Haiku for Children

I just found out that my children’s picture book, Happy Haiku, will be released in September. Of course I quickly posted a cover reveal (illustrated by Jack Foster) on my facebook and Instagram accounts. Beloved poet and editor in the haiku community, Michael Rehling, was kind enough to write a foreword for Happy Haiku, and I am forever grateful. Here it is…

This volume is a small miracle. Liz Crocket is an established haiku poet but the fact that she is sharing her work in this wonderful book is a welcome effort to bring the simple beauty of haiku to an audience often overlooked by serious haiku poets. Children already are the receptacle of a natural love of nature and spinning imagination that adults often struggle to reacquaint themselves with as they grow older. The quality of the poems, when combined with beautiful illustrations by Jack Foster, is so seductive that I cannot believe that any reader, of any age, would not be smiling as they read this collection. I only wish that I had “Happy Haiku” to read to my granddaughters when they were young, but I plan to provide them both a copy and maybe sit down with them now and read it with them. It just might be that my great-grandchildren (someday) will have this book shared with them also.
Liz has been creating haiku that stir the minds of her readers for many years, but this may be her best work yet! I cannot think of a better way to introduce a love for this form to any child. Her sensitive and curiosity provoking work is simply a tour de force that will stimulate readers to enjoy the haiku form now and in the future. A better world is at your fingertips right now, and the fact that many of us who love haiku have something to share with a younger audience is wonderfully precious. I cannot give this book a stronger recommendation than to say that it will change the way young people imagine haiku poetry as a part of their own life. It is that powerful!
Michael Rehling

Haiku North America – Winston Salem

I just got back from a road trip through the winding roads of West Virginia and Virginia, to get to Winston Salem, North Carolina, where I saw old friends and made new friends at the Haiku North America 2019 Conference. The highlight for me was attending a reading and discussion led by Alan Pizzarelli, Alexis Rotella, and Michael Rehling. And one of my poems was even read…(thank you, Michael Rehling!)

I always come away from a conference inspired. My excitement to share my upcoming picture book, Happy Haiku, a picture book for children, is off the charts now. Can’t wait until I have a release date from my publisher to share with you.

(This post’s quote is a nod to my women’s fiction book, Full of Grace.)

I do not at all understand the mystery of grace – only that it meets us where we are but does not leave us where it found us.  Anne Lamott

 

The H. Gene Murtha Senryu Contest

 

I am so honoured to have my poem chosen for second place in the 2019 H. Gene Murtha Senryu Contest. Thank you to the editors of the wonderful journals, Prune Juice and Failed Haiku, a Journal of English Senryu, for selecting it, and publishing it.
My picture book, Happy Haiku, is due to be released soon. Perhaps by the fall? I have just seen the illustrations done by Jack Foster, and he completely captured the essence of my poems. I can’t wait to be able to share a cover reveal. My first audience, before it goes out into the world, will be my two and a half year old granddaughter. Can’t wait to read it to her!

I’ll end with a quote as I always do, today with a nod to my women’s fiction book, Full of Grace.

Quote: Grace has been defined as the outward expression of the inward harmony of the soul. William Hazlitt

Chat and Mother’s Day Wishes

Since my last blog post, I was thrilled to learn that Jack Foster will be the illustrator for my upcoming picture book for children, Happy Haiku. Jack has illustrated over seventy children’s books, and when you see them, you’ll see why he’s in demand. I’ll keep you posted when I get a release date!

Recently, I was honoured to do a fun interview with a blog in the UK, Novelkicks. I’ll share it on facebook, as soon as it’s out. Check it out in the meantime, for book reviews, author interviews, and all things novel.

For anyone local, there’s a launch at the charming bookshop, A Different Drummer, on Sunday, May 19th, for the latest books by the prolific and terrific authors, Melodie Campbell and Sylvia McNicoll. Sure to be a good time!

To everyone who is a mother, or has a mother, have a special and happy mother’s day.
My own mom has been gone a long time, but what I still wouldn’t give to have one more lunch with her. The cycle of life has given me the gift of my own children though, and I’ll be spending time with them and my grandchildren this weekend, feeling beyond blessed. This month’s quote from Erma Bombeck is a nod to my mom, who loved a good laugh, and who loved Erma Bombeck’s humour.

Quote: “Thanks to my mother, not a single cardboard box has found its way back into society. We receive gifts in boxes from stores that went out of business years ago.”

Haiku for Children

I was so pleased to hear recently that my picture book, “Happy Haiku for Children” is going to be published. I don’t know if the release date will be later this year or next, but I’m thrilled my youngest grandchild will still be young enough to enjoy it, and I can’t wait to read it to her.

I’m collaborating on a photo-haiga this month with Mark Williams, an amazing local photographer (the green belt guy). I’m writing a senyru (a three line poem similar to haiku) to pair with a gorgeous photograph of Mark’s. We’ll submit it to a journal next month, and fingers crossed it will find a home with them.

I’ve had the most heartfelt e-mails from people after they finished reading my women’s fiction novel, Full of Grace. It’s humbling to know that it’s resonating with people. Thank you to all that have shared your thoughts with me. I appreciate it more than you know.

The quote this month is for all those people who tell me they’ve often thought of writing a book…(you know who you are!)

Quote: “There comes a point in your life when you need to stop reading other people’s books and write your own.” Albert Einstein

Two Worlds

It’s been a busy month for me in both my women’s fiction world, and my Japanese short form poetry world.

Promoting my novel, Full of Grace, has kept me busy. Recently I put together my first book trailer, to post on facebook and on various writing sites. I see where I can improve next time, but for me there’s always a learning curve when it come to technology. But, I loved the process, and look forward to trying again sometime.

A huge thank you to Steph Warren of Bookshine and Readbows and blogger Jane Hunt for their wonderful reviews of Full of Grace recently.

In the Japanese poetry world, I was honoured to have haiku accepted in the Living Haiku Anthology, and other poems accepted into the Living Senryu Anthology. I was grateful to have poems published in various other publications, as well.

Over the next month we will hopefully see the end of the snow and ice here, and colour brighten our world again. Happy Spring, everyone!
This quote might make you smile, especially if you write in any form.

“If you have any young friends who aspire to become writers, the second greatest favor you can do them is to present them with copies of The Elements of Style. The first greatest, of course, is to shoot them now, while they’re happy.”   Dorothy Parker

Reading and Writing Chat

I can’t believe it’s been over a month since I last posted. Time seems to have flown since my book launch for my women’s fiction novel, Full of Grace. I’ve read some new women’s fiction, with my favourite being The Story of Arthur Truluv, by Elizabeth Berg. I also finally read Rupi Kaur’s first poetry book, “Milk and Honey” after reading her second book, “Of Sun and Flowers” first. Would recommend them both.

To my facebook friends who have messaged to ask where they could buy my books other than Amazon and Goodreads, you can order it from any major bookseller worldwide, including Waterstones in the U.K., Dymocks in Australia, Powell’s in the U.S., and Indigo and Chapters right here in Canada.

Sincere thanks to Mandy Eve Barnett for interviewing me this month, and to FreshOut art and poetry collective; Failed Haiku, A Journal of English senryu; and NHK-World Japan for publishing my photo-haiga.

Happy Valentine’s Day to all!

The below quote for this post is a nod to the character Grace, in Full of Grace.

 

“A high station in life is earned by the gallantry with which appalling experiences are survived by grace.”  Tennessee Williams

Thank you!

I would like to thank everyone who helped to make my Full of Grace book launch such a happy celebration! Special thanks to A Different Drummer Books for this beautiful display. (Full of Grace is available worldwide on Amazon in print and e-book, or can be ordered at any major bookseller.)

book launch display

Book Cover Design

One of the perks an author receives with a small publisher, is that you are often able to offer great input into the cover design of your book. Crimson Cloak Publishing has allowed me that, and I have worked closely with Loraine Van Tonder, who designed both the cover for my first book, A Path to the Lake, and now my soon to be released Full of Grace. I love the small details that make it unique. For example, the character on the cover, Angela, is an author. The book on the top of the stack beside her, is the title of one she had written previously. Thank you to my publisher, and to Loraine, for making my cover vision a reality. I am grateful.

Full of Grace Liz Crocket wrap (1)