Wednesday, October 31, 2012

halloween treat!

While the world is recovering from the storm (hurricane and publishing mergers) I thought I'd post some photos to lighten the mood. It is Halloween and my baby's a cupcake!

Rain Dragon wasn't sure what her costume was supposed to be, but, luckily,  I had this book to explain it to her:

She's grown so much since the first time we read this book!
Rain Dragon thought the book was more delicious than her, but they're both sweet treats to me:

Happy Halloween!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Storm Day this and that


We're bracing for Hurricane Sandy to hit--and as they've shut down the NYC subway system, and for safety reasons, my offices are closed--although those of us who can are working from home. I'm reading manuscripts and hoping that we don't lose power. I hope those of you in affected areas (and heck, those of you who are not, too) are staying safe and dry!


In the publishing world, we've been fascinated by the news that broke last Thursday of a potential merger/purchase of Penguin by Random House--spurring guesses on what the new company name would be (Random Penguin seems to be the universal choice. For fun, I threw in the possibility of "Little, Brown Penguin"--not that we're involved--at least, not that I know of!).

And then the breaking news yesterday was that Harper Collins may also be vying to purchase Penguin. Jeepers! A RH/Penguin merger would result in a publishing house that controls 25% of the market. A Harper/Penguin combo would control 20% of the market share.

I'd hate to see either of these scenarios happen, personally, for many of the reasons mentioned in the various articles. I guess we'll all have to wait and see how it shakes out.

UPDATE: It appears that the Random House/Penguin merger has been confirmed (pending approvals). The publishing company will be called Penguin Random House. Is this really happening?! It feels...fake, somehow. Almost like a fictional dystopian world.


Last week's book events (that I mentioned in my previous post) were great.

At the Lemony Snicket event at Symphony Space, the highlight were the questions from kids at the end, and one question in particular stood out for me. I think it was the second-to-last question, and it went something like this:

Kid: Would you rather fight 100 duck-sized horses, or one horse-sized duck?
Daniel Handler (aka Lemony Snicket's representative): Would I rather fight 100 duck-sized horses, or one horse-sized duck? Well, I would definitely lose either fight. I think 100 duck-sized horses would be more interesting to see, perhaps. But, what would we fight about?

How would you answer the question? It's a tough decision, but I think I'd try my luck with the duck-sized horses. They'd be cute, at least. A duck-sized horse just seems way too frightening to me. The stuff of horror movies. Speaking of, have you seen this study? I need to watch more horror films!


Just for fun, here are the 25 Most Awkward Cat Sleeping Positions.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Halloween on the way

I've long had dreams of coming up with super creative costumes for my kid when the time came, but it would seem that we are still at the age where Tilly would likely tolerate a costume for not more than ten minutes before pulling it off and taking it apart to examine it. So this year I'm afraid I will have to settle for admiring other's crafty projects. Oh Happy Day! has been posting a number of adorable costumes in recent weeks. In particular I thought this one was sweet, based on The Red Balloon. I had the book as a kid and was totally fascinated. Do you have any big plans for your trick-or-treater?

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Questions about the editing process


As an author who submits to editors and a professional editor myself, I have questions for people on both sides of the editing process.

My first question is mainly  for editors but thoughts from others aare more than welcome: what do you do when you write an editorial letter and the author argues and refuses to make the changes?

Not that editors are always right, and I don't claim to be!

Authors: what do you do when an editor makes a suggestion that is just plain wrong? And what happens? How do you work it out?

And what do you do when an editor, instead of suggesting, just goes ahead and writes new material? (This happened to me recently with a publisher when *I* was the author and I will leave how furious and frustrated I was to your imaginations.)

Wednesday, October 24, 2012


I posted this last week on my personal blog...I don't mean to be lazy to cross post it, but I just thought it was so neat I'd share it here too.

We did the first stop of my mini-tour for Starry River of the Sky at Books on the Square in Providence, RI. There was a very nice crowd of people, Rain Dragon was surprisingly tolerant and a lovely time was had by all.

The only bummer was that we didn't take any photos! The Sasquatch was holding the baby, I was holding one to hold the camera and we forgot all about it. But I did get one photo--this photo was given to me by one of my readers:

ahh, my pre-Rain Dragon days feel like a lifetime ago!

It's a photo taken 2(?) years ago at another event, holding a photo of us at an even earlier event. She took another photo of me holding this photo, which would be a photo of me holding a photo, holding another photo. Did that makes sense? Sadly, I did not take a photo of me holding this photo to illustrate this surreal concept.

Regardless, it makes my head turn in more ways than one. I'm always so thrilled and touched when I realize I have readers who are growing up with my books. I love thinking that they have moved from my picture books to early readers and now to my novels! It's these readers, the ones who have really stuck with my books, that make me want to create books to the best of my ability.  I don't want to disappoint them!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Comic Con and Symphony Space


Happy Fall, all! We've had relatively gorgeous Fall weather in NY, aside from one wintry day, and some gloomy rain. This past weeekend looked like this:
Prospect Park in Brooklyn, NY
There are always book-related events going on in NYC, but lately there seem to have been more than usual. Last weekend was New York ComicCon. I hadn't been in about three years, and I was shocked at how big and crowded it's become--much closer to what San Diego Comic Con is like, I was told. I was speaking on a panel, so I got a pass that looked like this:
I joked on Twitter that this is what I looked like after thirty minutes at ComicCon.
I spoke on the Kids/YA Publishers Spotlight panel--basically, ten different publishers buzzed about recent and upcoming Middle Grade and Young Adult books. This was the room my panel was in--it was a packed house! And the best part was that it was filled with fans of books. In fact, the audience would clap enthusiastically when the slide showed a book or author they were excited about, and not just the "big" books. That was pretty cool.
Here was the Little, Brown Books for Young Readers booth:
I had wanted to walk around a bit after my panel, but it was so crowded and overwhelming I couldn't take it. One of the best things about Comic Con, though, is that the majority of the attendees went all out in terms of their costumes. I didn't take any pictures, but there are plenty online, including here, here, and here. So many little kids were dressed up, too.


Speaking of costumes, yesterday I went to the Symphony Space for a costume party/Book Release Special Event for The Diviners. It featured a conversation (aka hilarious banter) between authors Maureen Johnson and Libba Bray, a reading from the book by actress Ella Rae Peck (Gossip Girl), and a performance by Dandy Wellington and his Band. Everyone was decked out in their 20s garb (Maureen wore satin pajamas, a la the character Theta in the book), and a grand old time was had. Maureen and Libba talked about their mutual love of serial killers, how the house in The Diviners was inspired by the house built by H.H. Holmes (of The Devil in the White City fame), and how The Diviners was inspired by Libba wanting to write about post-9/11 America--she found many similarities and parallels with 1920s America. Oh, and we also determined that there is no such thing as a sherpa farm (Libba had meant to say "llama farm").
(pardon the odd lighting of the photo) Ella reading with Maureen and Libba listening on stage.
At one point during the Q&A, Maureen and Libba ended up as puddles on the floor. I don't actually recall why they did this...
Dandy Wellington and his Band.
the artists! Don't they look ab-so-tute-ly sharp?
book signing with a fan in costume.
Here's a little snippet of the musical performance:
Libba is doing another booksigning this Thursday at Books of Wonder--it's a Teen Fantasy event with six other YA authors from 6-8 pm. Come on out! I'll be there.

Wednesday night I'll be back at Symphony Space for an event with Lemony Snicket--his new book, Who Could That Be at This Hour? comes out tomorrow--it's a new four-book series, a prequel to The Series of Unfortunate Events. Lemony Snicket (aka Daniel Handler) will be sitting down with author Sarah Vowell of This American Life fame.

If you're in the NY area, I hope to see you at one or both of these events!

Speaking of Daniel Handler, check out this hilarious interview:
He is a funny, funny man.

I must say, going to all of these events reminded me that I really like going to readings and other book events. I really should try to go to more that aren't books I've worked on. Have any of you gone to any literary events of note recently? Any upcoming ones you'd recommend?

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Nice finds


"Anne and her family lived alone on an island. She enjoyed having tea time with her friends the spiny lobster and baby hawk." National Geographic, August 1938

You never know what will turn up. I found these images while doing research for my novel -- by the way, it's NOT about a girl who lives alone on an island! But but the rock behind her figures prominently in the story. It is almost 3 billion years old, far older than these circles of it:
The Lewisian Gneiss Stone Circle at Callanish on an Early Autumnal Morning, Isle of Lewis, Outer Hebrides, by Lizzie Shepherd  .... her other images are amazing, too, and well worth looking at full-size!  

It's called Lewisian Gneiss, pronounced "nice." It comes in different colors, but is (usually? almost always?) striped:


Okay, back to work! It's hard to draw the line sometimes between time-wasting and research, but I THINK I'm getting better at it. Maybe one way is to stop once you've found out what you really need to know and save the rest for later?

Wednesday, October 17, 2012


After NYC kidlitcon, my booklaunch and my online book party, there was still work to do! Wonderful readers from all over had ordered books from Porter Square Books, so Rain Dragon and I (with lovely Libby) returned to sign them. All 110 (!!!!) of them.

Needless to say, after the first 50, Rain Dragon got a little antsy in the stroller and I was soon signing with her in my lap. I was absolutely thrilled to be signing the books and so grateful to everyone who ordered, but it was a tricky juggling act.

I realize that this is symbolic of my life from now on. As I look ahead to the new house, new events and new books (hopefully), I can already see the complications. When I wrote Starry River of the Sky, it was a consuming process and it was purposefully so. I wanted to create a book to the best of my ability, dedicating all my time, focus and passion into it.

I don't know if I can do that now, yet, I worry that the quality of my work will suffer as a result. I've gotten used to focusing on one project at a time. But, I guess I will just have to learn to multitask.

And, of course, I wouldn't want it any other way...but would welcome any tips or suggestions on how!

Monday, October 15, 2012

How to get publishers and agents to knock on your door


I was discussing the events of my last post with my assistant at work (about an author complaining that publishers and agents weren't coming to her), and she commented that it actually is very possible to get publishers and agents to "knock on your door", and I thought that might make an interesting blog post. Because it's true--I think most agents and editors have reached out to a potential author or agent at some point, whether or not it turned into a book. Here are a few ways it can happen (note: this is for all books, not specifically children's books):

Become a celebrity 
Okay, so this is probably the most difficult to accomplish, but it's probably the easiest way to get noticed in the publishing world. Heck, there's even a whole category for it: celebrity books. And the main reason why this is a viable publishing model is that most celebrities (depending on who they are, of course) are able to get media coverage for their book. This is huge when it comes to book sales, mainly because if a bookstore knows that a celebrity is going to be on the Today Show or the Tonight Show or on the Ellen Show, they're more likely to stock the book in their store.

Get a platform
This is similar to the first category, but perhaps a bit more "doable" for the non actor, singer, politician, or reality star. Getting a platform can mean becoming an expert in your field and writing papers, speaking at conventions, and being interviewed. It can mean creating a blog and keeping the content fresh, useful, and interesting, and getting tons of readers. It can mean making viral videos on Youtube. It can even mean just being very funny on Twitter and gaining a ton of followers. If you're an illustrator, start an Etsy store and sell prints, cards, T-shirts, and other products featuring your artwork. Many of my colleagues have contacted artists they've admired on Etsy. Todd Parr was discovered at the Licensing Show selling T-shirts. It can happen!

Become a journalist/write articles
Oftentimes editors and agents will contact the authors of a fascinating article they've read, whether in the NY Times, the New Yorker,, or another magazine, newspaper, or online journal, to see if they might be interested in expanding the article into a book. This perhaps works best for nonfiction books, but can happen for fiction as well.

Live a unique, fascinating life. Speak out.
If you have a unique life story, you can get noticed. Maybe you're the oldest Peace Corp volunteer in a certain region. Maybe you've sailed around the world in eighty days. Maybe you because the youngest person to climb Mt. Everest. Maybe you started an anti-bullying campaign that went viral. Maybe you saved a beached whale. None of this guarantees a book contract, but it sure doesn't hurt. I've definitely heard about people with interesting stories and approached them about writing a book. One of my colleagues read a New York Times article about layoff at the New York City Ballet, and took notice of one dancer who was very outspoken in the article and contacted her for a meeting. That turned into the book Bunheads by Sophie Flack.

Self-publish your book, do it well, and sell a bunch of copies
Easier said than done (it's a tough market for everyone), but this has been happening more and more, such as with Amanda Hocking and 50 Shades of Gray

Post your writing on writing community sites like, or write fanfiction
Some editors and agents I know look on these sites to find talent. If your writing is "voted up" by the community, it can get noticed.

Are there other ways you can think of to get the publishing world to come to you?

Thursday, October 11, 2012

So funny he peed in his pants and non-fiction


The other night I had dinner with a friend and her six-year old son, whom I've known since he was two --he was the child who was really sweet and gentle until his testosterone surge, since which time most of his games have centered around armies, weapons, and of course killing). After dinner, Jake  showed me his new books -- a pop-out one on the Coliseum with many details about gladiators; a Darth Vadar pop-out; daily life in Ancient Rome; some other war book I can't remember.

He asked what my next book was about, and when I said it wouldn't interest him, he suggested gladiators. I explained that non-fiction is really hard to sell to publishers ("in decline," as a group of authors report in the Gurardian),  a shame considering how many little boys love non-fiction.

He said eagerly,
"You could make up a story about gladiators!"

So I began plotting aloud: the gladiator who killed so many people (he nodded eagerly) that he was granted his freedom and became Emperor.

"That would be a good story," he said.

"Yes," I said, and then said something that made him laugh really, really hard -- for a long time. When he stopped laughing, he smiled and said,
"That was so funny I peed in my pants."

His mother, who had been reading a magazine, looked up, aghast.

"You didn't really," she said.

"Yes, I really did," he said, standing up and spreading his legs--sure enough, there were wet patches all down his blue jeans. He laughed a little more.

"Tell that to me again," he said.

But I don't think it was my imagination that his mother's face had paled when she saw his wet blue jeans, and I KNOW she wanted to get him into the bathtub.

"Okay, Jacobius Maximus," she said, good-naturedly, but firmly: she wasn't mad--just appalled, I think. "Upstairs."

So you may want to know what I said that elicited this reaction, and honestly, it wasn't that funny -- mildly amusing, I'd call it. Or maybe it wasn't the words, but  him, or the way I said it (the physical voice). It was just a sort of review/description of the book, given in that bright, singsong voice some adults use when they talk to children -- something like:

"Just a nice, sweet bedtime story for children, showing them how life ought to be lived." (or to that effect)

But now I DO want to write a picture book about Jacobius Maximus,who (in his imagination, which would be most of the story) is a gladiator in ancient Rome...but not until my novel is done! And maybe not even then, it may just be one of those tempting ideas that comes to distract you from finishing.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

throwing my own party: why and is it worth it?

So, after my rather elaborate book parties--the one at Porter Square and the online one--last week, fellow authors tend to ask me two questions. Why do I do them? Is it worth it?

Well, a million years ago, I read online at the old Fuse#8 blog about an incredible book party that the publisher threw for the last Lemony Snicket book and there were two things I took away from it.

First, I was kind of jealous. Why didn't any of my publishers every throw me even a quarter of a party like that?

But it was about that time that I had begun to accept and find peace with Robert's illness. I began to realize that anger and resentment at not just  his illness, but most things was simply wasted time and energy (which,  consequently, is the theme of Starry River of the Sky).  I realized, if I really wanted a party for my books I should do something other than stew in jealousy.  So, then and there, I decided I'd stop whining and just throw my own fabulous book parties.

Second, in response to that post at the Fuse#8 blog, one of the commenters criticized the extravagance and "waste of money" of the party, to which I remember (but can't find) she or someone responded about how all parties  can be seen as  a waste of money. The point of a party was to celebrate. The point of a book party is to celebrate the book with perhaps some promotional benefits--not the other way around.

 So, I probably lose money at my book parties. The magnets and chopsticks I had made for my Ling and Ting booklaunch most likely cost more than my royalty per book. The time spent made a hundred pocket pacys for my Dumpling Days launch probably put me at below minimum wage. This time around my awesome publisher (thanks, Little, Brown!) sprung for the glow-in-the-dark stickers and posters, but if they hadn't I would've paid for it myself.  But it doesn't matter.

Because these parties are also my way of thanking readers as well as celebrating the book. Booksales  are like receiving presents at a birthday party--I love them, but I don't measure the success of the party by them.  At a book party, I get to meet readers of my books, readers who want to read my next book! That is FUN. That is something to celebrate.

And it is definitely worth a party.

Monday, October 08, 2012


I wrote about the trend toward digital art on my blog here. I also said that I didn't like that reviewers don't always seem to notice when illustrators create their art digitaly, saying things like "the luscious paintings..."

Does this bother anyone? Is it just me?

"Agents and publishers aren't knocking on my door"

I spoke at the SCBWI Michigan Fall conference in Detroit this past Friday and Saturday--it was a wonderfully-organized and attended conference, and as I got to attend with my fellow speakers Libba Bray and Barry Goldblatt, it was a lot of fun. Libba and I both ran workshops on Friday afternoon while Barry did critiques, and then on Saturday we talked separately on various topics (mine was about what defines a good children's book). Then we did a few panels together, including a 1st-pages panel, and a Q&A.
For another panel, we talked about the history of The Diviners, "from concept to cover" and it was a trip relieving the whole process. Libba talked about her inspiration for the books, Barry spoke about choosing which editors and publishers to submit it to, and I talked about how as a publisher we rallied together to get the project. We talked about the editing process, too--and I laughed remembering a misunderstanding Libba and I had early on. I had wanted to make sure she was okay with our new policy of copyediting electronically, and she looked at me dismayed, and then said very hesitantly: " will nuance be taken into account?" There was a pause, and some more back-and-forth, and I finally realized she thought we had computers (or robots, perhaps?) copyedit our manuscript. I had to assure her that we still had live people who were talented copyeditors--but that now, instead of copyediting on paper, they did the copyedits using Track Changes in a Word document.

The attendees were passionate, friendly, and engaged, and a lot of great questions were asked, and stimulating discussions were had. However, I do want to discuss one encounter I had with an attendee that has left me feeling a bit perplexed. I hate to pick on one slightly negative encounter, when the whole conference was wonderful, but it's been sticking in my brain, so I thought I'd blog about it. My memory of the exact exchange and the order of what was said is a little fuzzy, but it went something like this.

It was after the conference had finished Saturday evening. I had just fetched my suitcase from the hotel storage and was heading to the bathroom to change into travel clothes, when I woman stopped me to ask a question. I wasn't in too much of a rush, so was happy to chat for a minute. She told me that the question she had submitted for our Q&A panel hadn't been read, so I told her to go ahead and ask me.

"With most publishing houses not accepting unagented manuscripts, what are authors supposed to do?"

"Well, you need to get an agent first." I told her that even authors who had "made it" without an agent generally went back to get agents in recent years, because in today's market, it's generally considered important/a necessity. "The problem is, it's not that easy to get an agent." I said it's still possible to get published without an agent--and by attending conferences and meeting editors, that was one way to do it. We chatted a little more about how the industry had changed with eBooks and self publishing, and then she said something like, "I guess there are more agents now, with editors losing their jobs and becoming agents." and I said, "Yes, for whatever reason, there are more agents now than there used to be." At this point, I realized I needed to get going in order to meet the woman giving me a ride to the airport, and I think she realized this, so we started saying our niceties (thank you and goodbye), but then she said something to the effect of: "Well, I guess I just won't get published."

I was a little surprised by her defeatist tone, and I wanted to be as encouraging as possible, so I said, "Oh, don't say that, don't give up."

"The problem is, agents and publishers aren't knocking on my door."

I didn't have a response for this, and we were already walking away from each other, so I just continued on my way. But later I replayed the conversation and marveled at the woman's attitude. It was as if she felt she was somehow entitled to be published, that it shouldn't be so hard.

I don't know the woman's background--perhaps she'd been coming to conferences for years and was just speaking from extreme frustration. Or maybe it was her first conference, and she was disappointed by what she had learned. But I'm really not sure what that woman wanted me to say. That it should be easy? Did she want me to somehow feel guilted into publishing her? That I'd say, without having read anything she'd written, that I'd publish her book?

It's a tough, competitive business, for sure. It's not easy to get published, nor do I think it should be. It can be heart-breaking, frustrating, and soul sucking, and not everyone is going to make it--in fact, very few people are going to be successful in this industry. But this business can also be joyful, inspiring, and full of supportive, collaborative people. And generally, that's the type of people who attend these conferences. So, give up if you want, if it's not worth it to you, but if you want it enough, then work hard, learn all you can, and try to enjoy the journey. Write from your heart, and surround yourself with supportive, positive people. You may make it, or you may not. It takes a lot of luck and timing to be published, a lot of things that aren't in your control. But it most certainly takes not giving up.

I'll leave you all with the same way I ended my talk at the conference. This is from Stephen King's On Writing: 

“Writing isn’t about making money, getting famous, getting dates, getting laid, or making friends. In the end, it’s about enriching the lives of those who will read your work, and enriching your own life as well. It’s about getting up, getting well, and getting over. Getting happy, okay? Getting happy….you can, you will, you should, and if you’re brave enough to start, you will. Writing is magic, as much the water of life as any other creative art. The water is free. So drink.
             Drink and be filled up.”

Saturday, October 06, 2012



When one novel has come out really well, it's scary to write the next -- at least for me. And if the first novel has DONE really well, and the next book doesn't, the failure is public.So  I admire Grace not only for how good STARRY RIVER OF THE SKY is, but for having the guts to write it.
And  I'm really, really happy that STOTS has garnered 5 starred reviews....and even happier to (finally, because I've been in Scotland) meet Rain Dragon and see how healthy and happy she is. But more on her later--I'm looking forward to getting to know her and Anna's daughter better and posting many "real children" posts about them in the years to come.

Earlier this week, because so many people wanted signed copies of SROTS (yay! Below is part of hte crowd waiting for Grace to speak at Porter Square Books in Cambridge:)
Grace had to go back and sign more. Carol Stoltz, one of the great owners,had  an entire cart of books ready for her to sign.

I volunteered to go with her and help with Rain Dragon, one of whose many charms is that whenever I talk, she watches me with intense interest  (this is not just my imagination: she stares and listens as though she is sure that what I am saying is fascinating). But sometimes, Rain Dragon needed to sit on Grace's lap, where she kept wanting to help with whatever her mother was doing with that pen.

Wednesday, October 03, 2012


I think I may have posted the Alice in Wonderland one of these. I find them mesmerizing. Anyway, they give me some ideas on how to make a nice little trailer for my new book. I may be getting a jazz sax player friend of mine to help out. Grace, who always uses original music, has inspired me! My publisher hasn't wanted to post any of my little films because I've used music that isn't my own. Well... no more my friends!

book launching and giveaways

I've been pretty busy the last few days launching my new book into the world and now I'm a bit tired. As well as Sunday's event, I had an online booklaunch on my blog. Next week (after I've recovered) perhaps I'll recap and talk about the how's and why's of all my efforts but in the meantime, I thought I'd call your attention to the two big and still on-going giveaways I announced:

Enter the Drawing and Win Your Portrait
If you post/ share a photo of yourself with Starry River of the Sky on my facebook page you can  win a special edition pocket pacy or even the grand prize of getting your portrait paint by moi! More details HERE.

Glow-in-the-Dark Sticker Giveaway and Event Kit
Your book club, your classroom-- anyone who is reading and sharing Starry River of the Sky-- can order these specially made glow-in-the-dark stickers FREE! These stickers are part of this event kit that goes with the book. Have your own Starry River of the Sky Book Party! More details HERE.

More next week...right now I'm going to bed!

Monday, October 01, 2012



Libby and I came up to the Boston area for Grace's book launch for Starry River of the Sky at Porter Square Books. As soon as I got off the Amtrak train in South Station, I realized that it's been a while since I've come up to Boston (aside from a quick one-day jaunt to Boston for a meeting earlier in the year). I'm sad I didn't have a chance to contact many friends in advance of my trip (aside from my Twitter and Facebook posts about the book launch), but it was nice to see so many familiar faces at the event.

It was a rainy, gloomy Sunday, but that didn't deter a nice big crowd from coming out. It was a full house! Standing room only--and best of all, there were so many kids in attendance:
Grace prepared an interactive reading from the new book, and asked for audience interaction.
They acted out one of the "stories within the story"--here are the six suns that shine down relentlessly on the land, making the world unbearably hot. WangYi (on the right) is getting ready to try to shoot them down from the sky.
Grace's book signing line was extremely long, but she supplied goodie bags and had kid helpers pass around plates of delicious cookies (baked by Grace's mother-in-law) to pass the time.

Speaking of cookies, a young fan brought Grace this awesome homemade cookie bouquet! Check out all of the book covers--the colors are spot-on, especially for Dumpling Days--can you name the book titles?
The very last person in line was Grace's littlest fan. Here's baby Rain Dragon eagerly reaching for a copy of Starry River of the Sky!
Thanks everyone for coming out and making it an incredible event!

If you haven't seen it already, check out the trailer: