The Blank Canvas: Part 2

When we last left the canvas in my dining room, it was still blank, but I had made a pile of colorful textured paper, too. You’d think I’d be ready and eager to make art! Nope. I didn’t have a...

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Star Wars Was Always for the Girls

  In my constant quest to uncover successful storytelling, I’m always fascinated by those stories that have worked their way into our cultural fabric. Think Alice in Wonderland, Harry Potter, Wizard of Oz, Frankenstein. And of course, Star Wars. The original...

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Coaster Life

  On a sunny day in summer, amusement parks are feasts for the senses—the colorful game booths, the smell of popcorn and waffle cones, the chill of slushies, the whoosh of wind through your hair, and delighted screams as coasters...

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The Blank Canvas: Part 1

Almost ten years ago, I went to a workshop at the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art in Amherst, Massachusetts. The class was geared toward teachers to model Carle’s process of collage. I wasn’t a teacher. I just went...

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Writers are Birds

Writers are birds. That’s what I decided today while watching the flurry at the bird feeders outside my office window. Each type of bird has a very different way of taking seed from the feeders. Clearly, for birds, there’s not...

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Reading Everyday in NYC!

Back in November 2015, Chancellor Carmen Fariña of the New York City Department of Education announced a wonderful new literacy program called NYC Reads 365. It encourages daily reading, in and out of school, to give kids their best...

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Revising a Cyclone

Cyclone was a roller coaster at Six Flags New England, in Agawam, Massachusetts. It first opened in 1983 when I was twelve and the park was called Riverside. Cyclone was the park's main attraction. It was wooden and clanky,...

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Welcome to My Inventing Room

“This is the most important room in the entire factory!” he said. “All my most secret new inventions are cooking and simmering in here!” That’s what Willy Wonka says to the lucky golden ticket finders in Roald Dahl’s famous book,...

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