photo taken by Heidi Den Ronden

Thanks so much for dropping by the blog. Be sure to grab a cuppa tea (or coffee or water) and read. My blogger manifesto is HERE.

I wonder what attracted you here. Was it flash fiction? The poetry? The photography? The memoir? The cyclone recovery story? The quest for wellness? Reflections on parenting and peace? The discussions of writing? The interviews? Was it the philosophy?

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PiBoIdMo Day 28: Paula Yoo Explores Non-Fiction Biographies (plus a prize!)


So true about research inspired books – I really love this advice and am now just finding a few more ideas more in the non fiction genre. Thank you.

Originally posted on Writing for Kids (While Raising Them):

PaulaYoo2 copyby Paula Yoo

It’s Day 28 of Tara Lazar’s annual Picture Book Idea Month (AKA PiBoIdMo)! Two more days and you’re done. Best of all, you will have 30 ideas to explore for your next picture book draft… and hopefully, one day, a published book!

For today’s blog, I will walk you through the general process of how I write my non-fiction picture book biographies. Here we go…

1. How do I come up with a non-fiction picture book idea? I do the following:

  • KEEP CURRENT: Read books. Pay attention to the news (social media, TV news, newspapers/magazines).
  • BRAINSTORM: Brainstorm about your own personal life: hobbies, favorite music/TV/books/etc. You never know what ideas might spark!
  • FRIENDS: You never know—a friend might mention something that could spark an idea. For example, I have had friends mention an article they read that would inspire me to jot down a picture book idea…

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PiBoIdMo Day 29: Arree Chung Gets an Idea OUT and Makes it Work


I love this idea, and have been going through a process of this with some of my picture ideas. Ah and I do think kids find cots kind of scary sometimes. My children much preferred their bed!

Originally posted on Writing for Kids (While Raising Them):

by Arree Chung

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Has this ever happened to you? You’re working on an idea. You’re excited about it. You share it with your agent or editor and then they tell you that it’s not working. Thud, thud, thud (that’s the sound of my head hitting against the wall).

Back to the drawing board. Well, not always. Developing an idea and refining it is really hard but sometimes you can make it work. This happened to me, on the book I’m currently working on. It’s titled OUT.

In this post, I’ll share a few tips on developing an idea and how to make an idea work when it’s not working.

Stories come from many places but sometimes, I like to start with the feeling. OUT began as a story tilted BREAKOUT.

At the start, I knew I wanted to make an adventure story. As a kid, I…

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The Divine Tree


“When a soul has in it the life of the spirit, then does it bring forth good fruit and become a divine tree.”
-‘Abdu’l-Baha, Paris Talks

Here the hands represent the soul
in action and on that hand
is the imprint of the divine tree.

You can read and see more photographic reflections on the month of Speech at Nineteen Months.


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PiBoIdMo Day 20: Carolyn Fisher Switches Hats (plus a prize!)


Love reading the posts at PiBoIdMo,although I stopped a little this month to start writing a YA Novel and am now just catching up with the posts. Thought I’d share this one over at my blog as it is so interesting.  Have one PiBoIdMo idea I am really excited about and have been working on that as well.  I stop and take photographs or go for a walk when I can’t write, and yes I love to doodle drawings as well, but don’t consider myself an artist.

Originally posted on Writing for Kids (While Raising Them):

by Carolyn Fisher


As you can see from the above, making a book is simple. I NEVER get stuck, beat-up or depressed!

But if I DID happen to get off track, I would switch hats. Draw for a while instead of writing. Write for a while instead of drawing. Change locations from my studio to a coffeeshop.

Just in case you’re having an off day, I have 3.5 suggestions:

1. Keep a sketchbook or notebook stuffed with people, places, or things.
Just for fun, pick a page at random to use as a story starter. Or pick two pages.


2. Use thumbnail sketches
Draw quick, small sketches to generate ideas when you’re brainstorming. Test variations of your ideas. Ask: what if?


3.0 Throw away your eraser.
The eraser makes you uptight. You don’t need the negative energy emanating from its pink pearly heart.

3.5 Draw or write in drafts.

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Family, Focus, Futures

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(c) June Perkins

I love making books for family members.  I have just produced my fifth book.

I think the latest one may end up being for more than family one day due to its themes of cultural transmission and empowerment of young people, but it gave me such  satisfaction to take what I’ve learnt about writing picture books, photographs and a family experience and make it into a special thank you gift.

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(c) June Perkins

These limited edition books are so much fun to make because I can send them to someone who I know will  definitely appreciate and enjoy them.

I often add poems, or a story I may have written for that person, and some like the 50th anniversary book for my husband, were very involved and many others contributed, that was the most ambitious project to date.

Something about making these books for future generations motivates me, and I’ve long since neglected keeping family albums in favour of making story and memory books.

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(c) June Perkins

I realise now sometimes with the photographs I select I don’t need many words to make these books powerful for those they are about.

I remember reading that Anthony Quinn the actor often made gifts for friends and family – unique pieces.   He was a talented artist, actor and writer but is more known for his acting.

What a wonderful thing to do!  And they are especially special gifts for birthdays, anniversaries and Christmas.

I don’t know how many more books like this I will manage, but I know that there is always a special reason that each ones comes into being.

I will keep making them as I work on novels, blogs and poems, and perhaps they will be the most precious of the works I leave behind.  Who knows what future generations of my family will make of them but they will convey if nothing else my feeling about the people who were with me through the journey of life.

(c) June Perkins