November 7, 2011

Tons Of Fun Monday!

I hope you're all feeling bright-eyed and bushy-tailed this morning (and really, don't ask me what being "bushy-tailed" means exactly or what it has to do with being awake... :))

Since it's Monday, I assume some of your bushy tails look like this:
google images
and some like this:
google images
But if you're feeling like the second one, never fear!  You've come to the right place!  We have donuts :)

And, as you know, we always have plenty of fun around here!  Today is extra-especially fun because of all the winning!  Ready?

First  off: this week's Fun Foto theme is HIBERNATION!  So scout around for a child-friendly photo that says hibernation to you and get ready to post it on your blog Friday for everyone to enjoy and use as a story prompt :)

Next up: the October Pitch Pick.  The winner, whose pitch will be sent to the awesome editor Erin Molta for evaluation and comment, is none other than KIM!!!!!  Congratulations, Kim!!!  Well done!!!  And congratulations also to Carla, Christie, and Tracy, our other brave contestants, who put their work out there for everyone to see and critique.  As always, all the pitches were wonderful, and I'm sorry that everyone can't win.  But please, keep those pitches coming.  It's great practice, and who knows?  You could be a winner next time!  Stay tuned for Straight From The Editor coming up whenever Erin's comments happen to arrive... :)

Next: the winner of which book will go on a journey around the world is Can't Sleep Without Sheep! If you would be interested in having Can't Sleep come to your neck of the woods, please sign up in the comments.  I will either choose one person to start with (possibly by a contest of some kind... mwah-ha-hah!) and let them send it on, or if enough people from enough far-flung places sign up, perhaps I'll just put together an itinerary.  The idea is for the book to travel around and be signed with a first name, location and date (and a tiny message if you like) and then come back to me eventually to share with kids on school visits!
illustration copyright Mike Wohnoutka 2010
Finally: here are the Halloweensie Contest finalists for you to vote on.  Boy did this turn out to be way harder than I expected!  Everyone's entries were so good!  In the end, though, my assistant judge and I narrowed it down with heaviest emphasis on what a child would most enjoy since the point is, after all, to write for kids, with secondary consideration to how close you came to the 100 word count.  So here are the 3 finalists, identified by number. not name.  Please read them and vote for #1, #2, or #3!


Oh Judy!
A gaggle of boys and girls dressed like soldiers, dancers, animals and one lone devil walked down the street in search of Halloween treats.
Before they reached Judy's house, a ghost darted out of the bushes.
A ballerina jumped throwing her candied apple into the air.
A bear cried as the gooey treat fell on his furry head.
The devil stumbled over a jack o'lantern into the bushes.
The group joined together to return the devil to his feet.
"Oh Judy,” they yelled.
"What?" she cried from her front porch, as a shadowy figure slipped into the bushes.


Red candied apple dripping in goo.
Orange carved pumpkins spelling out BOO!
Yellow glowing jack o’lantern’s grin,
Green as the wart on an ugly witch chin!
Blue satin Cinderellas looking for a shoe,
Purple bubbling cauldron of stinky witch brew.
Black is the cat, white ghost in flight,
A rainbow of colors on Halloween night!


Boo smirked and pulled Jack O’Lantern to the spooky looking house.
“Come on. Let’s go here.”
Jack O’Lantern gasped at skeletons and ghosts hanging from trees. The eerie sound of a wind chime, the only noise.
“Maybe we should have come out earlier,” said Boo, shivering in the cold and dark.
Circumnavigating a hanging ghost to reach the door, Boo dared to ring the doorbell.
Just as the door creaked open, a gust of wind blew the hanging ghost into them.
“Aargh!” They screamed as two candied apples were thrust toward them.
The boys ran and called back,
“Thank yoooooooo!”

So please vote for your favorite today or tomorrow!  (Poll will close Wednesday November 9 at 5 AM EST so I can post the winner on Wednesday morning.)

The winner will receive a signed hard cover copy of Haunted Party by the incomparable Iza Trapani!
And as I said, all of the entries were fantastic - I was so impressed with the quality and with how imaginative people could be within the constraints of the writing requirements!  I'm looking forward to the Thanksgiving Contest I've had requests for which I will post as soon as I think up what it is :)

Don't forget to vote for the Halloweensie winner, let me know if you'd like to have Can't Sleep journey to your house, and pick out a hibernation foto for Friday!


  1. Wow - you pack a lot into these blog posts! I'd like to participate in your book's journey, it sounds like fun.

  2. I need to work up courage to do a pitch :)

    I would love to participate in Journey Around the World (France).

  3. Andrea - I know - it's just a try not to post more than 2-3 times a week and there's so much to do and say :) I would love to have you participate in the Can't Sleep Journey - Canada, right?

    Joanna - you can do it!!! The first available opening is December 28, I think, and after that, January 18 or something, so you have plenty of time to get that pitch perfect :) And I know Ava and Woolliam would love to come to France :)

  4. Oh my goodness, all sorts of awesomeness going on here this morning. I particularly love the picture of that squirrel. lol. He made my morning. And I still can't believe I forgot to post my Halloweensie story. Ugh. I guess that tells you what kind of week it was last week. I'm ready for a fresh and happy start this week tho. And I voted for the contest. Good luck everyone!

  5. Abby - I'm sorry you missed the Halloweensie Contest, but don't worry! you can enter the Thanksgiving one if I ever think it up :) Thanks for voting!

  6. How much fun is this. I'd love to participate in the book journey. (Midwest - USA)

  7. Natasha - oh, yay! This is going to be fun :)

  8. Woo hoo, so excited to be nominated in your Halloweensie contest. Squee! Great entries, I must have missed that second one before.
    Will start getting ideas for hibernation.
    Have a great week!

  9. And congrats Kim!

    And I LOVE Can't Sleep Without Sheep so glad that got picked.

  10. Catherine - I know! Congrats! And that second one was the last entry - maybe why you didn't see it. HAGW too :)

  11. Happy Monday Susanna! Good luck to the three entries, each of them was fun to read. It must have been hard narrowing it down. Halloween books are fun!

  12. Congratulations to Kim. Everyone who pitches is so brave. I'm learning lots from the posts and comments. Thanks.

  13. Thanks to everyone who voted for my pitch. As you all know, our writing becomes so personal to us and so close to our hearts that having positive support and constructive feedback means everything. So I appreciate your vote and your suggestions to make the pitch even stronger.

    On another note, what a great Halloween contest Susanna. The three finalists are terrific and it was hard to choose the best one!

  14. What an uplifting blog today -- so much good news. I think all three finalists are great! I voted.

    Congratulations on the selection. I would love "Can't Sleep Without Sheep" to visit me! Sign me up. Can we blog about it when we receive it? That would be fun -- follow the sheep. :)

    Is the hibernation photo, one of our own photos, or a photo we've seen and liked. I'm new to this. Will be out of pocket Friday, but will try. Am looking forward to your Thanksgiving contest -- will not forget to post this time.

  15. Oh my goodness. Those pictures were perfect! I loved reading the entries. They were so great!

  16. Yay, Kim. I think that was the one I voted for. I can't remember since there were so many good ones.

    Great idea about the book "tour".

  17. So yeah, I was NOT picture number 1, the cute and perky creature. What a wonderful post today with so much to entertain and do.

  18. Kerri and Stacy - thanks for stopping by, reading, and voting!

    Kim - congratulations!!! :)

    Patricia - thank you :) and Can't Sleep would love to make a stop at your house and I would love if you wanted to blog about it - so sweet :)

    Peggy - glad you enjoyed the entries! They were all good, weren't they?

    Stina - do you live somewhere exotic? maybe Can't Sleep can come visit you... :)

  19. Angela - well, you have an excuse having put in all those hours on NaNo! Glad we could entertain you over here for a minute or two :)

  20. This morning, I resembled the cat more than the squirrel. In fact, I may go to bed soon to get this day done already.

    So many happenings here. I voted! Can't wait to see who wins.

  21. Theresa - Maybe tomorrow you'll feel more like the squirrel :) Thanks for voting! And I really enjoyed your guest post this morning.

  22. Wow! Your blog is chock-full of activity. Good for you! So glad Can't Sleep Without Sheep will go around the world. It's such a great book!

  23. Those were so much fun to read! I wish I had a photo of myself hibernating with a stack of good books and an endless mug of latte...

  24. Iza - thanks! :)

    Deniz - glad you enjoyed them! i hope you'll enter the Thanksgiving Contest coming up any minute... :)

  25. Congrats, Kim.

    I voted, too. All were good.

    I would love to participate with "Sheep can't sleep", I'm in the midatlantic region. Some people think of Virginia as being the south.

    Also am confused about the foto contest. What kinds of photos do you want and if they are our own or what we find on the internet.

  26. Clar - photos should be appropriate for children ages 0-12, represent whatever the theme is for the week, and be either photos you've taken yourself or anything you find on the internet. With luck, they might spark a story idea for someone :)


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