I had an inkling

So I’m taking this excellent class with Tom Froese at Skillshare, and for an assignment, he wants us to assess our own art and see what we like and why.

I think for me, and for others who’ve given me feedback in the past, my ink drawings are some of my strongest works. Here are a few examples; what do you think?

polar bear
brown bear
rock hyrax
red panda
field mouse, I think?

And lastly, my attempt at making a comic…

So what do you th-ink? Is ink my strong suit? 😄

Perfect Picture Book Friday: Queen of Physics

Gabi Snyder, the author of the hilarious book TWO DOGS ON A TRIKE, shared a terrific review of Queen of Physics on her blog for the Perfect Picture Book Friday post this week!

Gabi Snyder

Cover of Queen of Physics

Title: QUEEN OF PHYSICS: How WU CHIEN SHIUNG Helped Unlock the Secrets of the Atom

Written by: Teresa Robeson

Illustrated by: Rebecca Huang

Sterling Children’s Books, 2019

For ages: 5 and up

Themes/topics: physics/physicists, stem, atoms, beta decay, women in science, Chinese Americans

Opening spread:

In China, in the small town of Liuhe,

the Wu family celebrated the birth of a child.

The child was a girl.

A girl!

What would become of her?

Publisher’s Description

Meet Wu Chien Shiung, famous physicist who overcame prejudice to prove that she could be anything she wanted.

Wu Chien Shiung’s story is remarkable—and so is the way this book does it justice.” —Booklist(Starred review)

When Wu Chien Shiung was born in China 100 years ago, most girls did not attend school; no one considered them as smart as boys…

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Show ’em who’s moss!

My parents’ front yard in Vancouver was so shady that a quarter of it wasn’t grass but moss. It was the softest thing ever, and my sis and I would choose to sit in the shade just to sit on the moss instead of the prickly grass. And don’t get me (or, really, the Spousal Unit and Kid1) started on the useless monoculture that is North American lawns. LOL!

Mosses are fascinating plants. If you want to learn more about them, head to this Encyclopedia Britannica page. If you just want to see some pretty pictures, stay right here and scroll down! 😄

Don’t these look like Mother Nature’s ikebana arrangements?

Wishing you a nice weekend filled with beauty!

[Nonfiction Wednesday] The Queen Of Physics Is An Asian Immigrant Woman

I love this wonderful review of Queen of Physics!

Gathering Books

Myra here.

We are delighted to dedicate our Wednesdays to featuring nonfiction titles, as per usual. We would also be linking our nonfiction choices with our reading themes throughout the year, when we can.

We are pleased to launch our quarterly reading theme from April to June this year onMigrants, Exiles, Refugees: Stories Of The Dispossessed.Essentially, we are on the look-out for books with the following themes:

  1. Stories of exile and movement from one place to another – either by choice or by circumstance

  2. Narratives on im/migrants, belonging and exclusion

  3. Tales of people who are in transition and displaced from their homes

  4. Stories of seeking refuge and sanctuary and finding forever homes

  5. Narratives of loss and dispossession

Queen Of Physics: How Wu Chien Shiung Helped Unlock The Secrets Of The Atom (Amazon | Book Depository)

Written by Teresa Robeson Illustrated byRebecca Huang
Published bySterling…

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A little bubbly

Some people celebrate with champagne bubbly, I celebrate with this other kind of bubbly:

Sourdough. Tasty and my body doesn’t react weirdly to it like it does to alcohol.

I made a few things with the discard because I’m an immigrant who inherited my mom’s motto of “never waste food” (she lived through WWII as a kid and never forgot about starving until the day she died), and can’t throw out perfectly good starter.

What am I celebrating? Well, I still can’t tell you because, again, publishing. But let’s toast with sourdough, shall we?

Chopped liver

I had my own moment of the Sun Ra quote that says, “A prophet is not without honor except in his own country among his own people.” Or, as this BoredPanda post hilariously shows…

For me, it wasn’t a bookstore but the local library that I practically lived in for the 15 years I homeschooled.

Despite the fact that there are very books in their children’s collection about notable Asian-Americans, let alone a female scientist, they only had one copy of Queen of Physics…until it won several awards at which time they bought 3 more copies for a grand total of 4. Meanwhile, they have on order 4 copies of a recently released, humorous book about a cow. Because, as we all know, cows are more important than an immigrant scientist who worked on the Manhattan Project and who helped several Americans win Nobel Prizes.

But, I’ll quit whinging about it even though I have several (many) more thoughts on the topic.

Instead, let me share a photo of some of the beautiful seedlings the Spousal Unit started several weeks ago:

Aren’t they cute? These have now been taken down to the unheated greenhouse to toughen them up for planting and he has started another batch of veggies in the utility room.

What about you? Do you have a garden? Have you been under-appreciated by your own town? 😝

Clouded vision

The recent uptick of anti-Asian attacks weighs heavily on my mind. I’m angry and hurt and suspicious of people and don’t feel much like being chipper. But, because I’m a writer, I look for metaphors.

Many people walk through life in a haze, centered only on themselves. They can’t see 10 feet past their noses to the wider world, the bigger picture. They’re surrounded by a self-made fog.

And in a fog, the most visible things are webs…

webs of lies and deceit…

trapping their minds in one place, where they blame invisible spiders and “others” for their own faults and misery.

Will the fog clear someday? Will those who have lived in a fog see the beauty of the world around them and notice that it’s the “others” who help make it a better place?

I don’t really know. I love Star Trek for its optimistic view of a future where human beings rise above their petty natures. But, I’m also quite convinced that humans will exterminate themselves after a run of about 300,000 years, a fraction of the dinosaurs’ reign of around 165,000,000 years.

I wonder what species will be dominant next? I hope it’ll be octopuses and not cockroaches.

Past issues

I found drawings I did back in December of 2016 on my hard drive. I had a lot of anger issues over a certain event that November. Bet you can’t guess what precipitated those feelings.

But to end on a slightly upbeat note…

I don’t know why I don’t do more ink drawings. Could it be that I don’t have enough time between writing, authoring, baking, knitting, volunteering for SCBWI, 12×12, and a few more things?

Book Giveaway: DON’T CALL ME FUZZYBUTT! by Robin Newman

Enter to win this latest book by my friend and hilarious author Robin Newman!

Writing and Illustrating

Robin Newman has written a new picture book, FUZZYBUTT! illustrated by Susan Batori and published by Sleeping Bear Press. It is available in bookstores, now. SBP has agreed to share a copy with one lucky winner living in the United States.

All you have to do to get in the running is leave a comment. Reblog, tweet, or talk about it on Facebook with a link and you will get additional chances to win. Just let me know other things you do to share the good news, so I can put the right amount of tickets in my basket for you.

Sharing on Facebook, Twitter or reblogging really helps spread the word for a new book. So, thanks for helping Cynthia and Mary.

If you have signed up to follow my blog and it is delivered to you everyday, please let me know when you leave a comment and I…

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Springing into new beginnings

The birds are getting frisky and so is our Meyer lemon plant. Soon, there will be many baby birds…and baby lemons. Well, the first is a certainty anyway, and I’m hoping for the latter as well. I do, however, feel a little promiscuous as I make like a pollinator every morning with a paintbrush (pollen, meet stigma).

See? Little baby lemons already (next to their older siblings).

Meanwhile, it’s still sort of winter. Last week, we had temps in the 20s F. But despite that, the Spousal Unit was able to harvest these gorgeous kale and collards from the greenhouse…

Beautiful, no?

By the way, the title of the post also alludes to some really exciting news which I can’t tell yet…because publishing. But I can’t wait to shout it to the world!