HULA HOOPIN’ QUEEN has had a great year! Awards Starred Review Kirkus Reviews Best of the Best Books Chicago Public Library Charlotte Zolotow Award – Highly Commended Title Cooperative Children’s Book Center (CCBC) Choices Cooperative Children’s Book Center (CCBC) Oneota Reading Journal Sprout’s Bookshelf Blog Midwest Book Review The Horn Book Booklist Online Shelf AwarenessIcon-star School Library Journal Kirkus ReviewsIcon-star Publishers Weekly BookDragon, Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center




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Brooklyn NY School Visits

What a wonderful time I had in October visiting four schools in Brooklyn.  Thank you to the Brooklyn Public IMG_0234IMG_0244 IMG_0282 IMG_0251 IMG_0240 IMG_0254Library for contracting me to do the visits.  And thank you to all the great students who enjoyed THE HULA HOOPIN’ QUEEN and my presentations.

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The Wauwatosa Public Library was the perfect place to launch HULA HOOPIN’ QUEEN. Thank you to Anne Kissinger at the Wauwatosa Public Library for helping me with a wonderful launch. A wonderful time was had by allDSC_0204DSC_0221DSC_0228DSC_0237DSC_0252DSC_0272

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I’m so excited to announce that HULA HOOPIN’ QUEEN will be released by the end of the May 2014. The illustrations by Vanessa Brantley-Newton are absolutely beautiful and I’m pleased to share them.Image 3

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My first picture book, THE HULA HOOPIN’ QUEEN is being published by Lee & Low Books. It is scheduled to be released in spring 2013. I am beyond thrilled that artist/illustrator Vanessa Brantley-Newton will be the illustrator. To see her portfolio check out the link icon on this website.

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I think about this quote a lot when I get bogged down with creating plot. Sometimes it takes me days, even weeks, of slowly plodding along different paths before I find the one that leads me through the forest of ideas I started with.  And yes, at times, I want to just stop, as I tell myself that nothing is working, and that I should just shove the manuscript to the back of a drawer and forget about it. But, over the years, I have found that good things grow slowly. Whether they are potatoes or carrots growing in the garden, or ideas for a new story. None will grow if I stand still.

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Thelma’s Got A Blog!

Making hula hoops in my spare time

Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep. -Scott Adams

I think this quote is a great one to think about when you are revising. I’ve found that as I revise, I sometimes find myself putting things back in that I previously had edited out. What I thought were “mistakes,” actually were things that made the story stronger. I love the creative freedom that writing allows me as I muddle through the first or even the seventh draft of a manuscript. Where else in life can we take a mistake, toss it aside and then bring it back as something that actually enhances what we are working on.

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