cat sleeping on keyboardI wish I could say I spent my blog-cation doing what this cat is doing. That wasn’t quite the case, actually. πŸ˜‰

Part of my blog-cation, I was actually BLOGGING. Not here, except for one post, but I did manage a post a week on my new Starborn Revue blog, which is devoted to the performing arts and creativity. (Note to self: summer is probably not the best time to launch a blog.)

Most of the rest of the time, I was WRITING. My laptop and I were busy this summer!

For a look back at the summer’s writing, and a look ahead to September’s blogging, click on the magic words…

WRITING:

12×12: I am delighted — make that astonished — to be able to report that I wrote a picture book draft and revised a picture book in July, and revised one in August, as well.

Middle grade: One middle grade novel is completed and is “out there” — the agent search process has begun. I’m currently working on revisions of a middle grade mystery. I tried something new with this revision. To begin, I did the sort of manuscript evaluation that I’ve received from Emma Walton Hamilton in the past, but this time it was me, evaluating my own manuscript. I am convinced that with my “editor” eyes, I saw much more that needed work than I would have otherwise. I am now working through the reams of suggestions I gave myself.

Fiction for grown-ups: I completed the second draft of my novel, although I feel it should really be called the second first draft, as I added so much new material. It still needs work, but it’s getting there.

Children’s Book Hub: The Hub Facebook Group is still a major focus for me daily. It’s growing and people continue to share great resources and ask intriguing questions. If you’re involved in creating kidlit, and you’re on Facebook, I hope you’ll join us in the Facebook Group. (You have to request membership — please be sure Emma and I can tell from your publicly viewable FB info what your involvement is in the kidlit world.) I’m also associate editor of the monthly newsletter for the full subscription-based Children’s Book Hub, and enjoy that very much. (If you’d like to join the full Children’s Book Hub, click here for info.)

I also spent time in July wishing I were in Southampton, NY at the Stony Brook Southampton Children’s Literature Conference, and spent some time in August wishing I were in Los Angeles for the Summer Conference of SCBWI (Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators). Some day I’ll get back to those conferences…

BLOGGING: Here’s just a hint of what will be coming up in September on By Word of Beth.

Perfect Picture Book Friday: PPBF starts up again on September 7th, going into its third year! Although I won’t be participating every Friday, I do have a picture book to share with you on the 7th, one that is quite far removed from the usual sorts of books I choose for PPBF. (It is something I read for research on the middle grade mystery, actually.)

Blog Tour: I’ll be participating in a blog tour during the second week of September as Erik, the Kid Who Reviews Books, launches his self-published chapter book adventure story. I will be reviewing the book on September 13th, and will have a GIVEAWAY for one paperback copy of Erik’s book. I’m so proud of Erik!

International Dot Day: As I did last year, I will be creating a Dot and posting it on my blog, September 15th-ish. (Actual date of posting will be September 16th.) This year, Peter H. Reynolds is celebrating the 10th anniversary of the publication of his picture book The Dot, which was the inspiration for International Dot Day in which kids (and adults) all around the world are encouraged to “make their mark” creatively. There’s still time to sign up! Encourage a school class or other kids’ group to do so, or sign up on your own. (I signed up as “other” and indicated I’m a blogger.) My friend Pat Tilton,Β  wrote a wonderful blog post in which she encourages those of us in the kidlit blogging world to make our mark on September 15th-ish. Read it here!

I hope to post every Friday, and most Mondays. Here’s to a new season of blogging! (Wake up, kitty…)

What did you do this summer? What do you have planned for September? Please tell me in the comments!

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