Posted by: Kathy Temean | December 5, 2014

Free Fall Friday – What Does It Take?


This wonderful holiday inspired illustration was sent in by Joan Charles. She is an illustrator, writer, graphic designer. Her work can be found in gallery exhibitions, magazines, and books. She illustrated the award-winning middle grade adventures Lost in Lexicon and The Ice Castle, written by Pendred Noyce.

In the last few months I have been asked how someone gets on Writing and Illustrating to show off their work, get an interview, and market a book. Here are the things I consider:

1. Do I know you? Have I met you?

2. Do you follow my blog?

3. Do you leave comments?

4. Do you promote Writing and Illustrating on your website, facebook, or blog?

5. Have you tweeted, reblogged, facebooked or shared information posted on Writing and illustrating?

6. Have you ever been featured on Writing and Illustrating?

7. Have you ever written or shared any information on Writing and Illustrating that would help other writers or illustrators?

8. If you haven’t done any of the above, do you have something to share that the readers who be interested in hearing about?

9. Have you published a book? Is there anything interested in how it got published or something you did that would interest readers?

10. Are you willing to do a book give-a-way?

I can’t know everyone by meeting them in person, but I can get to know you by leaving a comments or following my blog. I have many friends that I hope to meet someday. If you are writing or illustrating a book, you should be looking for people like me who have a large amount of followers and start working to make a connection.

I’m happy for everyone who gets something published, wins a contest, gets an agent, or wins an award and will be happy to include you in a Kudos post. But if you fit into the first seven on the list, you are considered family and will always get your successes promoted on Writing and Illustrating.

Tips: You shouldn’t wait until your book is about to come out to start building connections. Start doing that right now. Think about what type of things you could share that would help other writers. Maybe you don’t feel like you have anything to share, but I bet you do if you think about it. Have you attended a workshop or conference? Have you read a book on how to write or illustrate? You may be revising a story and have an epiphany. Did you learn anything useful during a critique? Maybe you run into an agent or editor who shared knowledge that could be shared?  The substance of all these things could be used to write an interesting article. It would be a great way to get your name out there and be noticed.

Just remember when you want to promote yourself, you can’t look like that is all you are interested in doing.

Submissions: Send to Kathy.temean (at) gmail (dot) com. In subject area write, SUBMISSION ARTICLE FOR WRITING AND ILLUSTRATING. Introduce yourself, bio, and send me your article or express you interest in writing an article on…(subject and your idea).

I love when people have a topic they would like to write about that will help other writers and illustrators. If there is not enough meat to the article, I will give you some ideas or suggestions to pump it up. So write something interesting, helpful and start submitting your article to build your list of places and people who will help spread the words when success jumps in your path.

I am sure you have gone to blogs or signed up for newsletters that end up just talking about their book or books. If you haven’t you are lucky. I know I have and it is very disappointing. In fact that tactic could turn someone off and cause them not to buy anything with your name on it. So be careful.

Don’t get buried in only thinking about writing only for your own blog. If you get your article on another blog, you are getting access to a whole new group of people who might end up following your blog. Be smart. Even if you have ten published books, do not turn down someone with a large following saying things like, “I want people to come to my blog, not yours.” This is a statement from someone who doesn’t understand the importance of marketing and someone not savvy enough to see how getting exposure to thousands of new people could be a huge win.

Remember: I am not the only blog with a large following. There are many that could provide opportunities for you.

I am looking to do a Kudos post next week. Any good things happening out there? Let me know.

Call for Christmas Poems or Hanukkah Poems and or illustrations. Will be posting them later this month. Send to Kathy.temean(at) Put December Illustration or December Poem in subject area. Thanks!

Talk tomorrow,




  1. Kathy, your blog is one of the BEST and I agree with everything you said here. You give EXcellent advice and you sure do know your stuff 😀

    • Donna,

      I am so glad our paths crossed. I can’t remember how many years it has been, but you are someone who goes out of their way to help others and that is something I always admire.


  2. Ive. Been a lurker on your blog. Taking this opportunity to thank you for the blog and tell you how it has helped my writing…shaping…and inspired me to reformat my blog

    • Joan,

      That is so nice to hear. Thank you for letting me know.


    • Joan,

      I also meant to say, “Don’t be a lurker.” Keep in touch.


  3. Kathy, you changed my life. When I went to the 2012 SCBWI conference in New York, I was overwhelmed by all the incredible portfolios included in the showcase. I put mine out, but started to feel like my work was not good enough. Truthfully, it wasn’t good enough. But you picked up one of my postcards, and asked if I would submit information for Illustration Saturday. Your vote of confidence in me, which you give so generously to so many people (after all, SCBWI is full of talent!)–changed my outlook. It changed the momentum of my thinking. And as a result, my work started to change too.
    Almost three years later, I am busy working on my first book–due out in 2016. I owe you a huge debt of gratitude. Your generosity in nurturing new talent is fantastic. I send you a great big hug, and a wish for a very happy and healthy Holiday Season!

    • Barb,

      Wow! That is such good news. You need to email me with how it all happened and give me the title and publisher. Do you have an illustration for the holidays? Oh, remember for anyone who has been featured on Illustrator Saturday, I put up a post this month on new illustrations from featured artist.

      Happy holidays,


  4. Kathy, your blog is extremely informative and practical, and I am so glad to follow you here. It does feel like we are part of your family, and I can’t wait to meet you one day. Thank you for all your efforts to promote all of us in children’s books! Oh, and today’s illustration is lovely!

    • Dow,

      So glad you feel the same way. Wishing you the best in the coming year.


  5. Love your blog and all you do! I have garnered so much useful info here which has helped so much in my writing and illustrating. I always come here first! Thanks for everything. Happy Holidays!

    • Barbara,

      It has been so much fun watching you grow. Keep up the new work.


  6. Just wanted to say thanks for all the info and opportunities you provide for kid lit writers & illustrators.

    • Diana,

      Thanks for stopping by and saying thanks. It is always nice to hear someone is getting something out of stopping by. I hope 2015 is a good year for you.


  7. Many Thanks Kathy, for bringing so many opportunities to the Children’s writing and illustrating community! And an enchanting winter illustration today by Joan Charles!

    • Michelle,

      So nice to hear from you. Is it cold and snowy in Chicago? It’s gotten cold and raw here. I agree that Joan’s illustration is enchanting. Wishing lots of success in 2015.


  8. I too am an avid follower, Kathy. Of all the blogs dedicated to children’s book writing and the industry, yours is the one I never skip reading when I’m pressed for time. I always learn something new or something that forces me to dig deeper into my own projects. Many thanks! And Happy Holidays!

    • Donna,

      Thanks for the note. Hope you have a wonderful holiday and something wonderful happens for you in 2015. Remember I want to hear about it.


  9. Kathy, you are the best! Thank you so much for all you do for the world of children’s literature! I look forward to getting your blog post every day; grazie mille for brightening all our days!

    • Margo,

      I am glad you are stopping by. I enjoyed doing the post about you this year. Wishing more success in 2015. Keep in touch.


  10. Though I haven’t said much, I enjoy all the wonderful information you have to share. I just wanted to take a moment to say how much I love the illustrations you post. This one is magical. I would love to know how she did it.

    • Diane,

      I love Joan’s illustration, too. You will be getting you wish in 2015, since Joan will be one of the featured illustrators in January. Have a great holiday.


  11. I’m simply in awe of the way that you post interesting, helpful information every day without fail! I look forward to Illustrator Saturday every week, because I know there will be one or more images that spark a picture book idea for me. Having my first pages critiqued twice on Free Fall Friday was tremendously informative and useful, and bolstered my confidence as a new writer. Thank you Kathy – I have the 2015 NJSCBWI conference on my bucket list!

    • Cathy,

      This is exciting that you are considering coming to the NJSCBWI Conference. That would be cool to see you there.


  12. Kathy, I have been reading your blog for several months now. I find lots of value in your posts, and I appreciate it as a great resource for writers and illustrators. I have not participated much in the discussion, but will try to do better. I have shared your information with my little Word Weavers group in Troy, MO. Thanks!

  13. Hally,

    I am so glad to hear from you. Thanks for spreading the word. I hope you don’t think I was pushing people into leaving comments, that really wasn’t my intent. But it is a nice way to get to know you.



    • Not at all. I try to be selective about the blogs that I subscribed to, and I am glad this is one that I discovered along the way. It was time I let you know that!

  14. Hiya, I am really glad I’ve found this info. Nowadays bloggers publish just about gossips and internet and this is actually irritating. A good site with exciting content, that is what I need. Thank you for keeping this site, I’ll be visiting it. Do you do newsletters? Cant find it.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: