Category: Blog

What Are the Gemstone Dragons?

If you’ve never heard of a Gemstone Dragon, or think they’re just mythical creatures from the Dungeons and Dragons game, then you haven’t seen my new Gemstone Dragons book series! What is a Gemstone Dragon? A Gemstone Dragon is a magical creature with awesome powers! Each Gemstone Dragon has a gem on their chest that…
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Dragons Around the World

My new GEMSTONE DRAGON chapter book series is coming out in a few weeks! So I wanted to celebrate all things dragons around the world. My Gemstone Dragons are different from other dragons. They’re fun, sparkly and have a magical power that comes from the gemstone in their chest. They know, however, that their biggest…
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Interview with ARROW illustrator Justin Hernandez

I’ve been blessed to work with fantastic illustrators and art directors on my novels from my very first one. THE BOY, THE BOAT, AND THE BEAST is my debut novel, but it was also the middle-grade debut of illustrator Justin Hernandez. The book also had a fantastic art director at Simon & Schuster, Laurent Linn,…
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Interview with ARROW Disability Expert Reader Sarah Tuberty

When I got the idea for ARROW, it was this: A boy with one hand lived in a tree. I didn’t know why he lived in a tree or why he had a limb difference, but if there’s one thing I’ve learned in my career as an author, it’s to honor what my characters tell…
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How to Plant Seed Paper

When I’ve talked to readers and librarians about ARROW, I’ve been giving out little squares of seed paper. I encourage them to plant the paper squares with kids to grow beautiful wild flowers. One of the things I love about this is the way it builds a love of nature. It’s one thing to look…
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Learn About Soil with Edible Dirt

When a tree tells a story, you can imagine that soil is probably part of it. Soil plays a major role in the story of ARROW (but I won’t tell you what — no spoilers here). In extending the story, teachers and parents can use ARROW to help teach children about soil, and I’ve got…
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Interview with ARROW editor Sarah Jane Abbott

It takes a village to make a novel the best that it can be, and I had a fantastic village at Simon & Schuster and the Paula Wiseman Books imprint when I was working on ARROW. My editor, Sarah Jane Abbott, was indispensable, giving me suggestions that helped lift the characters and story to new…
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How to Create Your Tree of You

I’ve loved trees since I was a kid. Reading in their branches was one of my favorite things to do. When I was writing ARROW, I realized how much we use trees as metaphors for so many things in our lives, and that’s where the Tree of You activity was born. I did this at…
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Writing Question Answered: Should Your Characters Be Based On Real People?

I get asked a lot about whether the characters in my stories are based on real people, and the answer is yes… and no, and for most writers, that’ll be true. A little piece of me is inside every character I write. It’s inevitable, because the characters are coming from me. As a writer, I’m…
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TreeFolks Loves Trees as Much as Arrow – Plus GIVEAWAY

I’ve got some really special blog posts coming up that I’m super excited about. With the release of my new novel ARROW, I’m interviewing a bunch of people who helped me make the book a reality and celebrate its release. First up is Andrew Smiley from the fantastic TreeFolks, and I’m giving away an ARC…
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