By Kim Rogers
Today, we’re chatting with Monique Gray Smith (of Cree, Lakota, and Scottish decent), author of When We are Kind (Orca Book Publishers, 2020) and Nicole Neidhardt (Navajo) who is the book’s illustrator.
From promotional copy:
When We Are Kind celebrates simple acts of everyday kindness and encourages children to explore how they feel when they initiate and receive acts of kindness in their lives.
Continue Reading Native Voices: Author & Illustrator Interview: Monique Gray Smith & Nicole Neidhardt »
By Kathi Appelt
This interview includes plot spoilers for Sisters of the Neversea by Cynthia Leitich Smith (Heartdrum, June 1, 2021). You may want to bookmark and return to it after reading the story.
Cover art by Floyd Cooper (Muscogee); from the promotional copy:
Lily and Wendy have been best friends since they became stepsisters.
Continue Reading Guest Interview: Kathi Appelt & Cynthia Leitich Smith on Rebirth in the Neversea »
By Bree Bender
Today, I am excited to welcome the critically-acclaimed middle grade and young adult author Corey Ann Haydu to Cynsations. Corey Ann is the author of many books for middle grade and young adult readers including her Edgar Award nominated young adult novel Eventown (Katherine Tegen Books, 2019). Corey Ann’s latest middle grade novel, One Jar of Magic (Katherine Tegen Books,
Continue Reading Author Interview: Corey Ann Haydu on Finding the Joy in Writing »
Learn more about Erin Cashman
By Erin Cashman
Recently, someone commented to me that writing fantasy must be easy, since I can just make up what I need to fit my plot.
I wish! As Lloyd Alexander said,
“Once committed to his imaginary kingdom, the writer is not a monarch but a subject.”
To me, world building is both the hardest and the most wonderful part of writing fantasy.
Continue Reading Guest Post: Erin Cashman on The Role of Research in Writing Fantasy »
On our way out to a high school winter dance.
By Cynthia Leitich Smith
The first in a series of four posts celebrating the Oct. 9 release of my realistic contemporary YA novel, Hearts Unbroken (Candlewick).
My senior year of high school, “Back to the Future” was a hot new release, Duran Duran was ruling the radio waves,
Continue Reading Hearts Unbroken: Writing Stories “Loosely Inspired By” Your Real Life »
By Traci Sorell
This is a watershed year for the release of Native young adult novels.
From Eric Gansworth’s Give Me Some Truth (Scholastic, 2018), the followup to his If I Ever Get Out of Here (Scholastic, 2013), and Tim Tingle’s Trust Your Name (7th Generation, September 2018), the fourth in his No Name series, to the upcoming Hearts Unbroken by Cynthia Leitich Smith (Candlewick,
Continue Reading New Voice: Dawn Quigley on Apple in the Middle »
By Carol Coven Grannick
I am leaving my day job at an extraordinary early childhood center on June 30.
Plenty of people think I am “retiring.”
But if you’re reading this, you probably could guess that I’m not retiring at all. I’m beginning my full-time career as a writer.
I’ve written and taught about transitions much of my life as a clinical social worker and still struggle with how to convey these vulnerable,
Continue Reading Guest Post: Carol Coven Grannick on Transitions: Lunging Forward, Leaning Back »
Guillermo del Toro
(image from The Shape of Water media kit)
by Kate Pentecost
Academy Award winning director Guillermo del Toro has been My Boy for a long time, way before his monster romance The Shape of Water took home Best Picture and Best Director at the 90th annual Academy Awards ceremony and was nominated for scores of others.
He’s My Boy in that way that some musicians are Your Boy (or Girl,
Continue Reading Intern Insights: Kate Pentecost on Four Writing Tips from My Boy Guillermo del Toro »
By Michele Weber Hurwitz
We writers know well the lessons of perseverance.
Neil Gaiman said: “This is how you do it: you sit down at the keyboard and you put one word after another until it’s done. It’s that easy. And that hard.”
Harriet Beecher Stowe said: “Never give up, for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn.”
Continue Reading Guest Post: Michele Weber Hurwitz on Being Pushed to Persevere »
By Janni Lee Simner
In writing, as in many professions, there’s a lot of emphasis on getting that one big break.
This is the story we tell about writers: that we slave away for months or years or decades and then—at last!—that first story or first novel sells. Our career is launched, and we ride off into the sunset, where we happily keep writing and selling our work forever.
Continue Reading Guest Post: Janni Lee Simner on Setbacks & The Writing Journey »