So I had a brilliant idea. Humorous poems about stinky animals. Lots of back matter. You know–skunk, stink bug, mink, ferret,. Had a moment’s doubt that there wouldn’t be enough. Google set my mind at rest. Talked to daughter Heidi about doing the book with me.
A lyrical book about a little boy, his obsession with the moon, and how he becomes an astronaut who gets to walk on the moon. And though the book is dedicated to Neil Armstrong, it’s not about him. It’s about desire, dedication, and hard work. In fact, the very things that created the book itself.
So, I got an email asking for a short story for a new dragon anthology and thought: I am SO done with dragons. But no sooner had I said that aloud, then my traitor mind responded: “The tsar’s dragons were harrowing the suburbs again.” The next three or four sentences spun out quickly.
The Yolen-Stemples are a family of birdwatchers. (I must admit I am the least of them.having been a city girl the first fourteen years of my life.) My late husband David Stemple grew up in the mountains of West Virginia. And our three children began early, because David (“Pa” in OWL MOON) taught them how to bird.
This is the second book that my three children and I have done for National Geographic, the first being ANIMAL STORIES.
NG asked us to do the first book, we pitched the second. I made a rough outline and once NG gave us a contract for the book, we divided up who would do which sections.
My old friend (ex-student of mine, then a member of my critique group, winner of the Jewish Book Award among other citations—Barbara Diamond Goldin—and I decided to write a book that would be feminist, 21st century midrashim about the girls and women of the Hebrew Bible. That meant for most of them
It took Heidi and me close to fifteen years till this book finally came out. I tried it as a picture book, a middle grade novel, an easy-reader. When Heidi signed on and we did it together as a picture book (MUCH better than my first feeble attempt) we actually had a book. Scholastic bought it and put the very inventive John McKinley
Son, Adam Stemple, and I wrote this second book of our graphic fantasy novel noir mystery trilogy. The first book, Stone Cold, set, as this one is also, in 1930s Edinburgh, Scotland. stars Silex, a talking gargoyle on top of a church in Scotland who works as a detective, assisted by a team of Scottish street urchins who do the grunt work.
I can’t seem to get away from dinosaurs! Here J. Patrick Lewis (former Children’s Poet Laureate) and I have done a picture book’s worth of humorous poems about the “interesting” demises of prehistoric creatures, from trilobites to T Rex to dire wolves.
Ah, The Seelie King’s War, where son Adam (my co-writer) and I untangled the history of the Seelie Court’s mysteries and the lineage of the Unseelie kings. The final book in the trilogy, where we begin with the unknowable, meet a fascinating new cast of characters, kill off quite a few beloved folk in a terrible war, and solve the biggest mystery of the The Seelie Wars trilogy.