Tuesday, January 3, 2023
Wednesday, December 14, 2022
Here I Am!
After a blog break, I'm back on site. Here's the skinny:
1. I'm still writing! I have an adult memoir, a poetry collection, two YA novels, a middle grade, and the conclusion for Firstborn percolating, plus a myriad of board books.
2. I'm looking for representation by an agency interested in giving voice to a disabled person focusing on literary works.
3. I've left Twitter in the upheaval of the site.
4. After fourteen years, I'm currently no longer posting reviews of board books at readertotz. Co-founder and writer Joan Holub and I still make a call for ALA to recognize the board/novelty book format in their annual awards with the Dorothy Kunhardt Award.
5. I'm creating more visual art which I hope to share here soon.
6. My mentoring with Stony Book University for their Children's Lit Fellows Creative Writing Program is on hiatus following Covid closures.
7. Physically, scleral lenses for extreme dry eyes were not compatible with my Sjogren's. And a year on hydroxychloroquine for lupus has created nerve damage. I may post more specifics in the future in case it would help another person piece together their own protocol.
8. I am a grandmother of two now! Celebrations!
9. Having been in the sacred space of walking a beloved through death a year ago, I continue to read widely and search for truth and the beauty all around.
That's my quick catch up. Thanks for stopping by in our busy season.
May your day be well, and your night be well! xox
Wednesday, October 20, 2021
Shepherd: The Best Board Books to Cut Your Teeth On
I'm happy to share I've participated in Shepherd which is a beta site that lets you browse the personal picks of your favorite authors in one giant bookstore. My entry is: The Best Board Books to Cut Your Teeth On. While featuring my own board book, I Love All of Me, I was able to recommend five other titles, as well, and explain my choices.
Basically, if you have a favorite book, it's possible that author has created their own list of recommends to keep you reading. Links make purchases easy. Here's Kirby Larson's and then Lois Lowery's separate lists they recommend.
If you are an author or illustrator and interested in participating, you can jot an email to Ben Fox at forauthorsatshepherddotcom. Thanks for checking out Shepherd, and happy reading to you!
Wednesday, September 1, 2021
Celebrations: Bank Street College Board Book Award
It's official! Bank Street College of Education has decided to begin acknowledging and awarding board books! My editor just zipped me the press release as she and I talked about this need in 2010. The award will be named: the Margaret Wise Brown Board Book Award for excellence in literature for very young children. Wonderful!
Here is a press release excerpt:
“Criteria for selection will include books that promote interplay and engagement, incorporate rich
language, demonstrate a consideration for childhood development, and are constructed to withstand multiple encounters with little hands,” said Dr. Cynthia Weill, Director, Center for Children’s Literature, Bank Street College of Education.
Joan Holub and I, both board book author/illustrators, have been calling for a recognition of the board book format since 2009. Our aim at the readertotz blog has always been to raise the profile of board books for our first readers. We make a call to authors, illustrators, and publishers to create the best possible works as they introduce reading to our youngest ones.
We have envisioned the American Library Association creating the Dorothy Kunhardt Award for the Outstanding Board or Novelty Book. Click here to see our facebook page. We would love to see Dorothy named as the creator of the beloved, first novelty book still in print: Pat the Bunny.
Joan and I are thrilled Bank Street College is lifting this important format for all to see! Here's to future award recipients, the wee ones who will hold the works, and Bank Street College for their efforts. Bravo!
Thursday, May 20, 2021
It feels like a new beginning as we emerge together. I'm ready for new experiences and new opportunities. Here's a new author photo to kick things off. Enjoy your own re-entry into society. May there be beauty all around!
Tuesday, April 6, 2021
Oxervate: side effects after two weeks
Tuesday, March 23, 2021
Lupus, Sjogren's: Neurotrophic Keratitis and Oxervate
I haven't updated any information concerning my autoimmune diseases during the pandemic. Suddenly, the world was isolating, as well, and vigilance was needed for my weakened immune system. The main lupus drug was touted by some and tested repeatedly for efficacy against the coronavirus. The extensive purchases by governments blocked deliveries for lupus patients. Shipments were finally restored when hydroxychloroquine proved ineffective for Covid19.
So, here we are again, as vaccinations extend, we are beginning to emerge. Folks with lupus and other diseases and conditions will continue to isolate as needed, but how wonderful to have the possibility of re-entering the stream on healthy days. Preferably cloudy ones. :)
I'm really posting today to say I'm going to begin Oxervate tomorrow. This FDA-approved treatment for neurotrophic keratitis will be for both eyes. Lupus and Sjogren's have killed the nerves in my cornea, which could lead to blindness and the need for a corneal transplant. I had no sensation when the doctor pulled a string across my open eye. Right now, I have light sensitivity and extreme dryness.
Oxervate is a cenegermin, a form of human nerve growth factor developed in a lab. Potentially, the nerves in my cornea will grow, work, and survive. 7 out of 10 patients are completely healed.
It has taken 5 months to qualify and about 5 agencies working together to make this happen. The cost is enormous, but extensive coverage is provided, bringing my cost down to $100 for 8 weeks. Compared to what I can gather would be about $250,000 without insurance and assistance.