News and Poetrees

BIG NEWS!!!! Such a Pretty Face, Short Stories About Beauty which is actually an anthology of anti-culture-of-beauty stories is now available as an e-book. I have always believed this book is important to young adults who struggle with their views of beauty but it’s especially important now when we read so much in the news about shaming girls and women about their looks, their weight, their views. You can order it from your favorite bookstore or click on the e-book link.















In other news, we’ve just finished hosting Mount Mary University’s third annual Publishing Institute where participants met with agents and editors to pitch their work. The day included a poetry workshop with Milwaukee Artist of the Year, Dasha Kelly. Participants read their poetry in a public reading at the end of the day and then helped us make our poetree blossom with their words.


Isn’t this great?








Our poetree is on exhibit at Mount Mary University. Speaking of Mount Mary, I need to get this post up and then I need to hightail it over to Mount Mary because my students in the Literature and Writings of Protest, Violence, and Redemption are about to display their graphic novel panels for a celebration of writing.

I hope you’re all finding a million ways to celebrate this creative life! I sure am — at least this week.


Book lists and library visits: I hope to see you at one of the following….

Hi all,

Things_I'll_Never_SayFirst the big news…. Things I’ll Never Say, Stories about Our Secret Selves was named to the CCBC 2015 Choices list! It’s also on the Teenreads Teen Choices award nomination list along with books be fellow Wisconsin writers Pat Schmatz (Lizard Radio) and Ann Bausum (Stonewall). If you like to vote for your Teen Choices, just click on here.





A number of Wisconsin authors will be gathering around the state and I’m scheduled to be present at a few. We love to hang out together at the Wisconsin Reading Association Conference which is held at the Milwaukee Convention Center. That kicks off the spring author visit season. SCBWI created this schedule and poster for us:12592354_939832912768444_7471174032287437789_n


Here are additional appearances:

  • March 19 — Wisconsin Author Festival, West Allis Library, 7421 W. National Avenue, West Allis, WI  — 1-4:30 pm


  • March 30-April 1 — Chairing Panel on Writing about Family and Dysfunction in Young Adult Novels with YA authors JL Powers, EM Kokie (of Madison) and Terry Farish — AWP Conference (Association of Writers and Writing Programs), Los Angeles, CA


  • April 10 – WEMTA AUTHOR FAIR, Kahlahara Resort, Wisconsin Dells. 11:30 am to 3 pm


  • April 17 — Hedberg Library Open Mic Event, Hedberg Public Library, 316 South Main Street, Janesville, WI 53545, Time: TBA


  • April 21 — Delafield Library, Reading and Q&A, 500 Genesee Street, Delafield WI 53018 (




Janis Joplin’s Porsche is going to auction….

Janis Joplin with her Porsche Hi all,

You have no idea how many people have sent me the link or tagged me on facebook about the latest Janis Joplin news — her porsche is going to auction at Sotheby’s. Of course I tagged my editor at Abrams and asked if they could purchase the car. Susan said sure thing and “we’ll take a road trip together.”  Wouldn’t that be a kick? I’m picturing two writerly types, their hair whipping behind them speeding down Route 66.

I have other news, surely. But for now, let’s all just imagine what it would be like to ride cross country in a wild car, the wind in our faces….