your ebook once it is available to patrons.

(5) FINISH

It’s that easy!


2018 BCALA EBOOK LITERARY AWARDS COMMITTEE

Tiffany A. Duck, Chair
tiffany.duck3@gmail.com

Dana Evans
gevansd42@yahoo.com

Eddie Hughes
Ehu3utube@gmail.com

Annie Payton
annie.payton@aamu.edu

Gladys Smiley Bell
gladys.bell@hamptonu.edu

Stacy Williams
srw207@gmail.com


Talk tomorrow,

Kathy

Posted by: Kathy Temean | February 21, 2018

Kudos

CONGRATULATIONS – EVERYONE!

Carol Murray attended the Avalon Writer’s Retreat last September and has signed with Agent Jennie Dunham of Dunham Literary.

Laurie Wallmark attending Bombshell:The Hedy Lamarr Story at the Hopewell Theatre, wearing her Hedy shirt celebrating her new picturebook contract for, HEDY LAMARR’S DOUBLE LIFE, which is scheduled for spring 2019.

COVER REVEAL: Robin Newman new book NO PEACOCKS! Coming out this fall.

Charlotte Benardo’s two books in her Evolution Revolution trilogy have won awards- the first book, Evolution Revolution: Simple Machines, won Bronze in the Feathered Quill Book Awards, and the third book, Evolution Revolution: Simple Lessons, won gold! Both books illustrated by Cathleen Daniels.

Wendy Greenley has a picture book titled LOLA SHAPES THE SKY, illustrated by Paolo Domeniconi, being published by The Creative Company for publication in the Spring 2019.

COVER REAVEAL: Here is the cover for Christy Mihaly new picture book HEY, HEY, HAY! Illustrated by Joe Cepeda and coming out in July.

COVER REVEAL: Here is the cover for Patricia Keeler’s new picturebook coming out this April.

Do you have something to share. Please send me your success story. I’d love to shout it out! If you sent me something that I missed please send it again. Thanks!

Talk tomorrow,

Kathy

Posted by: Kathy Temean | February 20, 2018

ASK CAT

On the third Tuesday Christina or Christy Ewers Tugeau of the Cat Agency will answer questions and talk about things illustrators need to know to further their career. It could be a question about an illustration you are working on, too. Please email your questions to me and put ASK CAT in the subject box.

chrisandchristy

While the children’s book Industry was celebrating some of its’ most prestigious awards, it was hit with a flood of allegations of mistreatment of women with the #MeToo Movement – all very shocking.

Here’s Chris trying to make sense of all this and guide us through this difficult time:

The Big Question: WHY?

The Answer: Because they could.

The Ultimate Answer: Only we can stop it and prosper

I have been shocked and dismayed for some time now, but particularly in recent days, learning about the abuse and harassment charges being brought against several highly talented and very well-known men in our industry. Like us, these writers and illustrators have worked long and hard to produce work that we respected and even deeply loved. Then they chose to use this adoration to take advantage of others trying to also work hard to be a part of this special industry. Kidlit strives to bring knowledge, truth, love, safety, beauty, imagination and often alternative solutions to young ones trying to understand a world too big and often unsure and unsafe for them. It is a gift and also a responsibility to be part of this process. Yet these few men have then used their earned esteem as ‘power’ to do harm to other adults striving to learn and become a part of this worthwhile endeavor and share their stories and talents with each other and our children.

WHY?

That question has no acceptable answer, but of course it has a counter action. Thank you to all who have and will speak out loudly about these offensives. It takes bravery and the right atmosphere to successfully do this….this is the right time. Perhaps, in time, we can find a way to admire their work (books) without any longer admiring them. I hope we can regain our footing and our balance soon. After all, the vast majority of professionals in this industry are fine, giving, supportive men and women working so hard without overblown egos and ulterior motives. This very incredibly good-hearted, expansive, creative community is the one we need most right now.

I truly hope others will not run from these bad experiences and deprive themselves of the people and conferences that are there to teach and support them. Please don’t stop writing or painting because of being traumatized. PRODUCE MORE… show the world! Take back the power! Help others do the same. Don’t put yourself alone in situations that can be compromising. Walk away from any situation that feels wrong, and report it! Get deeper involved in existing groups and organizations to be sure they are what we need and deserve. A few spoiled lemons are easily detected once one looks and listens (and smells!). But the lemonade can be as sweet as ever by blending the best.

The answer? Join, work, share and celebrate Kid Lit any way you can and as often as you can. We need you!

Thank you Chris for your efforts to on how navigate these troubled waters and go forward.

Please help keep this column going by sending in your questions.

NOW SIT DOWN AND WRITE UP YOUR QUESTIONS FOR “ASK CAT.” 

Hope this illustration by Nicole Tadgell will inspire everyone to send in a question to Chris and Christy. Nicole was featured on Illustrator Saturday April 2, 2011. Take a look.

Send them to kathy(dot)temean@gmail.com and put ASK CAT in the Subject Area.

Talk tomorrow,

Kathy

Posted by: Kathy Temean | February 19, 2018

Agent Looking for Clients – Kieryn Ziegler at DG&B

 

Kieryn Ziegler joined DG&B in 2017 as the assistant to Michael Bourret in the West Coast office. She grew up in central Pennsylvania and moved to LA to study at USC’s School of Cinematic Arts, where she graduated with a BFA in Writing for Screen & Television. She loves books about exciting new worlds, found families, fantastic female characters, and stories with diverse POVs — especially YA & MG. Aside from good books and good TV, she’s a big fan of dogs, road trips, and coffee shops with lots of outlets.

She’s seeking: Kieryn is accepting queries for all genres. In fiction, she especially loves books about exciting new worlds, found families, fantastic female characters, and stories with diverse POVs, and would love to see more LGBTQ+ characters in sci-fi and fantasy.

How to submit: Please send queries to kziegler@dystel.com, along with the first 25 pages (or nearest chapter break) of your manuscript.

DG&B Submission Guidelines


 

Dos:

  • Do send your query letter via email, and include the full query in the body of the email, not as an attachment.
  • Do include a writing sample of the first 25 pages of your manuscript (fiction) or your proposal with sample chapter (nonfiction) in the body of the email below your query letter.
  • Do proofread carefully and double-space your materials if possible.
  • Do be sure to query only one agent at this agency. We will not review queries sent to more than one of us.
  • Do resend your query email if you haven’t heard from us in 8 weeks, noting the date previously sent. Our goal is to read and respond to every query in that time frame.

 

Don’ts:

  • Don’t send attachments with a blank email or an incomplete query – we will not open them.
  • Don’t send materials as a shared file or download link (such as Dropbox or Google Docs). We will not open these files.
  • Don’t submit to more than one of us at once, whether in the same query or separate queries, or requery another agent here after getting a pass. We share queries with each other frequently, so a no from one is a no from all.
  • Don’t send a query for a novel until the manuscript is complete, polished and ready for review. We do not accept partial manuscripts for novels. Nonfiction can be queried with a proposal.
  • Don’t pitch projects or follow up on queries via social media. Pitches made via Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc, will not be considered except as part of a planned pitch event.

 

Query Tips:

We like our unsolicited queries to be concise, well-written, and well-proofed, and as devoid of gimmicks as possible. Here’s what to include:

  • A professional, personalized greeting.
  • A mention in the first paragraph of why you’re querying us: you admire a client’s work, you met us at a conference, you read a great interview, etc. Be brief and specific!
  • Key stats for your project: title, genre, word count, and comp titles or authors.
  • Your pitch: a paragraph or two summarizing your novel or nonfiction project that will hook us on your work. For fiction, please include genre, word count, and comp titles.
  • Your bio or credentials: your expertise in the topic, your previous publication credits, your social media platform.

See our FAQ section for more information on a strong query and what to expect when you’ve queried.

Talk tomorrow,

Kathy

Posted by: Kathy Temean | February 18, 2018

SCBWI: Karen and Philip Cushman Late Bloomer Award

The Karen and Philip Cushman Late Bloomer Award is for authors over the age of fifty who have not been traditionally published in the children’s literature field.

The grant was established by Newbery Award winner and Newbery Honor Book recipient Karen Cushman and her husband, Philip Cushman, in conjunction with the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. 

The award is open to unpublished children’s book authors or author/illustrators over the age of fifty, and one winner will be chosen from the pool of those who have submitted material for the SCBWI Work-In-Progress Grants. 

Deadline: Submitted in conjunction with the Work-In-Progress e-mail submission from March 1-31, 2018.

Award: $500 and free tuition to any SCBWI conference anywhere in the world. (Conference tuition includes tuition to the general conference, and does not include transportation, hotel, and expenses.)

Guidelines:

1.    You must be a current member.

2.    The award is open to unpublished writers and writer/illustrators fifty years of age and older.

3.    Applicants send an additional e-mail with the same Work-in-Progress grant submission they have already submitted to:  wipgrant@scbwi.org. Send your Cushman submission with “Cushman” in the subject line and your full name in the body of the e-mail. (You will be sending two e-mails to the same address with the same attachment but different subject lines)

4.    The applicant cannot have been published or have a project under contract in the children’s book field.

5.    All Work-In-Progress Grant guidelines apply.

7.    The final judging will be by a committee including Karen Cushman and Lin Oliver.

Questions? Contact Grant Coordinator Sarah Diamond. sarahdiamond@scbwi.org

Talk tomorrow,

Kathy

Posted by: Kathy Temean | February 17, 2018

Illustrator Saturday – Cristian Bernardini

Cristian Bernardini is an artist from Argentina. He studied to be a designer but when he finished (graduated as a Graphic Designer from Buenos Aires University), he decided to be illustrator. He likes illustrating many different topics specially when they include children, animals and monsters (he loves last one).

Cristian enjoys working with a wide variety of media including acrylic paint and watercolours as well as creating combined traditional and digital artwork. His illustrations are used for fiction and non fiction children’s books, novelty books, educational books and have appeared in many graphic media like magazines, multimedia, newspapers and advertising over the last 15 years.

Nowadays he works for clients in all over the world, with several books published by very well known editorial houses such as Macmillan, Scholastic, Pearson, Harper Collins, Norma, Sudamericana, SM, Darakwon, Capstone or Eudeba among others. He also, has contributed to many animation productions, developing in the creation of characters, makeing storyboards, animating or designing.

 

I have worked for several techniques, painted in watercolor or acrylic, also purely digital, vector … although I am changing for each project, it depends what is needed in each one, Although currently one of the methods that I do not only like the result, but also I am very comfortable, is the following:

First I sketch a very small size (usually the whole story if is a book), in that instance I defne the volumes of the things that appear, characters objects backgrounds. Once I have the layout, that is, a basic composition, I start with a more defned sketch.

Then I do a color test digitally, if it is a book with all the squares together to see how the color works throughout the whole project. Not to be repetitive both with images and with color.

The next thing is to print the sketches (which are digital) and I pass them to ink, in this part I work a lot on the detail, the expressions and small things that I know that they will see a lot.

I like to show the texture of the  granulate that generates the graphite.

I continue scanning everything and retouching if necessary, in high resolution (400dpi) to have room to spare.

The painting is digital but adding textures, sometimes or using irregular brushes that give me the feeling of hand painting (photoshop).

The drawing in line, I usually have it in one layer, and the background in transparent. then I’m coloring the line and in some cases I eliminate it or cover it with the brushstrokes.

This is one of the roads, which amuses me in some other projects, the past to ink includes the shading with watercolors and then the digital color is using flters in photoshop.

INTERVIEW:

How long have you been illustrating?

When we are children, we all draw. It is like one of the frst forms of expression, without flters and with a lot of sincerity in the strokes. Many never stop doing it, only we are fling it a bit or perfecting it. In my case as well as others, the point that we never stopped doing it, and did not interest us so much that we dedicate many hours to be able to tame this form of language.

I think the concept of illustrating something, I had it in the frst school works, where I had some situation … with time more and more loaded with details. I remember that all my classmates loved my drawings and asked me to draw them animated cartoons known.

What and when was the frst painting or illustration that you did where someone paid you for your artwork?

When I was  child, I would be 8 years old or a little older. Very close to my house there was a little store, where they sold school supplies, the seller, although he knew me, was quite bad humored, I remember him as very grumpy. One day I drew him, something like a caricature from my vision and I give to him. It was funny to me,  To my surprise he liked it so much that he gave me a box of markers (many colour and they look expensive), ohhh I can consider that  was my frst payment hehe 🙂

Professionally, the frst paid job was the design of a character for a company. It was a pretty bizarre idea, because it was giving personality to the mascot of an electricity company.

It was because with an acquaintance,  got together, to give communication solutions to this company. The  illustration was a great way to say complex things. The client love the idea to add art to his  ads.

These were the frst steps where I saw refected the potential of the drawing applied to the business world, an interesting experience.

What made you choose Buenos Aires University to study Graphic Design?

I always had a facility for drawing, and I understood that these felds were related. Although it is a very diferent discipline, it has many m

eeting points. Over time I found ways to interrelate both worlds and I am continually exploring this encounter.

When I fnished the secondary, I knew that graphic design had something to do with the idea to comunicate throught the image, although I did not have much what it was about. My ease with drawing helped me to decide. At frst, I could not get them together, and I found them very diferent but with time I was fnding the meeting points.

My great passion was always the illustration, but the design formed me in many aspects, in the “how” to tell it so that the communication or the message is efective. Although I do not dedicate myself fully to graphic design, it gives me many resources that were very valuable in my career.

Did you also take some illustrating course in addition to Graphic Design?

Yes, when I was young I learned the classic techniques of painting, watercolor, pastels or acrylic based on still lifes. I found it a bit boring. That’s when my parents sent me to a Caricature course. I defnitely loved it, in this courses is where I discovered, games of deformations in the drawing that marked me with fre. That funny reinterpretation of reality, although it was something that one always did, now had a structure. I loved studying things in their realistic representation and then being able to deform them with a personal criterion.

Over time, I was modeling that distortion characteristic of the caricature, the abuse of this is grotesque and unnecessary for my way of working. So I’m reguing it based on what I want to tell and how.

I also studied comics, animation … I’m always on the move, for example, I recently completed an animal anatomy course and I’m already looking at the possibility of starting another one in 3D.

Did the school help you fnd illustration work?

Not in a direct way, but if my studies were a support in the knowledge that gave me more consistency in the drawing and security at the time of facing any project. That security is essential to get any illustration work.

Do you feel studying graphic design infuenced your illustrating style?

Yes absolutely. My drawing is constantly in morphological searches, sometimes more classic or realistic and other more vagrant. But all this is the product of this professional deformity of adapting a design to a way of communicating. This is very characteristic of graphic design.

Another important element is the distribution of information, the “how” to comunicate.

There are many meeting points between design and illustration, I’m crossing them on my way.

What type of job did you do right after you graduated?

When I was fnishing my degree and after graduating, I continued working as a graphic designer, developing websites or in a printing or in publicity.

Many times I was in a ofce as part of the design team, learning a lot… but I was sure that it wasn ´t my destiny.

At the same time, I began to make simple in charges of illustrations, the change to full time in illustration was gradual.

When did you decide you wanted to illustrate for children?

When I started in this career, at the beginning I was infuenced by the comic or the illustration in relation to this. I made my portfolio based on the things that inspired me, but evidently I already had a strong inclination to the world of the fantastic and humorous. This made my style adapt well in the language for young people. So I searched through that feld and soon discovered a new world that I had not previously contemplated.

Also at that time, the business of children’s literature was taking fight, and the demand for more elaborate and attractive books was growing more and more.

How did you get the job to illustrate your frst picture book?

My frst participation in a children’s story was not a complete book, it was a story I illustrated that was part of a school manual. All my frst works were in the feld of editorial illustration, basically in the educational area.

A short time later I contacted an editorial that was pulling out a collection of short books and wanted me to illustrate a couple of these stories. Although it was short stories without a good publicity, it was a great stimulus for me.

Was Trust Me, Jack’s Beanstalk Stinks! your frst picture book?

Actually that was the second, my first book with Picture Books was “No Lie, I Acted Like a Beast !:The Story of Beauty and the Beast as Told by the Beast (The Other Side of the Story)”

A collection that has a particular twist in its history, takes classic stories and are told but not in the conventional way, but by another of the secondary or evil characters as is the case of Jacks’ Beanstalks.

Like the side B of the story, in this case,  I feel that the idea was very fun and orginal, I just had to add a little personal touch.

How many picture books have you published with Picture Window Books?

Luckily once they started testing how my style would work for their collection. Soon I came other books to illustrate. They like to work with me, just like me with them.

With them I illustrated the following titles:

-No Lie, I Acted Like a Beast !: The Story of Beauty and the Beast as Told by the Beast,

-Trust Me, Jack’s Beanstalk Stinks! ,

No Lie, Pigs (and Their Houses) Can Fly! ,
Believe Me, I Never Felt a Pea !: The Story of the Princess and the Pea as Told by the Princess,- Gertrude and Reginald the Monsters Talk about Living and Nonliving And some books by several authors.
Honestly, Our Music Stole the Show!
Listen, My Bridge Is SO Cool!

This 2018, at least two new books with my art will come out.

How many picture books have you illustrated?I have more than 40 books illustrated by me, several are in my country Argentina and many others from other parts of the world; Australia, South Korea, USA, England, Chile, Puerto Rico and New Zealand among others.

Do you have an artist rep.? If so, who and how long have you been with them? If not, would you like to fnd one?

No, I haven´t one, always handle me on my own. On one occasion I went to the fair in Bologna, and saw that many editorials were only work with Representatives, at the time I found out but I continued alone.

Therefore I haven´t any experience in this feld, maybe it can be interesting, I do not rule it out, I am always open to these new possibilities.

It looks like Listen, My Bridge Is SO Cool! Just came out. How long did it take you to illustrated that book?

The editorials usually give me a grid to complete a deadline for the sketches, and then for the fnal painting. We adjust it together depends on the convenience of each. For that particular project, I think it was just over 2 months.

Are there publishers in Argentina that you publish books?

Yes, luckily, most of my work is from Argentina, in children’s literature for books or in educational didactic material. Also as an illustrator I take diferent works that involve drawing and design, in advertising, storyboards, whiteboards, in animation (designing characters and backgrounds).

Have you done any book covers?

Yes, in some occasions for novels, or some specifc subject. In general, they are for novels that require not only the cover but also some interior images as well.

 

Do you have any desire to write and illustrate your own children’s book?

I imagine that in many cases this is a key point, although I am thinking and developing ideas every time I can, the reality is that I never get to realize them. I am always with the illusion of completing an integral story, written and illustrated by me. But for now it is a pending matter. I hope that it will soon become real.

Would you illustrate a book for an author who wants to self-publish?Yes, on several occasions, I participated in projects that were self-published.

They have their pros and cons. As positive is creative freedom, sometimes it can only be limited by what one as an illustrator wants to limit.

The downside is that sometimes there are not clear things, for example essential things like the world of printing or graphic communication, that’s where I take my spirit of graphic designer and prop it up so that the project can be viable and leave to market.

Have you worked with educational publishers? Which ones?

I worked for diferent publishing houses in the publishing feld, in fact as I mentioned before, they were my frst steps. As you can see I am an illustrator of all terrains on occasion, I worked in these areas.

Designing characters for plays, desingning costumes for transcendent musicals of Buenos Aires, scientifc illustration for educational publishers, animation (presentation of TV shows), live drawing of animals for advertising events, among other things.

Even, as a curiosity of the diversity of formats where my drawings appear, a couple of years ago, one of the books that I illustrated, was part of the happy box of a well-known international hamburger company.

Have you done any illustrating for children’s magazines? Which ones?

Yes, many years ago in Argentina I worked doing a comic for a children’s magazine, AZ10 it was at fnal of  90´s .

I had any appearances in local magazines but no so much .

Have you illustrated a graphic novel?

I made some graphic novels for collections of educational material, principally of pre-adolescent public. I enclose samples of Corrascosa Summits and Sherlck Holmes and Pahntom of the Opera.

 

What do you think is your biggest success?

It is a very broad question, which I would not answer focusing on a particular project, I take it as  something more general.

Undoubtedly my greatest success is to have my desire to illustrate and never lower my arms to get this purpose is part of my daily life and a livelihood for me and my family.

Working on something that gives me pleasure is the greatest success.

What type of things do you do to fnd illustration work?

I’m in some portals related to children’s illustration (childrensillustrator.com

or hireanillustrator.com). At some point I also went to specialized fairs like the Bolgona Fair in Italy. If you are a children´s illustrator, it´s an interesting option to know diferents publisher from any country, and you have the possiblity to have a metting directly to the Art Editor sometimes. Nowaday I am currently testing with some freelance work sites, I am seeing if this system is available to get any work, although in these types of markets the low price is often valued more than the quality of the work.

I also seek to show my work through my personal site, http://www.cristianbernardini.com.ar, facebook Cristian Bernardini or instagram Bernardini_Cristian.

Although I have to admit that I’m not very good at spreading my stuf, for example, to get this interview, I’m sure that it wasn´t easy for Kathy. (So sorry !!! I’m Guilty!)

Has that changed over time?

At first, my painting process was extremely handcrafted, with watercolor or acrylic fnishes that gave me some pleasure. With time and the idea of practicality, I went to fnish them digitally with touch-ups. To the point where all my work went through the digital world, dispensing with even paper.

Which made me click, because I was leaving aside something that I enjoyed a lot, which was the whole craft process, the drawing on paper for example. Now I’m going back to the sources but renewed, a mixture of the two artisanal and digital worlds.

Do you have a studio set up in your home?

No, I work in my studio that is about 20 minutes from my house. I have my diferent work materials there and I can concentrate and dedicate my time to personal assignments or projects.

Do you try to spend a specifc amount of time working on your craft?

I do not usually have such a stipulated timetable, what is clear is that I have to dedicate a good part of the day to be satisfed with the drawing, I usually change my views several times to arrive at a result I like.

Sometimes it is very convenient to get out, to think about the process and to come back with new ideas.

Do you take pictures or do any types of research before you start a project?

Yes, I usually do some research, if required, for example if it is some specifc place, some specifc animal to know more about it and its characteristics. Other thing that inspired me is … to  see illustrators with diferent styles. In my freetime, I fnd  many talent people and then I save it in my mind, studing how they get this climax or how use the colour… etc

I fnd very useful is to start drawing quick sketches of characters or situations to go fnding the right personality or the style that best fts with that project.

In those frst steps where things arise and one as a creator makes decisions about how the characters will be as well as the climate of the story.

Do you think the Internet has opened doors for you?

Undoubtedly, the internet is not only a source of inspiration to see other colleagues (incidentally your site is a great contribution to the profession). It is also a fundamental tool to be seen in diferent parts of the globe.

Do you use Photoshop or Painter with your illustrations?

Mostly I use photoshop, combining a good range of brushes can get very interesting results, exploring with textures and forms of painting. Although sometimes I seek to get in touch with Painter, and after a while I return to the known and I stay in photoshop. Another of the interesting programs that I have known is the Manga studio, it depends what kind of graphic search is needed, this last one, can be of great help.

Do you own or have you used a Graphic Drawing Tablet when illustrating?

As I was saying, I am very incorporated into the digital world, I have a Wacom Cintiq tablet, it is an artifact like a screen with a sensitive pencil that allows me to draw directly on it,  it is like to draw on a paper. Its make me draw and paint like the traditional way.

Do you have any career dreams that you want to fulfll?

I am constantly looking for new forms of expression, or painting to look for graphic alternatives. These days it is crossing my mind, developing designs in 3d, perhaps for graphics or for other felds of design. And in this search, I found very interesting software and with a good result like  Zbrush. It is a program for 3D modeling, with a brief learning one can take their creations in pencil to a tangible object in 3 dimensions (if it is printed).

What are you working on now?

I am currently working on a new book for a new collection for Capstone / Picture books. About Aesop’s fables. I particularly love drawing animals, and giving them personalities with their gestures and expressions.

Do you have any material type tips you can share with us? Example: Paint or paper that you love – the best place to buy – a new product that you tried – A how to tip, etc.

A material that I would like to highlight, for the illustrative colleagues who work with ink. It is the Penbrush (pentel), there are also other brands. It’s like a marker with synthetic hairs that serves as a brush, is very docile and practical. I presume that it was developed to be used in Chinese calligraphy, but for lovers of drawing it is a marvel.

Any words of wisdom on how to become a successful writer or illustrator?

This may be an advice that seems silly, but I think it is essential to understand ourselves as creators who want to contribute something with what they do.

As far as possible, before facing a new project (of those projects that give you pleasure to do them), my advice is to take some time to think about it, simply that, to think abotu what I want to tell and how, looking to challenge oneself and try not to fall into the common places. Maybe it can be a while a couple of days but the important thing is to be able to see the big picture  and not just a fraction.

Many times this industry is subject to very limited times, that is why one tends to follow a work inertia, fnish it and take another job, and after a while fnds that it only made the same thing over many years … and the same, as if one were a page decorator.

My advice is to think, to be more analytical with our work, withoutbelitting the audience to which it is directed.

Thinking what new thing to tell, what are my strengths and weaknesses and challenge me, if necessary or what one believes best…  always understanding that this profession not like a  maker of beautiful images, if not as a creator of worlds that deserve to be explored .

Thank you Cristian for sharing your talent, process, and expertise with us. Make sure you share you future successes with us. To see more of Cristian’s work, you can visit him at his blog: http://cristianbernardini.blogspot.com

If you have a minute, please leave a comment for Cristian. I am sure he’d love to hear from you and I enjoy reading them, too. Thanks!

Talk tomorrow,

Kathy

Posted by: Kathy Temean | February 16, 2018

Agent of the Month: Scott Treimel – Interview Part Two

Scott Treimel is February’s Agent of the Month.

He is closed to unsolicited submissions, but if you are a follower of my Writing and Illustrating blog you can submit a full picture book manuscript or a query with the first three pages of a chapter book, middle grade, or young adult novel in the month of February.

PLEASE NOTE – changed information in green:

To take advantage of this opportunity, please use this email address: kathy(.)temean@gmail(.)com. You MUST put SCOTT TREIMEL FEBRUARY SPECIAL SUBMISSION in the subject box and note you are a follower.

Of course format your submission using one inch margins, 12 point New Times Roman font, double spaced, plus don’t forget your name, address, and contact information.

DEADLINE: February 28th. Please check last Friday’s post for the first page guidelines.

See bottom of the page for guidelines to participate in the First Page Critiques.

S©ott Treimel NY is a full-service boutique agency representing the intellectual property rights in the work of authors and illustrators of books for children and teens, only: Picture books – Chapter books – Middle Grade books – Young Adult novels – Non-fiction and fiction – all genres. He also represents selected children’s illustrators.

HERE IS PART TWO OF MY INTERVIEW WITH SCOTT:

We ended with this question last week. Any pet peeves? and Scott saying, “Lordy, do I ever!”

Scott, will not have time to write up his list of pet peeves, since he is very busy with all the submissions I have been forwarding to him. So here is a tidbit of information that I think you will find useful.

Here is Scott with an opinion on narration and verb tense, simple past vs. present. 

I find present tense asserts a lighter, lesser hold on readers, almost as if the narration disappears. authors choose present tense thinking to enhance the immediacy of a story. in fact, present tense lightens the storytelling’s architecture, taking a measure of gravitas with it. Simple past tense narration memorializes something that happened and, by implication, merits telling; present tense records what is happening, which may or may not be equally worthy. 

Do you let people know if you are not interested in what they sent?

Yes.

How long does it usually take to respond to requested material?

From one hour to six months.

Have you noticed any common mistakes that writers make?

They are too close to their work and cannot understand it as a reader does. They detail physical movement needlessly. They do not imagine as deeply or freely as they might.

Do you have an editorial style?

Suffice to say I dislike logy (lacking physical or mental energy or vitality; sluggish; dull; lethargic) writing .

Do you give editorial feedback to your clients?

Always

Have you ever represented a children’s book illustrator?

Yes

How long is your average client relationship?

STNY is twenty-four years old, and clients rarely leave us (although sometimes we let clients go), so I cannot answer: it depends when our client relationship begins.

What is your typical response time to email/phone calls with your clients?

From immediately to a couple days.

How do you like to communicate (email vs. phone)? And how often do you communicate during the submission process?

Email and phone, the frequency being case-by-case.

What happens if you don’t sell this book?

I retire it. Rarely, a ms might get a second chance if, say, a writer’s career takes off and editors clamor for him or her or an element in the ms. (characters, theme, setting) experiences a boom when it was previously a bust.

How many editors do you go to before giving up?

From a few to twenty-five(ish). Some projects, by their nature, have few prospects than others. Novelty books, e.g., generally have fewer prospects than middle-grades.

What do you think of digital books?

I am rankled by the royalties publishers pay.

Do you handle your own foreign/film rights contracts or does your firm have someone else who handles those contracts?

We might work in concert with our foreign and film sub-agents or, on occasion, we will handle the business directly.

Do you see any new trends building in the industry?

I am an authors advocate. Over time I have seen the power of editors and the value of authors diminish.

You have poured so much of yourself into helping the writers at the Avalon Writer’s Retreat improve their manuscripts. It seems like you have a real passion and a hands on skill in pushing a manuscript to the next level. Would you like to be invited to other writer’s retreats, workshops, and conferences?

Right now I would consider, in order of preference, Retreats, Workshops, and Conferences. I relish working with writers with a ms in front of us.

HERE ARE THE SUBMISSION GUIDELINES FOR FIRST PAGE CRITIQUES FEBRUARY:

In the subject line, please write “FEBRUARY 2018  CRITIQUE” and paste the text in the email, plus attached it as a Word document to the email. Please make sure you include your name, the title of the piece, and whether it’s a picture book, middle grade, or young adult, etc. at the top on both the email and the Word document (Make sure you include your name with the title of your book, when you save the first page).

REMEMBER: ATTACH THE WORD DOCUMENT AND NOT GET ELIMINATED!Your First Page Word document should be formatted using one inch margins and 12 point New Times Roman font – double space – no more than 23 lines – only one page.Send to: kathy(dot)temean(at)gmail(dot)com.PLEASE FOLLOW THE GUIDELINES: Your submission will be passed over if you do not follow the directions for both the pasted email and the attached Word doc. This is where most people mess up.

DEADLINE: February 16th.
RESULTS: February 23rd.

Please only submit one first page a month, but do try again if your first page wasn’t one of the pages randomly picked. Thanks!

CHECK BACK NEXT FRIDAY FOR FIRST PAGE RESULTS WITH SCOTT.

Talk tomorrow,

Kathy

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