The Bookman

On Friday, the Greater San Diego Reading Association ( had their annual Recognition Dinner. GSDRA honors teachers and literacy leaders from throughout San Diego City and County at the event. I was honored to present four of the Celebrate Literacy Awards.

The Celebrate Literacy Award recognizes organizations, institutions, and individuals making significant literacy contributions at the local or state level.

I met the Bookman!

Irwin Herman retired in 1988, but he found a new vision and gave us “The Bookman,” a wordwide charitable organization based in San Diego. It started one day when Irwin went with a friend who does outreach visits in local jails. He learned the inmates needed books. He gave some books and noticed how grateful they were.

An idea sprouted. Now Bookman organization provides books for free to anyone who asks. Can you imagine having such a vision? The bookman warehouse contains over 50,000 books with a daily turnover of 2000-3000 books. He enlists the help of Lenny the Elf (aka Leonard Pearlman) and other faithful elves including Tony Ross, a retired publishing executive, and Don Schultz, a retired bookstore owner.

The bookman’s motto is ”Providing books to anyone who wants to read and learn.” Please visit their website at to learn more about this fabulous project.

The bookman has given away an estimated 8 million free books to people in San Diego, every state, and seventy countries.

International Reading Association

I was at the International Reading Association conference in Phoenix in February, and I just received this photo from Michael Shoulders of the Sleeping Bear Press dinner with authors and illustrator. From left to right: Michael Shoulders, Eve Bunting, Barbara Gowan, Rick Anderson, Helen Foster James, and Tony Johnston. What a fun event.

Four Kids in 5B and 1 Crazy Year

I participated in San Pasqual School’s Teachers As Readers (TAR) group on Thursday. We read FOUR KIDS IN 5B & 1 CRAZY YEAR by Virginia Frances Schwartz. It's about students and their writing quest. Here are some of my favorite quotes from the book:

“I wish I could sit in my own grandmother's kitchen like the author Cynthia Rylant. No wonder these authors can write. Their grandmothers’ stories fill them up like fresh baked bread.”

“I love how you tell your story You use specific words that make pictures in a reader's head. you write what you know That’s what all good writers do.”

“September is a fresh start. You are like poems still unwritten.”

“I wonder again—how did those words come to me? Will they come again another time?”

“She worked in a hurry as if her pencil was leaking memories about to evaporate.”

“Writing makes you drift and dream and say things you don’t even plan on.”

“I just have to show up with my pencil.”

“Ms hill says writers write about what’s in front of them.”

Book Info:
Holiday House Publisher Hardcover 0-8234-1946-3
Scholastic Canada Ltd. (available only in Canada) -
Paperback 0-439-93568-5
Also available Scholastic Book Clubs US

Temecula Public Library

I had a great time Wednesday evening at Temecula Public Library's "S is for S'mores: Indoor Author Camp-Out." Miss Ginger coordinated a lovely event complete with tent, lantern, bear, and, of course, some yummy s'mores. What a fun time. Ginger organized the event to celebrate Children's Book Week. It was my first visit to this library and it's an amazing beauty of a library with fabulous resources.

Temecula Public Library
30600 Pauba Rd.
Temecula, CA 92592
(951) 693-8900

Thank you Ginger!

Lilac Time

Time in the mountains is always time well spent. Here is a photo of lilacs outside our cabin.

Temecula Visits

I'll be visiting Temecula Public Library tomorrow and the visit reminded me of visiting Pauba Valley Elementary in Temecula earlier this year. I thought you'd enjoy this adorable photo. The Library Queen set up a lovely camping environment for my visit and the kids thought it would be great fun if this camping bear read my book.

A big Thank You! to Toni Klym McLellan for mentioning S IS FOR S'MORES: A CAMPING ALPHABET in the article "Parents Magazine Offers Ideas for Outdoor Time" at The article has a wealth of information about getting kids to explore the great outdoors. You can read the entire article at:

Thanks Toni!

New Hampshire School Visits

I'll be visiting New Hampshire during late September and early October. If you are interested in me visiting your school, library, Girl Scout troup, etc., please email me at I'd love to hear from you. And, be sure to visit my website at to learn more about me and my books.

Yosemite Visit

On Saturday I had the pleasure of signing my book, S IS FOR S'MORES: A CAMPING ALPHABET, at the Ansel Adams Gallery in Yosemite National Park. What a treasure! I met lots of fun people. A big thank you to the Gallery for providing me with the opportunity.

Yosemite's waterfalls were wild with water and the dogwood was in bloom. Yosemite is one of my very favorite places.