My Gender Work was Stolen in the Children’s Book Industry

#Columbused #GenderWheel #GenderNow #DiverseBooks #StolenWork

Context is Everything I was plagiarized twice in the same year by the same community. It was hard to wrap my brain around at first. After all, this is a community I felt some connection to. These were people I imagine to be well-intentioned parents and professionals. But now there …

My Story, Your Story, Their Story, Who Gets to Tell It?

First Voice/Own Voice and Indigenous, POC, LGBTQI Children’s Books

My Story I have been involved in the children’s book industry for over 20 years. I joke that they accidentally let me in. Indeed, something must have been going on…stars momentarily aligned, portals briefly opened… because not only did I get “in,” but my first book, Prietita and the Ghost …

Self-Publishing Journeys

School of the Free Mind Student Spotlight: Sandra Gonzalez, Skillful & Soulful Press

When Matthew and I changed the format of our School to be independent study as well as more financially accessible, our hope was that folks would take full advantage of all the numerous materials to support them and their publishing endeavors. Publishing a children’s book, whether through traditional means or …

The time is now

Let's flood the world with our voices

The act of telling our own stories is a radical act. I continue to stand humbled by the power of creativity and its ability to heal us and change the world we live in. It’s with a sense of urgency that creativity flows through me these days. Sometimes it feels …

School of the Free Mind Goes Independent

Dreams, Rain and Waking Up in 2017

Right now, the last 3 ½ years feel more like a dream than anything else.  Matthew and I dropped into an engaged, active, productive, on task mode with materials and community. Creating School of the Free Mind was a fantastic experience that rose from our desire to share everything we …

When a Bully is President/Truth and Creativity for Oppressive Times

A children’s book to support kids and adults in the wake of the 2016 US election. The book can be used as a way to talk about oppression in society or as a straight up tool to talk about the current political climate and the next 4 years with your …

We Are Stronger Together

Aligning with Other Indie Presses

I am fiercely independent and I’m drawn to those who are too. But no one can or should live without others. We are stronger together. And in these days we need our strength. We need each other, even in our independence. As I walk toward independently publishing my own children’s …

Is Equality in the Children’s Book Industry Possible?

And Do We Have Time to Wait? (infographic)

When we look at CCBC’s statistics in the framework of how many books we need to make to stand in equity with white Americans, we begin to understand our real position. I estimate that the children’s book industry would have to increase its production level by 45% to accommodate an …

Why Children’s Books are a Radical Act

I just released Children’s Books as a Radical Act on Indiegogo to support my first 6 independently published children’s books. What makes these books radical? Why is it noteworthy that they’re independently published? Why children’s books of all things? Radical? Any time we center ourselves as POC, indigenous or queer …

Self-publishing is a radical, powerful act.

The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don’t have any.” – Alice Walker I’ve met a lot of powerful children’s book makers over these past few years teaching The Heart of It: Creating Children’s Books that Matter. I decided from the beginning that whenever …