Have you ever wondered about the stories behind the dedications in your favorite books?
In this latest addition to our posts about dedications, a few more Picture the Books authors share stories about their dedications. In this rare glimpse behind the scenes, the authors give us insight about who they honored and why.
Julie Segal-Water’s debut book, THIS IS NOT A NORMAL ANIMAL BOOK, illustrated by Brian Biggs, will be released on October 31, 2017 by Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books.
Julie dedicated her book to two very, very supportive people in her life.
I dedicated the book to my husband and son because they are my everything. They both also made considerable contributions to the book — from the inspiration arising from reading to my son, to my husband’s push to attend the conference where I met my editor, to cheering for me ceaselessly, and even to suggesting lines that appear in the book. Further, the word “uncompromising,” has double meaning. It refers to my unyielding love for my family, and signals the book’s central meta-fiction conflict — an author who does not want to compromise with the illustrator on how to draw the animals in the book.
I HAVE A BALLOON is Ariel Bernstein’s debut picture book. Illustrated by Scott Magoon, and published by Margaret K. McElderry Books/Simon & Schuster. It’s in stores now!
Ariel’s dedication is about the two people who inspired the book. Hint: They happen to be very close to her.
I dedicated my book to my two children because they inspired the story of two characters, an owl and a monkey, who both want a shiny red balloon. My daughter thinks she’s more like Owl and her brother is more like Monkey, which is probably true.
Marcie Colleen’s debut, LOVE, TRIANGLE, illustrated by Bob Shea, was just released on October 3rd from Balzer + Bray.
Marcie’s dedication is to a few of her besties who offered support though the crazy world of children’s publishing.
My three bestest girlfriends are fellow writers Kat Yeh, Joyce Wan, and Amber Alvarez. To say that they complete me would be an understatement. We all met through writing conferences and quickly became a foursome, supporting each other with giggles and tears every step of the way.
When LOVE, TRIANGLE went to auction, Kat and Joyce, with Amber on speaker phone, held vigil with mimosas and much needed “auction watching.” We started to call our group the Love Quadrangle shortly after.
It was a no-brainer, come dedication time that this book would be for these very special women in my life. The best part was that I kept it a secret until Kat saw the book at Book Expo America and read the dedication. Sometimes making your BFFs cry is a good thing. 🙂
Emma Otheguy’s first picture book, MARTI’S SONG FOR FREEDOM, illustrated by Beatriz Vidal is available now.
Her dedication story is both inspiring and in Spanish!
I dedicated this book to my parents, in Spanish, because they were the people who first shared José Martí and Cuban culture with me. In the dedication, I reference our trips down I-95 to visit family in Miami, and how my parents would always point out the royal palms (palmas reales) that reminded them of Cuba. A hundred years earlier, palmas reales had also been a symbol of longing and love for Cuba to José Martí.
Patricia Toht’s latest picture book, PICK A PINE TREE, is illustrated by Jarvis and published by Candlewick.
This book is appropriately dedicated to her favorite holiday helpers.
This book is dedicated to my four children. Our family is crazy about Christmas celebrations and decorating the tree is always a fun, noisy event. Every year I buy the kids new ornaments, usually signifying a special moment from that year. I put little white tags on the ornaments to specify whose is whose (and avoid arguments), and now our tree looks like it is a salesman’s sampler of ornaments!
Andrea J. Loney had two picture books published this year. BUNNY BEAR, illustrated by Carmen Saldana (Albert Whitman and Company, January 2017), and TAKE A PICTURE OF ME, JAMES VANDERZEE, (Lee & Low Books, July 2017), illustrated by Keith Mallett.
Both are dedicated to special people in her family.
This was my first book dedication and I wasn’t sure who to include — my initial list filled up a whole sheet of paper! But even though my friends and family are scattered across the country, across the world, and even on the other side of the veil, I carry them all in my heart. This dedication was my way of including everyone.
My maternal grandpa was a classical pianist who toured the music halls of Europe during World War 2, and I grew up in awe of his life-long devotion to elegance and artistry. My paternal granddaddy was a joyful Panamanian party guy with an infectious laugh. He connected with the world through his passion for amateur photography, and everywhere he went in the world people were delighted to befriend him. I am so thrilled that this book blends the sensibilities of both of my beloved grandfathers.
Jannie Ho wrote and illustrated the upcoming picture book, BEAR AND CHICKEN. It will be published by Running press on November 14, 2017.
Her dedication may not be fully appreciated right now, but it certainly will be later!
It is for my daughter, who is a picky eater but always loved soup. She is at a picture book reading age and I thought she would appreciate having her name in a printed book.
Erica Sirotich’s debut as author/illustrator is FOUND DOGS, published by Dial Books this past summer.
Erica proves that no one says you’re required to dedicate your books to a human. Erica’s dedication is to the inspiration behind the book!
FOUND DOGS is dedicated to my best friend Russell. He’s my thirteen year old terrier. Found Dogs is a counting book about adopting dogs
from the city shelter and was inspired by his story. Russ was one of those dogs who ended up at an overcrowded animal services facility and had very little time to make it out. On his last day there, he w
as given a second chance by a rescue group. I found Russell a couple weeks later and knew he was the one. Ten years later, he is still the best buddy and studio-mate a girl could ask for. In Found
Dogs, all the dogs are as lucky as Russ; each one meets his perfect person and goes home.