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Tuesday, September 19, 2006


I just got back from a WONDERful weekend in NYC. The cap's represent the fact that part of what made it so very divine was that I read and signed books at Books of Wonder, which is one of my favorite places on the planet. I mean, what could be better? Incredible selection, big browsing space, great displays, knowledgable staff and, if that's not enough, cupcakes.

PLUS I got to rub elbows with such greats - old and new - as:
  • Jim Trelease (who put down my child's school the minute he met me, but what the hey)
  • Amy Schwartz (A TEENY TINY BABY, BEA AND MR. JONES, and many more)
  • Sergio Ruzzier (THE ROOM OF WONDERS, plus illustrations for Emily Jenkins' spot-on & super-funny LOVE YOU WHEN YOU WHINE)
  • David Gavril (shout out to my fellow Hampshire alum! and author/ill. of PENELOPE NUTHATCH AND THE BIG SURPRISE)
  • Leonard Marcus (I cannot put his DEAR GENIUS down! Plus now I need WAYS OF TELLING real bad!!) and
  • K.J. Dell'Antonia (shout out to my fellow alum of the Manhattan Criminal Courts - no, that does not mean that KJ and I did time together, though I guess we kind of did, in a manner of speaking - and big props for puttin CHICKEN BEDTIME IS REALLY EARLY in READING WITH BABIES TODDLERS AND TWOS without realizing we knew each other from our former lives!). I also got to meet
  • Emily Jenkins, whose TOYS GO OUT is emerging as her finest work of many fine works. Plus she was really nice, which always works for me.

Other highlights of my visit were mostly culinary: soup dumplings (yes, I'm old and out of it, okay? I eat foods that were fads a decade ago and I say things like "shout out" which no one says anymore), cupcakes, and excellent popcorn at Film Forum (where I'd sit through pretty much any movie for the popcorn).

Plus I got to see many dear family members and friends, including my charming hostess, the lovely Ms. Kenna Kay. Some old friends came and surprised me at my readings (and brought kids I've heard about but never had the pleasure of meeting), which was extra nice! And my own kids stayed home. Which can be a nice thing too (absence makes the heart grow fonder and all that).

One last bit of news: When I got home, I learned that Neal Pollack's new website (for which I've been asked to contribute a column) will be up and running soon! The website is offsprung.com and the working title for my column is Pajamazon. As in, "if you want to hear bedtime stories, get yer freaking pajamazon!"

It will be a column about kids and kids' books and it will include the contributions of my own darling kids, assuming they don't lose all their stories goofing around when they are supposed to be getting ready for bed.

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