How Having Been A Children’s Librarian Has Made Me A Better Picture Book Author-Illustrator

I love Halloween. For one thing, Halloween is how I officially settle into Autumn, and Autumn is my favorite time of year [Except during Spring, Spring is my other favorite time of year.} Two years ago, before I left New Jersey, I created my self-portrait scarecrow for my garden. I named her Scarecrow taking the Day Off.

I sewed her head from heavy duck cotton, and I painted her face. Her head is hay, and I bought all her marvelous boots and her hat from Goodwill.  I allowed her to sit on a shelf in my garden.

After my house burned in Mississippi, I moved to New Jersey, where I was the Children’s Librarian in a private library for 16 years. Before I was hired, I had no training as a librarian, but I had begun writing and illustrating children’s books, and by some serendipitous plan, the son of the director at the library saw me working in my home. The library called me and asked me if I wanted to be their children’s librarian. Soon, I was writing reviews for the New Jersey Library Association, and in addition,  launched a campaign to read every picture book that hit the shelves of my local Barnes and Noble.

While I am not your gal for cataloging books, I love telling stories, and I love reading picture books. I grew 1000% because of my job serving as a children’s librarian.

I am retired from that job now, and I live over a thousand miles away from New Jersey–in the Ozark Mountains.

After years of not having time to seriously write and illustrate my own picture books, I am have found the time to do that now.

“Many miles before I sleep.” – Robert Frost