I’m thrilled to be “In the Spotlight” on author Melissa Northway’s blog today. Melissa is the author of the bestselling app Penelope and Purple Pirate, along with several other apps. If you have a moment, please visit me over there!Categories: A Troop is a Group of Monkeys, Apps, Authors, Digital Publishing, ebooks, Guest Blogging, Picture Books, Storybook Apps, Writing · Tags: A Troop is a Group of Monkeys, apps, Author, Digital Publishing, e-publishing, Guest Blog, Julie Hedlund, Melissa Northway, Penelope the Purple Pirate, Picture Books, Storybook Apps, Writing
You may recall meeting my friend, author/illustrator/poet/artist Robyn Hood Black last November shortly after she opened her literary-themed Etsy shop. Well today Robyn has turned the tables and interviewed me for her Poetry Friday post. We talked mostly about the writing and creation process for A Troop is a Group of Monkeys which is, at the end of the day, a poem as well as a storyapp. But she asked some seriously awesome questions, so I encourage you all to go over there and check out both the post and her lovely blog.
Also, DO NOT MISS the March Madness Poetry 2013 competition. Robyn and several 12 x 12 members are participating. Voting for the first round is closing soon. There is some serious talent among this year’s “authletes.” I had a blast reading and voting on them yesterday.
Categories: 12 x 12, A Troop is a Group of Monkeys, Apps, Authors, Children's Books, Creativity, Digital Publishing, Friendship, Guest Blogging, Picture Books, Poetry, Publishing, Rhyming, Storybook Apps, Writing · Tags: 12 x 12, A Troop is a Group of Monkeys, apps, Author, Children's Books, Creativity, Digital Publishing, e-publishing, Friendship, Guest Blog, Julie Hedlund, March Madness Poetry, Picture Books, Poetry, Publishing, Rhyming, Robyn Hood Black, Storybook Apps
This time, after a fantastic introduction to book apps and considerations for creating them, she shares stories from 27 authors and illustrators (myself included!) on how they created their own apps.
If you have ever even had the twinkling of an idea that you might like to create and publish a book app, What is a Book App? should be required reading. Here you have the opportunity to learn from 27 authors who have gone before you — share in their successes and learn from their mistakes.
The book is divided into sections based on how the authors’ apps were created.
- Writers Who Worked with Book App Specialists/Developers (e-Publishers fall into this category, which is also the section where A TROOP IS A GROUP OF MONKEYS is featured)
- Book Apps Created Using a Do-It-Yourself Book App Service
- Book Apps Created Using a Developer Studio
- Book Apps Created by an Individual Developer or Small Team
So in addition to reading 27 inspiring stories, you’ll also learn about the myriad options available for publishing book apps.
This book is available exclusively on Amazon Kindle but you don’t have to have a Kindle device to read it! You can get the free Kindle app that lets you read books from the Kindle store on your Apple or Android devices!
I am honored to be among the many talented authors who contributed to this book. Many thanks to Karen for putting it all together!Categories: A Troop is a Group of Monkeys, Apps, Digital Publishing, Picture Books, Publishing, Storybook Apps, Writing · Tags: A Troop is a Group of Monkeys, apps, Author, Children's Books, Digital Publishing, e-publishing, Julie Hedlund, Karen Robertson, Kindle, Picture Books, Self Publishing, Storybook Apps, What is a Book App and Could You Create One?, Writing
Another week. Another celebration.
Quotes on Gratitude
“If you have lived, take thankfully the past.” — John Dryden
“Gratitude is one of the sweet shortcuts to finding peace of mind and happiness inside. No matter what is going on outside of us, there’s always something we could be grateful for.” — Barry Neil Kaufman
“One regret dear world, that I am determined not to have when I am lying on my deathbed is that I did not kiss you enough.” — Hafiz of Persia
Gratitude list for the week ending March 2
- Well, there’s that “signing with an agent after four long, long years of trying” thing. Erzsi and I have had two wonderful meetings so far this week and I am bursting with excitement over all the possibilities. I don’t think I’ve ever been so motivated to get back to focusing on my writing!
- Speaking of writing, it was a wonderful feeling to work on app #2 in the TROOP series.
- 12 x 12 registration closed for the year with more than 475 members!
- Had great friends visit on the tail end of their skiing vacation. Our kids got along fabulously which gave us lots of time to catch up, drink some wine and eat lasagna!
- Had what was by far the best parent-teacher conference for Jay so far!
- PadGadget gave TROOP a review that had my convinced the review’s author (Emily) had been inside my head during the writing process. LOVED it!
- My dog has plenty of faults, but he is so gentle and loving with children. I appreciated this quality in him more than ever when we had two children visiting who at first were deathly afraid, but were giving him hugs at the end.
- I am honored to be one of 27 authors featured in Karen Robertson’s new book, What is a Book App and Could You Create One? (my mug shot is on the bottom left corner) Karen is so generous of her time and talent when it comes to promoting other authors’ work, and my son ADORES the Treasure Kai apps!
- Gorgeous bookmarks, postcards and business cards for TROOP arrived.
- Good snuggle time with Jay while Em was at a sleepover.
What are you grateful for this week?Categories: 12 x 12, A Troop is a Group of Monkeys, Agents, Apps, Authors, Children's Books, Digital Publishing, Dogs, ebooks, Entertaining, Friendship, Gratitude Sunday, How I Got My Agent, Picture Books, Publishing, Storybook Apps, Writing · Tags: 12 x 12, A Troop is a Group of Monkeys, Agents, apps, Author, Children's Books, Digital Publishing, Dogs, ebooks, Entertaining, Erzsi Deak, Friendship, Gratitude, Gratitude Sunday, Hen & Ink, Julie Hedlund, Karen Robertson, Parenting, Storybook Apps, What is a Book App?, Writing
Today it is my pleasure to introduce you to Cyndie Sebourn, a National Board Certified teacher with a master’s degree in education and a passion for empowering educators to use apps in the classroom. She is the author of the Smarty Britches app series, published her own imprint, Sascyn Publishing.
It wasn’t enough for Cyndie to tie her own app series, into the Common Core standards, however. She wanted to help other authors and developers do the same. So she founded Apps With Curriculum, where she provides Common Core-aligned lesson plans. Cyndie created the Common-Core aligned reading strategies for A TROOP IS A GROUP OF MONKEYS. Not only did she deliver a quality product in a short period of time, she was so supportive and an absolute delight to work with.
Here’s what Cyndie had to say about AWC’s mission.
“AWC is providing educators with a course of study for each app that is cross curricular in subject areas and involves technology with education. And for the public educators who need it, it provides alignment to Common Core Standards.
The Latin meaning of curriculum alludes to a racing chariot. That is AWC: it is a race to learn everything possible that pertains to the app. It is a race to help educators. It is curriculum at its best.”
And now you are invited to a party – tonight! PicPocket Books, Sascyn Publishing and Dandelion Moms are sponsoring an Apps With Curriculum Facebook party starting at 5:00 PST/7:00 EST. For two hours you can join in the fun, learn about some of the best apps on the market today, and be eligible to win gift cards and promo codes from the more than 12 developers/publishers participating. I’ve donated three promo codes for TROOP. So I hope you can swing on in!Categories: A Troop is a Group of Monkeys, Apps, Digital Publishing, ebooks, Giveaway, Social Media, Storybook Apps, Uncategorized · Tags: A Troop is a Group of Monkeys, apps, Apps With Curriculum, Author, Book Promotion, Cyndie Sebourn, Dandelion Moms, Digital Publishing, Facebook Party, Julie Hedlund, Melissa Northway, Social Media, Storybook Apps
A REAL LIFE child (i.e. not my own!) reading and enjoying A TROOP IS A GROUP OF MONKEYS. Nothing could mean more to me than this – bringing a book into a child’s hands. NOW it’s real!
A Troop is a Group of Monkeys, Apps, Authors, Children's Books, Digital Publishing, ebooks, Picture Books, Publishing, Storybook Apps, Writing · Tags: A Troop is a Group of Monkeys, apps, Author, Digital Publishing, e-publishing, Julie Hedlund, Picture Books, Storybook Apps, Writing
You know, I had a whole long list of things I was grateful for this week, not the least of which was getting to see Katie Davis this week, but I’m so wound up right now I can’t see straight much less write a coherent post! Why?
Because A TROOP IS A GROUP OF MONKEYS was published on the iTunes store today!!!
I am a published author – for real.
I could write 1000 posts and not be able to fully express my gratitude to the many, many people who have helped me along the way to making that statement. At the very least, however, I must thank Stacey Williams-Ng at Little Bahalia Publishing for loving my story as much as I did and for bringing her creative genius to the project, to Pamela Baron for the gorgeous illustrations and to Tim McCanna for the catchy, addictive tune.
The making of this app was a team effort, and that team includes all of my friends, family and colleagues who have put up with me through cheers and tears and everything in between.
Okay, I realize this is starting to sound like an Oscars speech so I’ll stop now before the music starts shooing me offstage.
THANK YOU!!Categories: A Troop is a Group of Monkeys, Apps, Children's Books, Digital Publishing, ebooks, Family, Friendship, Gratitude Sunday, Picture Books, Storybook Apps, Writing · Tags: A Troop is a Group of Monkeys, apps, Author, Celebration, Children's Apps, Digital Publishing, e-publishing, ebooks, Family, Friendship, Gratitude, Gratitude Sunday, iPad apps, Julie Hedlund, Little Bahalia, Picture Books, Publishing, Rhyming, Storybook Apps, Writing
It would be an understatement to say it’s been quite the week – in a great way! Read on to find out why.
Quotes on Gratitude
“When it’s over, I want to say: all my life I was a bride married to amazement.” — Mae West
“You can’t live a perfect day without doing something for someone who will never be able to repay you.” — John Wooden
“Gratitude is something of which none of us can give too much. For on the smiles, the thanks we give, our little gestures of appreciation, our neighbors build up their philosophy of life.” — A.J. Cronin
Gratitude list for the week ending February 2
- I was invited to speak on a panel at the O’Reilly Tools of Change for Publishing conference in Bologna in conjunction with the Bologna Book Fair. Last year I went to the conference not knowing a single soul and with a just-drafted proposal for an app that I was seeking input on. I’ll be back as a speaker and with that very app published in the iTunes store! Feelings of accomplishment like this do help carry the days when those rejections and disappointments come in.
- This week, 12 x 12 topped 400 members! The program is now officially larger than it was last year.
- We had an amazing featured author post from author Kathleen Pelley. Anyone who reads aloud to children should read AND listen to the post.
- I got to see a prototype of A TROOP IS A GROUP OF MONKEYS! I cannot express how rewarding it was to see it all come together, and I can’t wait for its pending release (date WILL be announced soon)!
- There is a strong possibility I’ll be getting another one of my books (outside of the app series) published in a combination of new and traditional methods. More on this soon, but the early indicators are promising.
- Jay ate his entire dinner three nights this week. This might seem small in the midst of bigger news, but when you get a notoriously picky eater wolfing down his meal three times in one week, that is worth celebrating!
- Reading Prince Caspian to my kids.
- Having a wonderful heart to heart with my daughter over dinner one night, when she told me she admires me because I don’t give up on my dreams. If that is my single accomplishment in life, it’s enough.
- Jay’s triple-chocolate malt ball-covered birthday cake!
- An unexpected chance to chat with a friend in London.
What are you grateful for this week?Categories: 12 x 12, 12 x 12 Featured Author, A Troop is a Group of Monkeys, Apps, Authors, Birthdays, Digital Publishing, Family, Gratitude Sunday, Picture Books, Publishing, Storybook Apps, Writing · Tags: 12 x 12, 12 x 12 Featured Author, A Troop is a Group of Monkeys, apps, Authors, Birthdays, Bologna Children's Book Fair, Children's Books, Digital Publishing, Family, Gratitude, Gratitude Sunday, Kathleen Pelley, Picture Books, Prince Caspian, Storybook Apps, ToC Bologna, Writing
What can I say? What can I say besides CONGRATULATIONS to each and every participant of 12 x 12 in 2012? Because, regardless of whether you wrote one picture book draft or twenty (yes, some people did write that many and more!), you are all winners. You are winners because you WROTE.
For those of you who did complete one draft a month and are ending the year with 12 picture book drafts, this WINNER badge, created by Linda Silvestri, is for you. Wear it proudly and come back for more in 2013. Ready to write 12 more? I know I am! Luckily, registration for 2013 opens on January 2.
Here is my outcome for 12 x 12 in 2012:
January — Wrote a PB draft that has become an idea for a chapter book series.
February — Wrote a PB draft using my favorite 2011 PiBoIdMo titled Tea Rex, about a girly, vegetarian T-Rex that wants to throw a tea party for her friends. But she didn’t have any friends because the other dinosaurs were afraid she’d eat them. This book, with the exact same title and very similar press just got sold to Viking Children’s. The only problem is that it’s not my version! Lucky author X who got there first. This is why it is so important to trust your ideas, your intuition and then to get those darn things submitted!!
March — Wrote a sappy, crappy “Mommy Loves Me” kind of story that will never see the light of day.
April — I laid an egg – no draft.
May — I wrote the second in my animal groups series, A SCOOP IS A GROUP OF PELICANS. If all goes according to plan, this will be released as an interactive app in May, 2013.
June/July — No PB drafts, but I did write and publish my Template for Storybook App Proposals.
August – Wrote a PB draft from the perspective of the antagonist in one of my other PBs. Might eventually propose it as a “he said/she said” interactive storybook app, as it is also a fractured fairy tale.
September — Wrote a cumulative PB in the “House that Jack Built” style. It needs a lot of work, but I love it.
October — Wrote a PB draft that I am now completely re-writing by flipping the male/female roles.
November — No dice, no draft
December — Wrote a PB draft that is more likely to work as a magazine piece as it is very “quiet.” It’s based on a true story from my own childhood.
So I wrote eight picture book drafts this year, six of which have at least some potential, and one that will most likely be published before the end of 2013. I am ecstatic with this result — far and away better than my performance of ONE new draft in 2011. AND, what’s even more amazing is that I continued to revise existing manuscripts. So my new writing did not get in the way (too much) of revising existing work – a trend that I expect will be more difficult to maintain next year, but that I will certainly aim for.
For this final month of 12 x 12 in 2012, it was an honor to feature author and poet Eileen Spinelli. Whoever wins the monthly handwritten note of encouragement in 2013 is one lucky writer! Many thanks to Eileen for encouraging us in our onward writing journey.
How about you? If you did complete a December draft, let us know in the comments and that will get you another entry toward Eileen’s prize. YOU MUST LEAVE YOUR NAME (FIRST AND LAST) IN YOUR COMMENT IF YOU WANT IT TO BE COUNTED AS AN ENTRY. Feel free to share not only your status for December but for the year. We can all gaze in wonder at the collective number of picture books we wrote this year. You have until midnight EST January 2nd to leave a comment on this post and the December 1st post to be eligible for the drawing. I will draw a winner on January 3rd using Random.org.
Remember — Registration for 12 x 12 in 2013 opens on January 2nd. Our final 2012 winner will be drawn on the 3rd, and our FIRST Featured Author post for 2013 will go live on January 4th. So be sure to come back and join the festivities. In the meantime, Happy New Year to you all!!Categories: 12 x 12 Featured Author, 12 x 12 in 2012, A Troop is a Group of Monkeys, Apps, Authors, Children's Books, Creativity, Digital Publishing, Friendship, Giveaway, Goals, Picture Books, Publishing, Storybook Apps, Works in Progress, Writing · Tags: 12 x 12 Featured Author, 12 x 12 in 2012, 12 x 12 Monthly Check-In, A Troop is a Group of Monkeys, apps, Author, Children's Books, Creativity, Digital Publishing, Friendship, Goals, Julie Hedlund, Picture Books, Publishing, Storybook Apps, Works in Progress, Writing