I Heart Libraries

So today, for the very first time, I entered the brand spanking new Esther Nixon Library in Jacksonville, Arkansas--it opened last Saturday. I must say my heart was pounding when I pulled onto that squeaky clean, extra-black asphalt parking lot. And when I walked through the doors, I just wanted to jump up and down and SQUEEEE!! It's so beautiful. It's so amazing. It's so clean and shiny and contemporary, and glass, and steel, and organized, and full, full of books. <sigh> And it's such a huge, huge change from the small, damp, dark, leaky-ceiling-ed building it replaced. I took some pics with my cell phone, but there is so much glass and the sun streamed in, so my pics were crappy, but trust me when I say it's gorgeous. :-) Oh, and did I mention the stainless steel mobiles in the children's area???

I am SO proud of the people of Arkansas for caring enough to vote for the millage increases that it took to build this new library and others around the state. Libraries are truly an investment in our future and it's wonderful, that even in this economy, people recognize that. 
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Poetry question for you

Okay, I'll admit it, for years I never had the appreciation for poetry that I should have. I wanted to enjoy the gorgeous flowing rhythms, the precise word choices, and all the rest, but, for the most part, it just wasn't happening for me. Anyway, a few months ago I took a poetry course through Indiana University and I discovered the wonder of Elizabeth Bishop. Oh my...the woman can paint the most gorgeous word pictures. I ran across some other fab poets as well--Langston Hughes, Sylvia Plath, Thomas Hardy, and Dylan Thomas, to name a few. But of all the poets I read, Elizabeth Bishop's work seeped into my soul. 

So, my question for you is--If I love the work of Elizabeth Bishop, what other poets would I likely adore?kellyrfineman I expect to hear from you. Your blog stimulates my poetry bones! :-)





Here it is! My latest nonfiction book, REAL WORLD SCIENCE:  EARTH'S BIOMES, from Cherry Lake Publishing. I was thrilled when the box arrived and I was able to hold the actual copy in my hot little hands. There's something about opening those book boxes... :-) 



Your Word is "Peace"

You see life as precious, and you wish everyone was safe, happy, and taken care of.

Social justice, human rights, and peace for all nations are all important to you.

While you can't stop war, you try to be as calm and compassionate as possible in your everyday life.

You promote harmony and cooperation. You're always willing to meet someone a little more than halfway.

(no subject)

 Deb Wiles is such an amazing writer--such an amazing woman. Even if you don't read her blog, take the time to read this:  www.deborahwiles1.blogspot.com/.

Thanks for all your wonderfulness, Deb! :-)

On Being Thankful and Helping Others

I received an e-mail last week from someone who had discovered my pb, FARMER MCPEEPERS AND HIS MISSING MILK COWS online. The e-mail was from Susan Lawson,  the coordinator for  the Storybook Project. I'll admit, at first I was skeptical (I've received plenty of requests for book donations), but the more I read, the more intrigued I became. What a wonderful, worthwhile project. With Susan's permission, I've pasted her e-mail below. If any of you have pb's (pb's or early readers only, please) that you'd like to donate, Susan's contact info is included. Granted, I have never met Susan in person and I really know very little about her organization, but her e-mail touched me. A copy of FARMER now sits tucked in an envelope on the corner of my desk addressed to the Storybook Project. I'm sure Susan would be happy to answer any questions you may have. Please read on if you'd like to contribute--

I am writing on behalf of an organization that I work for Lutheran Social Services of Illinois.  I am the Storybook Coordinator for a program called the Storybook Project.  Each month, I and a group of volunteers enter Southwestern Illinois  Correctional Center in East St. Louis.  We bring in 240 new children’s books each month and allow each inmate to select a book for their child.  The inmate is then allowed to read it onto a cassette tape which I later mail with the book to their child.  Last month alone, our program enabled 82 men to send out over 100 story books to their children for the month of October.  Needless to say, I am always looking for organizations or individuals that are willing to donate books to our program.  Since I am unsure if you would be interested in helping, I decided to send this message of inquiry.  We use both religious & non-religious based children’s books for our program.  Below you will find our website, I thought you might be interested to know more about our organization.  Know that your time and attention are deeply appreciated.  May God Bless you with his abundant favor!  
Love In Christ,

Susan Lawson,
L.S.S.I. Storybook Coordinator

2309 Holiday Lane
Maryville, IL  62062
email: susan.lawson@charter.net

Do You Twitter?


This may be old news to some of you guys, but it's relatively new to me. It makes me think of FaceBook's status update--only with a character-count restriction. Is it beneficial to me as a writer, or just another time suck? The jury's still out on that one. But at this point, it's fun--so why not? If you'd like to follow me, I'm katysd.

Don'tcha just love...

 ...good book days? I picked up four requested books from my public library this week and I can't wait to dig in--having a new pile of books is better than presents under the tree. Here are the gifts waiting in my TBR pile--TROUBLE and THE WEDNESDAY WARS by Gary Schmidt, THE AURORA COUNTY ALL-STARS, Deb Wiles, and OCTAVIAN NOTHING by M.T. Anderson. Ahhh...now comes the dilemma--which one shall I read first???
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