The Weekly Update (3/15/24)

© Sophie Furman


March 15, 2024 vol. 11

The Weekly 411 gathers all the links added to Kidlit411 each week. To receive this post by email, sign up for our email updatesAre you on Facebook? Join our Kidlit411 group for conversations and camaraderie. This week's illustration is by Sophie Furman.

Kid Lit News

Picture Book Giveaway

 We are pleased to host a giveaway of the picture book, Wake Up, Woodlands, by Karen Jameson, illustrated by Marc Boutavant (Chronicle Kids), out now. Enter to win a copy via the Rafflecopter below!

About the Book: Oh, the promise of spring and a new day! A honeybee, bear cub, bunny, squirrel, fawns, and more wake up as the landscape brims and bursts with spring firsts. In this beautifully illustrated picture book follow-up to their beloved bedtime book, Karen Jameson and Marc Boutavant offer a lyrical and reassuring ode to the morning and a celebration of a new season, affirming the power of greeting the day with energy, positivity, and hope.


About the Author: A former teacher, Karen Jameson holds a master's degree in education. She’s found the perfect way to combine her love for language, learning, poetry, and animals in her prolific picture book career. Karen is the author of Woodland Dreams, Farm Lullaby, Where the Wee Ones Go, and the forthcoming Wake Up Woodlands  (Chronicle), Time to Shine (Groundwood), A Llama is Not an Alpaca (RP Kids) and many more. She writes from sunny, Southern California.


About the Illustrator: Marc Boutavant has illustrated a wide range of books and games, including Around the World with Mouk and Woodland Dreams. His work has appeared in The New York Times and The New Yorker. He lives in Paris, France. 


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Picture Book Giveaway

We are pleased to host a giveaway of the picture book, Unicycle Dad, by Sarah Hovorka, illustrated by Alicia Schwab (Amicus Ink), out now. Enter to win a copy via the Rafflecopter below!



About the Story: Sarah knows her unicycle-riding dad is special--even as Sarah cooks, takes care of her brother, and does homework on her own. When her dad finally graduates from high school, gets a second job, and eventually lands a promotion, Sarah realizes there's so much more that's special about him. Unicycle Dad shares the inherent struggles and quiet joys of a single-parent, impoverished household. Raised by a single, teenage father in poverty, author Sarah Hovorka grew up in a family structure lived by many but seldom represented in children's books. Illustrator Alicia Schwab captures the story with warm, expressive art.


About the Author: Sarah Hovorka is the author of picture books, novels, and short stories for children. In addition to writing, Sarah works in the public sector and spends her free time reading, homeschooling, and playing video and board games with her husband and three sons in California. You can find out more about her, her books, and follow her blog at or connect with her on: Twitter, Instagram and Facebook


About the Illustrator: Two bookworms raised Alicia Schwab in the Madison, Wisconsin, area working several jobs to support Alicia and her siblings. Alicia started making books when she was little and has gone on to illustrate books and publications in Germany and the USA, including The Mukluk Ball, Takoza, Lite, and magazines.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Mar. 21 12 p.m. CST/ 1 p.m. EST The X Factor - Why Your Perfectly Polished Work is Getting Rave Rejections There are three craft-based factors that have to be exceptional for a book to sell: Plot, Voice and Structure. All writers seem to come to the table brilliant at one of these but needing work on the other two. Working on your weak areas has probably made your project shine, but it still may not be getting a yes. That's because of the fourth factor, concept, or as the industry calls it, hook. In other words, you can make the world's most beautiful candle, but if everyone is buying lamps, you may be out of luck. Workshops and even wonderful CP's sometimes don't challenge us on our basic ideas and whether they are 'break out' enough. We will discuss what exactly editors are looking for, what helps them have a vision for your story and what gives you extra credit when that project goes to committee (the acquisition’s board). 

Mentor Programs

  • What: a 4-month mentorship with an agented picture book author or agent, exclusive workshops from industry professionals, publishing business intensives, community building, more
  • Who: un-agented picture book authors, illustrators, and author-illustrators, plus agented PB creators without agented-represented picture book deals
  • When: apply for mentorship March 18-April 4


Inspirational Things

Don't Forget to Celebrate

When Your Favorite Novel Takes a Long, Long Time to Write


8 Steps From Amateur to Pro Writer


  1. What an awesome giveaway!

  2. Both of these books sound beautiful in their unique ways.

  3. Congrats on your new book! I can’t wait to read it.

  4. My son would love these books!

  5. Unicycle Dad is so intriguing. I don't think I've seen anything like this in a picture book. So glad the author was able to share a story based on her upbringing.

  6. My Dad was a unicycle dad! Sounds like a great book!

  7. I would be thrilled to win either of these great looking books!


Post a Comment