I entered the fast lane of 12 x 12

I’m thrilled to announce that I’ve joined the 12 x 12 Picture Book Challenge!

A group of other authors get tons of information and support and inspiration to write 12 new picture book manuscripts by the end of 2019. The group is run by Julie Hedlund and features a blog, forum, Facebook group, webinars, critiques, and more.

This is now the beginning of my second year officially working toward a career in children’s literature. I feel like taking this challenge in this group plops me onto the fast lane now. Wheee!

I’m excited to experience all the wonders this new writing world has to offer. Thanks for reading along on my journey!

Have a blessed year of pursuing your own set-aside, “impossible” dreams. I’m cheering you on!

Love,

Savannah

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Madness has arrived!

Round One is live, in the world’s biggest bracketed children’s poetry competition.

Come enjoy the fun and creativity, and VOTE! ✅ Send a friend, too:

https://madnesspoetry.com/matchups

Here’s my entry:

A Science Fair Marvel
by Savannah Rogers
Come inside and see this most extraordinary sight!
Just walk straight forward, take a left—You’ll find it on the right.
How long have I been building this contraption you see here?
To be straightforward, truthful, frank, I think about a year.
To start this grand machine, just pull this string, there’s nothing to it:
It’s plain and simple. Piece of cake. Straightforward. You can do it!
A complicated dance of gadgets—
Chain reactions—
CHEER!
My Rube Goldberg invention made me First Place engineer!

(Art credit Wikipedia)

I Did It!

Last night I realized that Vivian Kirkfield’s #50PreciousWords contest is happening now. (https://viviankirkfield.com/2019/03/02/the-50preciouswords-writing-contest-is-open) My goal was to hurry and come up with a 50-word story by this morning so I’m done before Madness Poetry starts this afternoon.

I did it! This was my first time trying this challenge. It certainly was challenging!

I’m so proud of my little layered story about staying unique when everyone wants you to conform! A lot of the story will be told in the pictures, which I’d love to sketch out soon. I think it will be even cuter and make even more sense then.

See if you can spot the use of:

– alliteration

– repetition

– joiner/conformist words

– art and color words

– affirming, self-love words.

Please drop a note in the comments, letting me know what you think.

Have a Wonder-full day!

– Savannah

…….

COLORFUL YOU (or, The Day the Play Dough Conformed)

By Savannah Rogers

(Word Count: 50)

 

Colors playing. Happy day.
“Too bright!” grumps Gray.
“Copy the accepted norm.”
Red joins Yellow. “We’ll conform!”
“Too bright!” tattles Tan.
Orange+Green: Brown’s a fan.
“TOO UNIQUE!” … Purple’s blue.
Squish… “We’re joining, too!”
“Just right,” Beige beams.

Monotone.
Completed dreams?

Enjoy uniqueness. Value hue.
Wonderful, colorful,
Just-right…
You.

—————–

(Photo credit:

http://www.kidsbabydesign.com/arts-and-crafts/make-your-own-non-toxic-play-dough/)

Got students?

If you have a class or family or homeschool full of students, you need to sign up to have them judge next month’s Madness! Poetry competition. It’s so much fun, they won’t even realize all the amazing literature and grammar (and even history and science) they are learning.

I’m hoping to be part of the action again this year as an “authlete” participant. Check it out!

From genius Madness creator Ed DeCaria:

Madness! 2019 is catching on! 88 classrooms representing 1,725 kids are now registered to read and vote. We have classrooms in 26 of the 50 U.S. states (see first comment below to find out which ones we still need), plus Canada, Mexico, and Vietnam. Please keep sharing the link (https://www.madnesspoetry.com/teach) online and offline so that we can get poetry in front of even more kids this March! THANK YOU!!!

Revisiting art

I spent countless hours drawing, painting and sculpting as a young girl. My favorite class in high school was an amazing art class as a tenth grader in Hawaii. But once college, career and family life took over, I let my art go. Packed away the supplies, never took those evening college classes I thought about occasionally… Every now and then I’d join the kids in an art project and get my fix.

Last year I decided to pursue creating children’s books. I discovered the Picturebooking Podcast, which is quite inspiring. Out came the colored pencils and sketchbooks. Matt spoiled me with new supplies and a fancy digital art pad and pen. The kids have been cheering me on.

I’ve been to two regional SCBWI illustrator meetings here in Arizona, and both have expanded my mind and given me fantastic advice and encouragement. My homework has been to continue to experiment and play with my art, try new things, see where it takes me. I will eventually have enough pieces and enough of a “style” to make a portfolio to share with publishing agents.

Here are some recent pieces. The frog and beach ones are part of illustrations I’m making for my son’s book, as part of a class I taught last semester. The others are just fun experiments. I hope they bring you joy and a sense of wonder about the beautiful world where we live!

Love,

Savannah

The Box

It arrived

at the perfect time,

much anticipated

and celebrated.

Joy and relief,

excitement and pride

were in that box.

Thirty-two years

were in that box.

Fear, doubt, and worry

couldn’t stop that box.

The box carried dreams

and hope,

encouragement

and inspiration,

bright, happy colors,

with my name on them,

with my heart on them–

pieces of me

to share

in love.

Copyright 2018 Savannah Rogers

The kids and I eagerly ripped into the boxes that held the treasured first copies of my new poetry book, Humble Beginnings. They are so much brighter and larger and wonderful in real life…in my hands instead of just on a computer screen. What joy!

I already signed the first book, when my friend Gina came over to pick up hers. Now I want to launch a search to see what sort of pen would be perfect for author signatures. 😁

A couple of days ago, I realized in horror that I had accidentally knocked my book file “offline” while trying to show a friend the cover art at Createspace. So my excited posts were likely sending new eyes over to Amazon, where the book was listed as “out of print.” For days. Ugh.

The amazing and perfect thing is that I fixed it, got it approved and back online yesterday right after noon… just in time for my boxes to arrive a couple of hours later. I was able to immediately share the good news and know that my friends would find the book up and ready online again. Whew!

Thank you all for cheering me on! Your preordered signed copies of Humble Beginnings will be on their way later today!

Tight budgets, extravagant dreams

Photo by Savannah Rogers

Life as a homeschooling mom often falls somewhere in the realm of Spartan missionary life … We forego luxuries that two-income families consider essentials.

It’s easy to feel guilty about the lack of income that often accompanies a homemaking “career.” In reality, our men probably feel it is a privilege to be able to singlehandedly support a stay-at-home wife and homeschooling family.

Yet I often feel like I’m spending family money like a recent Lottery winner, funding all the lessons and curriculum and sports and field trips. Sometimes I see other families with side gigs, and long to find something the kids and I can do to add to the mix. Believe me, I’ve got plenty of ideas for ways to blow some more money, including blessing the people around me.

But what could I offer the marketplace? I’m a busy mom of five kids who has always felt inadequate in homemaking, parenting, home businesses … you name it. Social media has not helped. The things I have felt great at, aren’t things typically quantifiable in the marketplace, or they are skills from my pre-children life that I haven’t kept current all these years.

Perusing freelance job sites in my journalism major convinces me that I need to either spend money taking classes or spend time volunteering somewhere to update my skills. Not many extremely part-time jobs are even an option. It’s hard to get serious about finding business or work opportunities when you already feel like you need to spend more time with housework and family, not less!

It’s almost like homeschoolers could use their own missionary support and fundraising postcards for philanthropists to keep on the front of their refrigerators, or maybe have a Patreon account! Let the brainstorming begin!

(Part one in a series on finding my place in the world outside my homeschool.)

(Written 2-26-18, updated 10-8-18.)

A book baby is born

Today I finally shoved my fears and insecurities aside and pressed “publish” on a collection of my early poems I’ve been wanting to make into a book and send to my high school English teacher, family and friends. I’ve called it “Humble Beginnings,” and it’s now available at your favorite online book sellers.

I’m excited to start drawing some illustrations to accompany the poems in a future edition. 😁

https://www.amazon.com/dp/1726479951

My English teacher in eleventh grade, Mrs. Norton, was always a fan of my writing. I remember her saying that when I published my book of poetry one day, to send her a copy. I have collected these poems and self-published them for her. I’m excited to also share them with my family, and, of course, you! 🙂

It’s funny how immobilized I’ve felt about sending these poems off into the world. It is a mix of vulnerability (even though most of my work has been fun and silly, not overly emotionally draining or anything) and a fear that if I publish a poem, even on social media, that the opportunity to ever publish it by a traditional publisher or turn it into a picture book has been lost. I’m still not quite sure if that is true, but I’ve decided to draw a line in the sand, publish my previous work, and move forward without worry. It is so freeing!

I think teaching a second class now of My Very Own Book, and helping 18 more students create and publish their own books, inspired me to go ahead and finish mine. Plus the switch Createspace is making over to Kindle Direct Publishing… I needed to get my book finished while I still understand the current process!

Last weekend’s Arizona conference of SCBWI, The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, also encouraged and empowered me to take the plunge. I am happy, and very grateful for all the knowledge and inspiration I found there.

It’s exciting to release my poems out in the world to you all. Happy Book Birthday, Humble Beginnings!

Catching up a bit

It has been a jam-packed couple of months, so let me catch up here a bit.

Today at my (amazing, fun, inspiring) KidLit Mingle group through SCBWI, a friend asked how my Madness Poetry contest went. She had missed the previous meetings when I kept the other children’s book creators at the meeting abreast of my progress. I also realized that I’d updated my author news on my new-ish Facebook author page along the way, but neglected my blog. Oops!

So, when last I posted here, I had won Round One and had begun working on my new Round Two poem, using the word “ekes.” Well, it turned out really cute! Michael Mouse, Recycle Mouse won its matchup and propelled me on to the next round!

You can see the matchup here, including both poems, results, and comments.

The sixteen “authletes” remaining for Round Three ended up with a little extra time to complete our next original poems, which was good since it fell over Easter weekend. This time my challenge word was “parlance,” which I don’t believe I had ever used in a sentence in my life.

My competitor is a phenomenal poet and author, and defeated me handily. But my poem “People Perceiver” was well received and meaningful to many. One sweet little girl in the Poetry and Tea co-op class I was helping with said with emotion, “That is the most beautiful poem I’ve ever heard.” ❤

I pray you enjoy my poem, too.

Here’s the matchup page with both poems and results.

Be sure to click around and read the other fantastic and moving poems! It was an exciting, nail-biting final in Round Six!

I’m so honored to have been part of Madness Poetry this year. “Meeting” all the other poet competitors and then finding their books on the shelves of my local library has been inspiring, and now a whole world of publishing camaraderie and learning has been opened to me because of this experience. I am eager for next year’s Madness!