I submitted my first picture book manuscript to a New York publisher in 1968. To borrow their phrase, “it did not suit their current needs.” Forty-plus years and forty-plus books later I can finally see the forest through the trees. I write for kids because I want to live in a world of possibility and wonder. Doing all I can to maintain that sensibility helps me write for children, and writing for children helps me maintain and live the reality of possibility and wonder.
How do you support teachers?
Teachers, parents, and those of us who write for children are all on the same team.We want to protect, entertain and inspire children as they enter the truths of daily life. I never visit a school thinking I’m going to say something the students have not heard before. But I do enter a school thinking that My second and different voice may show students that what they’ve heard from teachers is true and valuable.
About George Shannon
George Shannon began his professional work with children in 1973. After experience as a children’s librarian and professional storyteller, his first children’s book, LIZARD’S SONG, was accepted by Greenwillow in 1979. Since then he has had over 40 books published including 30 picture books (among them DANCE AWAY, CLIMBING KANSAS MOUNTAINS, WHITE IS FOR BLUEBERRY, THE SECRET CHICKEN CLUB and WHO PUT THE COOKIES IN THE COOKIE JAR). TIPPY-TOE CHICK, GO! was selected as a Charlotte Zolotow Award Honor Book for picture book writing in 2003. 2008 brought both the Washington State Book Award and the Worzalla/Burr Award for RABBIT’S GIFT, and the “Life time Achievement Award” from PNWA. His most recent book, HANDS SAY LOVE, has just been given an “Honorable Mention” by in the “Best About Family” category of BEST PICTURE BOOKS OF 2014.
George returned to part-time library work four years ago at The Island School in Puget Sound. He continues to write and work with children around the world on their own creative writing. Conferences, workshops, and author visits have taken him to schools from the Arctic Circle to Jakarta, and Kuwait to Japan.
His website about his work with students, his perspectives on teaching writing and information about his own books can be found by clicking here.
His blog for adults interested in writing picture books can be found at: www.georgeshannon.wordpress.com
Watch for his new book, One Family, which comes out later this month!