I have a special treat today: a guest post by Margo Sorenson, talking about her awesome new book! Doesn't it sounds great? And her story is amazingly inspirational (along with making me want Italian food!). Be sure to say hello in the comments :)
After school, Jake hurries to his Uncle Rocco's crazy, mixed-up Italian restaurant to play with food and dig into a new book! Whether juggling ravioli, bowling with mozzarella balls, or playing spaghetti pick-up sticks, Jake and his uncle serve up heaping portions of fun. So when the business next door moves out, Jake sets out on a mission to find a new neighbor for his uncle's Italian joint, or else Uncle Rocco will have to close the restaurant, and then there’ll be no more reading together. The joy of learning, the fun of reading with family, and the importance of community all play a part in Jake’s story. Jake and Rocco encourage children to read, laugh, and cook something crazy! Picture book fun for ages 4-8.
You can order this from any bookstore, as well.
Teachers and librarians may want to contact the educational sales manager Jacky Kim at (800) 843-1724 Ext. 319 firstname.lastname@example.org
BY MARGO SORENSON
When Meredith invited me to write about the inspiration for my latest children's picture book, SPAGHETTI SMILES, I was thrilled and honored. When I do school author visits, I always get asked where I get my ideas, and it's fun to share the often convoluted and quirky methods we writers use!
The primary inspiration for this book was the question I always tell the students about: "What if?" Watching and listening to people in many different places can serve as the impetus for a wacky and crazy idea, if you ask yourself, "What if?" about what you see and hear.
For example, for SPAGHETTI SMILES, one of my ideas was generated by the fact that our daughters used to have sleepover birthday parties in elementary school, and what they loved to do was to have "make-your-own-pizza" parties. The girls would line up in front of all the ingredients and create their own pizzas, some making faces and some making designs. I always wondered, "What if?" the pizzas could rearrange their own faces? The other "What if?" question popped into my head when our favorite Italian restaurant lost its neighbor, a toy store. The store remained vacant for some time, and I wondered, "What if?" a bank moved in next door? Or a post office? Or a gas station? What if things got mixed up between the restaurant and its new neighbor? What would be some of the wacky things that might happen?
The result – over twenty-two years of drafts, rejections, revisions, submissions, more rejections, and final acceptance (hurray!) – was SPAGHETTI SMILES! So, if you are wondering how to get ideas to write about, just pay attention to what's going on around you, and ask yourself, "What if?"
Oh, and it helps to love cooking Italian food and reading, too! ☺
Meradeth, thank you again – grazie mille – for inviting me to be your guest!
Award-winning author Margo Sorenson spent her childhood devouring books and Italian food. Born in Washington, DC, and raised in Spain and Italy, Sorenson received her BA in history from the University of California. With almost two decades of teaching experience and a national Milken Educator Award, she is very familiar with the imaginations and educational needs of young people. Sorenson enjoys visiting her grandchildren, watching sports, and hearing from her many readers. She lives with her husband in La Quinta, California.
You can find Margo on the web at www.margosorenson.com, on Twitter as @ipapaverison, on Pinterest, on Goodreads, on LibraryThing, and on Jacketflap.