Some Favorite Reads

Trying to squeeze in as many reads as possible is my goal, and is challenging with all going on. Here are my favorites. in 2014 I started and am still reading, Greenglass House by Kate Milford. I imagine it would also be on this list. A perfect holiday break read. Here are some others:

Both of Jonathan Auxier’s books: The Night Gardener and Peter Nimble and his Fantastic Eyes. Also the legendary The Dark is Rising sequence by Susan Cooper. Worse Things Happen at Sea is the follow up to Alan Snow’s Here Be Monsters. Both these books are wonderfully innocent, whimsical reads. Also, and most notably if you’re into the genre, The Monster Blood Tattoo Trilogy by D.M. Cornish. Yes, all these reads are middle grade and YA!


Eva Ibbotson

Upon recommendation of a librarian friend, I just completed two of Ms. Ibbotson’s books: The Abominables (Read with my daughters), and The Ogre of Oglefort. Ms. Ibbotson just passed last year, and reading her touching, heartfelt tales of accessible whimsy I am glad to have finally discovered her, and sad for her artistic loss. However, she was prolific in her career. An author of well over 30 books, she was a proponent of adventures, insisting children get them in their blood early. I aspire to her innocence of story, filled with other-worldly but accessible and emotionally real characters. Her imagination and heart alone, not to mention her broad story base, are alone worth reading her works to children.Eva-Ibbotson-007

A Bucket Full of Kids’ Cool

Cadddy doper

I’m undergoing an invasion. Bludgeoning, relentless. Midnight, midday. At work and at home. A massacre of every moment. It’s like one of those giant automatons from the movies, crashing through the landscape. People running, screaming bloody murder, stumbling over kittens and lobsters, or whatever the heck happens to be in the street, as they scramble over each other, every soul for themselves, clawing in a mad dash to escape the giant foot that, come on, let’s be fo’ real, is going to smash the putty out of every dag nabbed person in the city. Smashed out. Putty.  Nasty. I digress.

KIDS. Kids have taken me over: my three girls, my students, my readers  (which as of yet – let’s be honest and fo’ real – there aren’t yet many). So, I’ve embraced it. Kids are my life. Literally. (And figuratively.)

If you like kids, or are one, read this blog and you’ll possibly stumble upon stuff about:


Pocket knives

Children’s literature

Star Wars

Fun things to create

Pancreases that eat themselves (you probably know it as type 1 diabetes)

Star Wars


The latest in girls’ hair accessories. (Fo’ real.)

Star Wars

The occasional samurai sword and/or ninja stuff

The way you have to live your life. NOW. GO. I mean it. I know the answers. (I have no idea as to the answers. Have fun? Try hard? Eat food?)

Haribo Gummis (If you’re eating other gummis your wasting your time. Actually, you’re wasting everybody’s time. So stop.)

The Loch Ness Monster

 When and when not to toot

Rumpelstiltskin (And how it emotionally scarred me. Forever. And ever.)

Cool things we all need to buy. With other people’s monies. 

New York City (where everyone should live for at least a little bit)

The Muppets


Manchewla The Gorger Tee-Shirts are Coming!

We’re testing tees and graphics we like. Once we hit the winning combo, they’ll be for sale on my site.

First TEE Pic

This pic shows Percy, the narrator of the original Manchewla puppet play…for adults…when it wasn’t a middle-grade novel and a character smoking would not have raised an eye. Come to think of it, Percy may not be for sale. Ahem. Don’t smoke.


A great excuse adopted through being a writer, actor, artist, creator is justifying spending unlimited amounts of time watching movies, listening to music, reading graphic novels-fiction-nonfiction-everything, and daydreaming into a crowd. Stories are to be collected everywhere, and simply by storing them in my hopper I have them to consciously or unconsciously draw upon. I’ll be stuck on a passage when writing, and to jump start things I’ll brainstorm entertainment I’ve collected. For example, when blocked with how to get a heroine out of a jam concerning, say, atomic ground chunks (my term for ground hogs), I’ll toss out thoughts from my brain collection such as MMA, French cooking show, or an old 80s music video and I can usually draw up something that, on the surface, shows no traces of its original inspiration, but provides a fresh idea that spring boards me into breaking through my block. This philosophy also allows for a good deal of never growing up, always discovering and exploring things many adults have long since abandoned as being childish. Watch, read, listen. (“Write my name,” one of my twins just requested. Here you go: Roark.). Repeat. For life.RIP

Reading: Jim Henson – The Biography by Brian Jay Jones

JimHenson-BiographyCoverI’m currently reading this biography, and thus far it’s proven to be a direct telling about a remarkable man. Jones spent a good deal of time with Mr. Henson, enough to understand how the man would have liked his story to be told: honestly, catching the important details of what made him who he is, and leaving flowery prose aside. Mr. Henson was a man whose vision was his own, and he was able to do that which so many cannot – follow that vision sincerely, inspiring millions along the way. One of those millions being me.