Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Guest Blog Post: Julie Hedlund

I'm pleased to welcome guest blogger Julie Hedlund to Jumping The Candlestick!  Julie, a regular reader of this blog, has a blog of her own that you should take a look at: Write Up My Life.  Julie is here today to tell us about an upcoming writing challenge on her blog, as well as about a competition that a story of hers is in.  Welcome, Julie!

First, I want to thank Debbie for hosting me today.It is such an honor to be here since she’s a celebrity in our house! I finally broke down and bought the e-book version of The Pout-Pout Fish because our printed copy was worn to nubs.

As a pre-published picture book writer, I was thrilled to discover that Debbie, a best-selling author, also hails from Michigan. Although I currently live in Colorado, I was born and raised in Gaylord and graduated from the University of Michigan.From Debbie’s wonderful “Michigander Monday” series, I’ve since discovered more amazing Michigan authors.

Speaking of picture books, I am sponsoring a picture book writing challenge on my blog this year called 12 x 12 in 2012. The goal is to write one complete picture book draft a month for each month of the year in 2012.

I got the idea for the challenge while participating in this year’s Picture Book Idea Month, sponsored by author Tara Lazar. You see, I participated in PiBoIdMo last year too, but when I looked over my output for 2011, only one of those 30 ideas ended up as a complete draft. I was determined to change those statistics for 2012 and invited fellow writers to join me.We have more than 100 participants so far!I hope to see some of you there too.Debbie herself is going to be one of our featured “author experts” (although I can’t tell you which month because I want to keep it a surprise).

I do have one picture book I wrote, A TROOP IS A GROUP OF MONKEYS, entered in the Children’s Author Challenge with e-Publisher MeeGenius.I love this story because it teaches kids some collective nouns for groups of animals. I’d heard of a pack of wolves, a herd of buffalo and a pride of lions. But a float of crocodiles? An ostentation of peacocks? So fun!

I would love it if you could take a look at the story and give it a “like” IF you like it.  If you’re interested in doing more and want the chance to win some prizes, I’m running a contest on my blog right now. Just hitting the “like” button gets you two points.Prizes include a list of agents, an iPod shuffle, bookstore gift cards, writing critiques and, of course, Picture Books!

Once again, my sincere thanks to Debbie for hosting me today and to YOU for reading.

Happy Holidays!

Julie Hedlund blogs about the writing life (and regular life) at Write Up My Life. She writes picture books, travel articles and personal essays and WILL write a novel one day. When she is not mothering, writing or reading, she enjoys running, hiking, skiing, cooking, yoga, and savoring a great glass of red wine at sunset. She especially likes to do these things while traveling.


Julie Hedlund said...

Thanks for having me today Debbie. I hope our worlds collide well as my regular followers and yours can "meet and greet." :-)

Susanna Leonard Hill said...

First of all, I love The Pout-Pout Fish! Second, Julie's blog is totally awesome and the 12X12 challenge is going to be great - full of fun and part of a very supportive community of writers. If you're thinking about joining, you should! Thanks for a great guest post, ladies :)

Pat O'Dea Rosen said...

As always, I enjoyed your post, Julie, and am glad to have "met" Debbie. Now, I'm wondering: what's the collective noun for a group of bloggers?

Louise Behiel said...

Great post Julie. I like the idea of the challenge for 2012. what a great idea.

Robyn Campbell said...

The Pout-Pout Fish is just soooooo cool. It's the kind of story that makes a writer say, "I wish I'd written that."

The 12x12 is going to be a blast. I will end up with some great stories and have super encouragement along my way.

A TROOP IS A GROUP OF MONKEYS is a wonderful story that teaches kids about wildlife. I hope you win, Julie! Truly I do.

Great post y'all. *waving and smiling*

Julie Hedlund said...

@Susanna - thanks for your comments about my blog. I should also mention that Susanna does a great series called Perfect Picture Books on Fridays, so check that out and participate there too.

@Pat - a "windbag" of bloggers? ;-)

@Louise - Thanks, and join us if you'd like!

@Robyn - yes, The Pout-Pout fish IS like that. Thanks for your support of 12x12 and my story!

elizabethanne said...

Great post, Julie! I love your story (but there wasn't a "love" button to click, sigh...)

I also am a big fan of the Pout-Pout Fish (particularly "in the Big-Big Dark!")

An "Interconnection" of Bloggers? Anyone else have a suggestion?

elizabethanne said...

P.S. Meant to mention that the 12 x 12 challenge is going to be an amazing way to get our creative juices flowing. Thanks to Julie for coming up with such a great idea!

Joanna said...

I love the idea of blogging about writers in one's state! Go you Michiganers.

Man, I need to get hold of a copy of the Pout-Pout Fish now, to see what you all a re raving about.

I love Julie's PB entry and am so up for the 12x12.

Windbag of Bloggers. LOL. We sure are!

Coleen Patrick said...

Check out Julie's blog and her book (go like it!!)-they are both great!!

Patricia T. said...

Enjoyed your guest post. Love your blog as it is always interesting! And, I think your idea of 12x12 challenge is brilliant.

Ditto Joanna's comments about blogging about bloggers in one state -- great concept. Although I'm a rival Buckeye.

Love The Pout-Pout FIsh! Such a great book for kids.

Great post!

Renee LaTulippe said...

Ooh, I'm waiting for my Pout-Pout Fish to arrive from the States! I was really drawn by the cover illustration and cannot wait to read it!

Julie, you have officially coined "windbag of bloggers"! Nothing could possibly top that. Nice post and wonderful story -- I already liked it and they won't let me do it twice. :)

Julie Hedlund said...

@elizabethanne and @Joanna - thanks for the 12x12 and the story love

@Coleen - thanks for your nice comment about my blog and story

@Patricia - you are a very brave woman using the word "Buckeye" on a Michigander's blog. ;-) We love you anyway though!!

Julie Hedlund said...

@Renee - you are so nice - thank you!

Kerry Aradhya said...

Hi, Julie. The 12 X 12 challenge is such a great idea, and I'm glad you have so many participants already! I'm not sure I'm up for the challenge this year, but I'm going to be watching from the sidelines and still hope to get some good manuscripts written in 2012! Going to check out your story now. It sounds like a great idea :)

(P.S to Deborah: We have both Pout-Pout books here and love them both!)

Vicki a.k.a. Jarm said...

I am so motivated to get started with 12x12. PiBoIdMo was such a boost to my writing last month, that I was disappointed to have it end. But, along came you, Julie, to rescue us from our somewhat intimidating list of PB ideas. We will all be on a roll soon, thanks to you! Anyone else want to transform their 30 ideas into 12 developed stories in 2012??

Jennifer Rumberger said...

Hi Debbie and Julie - Great post!

Julie Hedlund said...

@Kerry - no worries. I know lots of people are "challenged" out - :-) We'll be there if you need us.

@Jarm, @Jennifer - thanks for coming by and commenting!

Emma Burcart said...

Very cool. I love the idea of ebooks for kids.

Anonymous said...

I really like A TROOP IS A GROUP OF MONKEYS and I am excited for 12x12 in 2012!!!

Karen McFarland said...

Julie, I always love your posts!

And I love the challenge. :)

Stacy S. Jensen said...

Made my way over and unlike many, I'm not familiar with the Pout-Pout fish. I'm about to correct this.

Clar said...

Also going to correct the fact that I didn't know about "Pout Pout Fish".
Great post, Julie. Blog on! :)

Love your "A Troop is a Group of Monkeys" entry. Hope you win. I can visualize the illustrations already and they are fantastic!

Debbie Diesen said...

Julie, thanks so much for the great post; and thanks, all of you, for the great comments!!

Julie Hedlund said...

@Debbie - you are more than welcome. I was so glad to be here!

@everyone else :-) Thank you for your kind comments and support. I can't wait for the 12x12 challenge either!!