MIMS HOUSE: Books by Darcy Pattison

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Picture Books
Perfect for K-3rd grades
Middle Grade Novels
Novels for 3rd - 8th grades
How to Write
Tips, Strategies and Inspiration for Writers!
Children's Nonfiction
Award winning science for kids!
Read and Write Series
All writing lessons should be this much fun.
The Aliens, Inc. Series
Kell and his best friend, Bree, must survive 3rd grade.
Children's Books
Best titles for kids

What if your science experiments were so interesting that even an Emperor wanted to know more?

In 1806, scientist Ernst Chladni (KLOD-nee) left Germany for a three-year road trip, entertaining Europeans with his science.

He made wires, columns of air, and solids vibrate. He wrote about this in his native German language, but his French scientist friends wanted to read about it in French. How could he get the cash he needed to write his new book?

In February, 1809, Chladni's friends took him to the Tuliere Palace. This elementary science picture book dramatizes the exciting meeting between a German scientist and French Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte.

Like Bill Nye, the Science Guy today, Chladni popularized science. But during his work as an entertainer, he struggled to find the time and finances do actual research. This story provides a glimpse at the life of Ernst Chladni, the Father of Acoustics. It's an amazing example of how scientists collaborate internationally. The story is based on Chladni's own description of the event.

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Clang!: Ernst Chladni's Sound Experiments
$9.89
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Jake Rose joins the courageous crew of the Eagle 10 as they streak across the galaxy to Rison, the other blue planet. Their goal is to find the umjaadi starfish, the host of an organism that is deadly to the Phoke, the water people of Earth. The mission is foolhardy because Rison will soon implode--the catastrophe is mere days away--from a science-gone-wrong scenario. Forced to enter the Risonian society at its darkest hour, the team struggles against local politics and race against time to find the starfish.

Utz Seehafer, the son and heir-apparent, of the southern Bo-See coalition is assigned to help the Earthlings' search. He battles his own demons of a lost brother, a grieving father, and the urgency of escaping a dying planet. Will he be able to save his beloved Derry, and their pet project, the great white shark named Godzilla?

Pilgrims is the exciting conclusion of an epic science fiction trilogy that pits Risonians and Earthlings against inevitable implosion of a planet. In a rush against time, they must deal with the politics of desperate men and the tricks of a dying planet. Will they find the cure and escape in time?

ALSO IN THE BLUE PLANETS WORLD SERIES

SLEEPERS, Book 1

A rogue militia. A diabolical sabotage. Is an alien teen is the only hope for either blue planet?

Sleepers is the first book of an exciting science fiction series that forces a dying world to beg for refuge on Earth. A test-tube baby, fifteen-year-old Jake Rose is half human and half alien. After living with his mother on Rison for most of his life, he finally comes to Earth to live with his human father's grandparents on Bainbridge Island in Puget Sound. His mother, Dayexi Quad-de is Rison's ambassador to Earth. She's tasked with finding Risonians a new home on Earth in a peaceful manner. Jake accidentally discovers that Earth's elite ELLIS forces are tying to sabotage Mt. Rainier and make it explode so that they can blame it on the Risonian aliens. Can Jake stop them in time or will they ruin the Risonians chances at a refuge on Earth?

Sirens, Book 2

He's an alien. She's not quite human.

Can they survive an epic battle under the sea?

Sirens is the continuing story in an exciting science fiction series. When aliens beg refuge on Earth, they ask only for a home in the seas. But what if Earth's oceans aren't empty? The Phoke, the mer men and women (mermen and mermaids) of Earth have remained hidden for centuries. But a Risonian water-borne illness forces them to come out of hiding and take a place at the negotiation table.

ENVOYS, Prequel
Envoys, Prequel is the short story of the first contact with the Risonians on their Cadee Moon Base. The ambitious naval officer Blake Rose joins the team as the comparative biology specialist. He's the first to shake hands with a Risonian, Dayexi Quad-de, who immediately captures his heart. Still, he has a job to do: protect Earth from aliens.
Interested in the origin of the Blue Planets World series? This is the short story for you.

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Pilgrims
$12.59
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Sirens, Book 2, The Blue Planets World series

He's an alien. She's not quite human.

Can they survive an epic battle under the sea?

Sirens is the continuing story in an exciting science fiction series. When aliens beg refuge on Earth, they ask only for a home in the seas. But what if Earth's oceans aren't empty? The Phoke, the mer men and mermaids of Earth have remained hidden for centuries. But a Risonian water-borne illness forces them to come out of hiding and take a place at the negotiation table.

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Sirens
$13.49
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Earth finally receives a message from space:

"You only live on land. Allow us to live in the seas."

Sleepers is the first book of an exciting science fiction trilogy that forces a dying world to beg for refuge on Earth. A test-tube baby, fifteen-year-old Jake Rose is half human and half alien. After living with his mother on Rison for most of his life, he finally comes to Earth to live with his human father's grandparents on Bainbridge Island in Puget Sound. His mother, Dayexi Quad-de is Rison's ambassador to Earth. She's tasked with finding Risonians a new home on Earth in a peaceful manner. Jake accidentally discovers that Earth's elite ELLIS forces are tying to sabotage Mt. Rainier and make it explode so that they can blame it on the Risonian aliens. Can Jake stop them in time or will they ruin the Risonians chances at a refuge on Earth?

Sirens is the continuing story in a science fiction trilogy. When aliens beg refuge on Earth, they ask only for a home in the seas. But what if Earth's oceans aren't empty? The Phoke, the mer men and women of Earth have remained hidden for centuries. But a Risonian water-borne illness forces them to come out of hiding and take a place at the negotiation table.

Pilgrims is the exciting conclusion of an epic science fiction trilogy that pits Risonians and Earthlings against inevitable implosion of a planet. A small team from Earth travels to Rison to find the cure for a water-borne disease that threatens the Phoke, the mermen and mermaids of Earth. But Rison's implosion is pending. In a rush against time, they must deal with the politics of desperate men and the tricks of a dying planet. Will they find the cure and escape in time?

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Sleepers
$13.49
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A NON-POLITICAL FAKE NEWS STORY FOR KIDS: EXAMPLE OF 1ST AMENDMENT FREE PRESS ISSUES

Do you believe everything you read in the newspaper?

Early in August 1937, a news flash came: a sea monster had been spotted lurking off the shore of Nantucket Island. Historically, the Massachusetts island had served as port for whaling ships. Eyewitnesses swore this wasn't a whale, but some new, fearsome creature. As eyewitness account piled up, newspaper stories of the sea monster spread quickly. Across the nation, people shivered in fear.

Then, footprints were found on a Nantucket beach. Photographs were sent to prominent biologists for their opinion. Discussion swirled about raising a hunting party.

On August 18, news spread across the island: the sea monster had been captured. Islanders ran to the beach and couldn't believe their eyes.

This nonfiction picture book is a perfect tool to discuss non-political fake news stories. Tony Sarg, famous as the inventor of the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade balloons, Macy's officials and newsmen cooperated in a huge publicity stunt. The fake news generated was valued at thousands of dollars of free publicity.

Back matter discusses the freedom of the press guaranteed by the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Quotes from Thomas Jefferson make it clear that fake news has always been one of the costs of a free press. A Timeline lists actual events in the order they occurred. A vocabulary list defines relevant words.

Read this incredible true story of how Tony Sarg and the press knowingly fooled everyone with fake news.

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The Nantucket Sea Monster: A Fake News Story
$10.79
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My STEAM Notebook is an elementary science interactive workbook that brings the past into the future in a powerful way. Primary source documents from 150 years of American scientists provide an amazing look into the practice of keeping a science notebook. Featuring notebooks from ten scientists, students learn how to write and draw in ways that help develop their understanding of science.

The workbook helps teachers implement the Next Generation Science Standards, the Common Core State Standards for ELA, and the STEAM initiative. Historical documents are interspersed with notebook pages for students to use in recording observations.

Historical documents will:

  • Emphasize the importance of writing in science and model effective writing and drawing to record observations
  • Introduce students to eleven American scientists who have made lasting contributions
  • Introduce students to a variety of scientific fields
  • Demonstrate the importance of notebooks across a wide variety of science specialties including ornithology (birds), behavioral evolutionary biology, malacology (mollusks), botany (plants), entomology (insects), zookeeper, epidemiology (infectious diseases), agrostology (grasses), ichthyology (fish), and taxidermy (preserving specimens).

Using the interactive notebook pages, students will learn to:

  • Record observations through writing and drawing
  • Develop explanations and arguments based on evidence
  • Write narrative and informative essays
  • Understand the interconnections between drawing and writing to provide information

The notebook pages are deceptively simple in their organization. Headers encourage careful recording of important information, and a Table of Contents keeps everything at the student's fingertips. Odd-numbered pages provide a grid for math or handwriting help. Even-numbered pages are for free-form writing, drawing, or gluing in teacher-provided worksheets. Each scientist inspires suggestions for how to work in the notebook.

Sample STEAM questions--Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math--are included for each scientist. This is a nuts and bolts interactive STEAM notebook that will help elementary science come alive for students.

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My Steam Notebook: 150 Years of Primary Source Documents from American Scientists
$13.49
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POPULAR EBOOK NOW AVAILABLE IN PRINT

CHILDREN'S PICTURE BOOK TO CHARM THE GENERATIONS

Kids and books--they just go together. Children's picture books are an addictive passion! You love reading to kids and wish that you could read one of your own. Now, you can make that dream a reality.

Writing illustrated picture books for children can seem deceptively simple. You must tell a complete story in less than 1000 words, and less than 350 words is best. Characters grow and change and keep the reader emotionally invested, while also giving the illustrator great possibilities for the art. It's a balancing act all the way around.

Writing teacher and author of over a dozen children's books Darcy Pattison explains the craft of writing children's picture books. You'll learn why format matters, how to appeal to kids and parents, how to write a read-aloud friendly book, and much more. Pattison provides tips on writing, editing, and marketing your manuscript to publishers.

If you like detailed writing guides, plenty of contemporary examples, and practical worksheets, then you'll love Darcy Pattison's guidance on creating your own masterpiece that will fascinate generations of young readers. Start writing your picture book today with this workbook.

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How to Write a Children's Picture Book
$14.39
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LIBERTY - A ROUSING TALE OF DANGER ON THE HIGH SEAS

When Santiago is thrust into the farm's pigsty, Penelope is captivated by Santiago Talbert's boast, "I plan to sail the Seven Seas." Together, these extraordinary pigs escape the farm and cross into the land of Liberty, a parallel world where an intelligent human or animal can get ahead. They follow their dream to Boston Harbor, where they try to convince sea captains that pigs can sail. First, though, Santiago learns mapmaking, while Penelope works on the docks loading ships. Eventually Penelope signs onto the Ice King's crew as he cuts and packs ice to ship to the far-flung corners of the world.

When the fleet of ice ships sails, Penelope and Santiago join the crew of the flagship, captained by Captain Kingsley, the Ice King himself. A massive polar bear, he harbors dark secrets, and the pigs face the shocking truth: they alone can save the friendly sea serpents from the Ice King's clutches.

From the fascinating world of tall ships comes this unlikely tale of humble pigs who follow their dream. Come and join the Talberts on their journey.

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Liberty
$13.49
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A boy unites an immigrant community and rebuilds his family-using a simple sourdough bread recipe.

Eliot Winston, a grieving son, must convince his new step-mother - now Griff Winston's widow - to adopt him. But when she married Griff Winston, Marj hadn't bargained on being the single mother of a twelve-year-old boy. Alli Flynn, a foster child new to the school, convinces Eliot that he must fight to keep his family intact and the best way to do that is to help Mrs. Winston with the Bread Project, a fund raising project for the school. With his whole future at stake, Eliot tries hard to please Marj; but as the deadlines near for the Bread Project and for Marj to sign his adoption papers, Eliot finds it harder and harder to hang on to hope.

In the tradition of Dicey's Song by Cynthia Voigt, this story follows two kids who search for a family and a home. This middle grade novel tugs at the heart strings. Pattison captures Eliot's poignant longing for a home, and combines it with a quirky project about bread.Come and cheer for Eliot and Alli as they fight for a community, a family, a home.

AUTHOR INTERVIEW

WHY DID YOU WRITE THIS BOOK?

Stories start in many places. This one started because I was always the bread-baker for family gatherings. For a while, I kept a sourdough starter and made sourdough English muffins, loaves and much more. I was amazed to read that some starters were over 100 years old and in continuous use. It was an amazing connection to other cultures, too, where different strains of sourdough organisms created distinctive tastes.

And then, a health issue forced me to adopt a gluten-free diet.

I knew I wanted to write something with bread as a major plot point, and the story of Eliot and Alli grew around that. Bread is a malleable metaphor so it seemed appropriate to use it as the means of building a unique community.

Eliot's panic attacks and Alli's foster parent problems came as the story progressed. Like a loaf of bread rising, you never quite know where a starter idea will take you

WHAT IS A BREAD PROJECT?

Eliot's Dad was an expert sourdough baker, and used a starter that had been in the family for decades. Sourdough starter has wild yeast and bacteria that leaves an acid gives off an acid that creates the sour taste. Griff Winston, the school nurse, was one of the most love people in the community. His sourdough bread loaves were legendary, and everyone supported his Bread Project as a fund-raiser. One student will get a container of sourdough, which they will feed with flour and water. The next week, the first student splits the dough and gives one cup of starter to the next student. The next week, two students give away starter--while still feeding their own, so there are four students with sourdough starter. Each week, the number of students with starter doubles: 1, 2, 4, 8, 16, 32, 64, 128, 256, 512. In ten short weeks, the whole student body will have sour dough starter, just in time for Thanksgiving.

Families are asked to bake something with the sourdough, and bring it to a silent auction. With a strong immigrant population, there will be sourdough pita, English muffins, pancakes, challah, French bread, cinnamon rolls, pretzels, Brioche, bagels, Bruschetta al pomodore, raisin bread, cinnamon rolls, Kaiser rolls, potato rolls. Loaves of rye breads, whole wheat breads, just plain white loaves. Focaccia. Dutch Crunch. Everything from A to Z: Anadama to Zucchini-Carob Bread.

To convince his step-mother to adopt him, Eliot only has a container of sourdough, a complicated Bread project, and hope. Will it be enough?

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Longing for Normal
$13.49
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WHAT MAKES A CANDLE BURN?

Discover the secrets of fire and candles. Solid wax is somehow changed into light and heat. But how? Travel back in time to December 28, 1848 in London, England to one of the most famous juvenile science Christmas lectures at the Royal Institution. British scientist Michael Faraday (1791-1867) encouraged kids to carefully observe a candle and to try to figure out how it burned. Known as one of the best science experimenters ever, Faraday's passion was always to answer the basic questions of science: "What is the cause? Why does it occur?"

Since Faraday's lecture, "The Chemical History of a Candle," was published in 1861, it's never been out of print. Oddly, till now, it's never been published as a children's picture book. Faraday originally gave seven lectures on how a candle burns. Pattison has adapted the first 6000-word lecture to about 650 words for modern elementary students. Read this eloquent update of Faraday's candle lecture, perfect for today's student.

Since Faraday's lecture, "The Chemical History of a Candle," was published in 1861, it's never been out of print. Oddly, till now, it's never been published as a children's picture book. Faraday originally gave seven lectures on how a candle burns. Pattison has adapted the first 6000-word lecture to about 650 words for modern elementary students. Read this eloquent update of Faraday's candle lecture, perfect for today's student.

"Good, simple explanation of a complex chemical process. Great enrichment possibilities for teachers. I loved the illustrations, the science, and the British tone. Overall, thumbs up " Deb Thrall, President, New Mexico Science Teacher's Association

"With this delightful book, Darcy Pattison brings one of Michael Faraday's famous scientific lectures for children to a whole new generation of young learners. Peter Willis' colorful artwork illustrates Faraday's own explanations in a scientific, yet kid-friendly style. This book is a wonderful way to introduce children to this extraordinary scientist and to teach them about changes in matter with a familiar, yet remarkable, object - a candle." - Karen Ansberry and Emily Morgan, Authors of Picture-Perfect Science Lessons

"Burn: Michael Faraday's Candle" is an exciting adaptation of Michael Faraday's (1791-1867) original special Christmas lecture, "The Chemical History of a Candle." Condensed from 6000 words to about 650 words for modern elementary education students, "Burn: Michael Faraday's Candle" is enhanced by dashing, colorful, quirky illustrations bring to life the original author's scientific lecture for juveniles, first delivered on December 28, 1848, at the Royal Institution in London, England. Mr. Faraday demonstrated several kinds of candles, including stearin, made of ox fat, a sperm candle made from the purified oil of the sperm whale, a bees-wax candle, and a paraffin candle, made from Irish peat bogs. Mr. Faraday taught everyone to observe experiments and ask, "What is the cause, why does it occur?" Mr. Faraday explains that capillary action explains who the flame in a candle gets hold of the fuel. Faraday continues to explain the oblong shape of the flame of the candle and the current of hot air draws out the flame, supplies it with air, and cools the sides of the cup of melted fuel. "Burn" is a brilliant reduction of a very famous British science lecturer that presents the information in a format appealing to children today.

--Midwest Book Review, July 2016

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Burn: Michael Farday's Candle
$10.79
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A Rowdy Heart Doesn't Always Know What it Wants or Needs

Captain Whitney Black McKee is a rowdy pirate After traveling the seven seas and fighting sea monsters, it's time to come back to home port for a rest. But the Captain's sleep has gone all awry. Sleepless. What's a rowdy captain to do? She sends her crew a'thievin' for a simple lullaby. But the rowdy heart doesn't always know what it wants or needs. She won't find rest, until her own dear Pappy arrives.

This charming children's picture book is perfect for fathers to read with their 4-8-year-old daughters. And follow it with a lullaby or two. Great Father's Day gift or for anytime you want to encourage a father-daughter relationship. Come and celebrate rowdy girls and their fathers. See videos of fathers reading to daughters on youtube.com/darcypattison

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Rowdy: The Pirate Who Could Not Sleep
$10.79
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2017 National Science Teacher's Association Outstanding Science Trade Book
2016-17 Alabama Camellia Children's Book Award reading list

Most spiders spin a web and passively wait for prey to come to them. Jumping spiders, by contrast, actively hunt by jumping to catch their food. What if a jumping spider was sent to the International Space Station? When it jumped, it would simply float. No one knew if the spider could hunt in a weightless environment.

This nonfiction picture book for elementary kids chronicles the amazing voyage of Nefertiti, the Spidernaut to the International Space Station and back. She's a Phiddipus johnsonii, or Johnson jumping spider, native to western United States. Her colorful anatomy--red, black and teal--made for stunning photography and video. In 2012, Nefertitti clocked a record-breaking 100 days in space, during which time she circled Earth about 1584 times, traveling about 41,580,000 miles.

Astronaut Sunita Williams, Captain U.S. Navy said, "It was a suspense story for me as it happened. I didn't know if she would survive when I unpacked her for the first time, or when I packed her up and sent her back home to Earth."

This is an astonishing story of change: through the dark and cold, in spite of being weightless and isolated, this incredible spider adapted and learned to hunt. Against all odds, she survived to return to Earth, where she had to re-adapt to Earth's gravity. Nefertiti's story of survival brings hope that we, too, can adapt to a changing world.

Join Nefertiti in this inspiring journey into space.

WHAT THEY ARE SAYING

"In this remarkable true story of a jumping spider sent on a mission to space, Darcy Pattison successfully weaves together life science, earth space science, engineering, and technology within a suspenseful narrative. Readers will be drawn to Nerfertiti's resilience as she tackles a challenge no spider has ever faced before...to learn how to hunt in microgravity. This heartwarming and educational book will make a terrific addition to any classroom STEM library." - Karen Ansberry and Emily Morgan, science educators and authors of Picture-Perfect Science Lessons.

"Nefertiti The Spidernaut is an accurate and step by step account of this spider's journey to and from the International Space Station. Having worked on invertebrates in space experiments with BioServe, Darcy Pattison truly caught the scope of the science while keeping you rooting for Nefertiti." Mary Ann Colley, VP of Science and Conservation, Butterfly Pavilion, Westminster, CO

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Nefertiti, the Spidernaut: The Jumping Spider Who Learned to Hunt in Space
$10.79
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A hectic chase inspires Dennis's amazing narrative essay.

A romp with his best friend, a Bernese Mountain Dog named Clark Kent, inspires Dennis to write a narrative essay. Recently, Mom asked Dennis to put a leash on Clark Kent so they could take the dog to the veterinarian for shots. Clark gave them all a merry chase There's lots of action to love here.

In this third installment of the The Read and Write Series, children's book author and writing teacher, Darcy Pattison, entertains kids while also teaching them how-to-write. This book packages a complete narrative essay lesson plan into an engaging story about a boy and his dog. Adding sensory details is demonstrated on each page and on the mentor text essay. Students are reminded to add transition words and use great verbs. Who would know that writing essays could be so simple and fun?

This story has multiple levels. Young kids will revel in the exciting story of chasing a dog around the house. Elementary students will rejoice that learning essay writing is so much fun. And teachers will find this the easiest writing lesson they've ever done--and the most effective. Buy this amazing story to fascinate a kid (and teach them something in the process).

THE READ AND WRITE SERIES

  • I Want a Dog: My Opinion Essay, Book 1
  • I Want a Cat: My Opinion Essay, Book 2
  • My Crazy Dog: My Narrative Essay, Book 3
  • My Dirty Dog: My Informative Essay, Book 4 (forthcoming)

WATCH DARCY PATTISON EXPLAIN HOW TO TEACH NARRATIVE ESSAYS

In a fifteen-minute video, Darcy Pattison explains how to teach narratives with this book: mimshouse.com/writing-narrative-essays/

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Narrative Essay and Dogs - Fun!
$10.79
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The Cat of Her Dreams

When cousins Mellie and Dennis decide to get a cat, they consider carefully what breed would be best for each family. For example, Mellie wants a cat that pounces, but Dennis wants a lazy cat, like his lazy dog, Clark Kent. Mellie wants a lap cat, but Dennis just wants a warm body BESIDE him. They consider different cat personalities, family situations, and personal preferences.

Mellie writes an opinion essay for her teacher, Mr. Eagle. But will her essay convince her parents to get the cat of her dreams?

This children's picture book takes a popular subject-kids getting a pet-and adds cats of all sizes and shapes: all writing lessons should be this much fun. In the end, it's the cousins and the cats that keep a reader turning the page. What kind of cat will Mellie choose? Will Dennis want the same kind of cat?

This story hits many notes:

  • A family story about cousins, Dennis and Mellie
  • Information on dog breeds
  • Responsible cat ownership
  • Mentor-text for teaching writing
  • Model opinion essay for elementary students
  • Models the writing process, especially the importance of pre-writing or planning before you write
  • Completes the writing process by showing the results of Dennis's essay

I WANT A CAT almost makes opinion essays look too easy. But it works on many other levels, as well. Younger kids will be excited to learn the differences between dogs and will laugh at the antics of the dogs. Elementary kids will rejoice in a story of cousins (and will write the best essays ever ). A universal dream - a great pet - becomes an engaging writing lesson.

See other books in THE READ AND WRITE series:

  • I Want a Cat: My Opinion Essay
  • My Crazy Dog: My Narrative Essay
  • My Dirty Dog: My Informative Essay (forthcoming)

WATCH DARCY PATTISON EXPLAIN HOW TO TEACH OPINION ESSAYS

In a short, informative video, Darcy Pattison explains how to teach opinion essays with this book: mimshouse.com/writing-opinion-essays/

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Cats and Writing! Meow!
$10.79
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A HIGH STAKES HIDE AND SEEK FOR ALIENS
Chapter Book Series for Boys and Girls: Book 4
Fun and Humor: Detectives are at Work

Kell makes a startling discovery: he has zigzag fingerprints. Worse, Mrs. Lynx and the Society of Alien Chasers know about the fingerprints, and they are on the hunt. Everyone turns detective in this continuing adventure of an alien family from planet Bix, who struggles to make ends meet by putting on birthday parties for kids. But the stakes are higher than ever because Kell's mom has just laid a beautiful green egg. With Mrs. Lynx on the prowl, can Kell and Bree keep the egg safe?

Do Historians Act as Detectives?

For History Day, Kell and friends must figure out which teacher created a special graffiti poster. And graffiti just got a lot more fun when a white concrete fence gets a new coat of paint.

A new spin on books for readers in grades two, three, four, and five

  • Easy Chapter Book series
  • Chapter Book Series for boys
  • Chapter Book Series for Girls
  • Chapter Book Series for ages 7-10

Humor for Kids - "A Funny Book"

The alien family, the Smiths, understand little of Earth's culture, which results in funny situations. Crazy songs and graffiti make this an exciting read.

Discover what other readers already know "Amusing, accessible, engaging" - Publisher's Weekly review of Aliens, Inc. Chapter Book series, Book 1: Kell the Alien
Read more of the ALIENS INC. CHAPTER BOOK SERIES

  • BOOK 1: Kell, the Alien
  • BOOK 2: Kell and the Horse Apple Parade
  • BOOK 3: Kell and the Giants
  • BOOK 4: Kell and the Detectives

Art Teachers: Every volume stars with a scene in the art classroom, creating something fun.
Family story: When the Smith family is shipwrecked on Earth, they must learn to depend on each other.

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Zigzag Fingerprints! The Alien Chasers are Getting Close!
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The Dog of His Dreams

When cousins Dennis and Mellie decide to get a dog, they consider carefully what breed would be best for each family. For example, Dennis wants a big dog, but Mellie wants tiny. He has no other pets, but she has other pets that a dog must get along with. They consider different dog personalities, family situations, and personal preferences. Dennis writes an opinion essay for his teacher, Mrs. Shirky. But will his essay convince his parents to get the dog of his dreams?

This story takes a popular subject-kids getting a pet-and adds dogs of all sizes and shapes: all writing lessons should be this much fun. In the end, it's cousins and the dogs that keep a reader turning the page. What kind of dog will Dennis choose? Will Mellie want the same kind of dog?

This story hits many notes:

  • A family story about cousins, Dennis and Mellie
  • Information on dog breeds
  • Responsible dog ownership
  • Mentor-text for teaching writing
  • Model opinion essay for elementary students
  • Models the writing process, especially the importance of pre-writing or planning before you write
  • Completes the writing process by showing the results of Dennis's essay

I WANT A DOG almost makes opinion essays look too easy. But it works on many other levels, as well. Younger kids will be excited to learn the differences between dogs and will laugh at the antics of the dogs. Elementary kids will rejoice in a story of cousins (and will write the best essays ever ). A universal dream - a great pet - becomes an engaging writing lesson.

See other books in THE READ AND WRITE series:

  • I Want a Cat: My Opinion Essay
  • My Crazy Dog: My Narrative Essay
  • My Dirty Dog: My Informative Essay (forthcoming)

WATCH DARCY PATTISON EXPLAIN HOW TO TEACH NARRATIVE WRITING

In this 20-minute video, watch author Darcy Pattison explain how to teach narrative writing with this book: mimshouse.com/writing-opinion-essays/

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Teach Kids to Reason and Form Opinions - While Having Fun!
$10.79
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Author and writing teacher Darcy Pattison provides help and inspiration to revise your novel in 30 Days. Each day's entry includes:
  • Inspirational quotes
  • examples that illustrates the topic
  • Walk the Talk: easy, yet practical tips to immediately improve your novel
  • TABLE OF CONTENTS
    1. Watership Down with Armadillos: Titles
    2. Search Me: Subtitles
    3. Defeat Interruptions: Chapter Divisions
    4. Scarlett or Pansy: The Right Character Name
    5. My Wound is Geography: Stronger Settings
    6. Horse Manure: Stronger Setting Details
    7. Weaklings: Every Character Must Matter
    8. Take Your Character's Pulse
    9. Yin-Yang: Connecting Emotional and Narrative Arcs
    10. Owls and Foreigners: Unique Character Dialogue
    11. Sneaky Shoes: Inner and Outer Character Qualities
    12. Friends or Enemies? Consistent Character Relationships
    13. Set Up the Ending: Begin at the Beginning
    14. Bang, Bang Ouch Scene Cuts
    15. Go Away Take a Break
    16. Power Abs for Novels
    17. White Rocks Lead Me Home: Epiphanies
    18. The Final Showdown
    19. One Year Later: Tie up Loose Ends
    20. Great Deeds: Find Your Theme
    21. The Wide, Bright Lands: Theme Affects Setting
    22. Raccoons, Owls, and Billy Goats: Theme Affects Characters
    23. Side Trips: Choosing Subplots
    24. Of Parties, Solos, and Friendships: Knitting Subplots Together
    25. Feedback: Types of Critiquers
    26. Feedback: What You Need from Readers
    27. Stay the Course
    28. Please Yourself First
    29. The Best Job I Know to Do
    30. Live. Read. Write.
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30 Days to a Stronger Novel
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You want to write a novel, but you don't know where to start. You have a great idea and-well, that's all. This book explains the writing process of starting a novel in six winning steps. Starting the Journey Why Editors Focus on Page 1 STEP ONE: Clarify Your Idea STEP TWO: Review Your Skills STEP Three: Plan the Opening Chapter STEP FOUR: Plan the Opening Line STEP FIVE: Now, Write STEP SIX: Revise Writing teacher and author, Darcy Pattison, is the author of " NOVEL METAMORPHOSIS: Uncommon Ways to Revise and How to Write a Children's Picture Book." She brings extensive experience in teaching writing to this exciting new book and helps you get started with the creative writing process. NaNoWriMo? You need this book in October to help you plan what to write in November 29 Plot Templates 2 Essential Writing Skills 100 Examples of Opening Lines 7 Weak Openings to Avoid 4 Strong Openings to Use 3 Assignments to Get Unstuck 7 Problems to Resolve The Math adds up to one thing: a publishable manuscript. Other books by Darcy Pattison: Novel Metamorphosis: Uncommon Ways to Revise The Book Trailer Manual How to Write a Children's Picture Book
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Confidence to Begin Your Novel!
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11 WAYS TO RUIN A PHOTOGRAPH: A Military Family Story
When her father goes soldiering for a year, a girl decides that without Dad at home, it's not a family photo album. Though her beloved Nanny is in charge of the album that year, the girl makes sure that photographs of her never turn out well. Photos are blurred, wind blows hair in her face. April rains bring umbrellas to hide behind. Halloween means a mask. This poignant, yet funny family story, expresses a child's anger and grief for a Dad whose work takes him away for long periods of time. It's a tribute to the sacrifices made by military families and to those who care for children when a family needs support.

Read with your child or classroom for military and patriotic holidays

  • Veteran's Day
  • Armed Forced Day
  • Patriot's Day
  • 4th of July

Understand Military Families Who Serve the United States

  • Gratitude for their sacrifices
  • Understand the family challenges
  • Support for deployment

Children's book author and writing teacher Darcy Pattison gives tribute to the sacrifices made by military families and to those who care for children when a family needs help. She says, "My father was a Japanese POW during World War II. Also, I have lived near the Little Rock Air Force Base for years, and watched families as fathers and mothers deploy. I have a glimpse of the struggles facing military families, and feel a deep gratitude for the sacrifices these families make."

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11 Ways to Ruin a Photograph: A Military Family Story
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If you're an alien on Earth, you have one giant secret to keep.

After a while, even friends want to tell your secret. Kell and Bree plan a birthday party with giants--Big Foot, Cyclops, Goliath and the Jolly Green Giant--while they struggle with keeping their own giant secret. But they have an even bigger problem: Principal Lynx and the Society of Alien Chasers is back with a dog trained to sniff out an alien in a crowd. When Mom is stung by a bee, Kell must find a doctor who can keep a giant secret, too. Will Aliens, Inc. be able to pull off the Giant Party and keep everyone happy?

Principal Lynx and the Society of Alien Chasers is back with a dog who can sniff and point out aliens. How can Kell, Bree and the gang avoid the dog and still pull off a GIANT birthday party?

Kell is afraid of Earth bugs: flies, wasps and now, bees. How can he survive on Earth with such creatures chasing him all the time?

Geography Day and Maps

Kell and friends learn about geography of the U.S. But Kell wants to tell his friends about the "geography" of the stars.

A new spin on books for readers in grades two, three, four, and five

  • Easy Chapter Book series
  • Chapter Book Series for boys
  • Chapter Book Series for Girls
  • Chapter Book Series for ages 7-10

Humor for Kids - "A Funny Book"

The alien family, the Smiths, understand little of Earth's culture, which results in funny situations. Crazy songs and dangerous dogs make this an exciting read.

Discover what other readers already know

"Amusing, accessible, engaging" - Publisher's Weekly review of The Aliens, Inc. Chapter Book series, Book 1: Kell the Alien

Read more of the ALIENS INC. CHAPTER BOOK SERIES

  • BOOK 1: Kell, the Alien
  • BOOK 2: Kell and the Horse Apple Parade
  • BOOK 3: Kell and the Giants
  • BOOK 4: Kell and the Detectives

Art Teachers: Every volume stars with a scene in the art classroom, creating something fun.

Family story: When the Smith family is shipwrecked on Earth, they must learn to depend on each other.

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Fun and Humor: Giants Stomp Through this Story!
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ALIENS FOR KIDS Chapter Book Series for Boys and Girls
Fun and Humor: Super Heroes, Super Heroines, and a Parade

"This fun chapter book series is out of this world." School Library Journal 2/1/15

For Kell, the Friends of Police Parade is a big deal, his first Earthling parade. With Bree's help, he must figure out how to deal with City Hall, figure out fund-raising and find super heroes and super heroines to march in the parade.
To make things worse, Principal Lynx believes someone in third grade in an alien, and she has a new Alien Catcher App on her smart phone. Survival on planet Earth just got harder for the Smiths, those friendly aliens from Bix.
Will the Society of Alien Chasers catch Kell and his family? Or will they outsmart Mrs. Lynx again.
Nutrition Day Means Learning to eat Healthy Kell and friends learn about good nutrition, while sampling foods from different cultures. Only Kell thinks all the food is alien.
A new spin on books for readers in grades two, three, four, and five

  • Easy Chapter Book series
  • Chapter Book Series for boys
  • Chapter Book Series for Girls
  • Chapter Book Series for ages 7-10

Humor for Kids - "A Funny Book"
The alien family, the Smiths, understand little of Earth's culture, which results in funny situations. Hopscotch, horse apples and fund raising are all strange things for the Smith family.
Are Super Heroes and Super Heroines Really Aliens? Well, Superman came from the planet Krypton. Find out what other super heroes and super heroines show up at the Friends of the Police Parade.
When a friend gets sick, Kell must visit the hospital But he has to make sure that no one tries to listen to his heart--because he doesn't have one.
Discover what other readers already know "Amusing, accessible, engaging" - Publisher's Weekly review of Aliens, Inc. Chapter Book series, Book 1: Kell the Alien
Scroll up and get your copy of Kell and the Horse Apple Parade at the everyday low price
Read more of the ALIENS INC. CHAPTER BOOK SERIES

  • BOOK 1: Kell, the Alien
  • BOOK 2: Kell and the Horse Apple Parade
  • BOOK 3: Kell and the Giants
  • BOOK 4: Kell and the Detectives

Art Teachers: Every volume stars with a scene in the art classroom, creating something fun.
Family story: When the Smith family is shipwrecked on Earth, they must learn to depend on each other.

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Bree, Kell and the Gang are back for more!
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"This fun chapter book series is out of this world." School Library Journal 2/1/15

Fun and Humor: Can an alien family find a way to make a living on Earth?
Shipwrecked on earth and desperate to make money, an alien family decides to make a living by opening Aliens, Inc., an intergalactic event-planning business master-minded by 9-year old alien boy, Kell Smith.

Kell discovers that his neighbor, Bree Hendricks, turns 9-years-old next month and she wants a party with an alien theme. That should be simple as flying from star to star. But things aren't that easy: Earthling's ideas about aliens are totally wrong. Even worse, Principal Lynx is a UFO-Chaser and suspects aliens around every corner.
Will the Aliens totally blow the Aliens Party? Will Principal Lynx capture Kell and his family and them over to the government?

Will an alien boy find school friends?
Kell must find a way to fit into the school life and make friends. In art class, music class and home room, he must learn the ways of Earthlings. His next door neighbor, Bree, makes it easier and helps the family find a way to make a living.

A new spin on books for readers in grades two, three, four, and five

  • Easy Chapter Book series
  • Chapter Book Series for boys
  • Chapter Book Series for Girls
  • Chapter Book Series for ages 7-10

Humor for Kids - "A Funny Book"
The alien family, the Smiths, understand little of Earth's culture, which results in funny situations. For one thing, Bixsters are hatched, not born. When Kell finds out that humans cook with eggs, he is horrified. And there are those bugs that bite or sting. Kell can't get away from them.

Discover what other readers already know:
"Amusing, accessible, engaging" - Publisher's Weekly
"The black-and-white line art further enlivens an engaging, accessible story. Kell's struggles to fit in will resonate with readers." School Library Journal 2/1/15

Read more of the ALIENS INC. CHAPTER BOOK SERIES

"This fun chapter book series is out of this world." School Library Journal 2/1/15

  • BOOK 1: Kell, the Alien
  • BOOK 2: Kell and the Horse Apple Parade
  • BOOK 3: Kell and the Giants
  • BOOK 4: Kell and the Detectives

Art Teachers: Every volume stars with a scene in the art classroom, creating something fun.
Family story: When the Smith family is shipwrecked on Earth, they must learn to depend on each other.

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"Fun," says School Library Journal. "Out of this world!"
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***NSTA Outstanding Science Trade Book 2015***
A POIGNANT STORY OF LOSS AND SURVIVAL

In the midst of a sugar cane field, within sight of skyscrapers, a mother puma was raising her cubs. Feeding growing cubs is difficult in an urban environment. One night, she found easy prey, chickens. The angry chicken farmer set an illegal trap and caught the mother puma. She didn't survive. Now, the search was on for orphaned cubs. Would the scientists be able to find the cubs before their time runs out?

This touching story brings to life the increasing difficulty of wildlife to survive as cities encroach on their habitats. Cutting edge environmental scientists are working to create wildlife corridors, or safe travel zones from one wild spot to another. Until they succeed, Abayomi's tragic story will play out over and over.

In this -Biography in Text and Art, - Harvill takes original photos as references to create accurate wildlife illustrations. These aren't generic cats, but one particular individual in detail. Pattison's careful research, vetted by scientists in the field, brings to life this this true story of an infant cub that must face a complicated world. Alone.

Named a 2015 National Science Teacher's Association Outstanding Science Trade Book, it includes information on the puma species and the conservation efforts in Brazil.

Read this heartwarming story of an orphaned puma cub and be inspired.

OTHER BOOKS BY PATTISON/HARVILL
Wisdom, the Midway Albatross: Surviving the Japanese Tsunami and Other Disasters for Over 60 Years
Starred Publisher's Weekly Review

  • -. . .Pattison writes crisply and evocatively. . .-
  • -Harvill contributes carefully detailed and naturalistic illustrations. . .-

FROM THE AUTHOR

One of the most amazing things about Abayomi's story is that he was born within sight of skyscrapers, in a very urban world. Yet the farmer who owned the land where he was born said he had never, in his 40 years of farming, seen a puma. It struck me that they are invisible in the land. And the tables are turned: in order for Abayomi to successfully return to the wild, the scientists must remain invisible. I also love that Kitty Harvill, the illustrator of my last nature book for kids, WISDOM, THE MIDWAY ALBATROSS, returned to work on this book. Her illustrations are awesome.

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Abayomi, the Brazilian Puma: The True Story of an Orphaned Cub
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COMPELLING AND ULTIMATELY HOPEFUL STORY
In this modern-day Hansel and Gretel story, Saucy and Bubba struggle to get along with Krissy, their alcoholic stepmother. One freezing cold night, Krissy locks Saucy out of the house and Saucy must sleep in the barn. In a desperate move, Saucy and Bubba run away to their aunt's house-except Aunt Vivian isn't home. Trying to take care of Bubba for several days forces Saucy to take charge of her own life and accept a terrible sacrifice in order to find safety for herself.

This middle grade novel is a heartbreakingly simple story that weaves through the tangled threads of a family and builds to an ending full of hope. Author Darcy Pattison recently wrote about the need for books about troubled families on the Children's Book Council Diversity blog.

Stories like this one carry a certain darkness, even if the events carry the weight of truth. It's in the tradition of Dicey's Song by Cynthia Voigt, and The Great Gilly Hopkins by Katherine Paterson. Both of these award-winning books tell of painful truths, but they manage to do so with respect for the child reader. I especially like Paterson's statement that she always ends her stories with a note of hope. Fortunately, Saucy's story also ends with hope that the family will work things out and come back together

Join Saucy and Bubba in their poignant search for family.

WHY DID YOU WRITE THIS BOOK?

I've always been fascinated by the Hansel and Gretel story, and I thought I could add to the conversation about step-families, especially when the step-parent has addiction problems. Children struggle to find their place in a new configuration of family and that can be infinitely complicated by alcohol or drugs.

I also like that it has the fantasy/folk element to the story. Bringing the story into the modern century was fun. Rethinking the responses of today's families ultimately led me to a story of hope.

HOW DOES THIS STORY UPDATE HANSEL AND GRETEL?

Like the folk tale, this is a story of a brother and sister who stick together in the midst of family problems. Krissy, the step-mother, bakes gingerbread houses as display pieces for a local bakery. It was fun adding other elements of the story such as a path of white stones that will bring the family back together.

The basic elements of the folk tale are intact, but are embodied in fully-fleshed out characters leaving this as a poignant story that will linger in your heart long after you close the book.

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Happy Birthday, Jacob Grimm!
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MIRACLES COME AT A HIGH PRICE

"Every block of stone has a statue inside it and it is the task of the sculptor to discover it." -Michelangelo

But what if an unscrupulous sculptor could trap someone inside a block of stone, just so he could carve them? And can miracles come from tragedy?

Threatened with the loss of the only home she's known, Laurel listens to a proposal from Master Gimpel, a deformed stone carver. He intrigues Laurel when he offers a path to untold riches. Master Gimpel explains that his Troll's Eye, a red jewel, is a doorway into the stone world where a treasure cave awaits. From the moment Laurel looks through the Troll's Eye, she and her gypsy companion enter a dangerous race for their lives.

This is a rich, surprising, and sometimes disturbing tale of gargoyles, and those who carve the creatures from solid stone. There's darkness in this cautionary tale, that nevertheless pulls off not one, but two miracles, and brings Laurel home to stay.

Follow Laurel's harrowing journey toward miracles.

WHERE DID YOUR IDEA FOR THIS STORY COME FROM?

Sometimes you run across a line about a mythological creature or object and the description grabs at you. In mythology about trolls, I learned that they are creatures of the night. If they are caught out after dawn, a single ray of light can change them into stone. That made me think of gargoyles and I went searching for more about the carved stone ornaments on cathedrals. Did you know that they were originally used as a way to decorate the end of a rain spout or gutter?

But the art form developed far past that. It was interesting to read about contemporary stone carvers in Marjorie Hunt's book, The Stone Carvers: Master Craftsmen of Washington National Cathedral.

About the same time, a character came to me. "She was small, like a hummingbird." I liked the contrast between a small girl and a massive stone cathedral.

Last, but certainly not least, there was another part of the troll's myth that fascinated me. When sunlight turns them to stone, it was said that their eyes became rubies. One obscure reference said that you'd be a fool to look through the troll's eye because what's good would become bad, and what's bad would become good.

Those three threads--gargoyle carvers, a tiny girl, and a cursed ruby--came together in this story.

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The Girl, the Gypsy and the Gargoyle
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STRANGERS IN THE LAND

Galen, the nine-banded armadillo, must accept the Tex, the ambitious outsider, as leader of the search for the fabled Faralone Falls, a place they can finally call home. But on the frontier, survival is the only thing that matters. Follow the armadillos on this epic quest for a home.

An Epic Quest Across a Dangerous Frontier

In the tradition of Warriors, Seekers, or The Guardins of Ga-Hoole comes the American fantasy, VAGABONDS, the sweeping saga of El Garro's armadillo colony, the scouts and pioneers who have always been at the forefront of the migration. Rumors from their original homeland, the jungles far to the south, suggest that El Garro's colony may be nearing the fabled Faralone Falls, where they will find the answer to why they have traveled northward for decades.

On the frontier, the armadillos face the unknown. Each step, each decision is uncertain, full of dangers. Galen must find the courage to take the necessary steps, even though he fears the outcome.

A Quest for a Home: An Immigrant's Tale

VAGABONDS is an American fantasy set in the Ozark mountains. Like El Garro's clan, we are a nation of immigrants, people who have known the sacrifice of leaving everything behind in hopes of finding a future and a hope for their families.
  • Your heart will ache for Galen as he must leave behind his Four sisters.
  • You'll weep with him when he finds his brother, Rafael, who has been blinded--and yet, he sees.
  • You'll marvel at the courage and compassion of these endearing vagabonds as they push the very boundaries of their world in search for a home.
Travel for a season with Galen, Corrie, Victor, Blaze and Rafael. Experience the Ozark Mountains in all their glory - an American fantasy.This isn't a fast read; instead, it's a compelling read.

Read Vagabonds and follow Galen as he grows into a leader among his people, one worthy of being remembered in ballads.
WHY DID YOU WRITE THIS BOOK?
Once upon a time there was a boy and girl who met in college at the U of A and they found they both enjoyed hiking in the Ozarks. It began a life long love of hiking.People say to write what you know: I was learning about camping and the Ozarks. One day, we went camping at the Steele Creek campground on the Buffalo River, and just at sunset, we saw armadillos digging in the bushes.

I studied armadillos and found that they are an invasive species, coming up from Mexico into the U.S., and had already moved into the Ozarks of southern Missouri. Popular articles in newspapers at the time talked about how surprising it was that armadillos were able to withstand the cold as they moved north, but speculated that they were able to survive by digging deeper holes.

  • Did you know that armadillos are the only creatures besides humans that have been known to contract leprosy?
  • Did you know that armadillos are always born as quadruplets? All boys or all girls.
  • Did you know that when startled armadillos jump straight up? It accounts for most of the road kill you see.
Until finally, I knew enough to put them into a fictionalized story. Now, I wasn't writing what I knew, but what I imagined to be true.

It seemed natural to make it an immigrant's story. These were creatures moving from South America, through Mexico, and into North America. Immigrants. I've always been fascinated with the difficulties faced by immigrants: leaving their home, crossing new lands, learning new languages.

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Vagabonds
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**Starred Review in Publisher's Weekly**
The Oldest Bird in the World Survives the Japanese Tsunami

The oldest bird in the world, documented with banding, is Wisdom, the Midway Albatross. She was on Midway when the Japanese Tsunami hit and this is her amazing story of survival of manmade and natural disasters for over 60 years. She has survived the dangers of living wild, plastic pollution, longline fishing, lead poisoning, and the Japanese earthquake. At 65, she's still laying eggs and hatching chicks. See her Facebook page at facebook.com/wisdomthealbatross

Wildlife artist Kitty Harvill used photos as a reference for her luminous watercolors. Her ability to depict a specific individual, not just a generic image of a species, makes this a unique portrait and a biography in text and art. Pattison's story, vetted by scientists in the field, explains the difficulties of surviving in the wild for a Laysan albatross. It's incredible that the bird banding program happened to band this unique bird early in her life and can still follow her story today.

Read this children's nonfiction picture book, a story of survival and hope amidst the difficulties of life.

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Wisdom, the Midway Albatross: Surviving the Japanese Tsunami and Other Disasters for Over 60 Years
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Congratulations You've finished a novel.

What an accomplishment Now what?
Now, you need a innovative, in-depth guide to revision.

Why Revise?

Before revision: Nice Story
After revision: Richer, deeper-the novel of your dreams.

Novice or Seasoned: For aspiring novelists, mid-list novelists who want to break out, novelists who want to self-publish-successfully, writers who have completed NaNoWriMo but don't know what to do next, and writing critique groups looking for a way to help each other to the next level.

Revising has never been easier

  • Systematically inventory and diagnose your manuscript
  • Visually manipulate your manuscript to identify problems
  • Transform dull characters into fascinating, memorable people
  • Strengthen the narrative and emotional arcs
  • Sharpen dialogue
  • Morph dull settings into backdrops that set the mood
  • Enliven narrated events by selecting the right details
  • Use language with confidence
  • Add depth with narrative patterning In-depth professional development
  • Plan your novel's metamorphosis

The Results
A stronger, richer, deeper story, a story that makes readers weep and cry and turn the next page.Novel Metamorphosis, unlike most books on revision, turns theory into radical new tools which are practical, tangible, concrete.

  • Cut straight to the heart of your manuscript's problem
  • Develop your writing and editing skills
  • Understand the critical underlying structure of your story
  • Learn theory as you work
  • Spark in-depth discussions in your critique group

In 1999, Darcy created the highly acclaimed Novel Revision Retreat and has since taught it across the United States; alumni of that retreat include Kirby Larson with Hattie Big Sky and Caroline Starr Rose with May B. With this workbook from the retreat, you can accomplish the same things in yourown home.

Get started now turning your first draft into a masterpiece

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Novel Metamorphosis: Uncommon Ways to Revise
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