Frogs can enjoy fine dining, too.
(If amazon says it’s out of stock–you can also get it at barnesandnobles.com but also, IGNORE THEM! It’s IN STOCK on amazon–They have piles of books, we’re just having trouble getting them to adjust the listing. You can order it from them and you’ll get it in about a week.)
So what if I’m the littlest frog on the page. So what? I’ve got a big heart and I know I’m going places!
I will be adding to this post as they appear. Thanks to everyone who used their printing (and digital) presses to mention ‘Frogs!’
Because, really, doesn’t everyone need a Frog-A-Day in their lives? I am pleased to step up, and provide this service.
Herewith, we shall begin with the first of many: I hath dubbed him”Big Frog”. Mainly, because he’s the biggest frog in the book. He takes up, like, half a page.
To celebrate my NEW Passover book, Frogs in the Bed, I will giving one away!
To enter, just leave a short comment below that either A) Describes your best Seder idea for kids or B) Includes the word, “Ribbit!”
PLUS: If you’d like additional tickets with your name on it put into the raffle hat, you can:
-Share this post on Facebook, and let me know in the comments below
-Pin the cover of my book from this post on Pinterest, and let me know in the comments below
Raffle closes March 25. Good luck!
(PS: Books are available on amazon. Ignore the temporarily out of stock listing; they are in stock- if you order one you should get it within a week.)
Yael, congratulations on your new book, Shimmy Shambone!
Thanks, Ann! I’m really excited to be talking to you about it!
Could you give us a quick summary of who Shimmy is, and what his story is about?
Shimmy Shambone is just the cutest little guy, really a great kid. He’s energetic, fun, sweet and friendly. Unfortunately, Shimmy really hates the idea of taking a bath! As you can imagine, this bothers the people who have to hang around with him, especially his mother, siblings and teacher. So, basically his story is about how a really messy kid learns that being clean is actually a good thing!
Where did you get the idea for Shimmy Shambone?
Should I be embarrassed to admit that I got the idea from my own three year old daughter, Laila? Well, I did. Laila went through a brief period last year where she gave us a really hard time about taking baths and showers. Fortunately, she got over it but it was a real power struggle for a while there!
Tell us a little about the illustrations. How did you find the illustrator?
I really can’t say enough about this illustrator, Robert Salanitro. I think his illustrations are adorable, engaging and funny. I found him by posting an ad for an illustrator on the Internet. Lots of artists sent me samples, but it was clear from the get go that Robert really had a feel for exactly who this character is and how to make that pop on the page.
I know sometimes the author and illustrator roles are very separate—when you saw the illustrations were you surprised? Did they take to story to a place you didn’t expect?
In this case I was very lucky. I really got to be intimately involved with every aspect of the process. Robert would send me crude sketches, stick figures really, to show me what he intended to do and I’d give him my suggestions. Afterward, we’d confer about the finished sketches before he started coloring them. And you know, even with seeing it every step of the way, I was still surprised by the finished product! He really brought Shimmy to life in the best possible way.
Tell us a little about yourself. Where do you live, etc.
I’m sorry to say, I’m a little boring! I’m a married mother of five, ranging from 16 to 4 years old and I live in Passaic, NJ. I do freelance writing for the adult Jewish market and my stories are featured in magazines, websites, and anthologies and obviously, some children’s books as well. Other than that though, it’s basically a lot of laundry and carpool!
Have you had a chance to read Shimmy Shambone to kids? If so, do you have a story of a funny/ interesting reaction that one of the kids had to the book?
I have read it aloud to kids and they pretty much unanimously find it hysterical. One kindergarten class actually cheered at the end! I think children like the idea of another kid making such a bold stand. More interesting to me though, is that a number of the adults I’ve met have quoted some of the book to me. That ease with the text tells me that the rhyme really works, which is always a concern to an author. So, I’m happy and relieved about that!
Is this your first picture book? Are you working on anything new?
Actually, Shimmy Shambone is my third children’s book but my first with such a humorous, fictional plot. My first two books, “We Can Do Mitzvos from Aleph to Tav,” and “When I Daven,” are also geared to the 2-5 age group, but are more educational. And I’m very excited to announce that I’ve got a fourth book, “We Can Do Mitzvos All Through the Year” about Jewish holidays, coming out in September. You heard it first, Ann!
Is there anything that you wanted to add, that you think my readers would like to know?
I don’t think it’s news to anyone, but it can’t be stressed enough – children really love humor. Sometimes I’ve found that children’s books – maybe specifically Jewish children’s books- tend towards preachiness. No one likes being preached at, I know I don’t! But give a kid a character he can laugh with and a dilemma that he identifies with and they’ll follow you all the way to the end and learn exactly what you hoped they would. And frankly, as a parent who has read my share of bedtime stories, I like a little chuckle too!
Thanks again, Yael. I hope you and Shimmy have much success!
1) iphone grogger (so clever–it actually makes noise when you shake it!) http://www.behrmanhouse.com/iphone
2) Lego Gragger-A DIY version from bible belt balabusta:
3)Yum. Chocolate gragger. You can get the mold on amazon.
4)Beautiful, interesting gragger from the Jewish Museum collection.
5) Great gragger craft that I made last year with the 7th grade girls at HANC. Altoid tins filled with popcorn kernels–very noisy!
(Liked that? You also might enjoy my top 10 Purim links from last year)
(Like this interview? You might also like the one I did with Eric Kimmel as well.)