Tuesday, June 30, 2009


So there I am doing my pre-writing routine (pre, during, post) by looking at today's writer's and illustrator's blogs that inspire me. You know, Jimbo Jabber, Kirby's Lane, Grow Wings and Not For Robots, Cocoa Stomp, Cuppa Jolie, Brimstone Soup, Between Fact and Fiction, throw in some Talking Potatoes or their Mom, a little Jane Yolen, Adam Rex's blue whale sightings, JJK, Marla Frazee... You know the usual little children's book writer pick me up. (ok so there's many many more blogs that I love and will gladly gush about again but this is just this morning's list)

Oh yeah, and TOMIE DEPAOLA!

You know Tomie, famous for his huge role in Jarret J. Krosoczka's (JJK) video about creating Monkey Boy. Actually you may have heard of him before that. Like only one of the most beloved illustrators of children's books alive! (And Newberry Winner!) Just look at my favorite books list on my profile and you'll see his "The Clown Of God" on there. I also loved the "Strega Nona" books, "Helga's Dowry, A Troll's Love Story" (absolute genius), "The Prince of the Dolomites," "The Mysterious Giant of Barletta," and many, many more (he's published more than 200!). Oh AND he's one of TWO MASTER CLASS SCBWI DVD speakers. I recently became a follower of his blog and so this morning on my dashboard I see Tomie has a new post with a picture of him, Julie Andrews (yes HER), Meg Cabot (yes her), and Krouse Rosenthal.
So I went and checked out Tomie's Blog again and another post caught my eye. Lo and behold, I see MY name. I rub my eyes and realize I need to get my coffee going pronto and look again. Still there. I actually got a shout out from the Great Tomie dePaola on his post here.

Awesome! Thanks Tomie!

I've had the pleasure of meeting Tomie at least a few times, though I was pretty sure I would be the only one remembering that. He's also been really cool to my brother Jesse too. Check this dream dinner out.

Around twenty years ago or more, my Dad went to a SCBWI conference and had a manuscript critique with none other than... Tomie dePaola. Tomie gave my Dad somebody's card and a year later he got his first contract. Fast forward in time and Tomie has been very kind and encouraging to the next generation of Watson boys.

So it is a pretty cool morning where I get a shout out from one of my favorite boyhood writer/illustrators. What's going to happen this afternoon?


  1. Woo-hoo!!! You're famous. As for this afternoon, you may rest on your laurels (I hear they're quite comfortable).

  2. thank you, BJW, for pointing our Tomie's blog!! Being a picture book writer, it is sometimes hard to find blogs of other picture book authors....(our audiences are often too young to have blog profiles......)

    Congrats on the shout out!

    And, speaking of Hogwarts (your choice on the Hogwarts vs Star Trek thing on my blog) I totally turned a Summer Reading Program I am teaching into Hogwarts! I'll blog about it soon.

    thanks for stopping by. I added you on my blog list.


  3. That is very cool, Ben! Gotta love Tomie. Gotta love the Watson clan! Gotta love Tomie loving on the Watson clan! :)

  4. Tricia, I hear laurels are quite comfortable to sit on. Particularly the non-thorned laurels. I tried the other way, not as comfortable as you'd think.

    Story queen, well I look forward to seeing much more of your Hogwarts summer reading program. Sounds like my kinda program. Thank you for adding me on your list! Look forward to more fun posts from you.

    And Cuppa Jolie, you nearly one of us, if you aren't already. Us PT folk gotta stick together. Great writing day for me today. The last few days of the SRS has been a huge motivator for me. Gonna miss it! (or will I? is it still going, is there some announcement looming??? Extra coffee for you if you let I, Uh, Think I Killed my Muse scoop it!)

  5. Ben! Great shout-out from Tomie. Wow! And thanks for the mention of my taters...I need to get them on a new book, now that life is getting back to normal. Happy week!

  6. Martha I've been thinking about a book recommendation to request for the Talking Potatoes to review and I keep coming back to The Story of Ferdinand by Munro Leaf. I'll be happy to go through the formal channels to request it, but I think it is an awesome story. And I especially LOVE the illustrations. Very glad life is getting back to normal for you.

  7. Way cool, Ben! TOMIE DEPAOLA!

    And thanks for being so kind in that last set of comments. Very sweet. :)

  8. That is so awesome, Ben! And thanks for the Link to Tomie's blog.