The e-Book Cover Design Awards now have gold star winners as well as the overall winner. These gold stars were applied retroactively to the January contest, and Shakespeare's Complete Paragon earned a gold star! The site then held a design contest for badges for the winners, and my gold star now comes with a badge:
No, I didn't win...
But I was a little nervous as I scrolled through the January, 2013 entries. Joel Friedlander of The Book Designer had added his commentary on the design of many of the covers, and he didn't hold back when he thought a cover didn't work for whatever reason. In most cases, he offers suggestions for improvement, but learning that one's design just doesn't work can still sting a little.
Fortunately, Friedlander had good things to say about my entry of Shakespeare's Complete Paragon: “The author is also the artist who created these amazing and beautiful paintings of animals, here collected from various other books. A beautiful and arresting cover that combines great illustration with custom lettering for a unique effect.”
My illustrations aren't exactly paintings, but I'll take it.
The latest article on Teach with Picture Books features Shakespeare's Zoo! The post, Animal Attraction: Exploring Animals with Picture Books, outlines 10 different ways to use animals to keep students engaged in the classroom, each with picture book examples. Read the original post for how to use these resources specifically.
1. Fantastic Fables - Creative Writing - Grades 2 and up
Yo, Aesop! Get a Load of These Fables
Squids Will Be Squids
2. Peerless Predators - Argumentative Essay/Research - Grades 4 and up
Top 10 Worst Killer Animals You Wouldn't Want to Meet
Nature's Deadliest Predators
3. Crazy Critters - Creative Writing/Art - Grades 2 and up
Animals that Ought to Be: Poems about Imaginary Pets
Cock-a-Doodle-Moo: A Mixed Up Menagerie
4. Beasts of Burden - Creative Writing/Research - Grades 3 and up
Animals that Changed the World
Tales of Famous Animals
Do Animals Work Together?
5. Creature Comparisons - Poetry/Figurative Language - Grades 3 and up
Shakespeare's Zoo (Volume 1)
6. Pack Behavior - Analytic Essay/Novel Extension - Grades 5 and up
Be the Pack Leader
Scruffy: A Wolf Finds His Place in the Pack
Face to Face with Wolves
7. Feathered Friends - Poetry/Research - Grades 5 and up
8. Who's to Choose When It Comes to Zoos? - Argumentative Essay/Research - Grades 6 and up
The One and Only Ivan
9. Animal Allies - Art/Research - Grades 5 and up
Once a Wolf: How Wildlife Biologists Fought to Bring Back the Gray Wolf
10. Home Sweet Home - Creative Writing - Grades 2 and up
The Salamander Room
Not Inside This House!
The e-books are ready! Kindle versions and the universal epub file type as well. Remember that Shakespeare's Complete Paragon is the combination of the 42 illustrations found in the other two books.
I decided to make the images for the book available for purchase (without text) in a few formats. Click on the image below (or the link in the menu to the left) for access to greeting cards, postcards, matted prints, framed prints, posters, stickers, t-shirts, hoodies, and children's clothing.
I will add each new image to the shop as I create it.