New Voices: Vivian Elbee & Hannah Holt on Persistence

By Traci Sorell

Today we’re chatting with picture book authors Viviane Elbee and Hannah Holt, both members of the Epic Eighteen debut group.

Viviane Elbee

Viviane Elbee, debut picture book author of Teach Your Giraffe to Ski (Albert Whitman, 2018), crafts a story that according to Kirkus Reviews “conceals a how-to for conquering one’s fears.”

Illustrated by Danni Gowdy and told in second person,

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New Voices: Writing Partners Katy Loutzenhiser & Nicole Panteleakos Discuss Their Paths to Publication

By Stephani Martinell Eaton

Writers spend a lot of time alone which is why it’s so important that writers find communities and support. There are lots of ways to do that.

It just so happens that the debut authors we are celebrating today are writing partners and have shared with each other the struggles and joys of the writing life.

Meet Katy Loutzenhiser,

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New Voices: Beth Anderson & Tina Cho on Bringing True Stories to the Page

By Traci Sorell

Picture book authors Beth Anderson and Tina Cho‘s debut books both explore actual events and both authors agree, craft study and critique groups are vital components on the path to publication.

Beth Anderson

Beth Anderson and I share a love of nonfiction. Her debut picture book, An Inconvenient Alphabet: Ben Franklin &

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New Voices: Margaret Greanias & Melissa Stoller on Writing Craft Resources

By Traci Sorell

Today Cynsations features two debut picture book authors, Margaret Chiu Greanias and Melissa Stoller, both members of the Epic Eighteen group.

Margaret Chiu Grenias

Maximillian Villianous, the debut picture book of author Margaret Chiu Greanias, centers on Maximillian, a young monster who does not fit in with his ill-mannered family.

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New Voices: Gail Shepherd & Karen Strong on Writing Southern Settings

By Stephani Martinell Eaton

Gail Shepherd and Karen Strong, debut middle grade authors, both found inspiration for their books in southern settings. Today they share insights about their journeys to publication.

Gail Shepherd

I grew up with the Vietnam war in the background—it was always on TV. That war influenced my sensibility and my world view.

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New Voices: YA Authors Tiana Smith & Addie Thorley on Inspiration, Marketing, Publication & the Writing Life

By Stephani Martinell Eaton

Meet YA authors Tiana Smith and Addie Thorley as they discuss their novels, inspiration, and advice for writers. Cynsations is excited to celebrate their debuts!

Tiana Smith 

What first inspired you to write for young readers?

I’ve always loved telling stories. I mean, I’m not saying I got into trouble a lot as a child for telling lies,

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New Voices: Christy Mihaly & Jessie Oliveros on Their Paths to Publication

By Traci Sorell

Today, we have two award-winning Epic Eighteen debut authors, Christy Mihaly, author of Hey, Hey, Hay: A Tale of Bales and the Machines that Make Them, illustrated by Joe Cepeda (Holiday House, 2018) and Jessie Oliveros, author of The Remember Balloons, illustrated by Dana Wulfekotte (Simon & Schuster, 2018).

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New Voices: Swati Teerdhala & Kip Wilson on Funneling Inspiration Into a Book

By Stephani Martinell Eaton

Ideas for stories have to come from somewhere.

Today, Swati Teerdhala and Kip Wilson, two YA debut authors, share what inspired them to write their stories as well as advice they have for beginners.

Swati Teerdhala

What first inspired you to write for young readers?

Books were such a huge part of my childhood and truly shaped the way I viewed the world.

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New Voices, New Visions: Author-Illustrators Jen Betton & Aidan Cassie Discuss Process

By Traci Sorell

I’m delighted to welcome Jen Betton and Aidan Cassie to Cynsations today to share their interesting journeys to becoming author-illustrators for children.

Jen Betton is winner of the 2012 SCBWI Illustration Mentorship Award and the Portfolio Grand Prize at NESCBWI in 2014. Last year, Putnam published her debut picture book, Hedgehog Needs A Hug,

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New Voices: Joshua S. Levy & Karla Manternach on Reactions to Their Manuscripts Selling

By Stephani Martinell Eaton

Today I am excited to introduce you to Joshua S. Levy and Karla Manternach, two middle grade authors whose debut novels surprised some of their friends. Joshua is the author of Seventh Grade Vs. The Galaxy (Carolrhoda, 2019) and Karla is the author of Meena Meets her Match illustrated by Rayner Alencar (Simon &

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