Sunday, February 2, 2014

Picture Book Remix (or Short and Sweet and Funny)

Tip of the Day: This has been seen in the wilds of B&N! Pick up your paperback copy and laugh hysterically today.

My first Book Nook column is up in the February edition of Genesee Valley Parent Magazine! I am very excited about this for a number of reasons:

1. It is my first review writing gig that is paying me in actual dollars

2. GVPM is a fantastic locally owned and run publication with quality articles, relevant ads, and great distribution. Plus they are a sponsor for the Rochester Children's Book Festival.

3. I was "forced" to spend time reading picture books

Some of you may be thinking, "Forced to read picture books? Don't you work at the Children's Reference Desk for seven hours each week in your library? How are you not reading picture books? Besides, don't they take about two minutes each to read?"

The answer to all of these questions is YES. But the truth of the matter is:

a. When I work in the Children's Center, people usually ask for books about a certain thing (trains, dinosaurs, trucks, etc.), not for general recommendations about anything...and if they do, I have some go-to titles that I love (books by Tammi Sauer, Audrey Vernick, Anna Alter, and Jean Reidy to name a few).

b. Believe it or not, librarians do not actually sit around and read all day at work. Not even if each picture book only takes two minutes each. Those two minutes add up to time you are supposed to be spending on ordering, doing reference, answering emails, doing PR, running programs, planning events, etc.

c. I focus most of my reading on YA and MG because they DO take longer to read, and patrons can more easily flip through a picture book to see if it appeals to them than a novel.

That said, reviewing picture books for GVPM has been so much fun! Article due dates have driven me to check out and read lots of them at home, compare them, and actually know and love some of the Caldecott Winners this year. And you know what else about picture books?

They are so stinkin' cute and funny! Don't believe me? Or do? Either way, try some of these:

Will this make me want to try my hand at writing a picture book text? I only have once and it was a disaster, but perhaps if inspiration strikes, I will now have some masters in mind to use as inspiration and motivation....

Deena, Miss Subbing for Pubbing


tammi sauer said...

So nice to see you are pro-Bernadette. :)

Jennifer R. Hubbard said...

I do love Tammi Sauer's dancing chickens!

DeenaML said...

Tammi, I would push PRINCESS IN TRAINING on more kids it if was ever on the shelf!

Jennifer, oh yes, the chickens are fabulous as well.