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Update - Winner Announced! Celebrate Earth Day with Lisa Wheeler!


Update 5/8: Congrats to Ashley Sierra on winning Lisa Wheeler's giveaway! We'll be in touch soon with more details.


A special thanks to everyone, dinosaurs and humans alike, who celebrated Earth Day with us!



 

4/22/2024


Happy Earth Day, readers, writers, and Earth lovers of all sorts! We have the wonderful Lisa Wheeler on the blog today sharing a new adventure for her and her loveable dinosaurs. Dino-Earth Day follows a group of dinosaurs as they celebrate the Earth by planting gardens, recycling, cleaning up parks, and more! This new book in her dino series of 25+ books and counting adds a whole new level of fun and can't be missed. Want to know more about Lisa, her Earth-friendly dinosaurs, PLUS want a chance to win a copy of her book? Read on...



Q: Hi, Lisa! Thanks so much for joining #SeasonsOfKidLit! We’re thrilled to have you back with us and hear about your fun-new book in your popular dino series: Dino-Earth DayReaders, if you missed Lisa's Valentine's Day post, click here.


Can you share more about your newest book and how it fits into your series? 


A: Sure! My publisher, Carolrhoda, and I came up with lists of holidays we’d like to see the dinos explore. We felt that Dino-Earth Day would be fun, but also important and educational for my characters. An Earth Day title is a great way to show not only celebration, but responsibility to our planet.



Q:  Dino-Earth Day is a rhyming read that follows dinosaurs caring for the planet on a very special day. What are some of the ways dinos care for the planet in your book? How did you come up with such fun ideas for your characters to participate in? 


A: As I approached the book, I knew that I wanted it to be kid-friendly. The subject of ecology and all that it entails—pollution, ecosystems, climate change, etc—can be overwhelming, even for adults. It’s a Diplodocus-sized problem! I wanted to focus on the small ways that kids could help, like cleaning up trash, recycling, composting, and gardening. Along with lots of research, I included things that my family does on a daily basis. I didn’t want to overwhelm or scare my readers. I’d rather they walk away from this book confident that they could do their part.



Q. You have over 25 books in the series (CONGRATS!) yet each book feels fresh and new. What’s a tip you have for those who are looking to turn a manuscript/book into a series. How can they keep each story feeling new (and not overdone) for their readers? 


A: In this series, I have a large cast of characters to pull from. Since the first ten books were Dino-Sports, there were large teams. I’m able to use those different characters throughout the Dino-Holidays series as well. 


That being said, there’s a small stable of familiar dinosaurs that readers see in every book—T.rex, Triceratops, The Pterodactyl twins, Diplodocus, and Raptor, to name a few—which is comforting. The “regulars” have personalities that kids start to recognize as the series goes on. Ex: The Ptero twins are comical brothers who often create their own problems.


My response to anyone wanting to keep it fresh might be to allow different characters to “star” in each book. If you only have two characters, try not to repeat themes. Allow your characters to learn, grow and change as your series continues.


I didn’t set out to write a series. My publisher saw the potential in making the first book, Dino-Hockey, into the Dino-Sport series.


Having options has been helpful. It also keeps me from getting bored. In future titles I’ve introduced some new dinos—ones that have been discovered more recently. That’s been fun!




Q: What’s your favorite scene from the book and why? How involved are you in the approval process for the illustrations/spreads? We know this varies by publisher so would love to hear your experience!


A: There are so many I love! But the one that stands out is where Triceratops is planting trees and explains, very simply, how trees make oxygen. Barry Gott, the illustrator, created a wonderful two-page spread for this scene. Great way to share the oxygen cycle!


My editors are terrific about asking for my input. I see the drawings in the sketch phase and then again when color has been added. Barry is amazing and I’m so grateful for him sticking with the series all these years. It’s a total team effort between the editors, Barry and me. I’m allowed to make comments and they make me feel like my input is important. Great publisher to work with!


Q: Thanks for sharing - we love the way the illustrations/spreads came out! What’s coming up next for your Dinos? 


A: After our last Dino-Holiday title, Dino-Birthday, the dinosaurs will embark on new and unique adventures in the upcoming Dino-World series. Kids will get to follow their favorite dinos as they go to school, help others and even head out on vacations! This series is the perfect way for me to explore all the different activities kids have suggested over the years. I’m looking forward to writing it!


That sounds amazing - count us in.


BONUS QUESTION: What’s a fun way you and your dino friends would encourage everyone to celebrate Earth Day? 


A: Plant a tree! I actually planted a maple sapling last fall that a friend dug out of her yard for me. I named her Maybe because I thought, “Maybe she’ll grow. Maybe she won’t.”


I’m happy to report that Maybe has small buds this Spring!


If you can’t plant a tree, adopt a new habit that helps the Earth. When researching the book, I learned about the dangers of plastic straws and decided to stop using them. It’s a small thing but if everyone does small things, it adds up.


Thanks again for joining us, Lisa. We loved having you!


Q: Would you like to leave a tip or a treat for the readers?


A: A treat! Leave a comment here and tag me on my Facebook page @Lisa Wheeler Children’s Books and one winner will receive a copy of Dino-Earth Day.


Wow - what an amazing treat! Thanks so much!


Readers, to enter to win a copy of Lisa's book, 1) Leave a comment below to thank her for stopping by and 2) share this post on Facebook and Tag Lisa at @Lisa Wheeler Children's Books.



The winner will be drawn and announced on or about 5/6!


Note: Books will be shipped in the US only. You must have a US address to win this giveaway.



About Lisa Wheeler:

Lisa Wheeler is passionate about children’s books. “I love everything about them, including the smell.” To date, Lisa has over 50 titles on library shelves. She’s written picture books in prose and rhyme, an easy reader series, four poetry books, and creative nonfiction for the very young.

 

Her newest titles include, Someone Builds the Dream, illustrated by Loren Long (Dial) , A Hug is for Holding Me, illustrated by Lisk Feng (Abrams Appleseed), My First Dino-Wrestling, illustrated by Barry Gott (CarolRhoda), and People Share with People Illustrated by Molly Idle. Lisa shares her Michigan home with her husband, her dog, and an assortment of anthropomorphic characters.


For more about Lisa, check out the below links:




To purchase Lisa's books on Amazon, or to leave a review, click here.



 



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11 Comments


I can't believe you are up to 25 dino books!!! Amazing Lisa!

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Great pointers for creating a series...The “regulars” have personalities that kids start to recognize as the series goes on. Following you on X.

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Thanks for stopping by. We love reading all the books in the series. It's so much fun when book series put out books for the holidays.

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Congrats, Ashley! You're the winner of Lisa's dino-sized giveaway. We'll be in touch soon with more details.



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I can't wait to read Dino-Earth Day! Thanks for sharing.

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Lisa's rhyme is always perfect! Congratulations on Dino Earth Day, another winning title. Would love to win a copy for my niece. Shared on Bluesky.

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