#AtHome learning using my books

The inspiring image above is a spread from my upcoming picture book, ELIZABETH WARREN’S BIG, BOLD PLANS, illustrated by the amazing Susanna Chapman and releasing on May 5 (hooray!). These days, it often feels hard to conceive of big, bold plans. I’ll admit, some days just getting out of my pajamas feels like a victory. And for those of those parenting or teaching youngsters and attempting #AtHome learning for the first time? Hats off to you!
To try to help you with your big, bold plans–or even the just-getting-through-today plans–I’ve been working to create and assemble whatever materials I can that might be of assistance. I’ll continue to add to this list as I get more requests (feel free to reach out if there’s something specific you’d like!), ideas, and time. Hopefully, you can find access to the books via an online read-aloud, ebook download, independent bookstore, or your own bookshelves. I hope these resources are helpful for your #AtHome learning efforts!


Emmanuels Dream cover with sticker
EMMANUEL’S DREAM: THE TRUE STORY OF EMMANUEL OFOSU YEBOAH


Two Truths and a Lie coverTwo Truths and a Lie: Histories and Mysteries coverTTL3 Forces of Nature coverThe TWO TRUTHS AND A LIE series


Be a Changemaker coverBE A CHANGEMAKER: HOW TO START SOMETHING THAT MATTERS


MY DOG IS THE BEST-coverMY DOG IS THE BEST


Again, my goals here are to be as helpful as possible for YOU to continue leading #AtHome learning, so please email me if there is anything specific I might be able to do, including ways to connect with your students. We’re all in this together, even while we’re apart. So, until we meet again, stay safe, #StayHome… and stay sane. xoxo

Happy holidays (and a gift idea)!


Are you buying any of my books to give as a gift this holiday season? If so, thank you!
I’d be thrilled to send you a signed bookplate and some book swag for you to include with your gift. Just send an email to laurie@lauriethompson.com with the details (which book, to whom it should be personalized, and what mailing address you’d like it sent to), and I’ll pop them in the mail for you ASAP.
And, again, thank you! It’s like giving a gift to me, too. =D
Be a Changemaker gift wrapped

My Dog Is the Best… in Japanese!

A few months ago I announced that My Dog Is the Best would be translated and sold in Japanese. A few days ago, there was a package on my doorstep. I opened it to find these:
My Dog Is the Best cover in Japanese
S U R P R I S E !  =D
This is the first foreign edition I’ve seen of any of my books, so it’s super exciting. And it was even better than expected, since we currently have a Japanese student living with us! She had already read the book in English, so it was fun to see her enjoy it in her native language.
She also rather sheepishly informed me that my bio, which I thought was rather clever in English, didn’t translate quite so well into Japanese. It originally said, “…many of her best friends have had four legs and fur,” but the Japanese version apparently says something along the lines of “many of her best friends have had four legs and were hairy.” She found it rather humorous that the Japanese version wasn’t clearly referring to animals, as the English version was. Ah, the subtleties of language, and the importance of word choice! 🙂
My Dog Is the Best-Japanese bio
 

Good news for MY DOG IS THE BEST!

MY DOG IS THE BEST cover

MY DOG IS THE BEST cover
I’m tickled to share some good news about MY DOG IS THE BEST with you today:

 
First, it was listed in the CCBC Choices 2016 by the Cooperative Children’s Book Center!

 
Second, it was also awarded a 2015 Blue Ribbon from The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books (BCCB)!

 
My Dog Is the Best activity kit coverThird, I worked with Curious City to develop a free storytime and canine craft kit for educators, librarians, and parents, and I think it turned out beautifully. Just download and print, and you’ve got a ready-made activity plan to go along with the book. Enjoy!

 
Finally, I can’t remember if I mentioned this or not, but now that the date is approaching, I’m getting more and more excited… My Dog Is the Best will soon be published in Japan! It is expected to release this summer, and in an even smaller (and cuter!) trim size. I’ll keep you posted!

 

Book trailer video for My Dog Is the Best

I LOVE this book trailer for My Dog Is the Best! Not just because it’s adorable (it is), or because it’s my first book trailer (yep), but because so many special people helped make it a reality.
First, check it out:

Isn’t that CUTE? Of course, huge thanks to Paul Schmid for providing the art. My sweet husband recorded the audio (with my awesome sister-in-law’s help) of my darling niece “reading” the book: She’s too young to read just yet, so she memorized the whole thing! And my talented friend Lelynn did the animations and editing. Thanks so much, everyone!
I hope you enjoy it as much as I do! 🙂

Summer 2015 roundup

The days are (finally) getting cooler and damper here in the Pacific Northwest and most of the kids are back in school, so it seems like a good time to reflect on the summer.
I typically don’t get to do much writing-related work over the summer, since the kids are home from school and the sun is shining, but this summer was filled with fun and exciting author events!

2015-07-11 Andersons Bookshop kids books extravaganza 2First, I got to participate in a huge author panel at Anderson’s Bookshop in Naperville, IL. The kids’ books extravaganza on July 11th included some of my best friends in the industry, including Christine Hayes, Ruth Barshaw, Lynda Hunt, Keyan Atteberry, Jennifer Chambliss Bertman, Tara Dairman, Janet Fox, and Amy Finnegan. It was even more wonderful because I got to meet the very special someone who wrote one of my all-time favorite reviews Emmanuel’s Dream, Keegan Knott, and it was her birthday, too! I got a hug. It’s a day I won’t soon forget, let me tell you. Thank you Anderson’s and Keegan for the wonderful memories! =D

EMLA costume partyNext I headed to the Erin Murphy Literary Agency client retreat at The Abbey Resort at Lake Geneva. I can’t even begin to explain what a powerful, amazing this annual event is for me, and this year was no different. We do lots of fun, silly things like the costume party, but we also do a lot of learning, networking, sharing, connecting, growing, and more. I feel so blessed to be a part of this community!
2015-07-12 Mustard Museum2015-07-12 St LouisIMG_2675From there I continued on down to St. Louis to sign books at ILA and conduct a research trip. Our first stop was the National Mustard Museum.

What am I researching there, you ask? Well, you’ll just have to wait and see! St. Louis was beautiful, ILA was a lot of fun, and I even got to go to
Cynthia Levinson’s book launch party for Watch Out for Flying Kids while I was there. Plus, the research trip was a huge success. I can’t wait to get back to work on that manuscript!

I had the opportunity to appear at several summer camps, including one on being a changemaker and another on early literacy, which I loved, and I did interviews on two different live radio programs.

IMG_2956Last but certainly not least, I also spoke at the Pacific Northwest Library Association (PNLA) annual conference in Portland with two of my favorite nonfiction authors, Mary Cronk Farrell and Elizabeth Rusch, and I did my first storytime for My Dog Is the Best at University Bookstore in Bellevue.
It was a busy, fulfilling summer, and now I’m looking forward to some quiet writing time!
 

MY DOG IS THE BEST news and #giveaways!

MY DOG IS THE BEST-cover

MY DOG IS THE BEST-coverIt’s almost release day for MY DOG IS THE BEST, available Tuesday, June 9th!
Here’s what the critics have had to say so far:

“… the simplicity of both the words and the pictures creates a charming, toddler-sized ode to man’s best friend.” —Booklist
“This simple, quiet story conveys the enduring bond between child and dog, with the added appeal of a joke that younger children just beginning to understand humor can enjoy.” —Kirkus Reviews
“Though ‘a boy and his dog’ may not be a groundbreaking theme, it’s often a popular one—and this gentle tale of friendship is no exception…. While this is a familiar story, it’s a well-executed and charming one.” —School Library Journal
“… simple wording helps young children who are learning to read…. I really enjoyed this cute children’s book and enjoyed its depiction of man’s best friend….or should we say ‘boy’s’ best friend!” —Curling Up With A Good Book blog
#Bookaday My Dog is the Best by @LaurieThompson & @PaulSchmidBooks. Made me think of http://t.co/mlzJYBYVm1” … “In my opinion, it is a perfect candidate for The Baker’s Dozen.”  — John Schu (@MrSchuReads) February 26, 2015

The launch party is Friday, June 12th, at University Book Store in the University District. More info here.
There’s a giveaway happening on Goodreads:

Goodreads Book Giveaway

My Dog Is the Best by Laurie Ann Thompson

My Dog Is the Best

by Laurie Ann Thompson

Giveaway ends June 16, 2015.
See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter to Win


Our adorable pup and boy pair are going out on a blog tour beginning Saturday, June 6th. Here’s where to find them (and me) in the next few weeks (note, many of these will have giveaways, too–more chances to win!):

6/6/2015 Booking Mama http://www.bookingmama.net/
6/8/2015 Jean Reidy http://jeanreidy.com
6/9/2015 Watch. Connect. Read. http://mrschureads.blogspot.com/
6/10/2015 5 Minutes for Books http://books.5minutesformom.com
6/11/2015 KidLit Frenzy http://www.kidlitfrenzy.com/
6/12/2015 Unleashing Readers http://www.unleashingreaders.com/
6/16/2015 Anastasia Suen: Booktalking #kidlit http://anastasiasuen.com/
6/19/2015 Kirby’s Lane http://kirbyslane.com
7/1/2015 Library Lions http://LibraryLionsRoar.blogspot.com

 
And, last but not least, if you’d like buy a copy:
You may pre-order a signed copy from University Book Store.
Also available on:

Let's celebrate with a giveaway (or four)!

MY DOG IS THE BEST cover

I’m so happy about the recent accolades my books have received that I’ve decided to host not just one giveaway–but FOUR!
To celebrate the fact that BE A CHANGEMAKER: HOW TO START SOMETHING THAT MATTERS was a finalist for the Cybils awards, I’ll be giving away a signed copy of the paperback edition on Goodreads, here:

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Be a Changemaker by Laurie Ann Thompson

Be a Changemaker

by Laurie Ann Thompson

Giveaway ends April 02, 2015.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter to win


To celebrate the starred review from School Library Journal for EMMANUEL’S DREAM: THE TRUE STORY OF EMMANUEL OFOSU YEBOAH, I’ll be giving away a signed copy on Goodreads, here:

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Emmanuel's Dream by Laurie Ann Thompson

Emmanuel’s Dream

by Laurie Ann Thompson

Giveaway ends April 02, 2015.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter to win


AND, I’ll give away a signed copy of either one (winners get to choose!) to two random subscribers to my mailing list. If you’re not a subscriber yet, just sign up below. (I only send a short newsletter once/month.)

Subscribe to my mailing list

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MY DOG IS THE BEST coverFinally, School Library Journal recently called my upcoming release “well-executed and charming.” I can’t give this one away just yet (it will release on June 9, 2015), but feel free to share the MY DOG IS THE BEST love by adding it to your Goodreads shelf and/or pre-ordering it at one of the following links:
My Dog Is the Best


On overnight success (Surprise! It’s a lot like failure.)

I posted over on the Emu’s Debuts blog yesterday about what makes an “overnight success.” If you missed it, here’s a little excerpt:

Both of last week’s posts here were about failure, or at least the constant perceived threat of failure that so often makes it hard for us to move forward. I’m going to continue the theme, but on a slightly different note. Our own Emu Empress, Erin MUrphy, once said something along the lines of, “For every success, there is a waiting period that feels like failure.” And in a post on this very blog almost three years ago, she followed that up with, “But it’s NOT! It’s just waiting!”
Roosevelt quote about failure and successWhen she wrote that post back in 2011, I’d only been with the agency for a few months. One year from now, I’ll have three books published. That doesn’t seem like very much waiting, especially to those familiar with the pace of the publishing industry. Many of my writer friends have walked up to me and said something to the effect of, “Wow, you’re on FIRE!” Some say things like, “I guess you’ve been busy lately!” Others ask, “So, what’s your secret?” as if I’m holding out on them. A few say, “Boy, did you get lucky!” never thinking that some authors might be a little bit offended by that. (I never am: Yes, indeed, I have gotten very, very lucky!)
So, in the interests of dispelling myths and keeping things real, I thought it might be helpful to break down my “overnight success:”

You can read the rest of that post here.

2013: What a year!

EMLA Client Retreat group photo

I haven’t posted here for way too long, but 2013 turned out to be quite a year. I did manage to squeeze in a few posts over at Emu’s Debuts, so I thought I’d share them here as a sort of roundup (and to partially explain where I’ve been since the last post)…
In July, I had the amazing experience of attending my second Erin Murphy Literary Agency client retreat, this time in Big Sky Montana. Words can’t really describe how wonderful these retreats are, but I posted a bit about it here.

EMLA Client Retreat group photo
The whole EMLA retreat gang (except me!)

Aside from that trip, I spent the summer writing, researching, writing, interviewing, writing, revising, writing, revising, revising, and revising to deliver the final manuscript for BE A CHANGEMAKER. I wrote a bit about the process here.
A screen shot of the developmental edit
Tracked changes in the developmental edit stage

Despite the mad race to the finish line, I feel really good about how it all came together. And here‘s a post about how it felt to get to THE END.
Done!
Then there was the dreaded author photo, which actually turned out to be sort of fun (and decent enough to share with the world, thank goodness!).

Laurie Thompson head shot

 
Other news and highlights from the year?

  • I got to see an early study for a scene from the picture-book biography of Emmanuel Ofosu Yeboah, illustrated by Sean Qualls.
  • The above book also FINALLY has a title, EMMANUEL’S DREAM!
  • I also got to see preliminary sketches for MY DOG IS THE BEST (sorry, I can’t share them here, but Paul Schmid‘s illustrations are ADORABLE!).
  • I finished another fiction picture book manuscript and it will soon be going out on submission (fingers crossed!).
  • I participated in and finished PiBoIdMo 2013.

Stay tuned for my next post on how I plan to tackle 2014. 🙂

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