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.
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.
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 The award was established in 2000 to discover and promote previously unpublished writers of color.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 www.enjoyingplanetearth.com, her blog at www.sylvialiuland.com, and her kid lit resource site, www.kidlit411.com.
Illustrator Christina Forshay was featured on illustrator Saturday in 2011. You might want to take a look. https://kathytemean.wordpress.com/2011/11/26/illustrator-saturday-christina-forshay/