|Bottom row, second from right holding "The Hero in You"|
Happy New Year everyone! This past weekend I attended the SCBWI Florida conference in Miami - my 12th one! I was on the first books panel talking about how my two books published this year came to be. It was great to be on the panel with such amazingly, talented writers. What an exciting time.
|Me dressed as the Lunch Lady, a character from Jarrett Krosoczka's graphic novels|
On Saturday, we had our masquerade ball with the theme being "Heroes vs. Villains." Being a big fan of Jarrett Krosoczka, I chose to dress up as the crime-fighting Lunch Lady from his graphic novels. I even had fish stick nunchucks, chicken nugget bombs to throw, a bananarang, and a spatu-copter. I was one of 5 finalists in the costume party but didn't win any prize. Someone needs to have a chicken nugget bomb thrown in their face for that! Just kidding.
Whether he's writing about a boy who wears a bag on his head, a slug that becomes your friend, a crime fighting lunch lady, or a punk band of farm animals, Jarrett knows the formula to entertain kids.
Jarrett has written and illustrated all kinds of books - picture books, graphic novels, chapter books, and short stories. I recently read, "Must. Push. Buttons" his newest illustrated book written by Jason Good. It's told from a toddler's point of view as he blurts out all the things that are running through his head while trying to find anything that has buttons he can push. The words and pictures work perfectly together but the expressions on the toddler's face are priceless.
Lunch Lady" graphic novel, book 1. It's about a lunch lady who fights crime at her school using typical cafeteria superhero weapons, such as a Spatula-copter, chicken nugget bombs, fish stick nunchucks, and a bananarang, a banana that works like a boomerang. The book is illustrated in black and white with just highlights of yellow throughout which contrasts Jarrett's normal use of bright saturated colors in his picture books. But it works. The way Jarrett has broken down each page into frames using different perspectives and angles, speech bubbles and sound bursts, and humorous characters is ingenious.
TED-x talk. He even talks about how real lunch ladies are truly heroes for all they do for kids and has sparked a national Lunch Hero Day coming up on May 1st. He's also conducted some great interviews himself with other authors, such as Bob Shea, on "The Book Report." His blog is a great one to follow, too. He's super funny and a great read.
So if you or your child or students are looking for a good laugh with some super cute and funny illustrations, I highly recommend getting hooked on Jarrett Krosoczka's books. And maybe someday you'll have a chance to dress up as the lunch lady - or another one of Jarrett's awesome characters - like me.