Growing Patterns Revisions

growing-patterns-revisionsHere is one of the busier pages of the Growing Patterns manuscript. My editor and I are trying to solve a problem. As part of my school and library visit program, I share the close-to-final mansucript for Wolfsnail: A Backyard Predator. I want students to see that the process of writing (and re-writing) keeps on going right up until the book is printed. I took a picture of this page to let you see our notes back and forth in the Word tracking feature. In this latest back-and-forth between Andy and me, he’s asked for some more photographs. In the book, Richard and I use close-up macro photographs and Andy wants to include some photographs that show the entire objects, too. I’ve sent him some options.

We’re also trying to make sure that readers understand that a particular set of photographs is actually three copies of the same image. We’ve done some digital manipulation to highlight a pattern. Some people who have looked at the dummy have thought the three images were of three different examples of the same object. I think we’re getting close to a solution. One of the things that is helping during this revision is that I am still doing school and library visits with Wolfsnail so I have been reading drafts of Growing Patterns to the kids I meet. I get such good feedback by watching their faces and hearing their questions.

Richard and I got a nice (and unexpected) mention today on a blog I read regularly, I.N.K.: Interesting Nonfiction for Kids. Here is one section of an exchange between author Loreen Leedy and her contact at Holiday House, discussing today’s market for nonfiction in children’s publishing.

“What innovations in presenting nonfiction have been significant in recent years? (Photos vs. illustration, length of book, graphic design, etc.)
Technical advances have been changing nonfiction for some time, particularly in the area of illustration and graphic design. From pop-ups like Encyclopedia Prehistorica Dinosaurs by
Robert Sabuda and Matthew Reinhart to new manufacturing techniques that allow the use of “scanimation” in Gallop! by Rufus Butler Seder to ever more amazing techniques in taking photographs and reproducing them such as in Wolfsnail: A Backyard Predator by Sarah and Richard Campbell, nonfiction is constantly becoming more sophisticated, more innovative, and more novel.”

wolfgeisel51ndxykykl_sl500_aa240_Wolfsnail Update: Wolfsnail: A Backyard Predator is showing up on all kinds of summer reading lists — including the Chicago Public Schools‘  list for grades 3-4. Wolfsnail was also featured on a podcast produced by the Cooperative Children’s Book Center. Here’s this year’s podcast archive. Click to hear Episode 48. The Wolfsnail booktalk begins about 7 minutes in and lasts about 2 minutes.

Gardening Update: I picked my first cucumber today! I absolutely love cucumbers. It was delicious and there are at least a dozen more on the vine. I didn’t have time to take a photo. I gobbled the cucumber up in a lunchtime salad. I also picked three zucchini and a handful of beans and snap peas. It is so very hot out there (97 degrees today) that I don’t know how the plants can stand it. They’re drinking lots of water. I hope the tomatoes ripen soon.

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