Friday, March 3, 2017

A new draft begins



 






With CHASING AUGUSTUS set for publication in September, I have begun writing the first draft of a new novel.  Each time I begin again I have to remind myself how difficult it is to create something out of nothing.
 
I love these wise words by the novelist Octavia Butler:
 
"First forget inspiration. Habit is more dependable. Habit will sustain you whether you’re inspired or not. Habit will help you finish and polish your stories. Inspiration won’t. Habit is persistence in practice."
 
I agree.  An amazing amount of work can get done, one day at a time.

I tell students in the classes I visit that if you write a page a day, you can write an entire novel in a year.

Now, back to work!

 

Thursday, February 16, 2017

This dog!






Reason #157 Why An Author Should Love a Dog:

Because when the words aren't working and the sentences aren't flowing, and you wonder why you ever wanted to be a writer in the first place, your dog gently wags her tail and looks at you with those soft doe eyes and tells you:


Oh, Kim, this is so hard, BUT YOU CAN DO IT!

And then you begin again.  

Because you love a dog.


Saturday, January 21, 2017

My Favorite Room




    This is the spot in my home where I love to read.  I usually read several books at once, and our family room, with comfy couches, a crackling woodstove, and blankets woven from our sheep wool, is the perfect reading spot.
     When I visit schools I am almost always asked to list my favorite books, so I've been keeping a list for more than a decade. Here are my top books of 2016! (I already have many for 2017, but I'll have to wait to add them to my list...)


              The Girl Who Drank the Moon
                    by Kelly Barnhill (middle grade)
Rooftoppers by Katherine Rundell (middle grade)
Anna and the Swallow Man by Gavriel Savit (young adult)
All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr (adult)
The Underground Railroad by Coleson Whitehead (adult)
Middle Passage by Charles Johnson (adult)
 
I also try and read several classics a year, and this year my favorite was a reread of:
 
 Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
 

And for my writing friends, my favorite writing book of the year was:

  The Way of the Writer by Charles Johnson.








Monday, January 2, 2017

A Year of Gratitude



When you are writing a novel about a girl and her dog, you need to do a lot of research!  Happy New Year everyone.  Let's make it a year of love and peace and kindness.

Monday, December 12, 2016

Where's Bee?





So fun to find my books on the shelves of the Chicago Public Library! These were discovered by my uncle and aunt during their road trip across the country.

Monday, December 5, 2016

New author photo!



My editor at Knopf/Penguin Random House just asked for a new author photo of me and my dog, Harper.  I wonder why?

Good news on the way!

Monday, April 4, 2016

How to Encourage Empathy



Thank you to Imagination Soup for including BEHOLDING BEE in your list of books that teach empathy!

"We MUST read stories that help us become empathetic to what it’s like to have a physical disability; stories that show not just our differences but more importantly, our similarities.

We MUST talk about physical disabilities (differences) with children. If we don’t, they become the elephant(s) in the room. As a result, children mistakenly interpret that these topics are wrong or taboo.

Disabilities are NOT wrong. Nor taboo. As we’ll see in these stories, everyone notices differences. Especially curious children. So it’s up to us to discuss and help our children learn about the similarities. It’s up to us to answer questions and to help kids see what it might feel like to have a physical disability. This is the a way to ensure that we raise compassionate, empathetic, and kind children."

Imagination Soup recommends several great books for young readers, including BEHOLDING BEE:

imaginationsoup.net