Tag Archives: Julie Mata

Bird Flew Away, But Book Wins Award

Wisconsin’s writers for young people get more recognition. Here’s news from the Wisconsin Library Association about authors whose books for children that organization has recognized.

Topping the list is Wisconsin native, now Chicago resident, Crystal Chan. He book Bird received WLA’s 2015 Elizabeth Burr/Worzalla Award, which is presented annually by the Children’s Book Award Committee of the WLA’s Youth Services Section “to the most distinguished work in literature written and/or illustrated by a Wisconsin book creator,” according to the WLA release.

Another huge honor went to Ann Bausum who was named Notable Author “for her contribution to the world of children’s literature.” Most of Ann’s many books, primarily about historical events and people, are published by National Geographic. Her Muckrakers: How Ida Tarbell, Upton Sinclair, and Lincoln Steffens Helped Expose Scandal, Inspire Reform, and Invent Investigative Journalism received the Council for Wisconsin Writers’ 2007 Tofte/Wright Children’s Literature Award.

Ann’s recently published Stubby the War Dog: The True Story of World War I’s Bravest Dog is one of five books written and/or illustrated by Wisconsinites that the WLA selected for Outstanding Achievement in children’s literature.

The others are:

  • The Hula Hoopin’ Queen written by Thelma Lynne Godin
  • This is a Moose illustrated by Tom Lichtenheld
  • Kate Walden Directs: Night of the Zombie Chickens written by Julie Mata
  • Here Comes the Easter Cat written by Deborah Underwood

CWW congratulations them all!

See more about CWW contests and awards at www.wiswriters.org.


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WI Writer Creates Quirky Middle-Grade Books

This looks like fun! Book Signing! - You're invited to celebrate the launch of Julie Mata's book:<br /><br /><br />
KATE WALDEN DIRECTS:<br /><br /><br />
BRIDE OF SLUG MAN!</p><br /><br />
<p>There will be door prizes<br /><br /><br />
and treats for everyone!</p><br /><br />
<p>Saturday, May 30th, 1:00 pm<br /><br /><br />
Barnes & Noble<br /><br /><br />
4705 W. Grande Market Dr.<br /><br /><br />
Grand Chute, WI<br /><br /><br />

This new middle-grade novel is the second in a series of “Kate Walden Directs” books by Wisconsin children’s author and video arts creator Julie Mata.  Although funny and light-hearted, Kate Walden Directs: Bride of Slugman deals with such serious issues as bullying.

Kate Walden Directs The Bride of Slug Man follows last year’s publication of

KateWalden Final cvr




Kate Walden dreams of becoming a big-time Hollywood director. But finishing her first movie is turning into a big-time nightmare. When Kate’s lead actress and BFF ditches her to hang out with the popular crowd, Kate’s movie seems doomed. Kate writes the perfect revenge script for her former best friend, but a hen hit squad seems to have its own diabolical script to ruin her life. Kate learns that real life is way more complicated than movies, especially when it comes to friends… and chickens.

Here’s a link to Julie’s website, which has a reader/classroom curriculum guideline:  http://juliemata.com/

Also, please visit the Council for Wisconsin Writers website at www.wiswriters.org.





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Boswell’s Features Children’s Authors During Children’s Book Week

Boswell Book Company in Milwaukee (2559 N. Downer Avenue) is celebrating Children’s Book Week with three days of great local children’s authors and SCBWI members discussing their books:

Thursday, May 7, at 6:30 p.m., features a panel of Middle-Grade genre writers that includes Julie Mata, whose Kate Walden Directs: Night of the Zombie Chickens   Kate Walden Directs

is being followed by Kate Walden Directs: Slug Man from Mars, which is being published this spring; Sandy Brehl, whose Odin’s Promise    Odin's Promise: A Novel of Norway

came out last fall, and Emily Demuth Ishida, whose Hattie’s War also debuted last fall.

Hattie's War

On Friday, May 8, at 7 p.m. Young Adult author Sylvia Acevedo, whose God Awful Loser 

  is just out will present.

Saturday, May 9, wat 2 p.m. Picture Book authors Janet Halfmann, whose Animal Teachers

 is the most recent of her many books, Kashmira Sheth, whose most recent book  Sona and the Wedding Game

came out earlier this month, and Jamie Swenson, whose most recent book If You Were a Dog

 was published last September, are on the schedule.


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Wisconsin’s Writers of Children’s Stories Celebrate Good News

Several members of Wisconsin’s chapter of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators have shared their good news of the month. Here they are, in their own words:

Liza Wierner

My debut YA novel HELLO? will be published in 2015!

Here’s the Publisher’s Lunch announcement:
Liza Wiemer’s YA debut HELLO? is about five Wisconsin small town teens, whose lives intertwine when a grieving girl calls her dead grandmother’s old phone number. In an innovative use of free verse poetry, screenplay format, narration, and drawings, five narrators tell a story of hope, friendship, and redemption, toPatricia Riley at Spencer Hill Contemporary, by Stuart Krichevsky of Stuart Krichevsky Literary Agency.
Blog post about the deal and the road to publication is here:http://lizawiemer.com/2014/03/17/hello/
CELEBRATE with me:
I have a  giveaway on the post linked above. Three people will get to choose one bo ok of their choice from Spencer Hill Contemporary.
Julie Mata

My good news is that my MG novel, KATE WALDEN DIRECTS: NIGHT OF THE ZOMBIE CHICKENS (coming out next month!), and the second book in the series, due next year, both got picked up at auction by CBT, which is part of Random House Germany. So Kate is going to learn how to speak German!

Janet Halfmann

My book, Star of the Sea, by Christy Ottaviano Books/Henry Holt is on the Scholastic 2014 Summer Reading Booklist for ages 3-5! The theme of this year’s program is “Reading Under the Stars.”
Joanne Linden

“Fiddleheads to Fir Trees: Leaves in All Seasons” by Joanne Linden, was included in “CCBC Choices 2014,” the annual best-of-the-year list of the Cooperative Children’s Book Center (CCBC).



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WI Children’s Book Authors’ Spring Release List

The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, Wisconsin chapter, has issued a flyer listing books by Wisconsin authors and illustrators being published this spring. Here’s the list. The actual flyer is at http://wisconsin.scbwi.org/wp-content/blogs.dir/86/files/2014/01/Spring-Release-Flyer.2014.pdf.  The success of Wisconsin writers and artists is just astounding!

2014 SPRING RELEASES by WISCONSIN Authors and Illustrators

BEN and ZIP: TWO SHORT FRIENDS by Joanne Linden, art by Tom Goldsmith (Flashlight Press, April, 2014) ISBN:
BIG RIG by Jamie A. Swenson, art by Ned Young (Disney Hyperion, 2/4/14) ISBN: 978-1-4231-6330-5
CORK AND FUZZ: WAIT A MINUTE! By Dori Chaconas, art by Lisa McCue (Viking/Penguin Young Readers, 2/6/14) ISBN: 978-0-670-01481-1
HULA HOOPIN’ QUEEN by Thelma Godin, illustrated by vanes Brantley Newton  (Lee & Low Publishers, April) ISBN: 978-1-60060-846
THE PENTECOST STORY by Elizabeth Jaeger (Concordia Publishing, Arch Books, January) ISBN-13: 978-0-7586-4604-0
RAINBOW OF BIRDS by Janet Halfmann, illustrated by Jack Foster (Guardian Angel Publishing, April) ISBN: 978-1-6163-3462-8

ASK AGAIN LATER, by Liz Czukas (Harper Teen, 3/11/14) YA Contemporary ISBN: 978-0062272393
KATE WALDEN DIRECTS: NIGHT OF THE ZOMBIE CHICKENS by Julie Mata (Disney Hyperion, 5/20/14) Middle Grade. ISBN: 978-1-4231-9459-0
ODIN’S PROMISE by Sandy Brehl (Crispin Books, 4/15/14) MG Historical Fiction ISBN-13: 978-1-883953-65-2
POET’S WORKSHOP series: Read, Recite, and Write Free Verse Poems; Read, Recite, and Write Limericks; Read, Recite, and Write Narrative Poems; and Read, Recite, and Write Nursery Rhymes. By JoAnn Early Macken (Crabtree Publishing) Available in eBook, paperback, and library binding at http://www.crabtreebooks.com/catalogs/schoolcatalog/
ROAD TO SOMEWHERE, by Kelley Lynn and Jenny S. Morris (Bloomsbury Spark, 2/11/14) YA Contemporary ISBN:
ROYALLY LOST by Angie Stanton (Harper Teen, 5/6/14) YA ISBN-13: 978-0062272584
SUBSTANCE ABUSE: THE ULTIMATE TEEN GUIDE, by Sheri Bestor  (Scarecrow Press) Non-fiction. ISBN: 9780810885585
WHAT THE MOON SAID by Gayle Rosengren (Putnam Young Readers, 2/20/14) MG Historical Fiction ISBN: 978-0-399-16352-4
WHITE SPACE: Book One of the DARK PASSAGES by Ilsa J. Bick (Egmont USA, February) Young Adult ISBN-10: 1606844199, ISBN-13: 978-1606844199

These books will be eligible for the Council for Wisconsin Writers 2014  Tofte/WrightChildren’s Literature Award , which has been won in recent years by SCBWI members Kathleen Ernst, Janet Halfmann and Jacqueline Houtman. Entry deadline for work published in 2013 is Jan. 31, 2014. Please visit the CWW website at www.wiswriters.org for more details.


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Good News in the World of Wisconsin’s Kiddy Lit Writers

Here are the monthly postings of achievements and accolades from members of the Society of Children Book Writers and Illustrators, Wisconsin chapter:

  • Sheri Bestor reports that Scarecrow Press has publisher her non-fiction book, Substance Abuse, the Ultimate Teen Guide, which has received a good review.
  • Julie Mata, author of Kate Walden Directs: Night of the Zombie Chickens, stuck her toe in the world of social media, creating an author page on Facebook, creating a website (juliemata.com), and is on Twitter @juliehmata.
  • Gayle Rosengren’s What the Moon Said is to be published next month by Putnam Young Readers Group and has already been termed “Sensitive and tender” by Kirkus, a “heartwarming story” and “engaging historical fiction” by Booklist, and  “…Esther makes the most of each day, asks little, and gives much,” by Publishers Weekly.  Putnam has also offered Gayle a contract for her second book, tentatively titled Joanna’s Cold War, which is a middle grade historical fiction scheduled for summer 2015 publication.
  • Miranda Paul recently received the contract for her third picture book, title yet to be determined, slated to be published in 2016 by Lerner/Millbrook. 

Congratulations to all of these writers!

Maybe they will enter their work in a CWW contest. Deadline for work published in 2013 is coming up soon — Jan. 31. Books published in 2014 will be eligible for contests with an entry deadline in January 2015. Contest information is at http://www.wiswriters.org.

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