Perfect Picture Book Friday – Balloons Over Broadway AND The Linda Ashman Rhyme Clinic Announcement

Wow!  Aren’t we all so glad it’s Friday?  Not only is the weekend so close you can taste it, we get a whole stack of Perfect Picture Books to start it off right!

I have a great book to share today, which I think is just perfect given that the Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City is only 3 weeks away.  And yes, those of you who have been here from Perfect Picture Books’ inception will know that I am totally cheating and recycling a perfect picture book that I already did on December 2, 2011 .  Here’s my excuse:

1. I did this for the 2nd week of PPBF back when only 9 of you were involved… so I’m hoping guessing a lot of you haven’t seen it 🙂

2. I just plain ran out of time this week.  Got my finger in too many pies or something, apparently 🙂  And I am doing a Young Writer’s Workshop on Sunday which I’m not done preparing for, so I needed every second I could snatch.

So, my apologies if you’ve seen this before, but if you haven’t I think you’ll love it and my advice is get thee to a library lickety-split so you can see the whole thing for yourself because it’s really great!

Title: Balloons Over Broadway
Written and Illustrated By: Melissa Sweet
Houghton Mifflin Books For Children, November, 2011, Non-Fiction Biography/History

Suitable For: ages 4-8

Themes/Topics:  art, puppeteering, pursuing a dream, non-fiction, biography

Opening and brief synopsis:  “From the time he was a little boy, Tony Sarg loved to figure out how to make things move.  He once said he became a marionette man when he was only six years old.”  Melissa Sweet tells the true story of Tony Sarg, inventor of the huge balloons that are the trademark and centerpiece of the Macy’s Day Thanksgiving Parade in New York City.

Links to resources:  this story is perfect for a curriculum section that covers art, history, biography, or Thanksgiving, or just as a good story for children interested in where things come from and how they work.  Balloons Over Broadway Activity Kit.  (Please be patient – the activity kit loads slowly because of all the art but it’s well worth the wait!)  There is also a spread of interesting and helpful back matter at the end of the book to expand your lesson.

Why I like this book: this book is interesting, entertaining and educational.  Tony Sarg is an inspiration because he had little or no formal art education and yet he went on to pursue his dreams and become world-renowned for his work.  One of his apprentices, Bil Baird, created the “Lonely Goatherd” marionettes for The Sound Of Music, and one of Bil Baird’s apprentices was Jim Henson who invented The Muppets!

For the complete list of books with resources, please visit Perfect Picture Books.

Now, just one more quick thing before you head off to read everyone’s perfect picks for this week.

The Linda Ashman Rhyme Clinic!

As I mentioned somewhere at some point 🙂 the one and only Linda Ashman will be HERE!!! on Monday December 2 conducting a Rhyme Clinic!!!

The purpose of the Rhyme Clinic is to help writers with those pesky rhyming difficulties that snarl up our perfectly good works-in-progress!  Writers who have picture book manuscripts written in rhyme who feel that the rhyme is perhaps not working as well as they’d like are encouraged to submit samples and questions.

Any writer who would like Linda’s help may email the first 20 lines of their rhyming picture book manuscript along with any specific questions to susanna[at]susannahill[dot]com with “Rhyme Clinic Submission” in the subject line between now and Monday November 18.

I will forward the submissions on to Linda.

Linda’s reasoning for requesting the first 20 lines is that:  “Submitting the first stanzas of their story, up to 20 (or so) lines, I think works better than sending only problem stanzas because it gives me a decent sense of their story and allows me to comment on how well the stanzas work as a beginning in addition to how well they work as rhyme.”

Submissions will NOT be chosen on a first-come first-served basis.  Instead, Linda will look over the submissions and choose as wide a variety as possible in order to address as many types of problems as she can, and therefore hopefully help the greatest number of readers.

Linda will go over the chosen manuscripts in detail, examining what works well and what needs work and explaining how to correct problems in rhyme.

In the interest of keeping the Rhyme Clinic post to a manageable length, we will probably choose about 5 submissions.  If we get a lot of submissions, we will run another day or two of the clinic as  our schedules permit.

This promises to be a VERY interesting and informative learning experience.  It’s a chance to get expert guidance from one of the best in the business at no cost!

So dig out those troublesome rhyming manuscripts and send them forth on the double!

Enjoy this week’s crop of Perfect Picture Books, everyone!  PPBF bloggers, please be sure to leave your post-specific link in the list below so we can all come visit you!

Have a great weekend!!!

Oh, and P.S.  Great post with everyone’s favorite writerfella Mike Allegra on Monday, same Bat Time, same Bat Channel!  See you then! 🙂