If you know me very well, you know I am a HUGE fan of Tammi Sauer's work. Her new book PRINCESS IN TRAINING is soooooo much fun! The illustrations are fantastic too.
Here's my little blurb:
Princess Viola is an awesome skateboarder, but not the "perfect" princess that the king and queen would like her to be. So what would any good parent do? They send her away to Princess Camp where she should learn how to behave like a proper princess. But....it's not as easy as it sounds. Viola tries hard, but has quite a few mishaps until a dragon comes along and her unprincess like skills cause her to save the day.
It's not only a fun read, but it shows young readers that it is okay to be different or have different skills. I give PRINCESS IN TRAINING five stars....ahem out five stars. :)
I met Tammi several years ago in one of her workshops. She is an amazing writer and I hope you'll hop to the link and see all that I learned from her. I am always trying to pick her brain (because it is amazing) so I sent her a few questions and she agreed to answer them for us.
When did you begin writing?
I have always been a writer. As a kid, I was very big on getting mail, so I joined a penpal club. But those weren’t the only letters I wrote. I spent hours sending fanmail to various celebrities, including Loni Anderson and Barbara Mandrell. Somewhere I have a collection of retro 8 by 10 glossies to prove it.
It wasn’t until 1997, however, that I began toying with the idea of writing picture books. I would write one day. Stop for 36 days. Write again for a week. Stop for four months. I didn't make a commitment to writing until the spring of 2003 when an illustrator visited my daughter's preschool. Seeing someone who was actually in the business inspired me to get serious about writing. That day I decided to devote my kids' nap time to writing. Even if my mom called. Even if Oprah was on. One year later, I got the offer for my first book—Cowboy Camp.
Do you have an agent?
Yes, my agent is Laura Rennert at Andrea Brown Literary Agency.
Can you tell us about the journey took until you reached publication?
When I first decided to try to become a children’s book writer, I would write something on Monday, send it out on Tuesday, and expect multiple offers by Friday. Little by little, however, I learned more and more. I wrote. I read. I studied successful picture books. I attended conferences. I found a critique partner and a critique group. And those early stories? They were awful, but I never once thought of them as a waste of time. Those were my practice stories. It’s the same with sports or playing a musical instrument. The best way to get better at something is to practice.
Are all your books published by the same publisher?
I work with a variety of wonderful publishing houses—Bloomsbury, Disney-Hyperion, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Simon & Schuster, and Sterling.
What one thing would you say to prepublished authors?
With a lot of perseverance, some talent, and a little luck, YOU can sell a picture book. (In my experience, an unlimited supply of frozen Milky Ways also helps.)
Do you have any special news you’d like to share???
I am really excited about my upcoming book with Houghton Mifflin Harcourt called Nugget and Fang. This book is illustrated by the oh-so-amazing Michael Slack. It focuses on the unlikely friendship between a minnow and a shark. I am hoping Nugget and Fang make a huge splash in spring 2013.
And finally the all important question: What is your favorite kind of cheese?
Wow, that’s like asking me who my favorite child is. I am crazy about cheese. I should totally move to Wisconsin in my support of cheese.
Here are some places you can learn more about the awesome Tammi Sauer. (I bet that makes her blush!)
I am giving away a copy of Tammi's awesome book, CHICKEN DANCE...
and Tammi is giving away two of her PRINCESS IN TRAINING buttons (so cute) on November 15th.
Now for a winner of WE HEAR THE DEAD by Dianne Salerni:
And the winner of a signed bookmark for her upcoming book CAGED GRAVES:
Thanks for dropping by!
Hugs to all!