Posted by: Kathy Temean | February 16, 2021

Book Giveaway: THE BIG BEACH CLEANUP by by Charlotte Offsay

Charlotte Offsay has written a new picture book, THE BIG BEACH CLEANUP illustrated by Katie Rewse and published by Albert Whitman & Company. It hits the bookstores on March 1st, but it is available for pre-order on Amazon, now. Charlotte has agreed to share a copy with one lucky winner living in the United States.

All you have to do to get in the running is leave a comment. Reblog, tweet, or talk about it on Facebook with a link and you will get additional chances to win. If you are a follower who has it delivered everyday, please let me know in your leave a comment and I will give you an extra ticket. Just let me know other things you do to share the good news, so I can put the right amount of tickets in my basket for you. Thank you for helping Charlotte and Katie.


Cora is excited to enter the local sandcastle-building contest―until the contest is canceled due to litter at the beach. Determined to help save their favorite place, Cora and Mama get to work picking up the single-use plastics that have washed onto the shore. It will take more than four hands to clean up the beach, but Cora is just getting started.


I am a long-time follower of your blog Kathy and am thrilled that you are featuring my debut picture book, The Big Beach Cleanup, today! Thank you!

Every manuscript I write seems to take a different journey. Some seem to come out fully formed while others change drastically from first to final and only a small nugget of the original idea remains. The Big Beach Cleanup falls firmly into the later category – I have over 80 drafts of it on my computer, it was originally called How Many Hands and didn’t even include the sandcastle competition that the story now revolves around!

When I first began writing The Big Beach Cleanup I sat down to write about little hands joining together to make big change – that was the heart of the story for me and so that nugget has remained a constant thread through every draft. It took me a long time to find the right way into this story, and I struggled to find the right character and storyline that children would be able to connect to. It wasn’t until one day on a walk with my children when I picked up a piece of trash off the street and tossed it into a nearby trashcan, that Cora, the main character of The Big Beach Cleanup was born. My small action sparked a big conversation with my two young children about how trash gets onto our streets, how it travels through storm drains to the ocean and why it is important to do our part. I went home that day and wrote the first draft of Cora’s story about a young girl who wanted to do her part to protect our oceans.

Even though Cora’s story was born that day and I knew I had found my way into the manuscript, it still didn’t feel right. The story felt didactic and was missing the fun. As much as I wanted to write a story to inspire children, I also wanted to entertain them and write a story that I as a parent would enjoy reading aloud. That is where my wonderful critique partners came in. They helped me figure out what was missing and dream up and weave in the sandcastle competition.

I then reached out to ocean advocacy experts to help me fact check my manuscript. I was fortunate to connect with two different experts who reviewed my manuscript and offered their feedback. From there I had a draft that I was fairly happy with but after so many rewrites, I was eager to get it in front of fresh eyes. When I heard that Albert Whitman editor Christina Pulles was running an Inked Voices workshop I jumped at the opportunity for feedback. I had attended a workshop (on a different manuscript) with Christina in the past, so I knew that her style resonated with me and how valuable her feedback would be. During that workshop the Inked Voices community and Christina gave me invaluable feedback regarding reworking the ending of the manuscript.

After a few rounds of edits with my wonderful agent, Nicole Geiger of Full Circle Literary, we sent The Big Beach Cleanup out on submission. I was thrilled when I learned that Christina Pulles wanted to acquire the manuscript and delighted that I would get to partner with the talented Katie Rewse, whose artwork I love and who is a big ocean advocate herself! Christina has been a dream to work with, helped me make further improvements to the manuscript, and shared Katie’s artwork from the beginning (which I love even more than I knew I would).

I am thrilled with the way The Big Beach Cleanup has turned out, and I hope that it both entertains and inspires readers to join hands and make the changes they wish to see in the world.


Charlotte Offsay was born in England, grew up in Boston, and currently lives in Los Angeles with her husband and two small children. Born into a family with a love of travel and adventure, Charlotte enjoys exploring new places and cultures. She is a former corporate finance client specialist who now spends her days caring for her family, volunteering in her local community, traveling, and using her experiences to fuel her true passion: writing.

Through her work, Charlotte hopes to make children laugh, to inspire curiosity, and to create a magical world her readers can lose themselves in time and time again. Her debut, THE BIG BEACH CLEANUP, will be published by Albert Whitman in Spring 2021, followed by HOW TO RETURN A MONSTER releasing Fall 2021 with Beaming Books. For more information visit She is represented by Nicole Geiger at Full Circle Literary.


Katie Rewse is an illustrator based in Bournemouth, on the south coast of England, where she studied for both her BA and MA in illustration. Since graduating in 2017, Katie has specialized in children’s book illustration and has enjoyed working with many publishers, while also making decorative work for a variety of contexts.

As a keen surfer, Katie feels passionate about looking after the ocean, so she was delighted to be asked to illustrate this book and help spread this important message.

Charlotte, thank you for sharing your book and journey with us. It sounds like a much needed book. I’m happy that you thought to write a book that will inpsire children to help clean up our environment and realize even little hands can help. Good luck with the book.

Talk tomorrow,



  1. Congrats, Charlotte! It’s a beautiful book and I cannot wait for my copy to arrive.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Congratulations, Charlotte and Katie! Your journey of persistence, flexibility and willingness to revise is inspiring

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Reblogged this on Terry Pierce and commented:
    Charlotte Offsay is doing a book giveaway for her debut picture book on Writing & Illustrating.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Wonderful, important and inspiring book -congrats! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. As a regular subscriber I’m so excited to see this here, Charlotte! The peek inside some spreads is fantastic. Yay! Thanks for sharing it, Kathy!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Congrats on the debut picture book, Charlotte. This is one I can’t wait to read – a subject near and dear to me!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Congrats, Charlotte and Katie! (I get the daily emails.)

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Congrats, Charlotte! I can’t wait to read this beautiful book!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. This story is in my wheelhouse. I pick up trash on beaches and in my neighborhood. Thanks for inspiring others to do the same.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Congrats, Charlotte and Katie! Great work. This looks beautiful.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Wow – 80 drafts! Glad you stuck with it. Your story sounds wonderful. Congratulations!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Congratulations to Charlotte and Katie what a lovely book!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Such an important topic! Congrats to Charlotte and Katie! I am so excited for this book!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Thanks for sharing your book’s journey. It always reassuring to hear that others have many drafts before their stories feel ‘right.’ This sounds like a great story. Good luck!

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Congrats on making a beautiful book! You certainly put in the time to make it work!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. As a beach lover I can’t wait for this book’s release.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. I’m so excited for this book!

    Liked by 1 person

  18. So happy to be a part of your journey! Wishing you the best of luck and success with this important and timely book! Best, Lynne Marie PS I am a subscriber and will be sharing this on the Rate Your Story Facebook Page and Twitter.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Katie and Charlotte, this is such an important message. Congratulations! I can’t wait to read it.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Great idea for a picture book. Can’s wait to read it.

    Liked by 1 person

  21. I grew up on the beaches of Southern California so the ocean holds a special place in my heart. I’m thrilled to see this much-needed book. Congratulations to Charlotte and Katie!

    Liked by 1 person

  22. Congrats! This sounds like a creative and much needed book for environmentally minded kids (current and future)–I can’t wait to read it. I get your daily blog, Kathy.

    Liked by 2 people

  23. Congratulations Charlotte & Katie. I love the themes of this book, cooperating to clean up the beach. Can’t wait to read it!

    Liked by 2 people

  24. Congratulations Charlotte! Your book looks amazing and Katie’s illustrations are so colorful and lovely! I can’t wait to read it!

    Kathy, I retweeted your post and get your blog daily.

    Liked by 2 people

  25. Wonderful! Love how the hands keep multiplying. Congratulations, Charlotte!

    I will Tweet this, Kathy. I follow by email. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  26. Congratulations Charlotte Katie and team. Smiling big for you. Much work went into making it, but you can tell it was a cooperative labor of love, bringing a much needed book to families,hopefully world wide eventually. This is sadly a relatable book, but it seems to offer messages of hope and determination. I admire all of your passion to repair the world. Most definitely enter me in the drawing for this wonderful, well thought out book. Signed, an Ocean loving friend.

    Liked by 2 people

  27. Sadly because Covid I can’t Travel anymore for my blog that I just started. Feels really sad that I have to wait before planning a new travel journey 😦


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 )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google 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 )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


%d bloggers like this: