Thursday, May 28, 2015

Picture Book Giveaway

In celebration of my new picture book Hippo Bottomless coming out, I'd like to do a free giveaway. This book would be great for kids 3-8 yrs of age. It's a fun book and might even teach your child a thing or two about swimming. But mostly about sticking to your guns and you'll get whatever it is you're trying to accomplish.













All you need to do is make sure you are a follower of my blog, leave a comment telling me what your favorite animal is and why. I'll randomly select a winner and announce it on next weeks blog. The lucky winner will receive a free signed copy of the book as well as a mini-stuffed hippo.







Of course if you'd rather purchase a copy, it is now availabe on amazon.com or you can purchase a signed copy from me!
http://www.amazon.com/Hippo-Bottomless-Allyn-M-Stotz/dp/069242752X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1432735500&sr=8-1&keywords=hippo+bottomless

Thanks for playing and goodluck!

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Two New Picture Books

Today is an exceptionally great day for me. I actually have two new picture books coming out. I tried not to have them come out around the same times but it just didn't work out that way. I don't know if that's a good thing or bad since it's never happened to me before. However, it just makes me doubly happy and more to celebrate!

My new picture book from Futureword Publishing titled Hippo Bottomless has just been finalized and will be available on amazon in just a few days. Woot Woot!!








Echo can't swim like his other Hippo friends. All he does is splash, splash, splash as he sinks, sinks, sinks to the cold murky bottom. Can some friends he meets along the way help or is he destined to spend his life sinking to the bottom, bottom, bottom.









My second picture book coming out by Mascot Publishing titled The Color of Love has also just been finalized but will take probably about a month to become available. This will be my first hard-back book which I've dreamed of for so long. This is a feel-good bedtime type story which has been a long time coming. Try three years to be exact. However, it was originally supposed to be a personalized book by Frecklebox but that fell through the cracks for various reasons. I was bound and determined to get it published though so I "bit the bullet" and decided to self-publish it. I did my research, talked to several authors in my writer's group and decided on Mascot Publishing because they produce quality books and I knew they were legit and easy to work with. I also found a great new illustrator in my writer's group who is a retired school teacher and was ready to finally pursue her dream of being an illustrator. The Color of Love is now her second children's picture book.







Denny asks his mother, "If the sun is yellow and clouds are white, what color is love?" Follow Denny and his mother as they jump on board their magic carpet to find the answer!










For those of you interested in purchasing an autographed copy of Hippo Bottomless, just let me know. I will have some by June 3rd. If you want to order through Amazon, it should be up and loaded within 3-5 days.

And have no fear, as soon as The Color of Love is officially available, I'll be announcing it on Facebook.

Thanks to everyone for their support!

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Character Development

How many of you writers do any kind of character building before you begin a story? The answer to that for me is...sometimes. And other times, I just start writing and the character falls into place. However, on those times that I struggle for just the right character, I begin building one.

Sometimes I get on the internet and start looking at pictures of little kids (no I'm not a stalker) or animals. It helps me to look at their faces, their expressions, the way they dress. From those photos, I can begin to think about what characteristics, flaws, quirks and personality I want them to have. And then I start jotting down all my ideas.

But I have to admit that 50% of those times, I draw a blank and could really use some help. If you are like me and need help once in awhile, I've come across a software program that really looks great. It was introduced to me by Jon Bard of the CBI Clubhouse/Write for Kids. And like him and his wife, Laura, I love to share what little knowledge I have with other writers. So below is a link where Jon is describing this software and walks you through some of the steps. It really looks like it could be beneficial and is very reasonably priced. Check it out!

http://writeforkids.org/2015/04/jon-reviews-a-very-cool-piece-of-software-for-writers/