Book Blog Tour

I was tagged by my friend Jennifer Marsh Morris to participate in a blog tour. I've known Jennifer several years now (hell we were even roomies at a conference) and she's ALWAYS busy! She has two books out soon: the first is called The Ice Cream Shop. It's being released by Scholastic next summer (2014) A second book called The Sea Monster is scheduled for the fall. Here are the critters who inspired the stories  ...

... read more about Jenn's books here

 Here are the questions that I am supposed to answer...

1) What is the working title of your next book?
The title is 'One Word Pearl' written by Nicole Groeneweg.

2) Where did the book idea come from for the book?
Nicole is the winner of The National Association of Elementary School Principals Foundation Annual National Children’s Book of the Year Award Contest - the winning book is published by Charlesbridge Publishing. It's a very cute story about  a little girl who loves to collect words!

3) What genre does your book fall into?
 It's a picture book.

 4) What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition?
Hmm ... I think it would be an animated story. I am thinking Emma Watson for Pearl.

5) What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
Pearl loves to collect words and uses them whenever she can - until one day the words go crazy and chaos ensues!

6) Who is publishing your book?
Mackinac Island Press, an imprint of Charlesbridge.

7) How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript?
In this case the manuscript was already written, so my job was to create a rough layout of the book which took me about 2 weeks.

8) What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
I think Pearl would relate to Madeline, Fancy Nancy, Lady Bug Girl.

9) Who or what inspired you to write and/or illustrate this book?
Pearl reminded me of ME in a way, I was always cutting out words and pictures and making up stories when I was young, so it wasn't hard to relate. The story also allowed me to work in a more abstract way with some of the images and with collage, the language used is a lot of fun and inspiring!

10) What else about the book might pique the reader's interest?

Definitely the use of words. This is a great book for teachers to use with young children, to get them thinking about words and how they can be used in with the core curriculum. I hope the reader will enjoy the fun pictures too!

Pearl is available on pre-order

Here is the next link on this blog tour... Russ Cox at Smiling Otis Studio! /hazelmitchell/2013/04/book-blog-tour.html


One Word Pearl - Coming August 2013

Welcome P


Pub Date August 2013



Nicole Groeneweg

illustrated by

Hazel Mitchell

published by Mackinac Island Press 

(a Charlesbridge imprint)

Page 32

If you're a picture book illustrator you'll know the significance of Page 32. It's the end of a long haul during which you created illustrations for the 32 pages of a picture book, plus cover and possibly end pages. You've put together a pdf for final proof and you've pressed 'send'. A strange kind of peace descends. The moment before you launch into whatever else is lurking on your to-do list. It's the quiet when the wind drops and the snow falls soundlessly. Ahhhh.

You try not to think about the spreads that weren't quite as you saw them at the moment of conception. When they existed only in your head after you read the manuscript. Of the character you met and the world they occupied. Of the colours you might use. Those first frantic days of scribbling in notepads and the 'yes' moments (and the 'no'). Of how vital the first pencil strokes were as you made marks and textures and bold, incisive strokes.

Of how you struggled in the middle. And how the redraws of the first ideas diluted the energy. The long hours, nights and many cups of tea working to get it back.

Then you got to the colour and it was a surprise, because now there was another element on the paper dictating where this was going; musn't let it get away from you!  You were a child again and the colours made you smile. And you wondered if the child looking at the colours would smile also?

So, after weeks or months, you come down to final tweaks. Zoom in from outerspace, a view of the planet, the continents, then the country and finally you scutinize the town and streets and houses and focus on a particular room. Until you reach page 32 and you feel yourself sink into the armchair of nothing left to do. You send it into the world. Then you make a final cup of tea and reflect.

In the morning you are not living with those 32 pages anymore. They have launched into the atmosphere. For now, there is peace. An uncertain peace, granted. Tomorrow, the day after,  they may re-enter. Ready for more tweaks and changes.

But right now there is a space in my heart.

'One Word Pearl' by Nicole Groeneweg, from Mackinac Island/Charlesbridge Fall 2013.