Posted by: Kathy Temean | May 5, 2016

Kudos: Sylvia Liu – Book Giveaway

Laura Hartman (WriteKnit) is the lucky winner of Sylvia Liu’s new book, A MORNING WITH GRANDPA – Congratulations! Please contact me with your address.

Congratulations to Sylvia Liu for you debut picture book. All you have to do to get in the running for win Sylvia Liu’s new book, A MORNING WITH GRANDPA, is to leave a comment. Reblog, or tweet, or talk about it on facebook with a link and you will get additional chances to win. Just let me know the other things you did to share the good news, so I can put in the right amount of tickets in my basket for you. Please make sure you check back on May 19th to discover the winner.

This post is part of Sylvia’s Blog Tour. Here is the link to see more.

Sylvia LiuMorningWithGrandpa_cover

Description of book and the story:

In A MORNING WITH GRANDPA, Mei Mei eagerly joins her grandpa in practicing tai chi. As Gong Gong teaches her the slow, graceful movements, Mei Mei enthusiastically does them with her own flair. When Mei Mei takes a turn, teaching Gong Gong the yoga she learned in school, he is not as flexible as she is. Though they have different styles, Mei Mei and Gong Gong enjoy each other’s company while learning new things together.

Sylvia Liu pic © K Woodard Photography

Book’s Journey to publication

Sometimes I’m surprised that I’m debuting as a picture book author because I started out as an illustrator. Even while working as an environmental attorney, I took art and illustration classes with a goal of becoming a children’s illustrator. About eight years ago, I started writing my own stories to have something to illustrate, and I was bitten by the creative writing bug.

In 2012, I got serious, participating in Julie Hedlund’s picture book writing challenge, 12×12 (where you write 12 picture book manuscripts in 12 months and have the option of submitting to a different agent each month) and joining an amazing critique group. Every year since then, I’ve done the challenge and completed a handful of stories.

In July 2013, I came up with the idea for A MORNING WITH GRANDPA, about a grandfather who teaches his granddaughter the Chinese martial art of tai chi. When I wrote it, I thought it could be a good candidate for the annual New Voices Award contest run by Lee & Low Books. The award was established in 2000 to discover and promote previously unpublished writers of color. Lee & Low Books is the largest multicultural children’s book publisher in the United States.

The deadline for submission was late October 2013, so my usual months (and sometimes years long) revision process was compressed. My critique group gave me great suggestions and I paid for a professional critique. Two months later, I got the most exciting phone call from my future editor, Jessica Echeverria, who informed me I had won the contest and the prize of a publication contract.

The story went through many months of revisions with my editor; the awesome illustrator Christina Forshay did her magic; and a bit over two years later, the book is in my hands! It’s been an incredible journey from start to finish.


Sylvia Liu is an environmental lawyer turned children’s author and illustrator. She debuts as a picture book author with A MORNING WITH GRANDPA, illustrated by Christina Forshay (Lee & Low Books, May 2016). She was spent a decade protecting the oceans and the environment at the U.S. Department of Justice and the nonprofit group Oceana, and now she paints, draws, and writes for children. She lives in Virginia Beach, Virginia, with her husband and their two daughters. Visit her portfolio at, her blog at, and her kid lit resource site,

Illustrator Christina Forshay was featured on illustrator Saturday in 2011. You might want to take a look.

Talk tomorrow,







  1. So happy for Sylvia!!!

  2. Nice 🙂 well done Sylvia and good luck! I hope this first book is a success and the first of many more !

    • Thank you Leila, for you support!

  3. Such an exciting time — with surely more success to come. Thanks Sylvia, and Kathy! Can’t wait to read your book!

  4. Well done! Love the cover too!

    • I love Christina Forshay’s illustrations too!

  5. I am so excited for Sylvia!! Hooray!

  6. Really wonderful Sylvia – Congratulations!

    • Thanks for stopping by, Cathy.

  7. I shared your book with a grandfather tai chi instructor. It made his day. What a wonderful book!

  8. Congratulations, Sylvia – wonderful news! Your book looks beautiful.

    • Thanks, Melanie. I appreciate your kind words.

  9. Congrats Sylvia!

  10. Congratulations, Sylvia! I’m teary and smiling just looking at the cover and reading, “Grandpa.”

  11. Congratulations, Sylvia. Can’t wait to read this one!

  12. Congratulations Sylvia! This book is an “interactive” favorite at our house!

    • I’m so happy to hear that!

  13. Our critique group is so proud of Sylvia, having seen her through this ms from beginning to winning. 🙂 Hooray for her success!

  14. A Morning with Grandpa will be a perfect gift for my new grandbaby. Congratulations Sylvia and thank you so much for the opportunity to win a copy (one for Grandma’s house too!).
    I’ve shared this link with my twitter followers 🙂

    • Thanks–I appreciate the support.

    • Laura,

      You are the winner of Sylvia Liu’s new book, A MORNING WITH GRANDPA. Please send me your address so Sylvia can mail you your book.



      • Thank you! 🙂

  15. What a great book to debut with. Can’t wait to read it – and share it.

  16. So happy to watch this all unfold for you, Sylvia. Congratulations!

    • Thank you, Tina, for your support & friendship.

  17. Congratulations, Sylvia! Can’t wait to read this one! 🙂

  18. Congratulations, Sylvia! Can’t wait to read this one!

  19. What a great story! Congratulations again Sylvia!
    – Lotus Ivak (

    • Thanks for your support, Lotus.

  20. Congratulations, Sylvia! Your book looks endearing and I can’t wait to read it!

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