To Dog or Not To Dog? To Blog or Not to Blog?

Lately I’ve been getting very nice emails about Fun Dog, Sun Dog and Cool Dog, School Dog. (Cool Dog is featured in the Scholastic Book Fair this fall.) And it has me all riled up. Well, truth be told, I’m all riled up anyway: SHOULD I GET A DOG? This is the longest I have ever gone in my life without a pet. I grew up with Missy, a yappy but smart and sweet Miniature Schnauzer. (Photo below is, I think, Missy #1. I remember Missy #2.)

I still love Schnauzers whenever I see them, and make a fool of myself talking to them on the street.… Read more

My Dog Tinka Lives! (In A Literary Sense)

So when our wonderful dog, Tinka, was dying, I thought my heart would break. That spring, at school visits, I was showing the F & Gs of my new book about her. I could barely make it through a presentation without crying.  I knew she wouldn’t be around to see the finished product. (Though she definitely knew the book! She used to lie on my office floor as I wrote FUN DOG, SUN DOG, and since it was a rhyming picture book a lot of the writing was down aloud. I do read everything aloud, but this one I read aloud all the time!)  

Sadly, Tinka did not see the finished book, but thanks to Marshall Cavendish and Scholastic,  children all over the country are getting to know her!… Read more

You Know It’s Going To Be A Great School Visit When….

You walk into the office and the women at the desks behind the counter grin from ear to ear and say, "Welcome! We are so happy to have you." (As opposed to … no, never mind, I won’t go there.) That’s how my day started yesterday, at the Samuel K. Faust Elementary School in Bensalem, PA. And then:  the principal came out right away to meet me;  the kids who spotted me in the hall whispered, "There’s the author," and as I walked around the school I saw that the bulletin boards were filled with all kinds of projects about my books: butterflies, babies, dogs.Read more


One of these days I’m going to learn from my friend Laurie Halse Anderson how to write quick blog posts more often. I have a lot to learn from her. Like, for example, how to dress to go to see your publisher: 

Granted she was going to take the hat off after we walked down to S & S, but doesn’t she look so cute? Underneath she has on a shirt suitable for being filmed in. Which I’m sure she’ll blog about. So enough about her. But speaking of filming, I had the great good fortune to be filmed last Friday for a Scholastic Book Fair video in which they are featuring my baby, Cool Dog, School Dog!Read more

Need More Crazy Dog Stories!

I’ve gotten some really fun crazy dog stories–here on the blog and in e-mail and on Facebook. But because of twitter and facebook technical difficulties yesterday , and because I’ve been busy with other work obligations, I’m extending the contest! Please post or e-mail crazy dog stories to win a free copy of COOL DOG, SCHOOL DOG. So far most of the stories have to do with food. Maybe that’s because I wrote about food or maybe that’s because dogs are all about food. But if you have a crazy dog story that doesn’t have to do with food… send me that one! 

Here’s another Tinka story, quickly, to get you thinking: We lived in the woods.… Read more

What’s the craziest thing your dog has done? FREE COPY TO THE BEST CRAZY STORY!

In celebration of my new book, COOL DOG, SCHOOL DOG, I’d like to share some stories about Tinka, the dog who inspired COOL DOG, SCHOOL DOG and FUN DOG, SUN DOG. 

Then I want YOU to write in and tell me about the CRAZIEST THING YOUR DOG HAS DONE. The person whom I deem to have told the CRAZIEST story will get a free autographed copy of COOL DOG, SCHOOL DOG. First of all, a photo of said dog, Tinka, and her boys, back in the day:

The boy in the red is now 23, the boy with the missing teeth is 20.Read more

Writing All the Time (Even in the shower)

I just spent a lovely weekend, but I didn’t have time to write at all. That doesn’t mean I wasn’t thinking about writing, and thinking about the novel I’m working on, and thinking about Charles and Emma, and thinking about the next non-fiction book, etc. etc. Which got me to thinking about writing some more. And I realized this: I am always writing. When I’m watching a movie (We saw Duplicity Friday night–and although I love Julia Roberts and I really like Clive Owen, and I love a good thriller/mystery, I couldn’t help thinking that it could have been better, and I don’t know if in this case that was because of the writing–with a movie there are so many writers–or the direction or what, but I sure did rewrite it in my head afterwards, a lot), or going to a bat mitzvah (I was paying attention, honest, but I was also thinking about my novel, which has many scenes in a synagogue, and I also realized I could “steal” something from what the rabbi said at one point about how after a girl becomes a bat mitzvah or a boy becomes a bar mitzvah she/he has to take responsibility for her/his actions, and I was also just inspired by my family, and my family history, and so who knows what that will turn into..), or doing taxes (which, though not fun, is a trip down memory lane of the past year since we have to list our expenses–holy camoly, the number of books bought!) or just taking a shower.… Read more