Thursday, August 28, 2008

In addition to the positive reviews from bloggers, we have more great news!

Kimberly Joy Peters' debut novel, Painting Caitlyn, has been shortlisted for the British Columbia Teen Readers' Choice Award (2008/2009), the Stellar Award!

About Painting Caitlyn:

It's been a difficult year for Caitlyn. She feels ignored by her mother and step-father who are obsessed with having a baby, her best friend is always blowing her off for a boyfriend, and she's struggling in art, her favorite subject. Caitlyn is completely depressed until Tyler enters her life and seems to make her problems disappear.

Older, gorgeous, and totally into Caitlyn, he makes Caitlyn feel important, needed, and special. But just as things get serious, Caitlyn discovers Tyler’s jealous side. Once she realizes her "perfect" boyfriend is as controlling as he is caring, she is faced with a choice: she can either let this relationship define her, or find the courage to break away.

Teens throughout B.C. will read and discuss Painting Caitlyn; the winner of the Stellar Award will be announced in May 2009. For more information, visit The spin-off of Painting Caitlyn, Posing as Ashley, will be released next month.

Dave Stubbs' Our Game: The History of Hockey in Canada has been shortlisted for the British Columbia Young Readers' Choice Award (2008/2009), the Red Cedar Award!

About Our Game:

Our Game: The History of Hockey in Canada is the most comprehensive book ever written for young readers about the history of hockey, specifically from a Canadian perspective. The author provides a play-by-play of our national sport’s evolution over three centuries, from the first publicly played game through the recent NHL lock-out. Along with essential information about rules, gear, and stats, readers will learn about hockey’s most unforgettable moments and most talented stars. Little-known facts, amazing photographs (many of which have never been published in a book before), and expertly researched history make this a must-have for every Canadian hockey fan!

Students in grades 4 - 7 throughout B.C. will read and discuss Our Game; the winner of the Red Cedar Award will be announced in May 2009. For more information, visit

Monday, August 25, 2008

REVIEWS & NEWS: Blog Review Round-Up

At Lobster Press, we are dedicated to every book we publish. Months and months of hard work are spent making sure each book receives the attention it deserves. So we get really excited when we see other people enjoying the end results! Thank you to all the bloggers who have taken the time to read and review Lobster Press books - fantastic feedback from readers makes our day.

The latest Reviews & News:

Hooked! Books for Kids: Review of Famous Firsts by Natalie Rompella

A Patchwork of Books: Review of Famous Firsts by Natalie Rompella

My Backyard: Review of Lemon the Duck by Laura Backman and Illustrator Laurence Cleyet-Merle

Mom Central: Review of Oliver Has Something to Say by Pamela Edwards and Illustrator Louis Pilon

Mom Central: Review of I Don't Want to Go by Addie Meyer Sanders and Illustrator Andrew Rowland

Sanctuary for Offbeat and Quirky Children's Lit: Review of Penelope and the Humongous Burp by Sheri Radford and Illustrator Christine Tripp

Picture Book of the Day: Review of The Months: Fun with Friends All Year 'Round by Sara Coleridge and Illustrator Kathy Weller

Friday, August 22, 2008


Managing more than ten books at different stages of development at once is difficult. But we were lucky enough to carve some time out of Meghan Nolan's busy schedule. In this interview, Nolan shares her thoughts on writing children's books and the kind of manuscripts and characters that excite her. Authors interested in submitting manuscripts to Lobster Press can find more information on the Lobster web-site.

What motivated you to devote your time to literature for young readers?

When I was in high school, I remember my English teacher Mrs. Baletsa telling us she had studied English literature in university, and I thought “Wow, can you really do that?” Books had always been such a luxury to me and such a passion of mine, so once I learned that literature was something legitimate to study and devote a career to, I never looked back. I went on to complete a BA and MA in English literature and always hoped to work in publishing.

I love being a children’s book editor at Lobster Press – it’s a dream come true, as trite as that sounds. I fondly remember many books I read as a child and as a teen and I hope that our books leave the same lasting impressions on today’s young readers. I am a firm believer that good children’s books bring children and their families together and provide a sense of nostalgia long after the books are closed. If I can spend my days being a small part of that experience and help deliver strong contributions to the world of children’s lit, then wow – I feel very lucky.

How do you think writing for children is different from writing for adults?

Writing for both audiences presents distinct challenges. I’ve heard some people say that writing for kids must be really easy, but I definitely don’t think that’s the case – with children’s books, every word matters and it’s crucial that authors draw readers in on the very first page and then keep readers engaged throughout the whole book (picture books, middle-grade texts, nonfiction titles, and novels).

With all of the competition for kids’ attention these days, it’s so important that books engage, entertain, and inspire. To reach these ends, it’s key for the author to always keep the young protagonist’s perspective in mind. How does the character feel about what’s happening? What does the character think? And most importantly, what does the character want? I find that it’s sometimes easy to overlook such details of the child’s perspective – and of course, these details are what help keep readers engaged.

What kinds of characters appeal to you?

Quirky, unapologetic characters with an interesting perspective and an endearing quality that makes them unforgettable. When the story is over, I want to miss the character – I know it’s always a good sign when I’m thinking about the character long after I’ve finished reading a manuscript. I have to be honest, too, and say that I adore funny characters. If something a character thinks, says, or does makes me laugh out loud, I’m hooked.

What kinds of stories are you looking for?

At the moment, we are looking for original fiction for young adults, and nonfiction titles for all ages. Specifically, we are looking for yoga manuscripts (for ages 4-8), cookbook manuscripts (ages 9-12), manuscripts related to the environment and green living (all ages), and hockey manuscripts (fiction and nonfiction, all ages). Please visit the Submissions page on our web site for all of the details.

What gets you excited about a manuscript?

I am apt to embrace a manuscript that surprises me or speaks to a universal truth in an unexpected way. I also get really excited about manuscripts that take risks and force me out of any kind of comfort zone. And of course, I also love a carefully constructed plot, complete with twists and turns. Nonfiction manuscripts filled with lots of little-known “gems” (as we like to call them) also spark my interest in a big way – I’d like to see more of these manuscripts.

Do you have any tips and suggestions for writers thinking about submitting their manuscript?

Know your audience, don’t rely on adjectives, write with strong intention, and over all, surprise, entertain, and inspire us.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008



Based on the inspirational true story of the Pekin duck born in an elementary school classroom.

Ms. Lake and her class conduct an egg-hatching project in school and on the big day, welcome four little ducklings into the world. The students soon realize that the soft yellow one they named Lemon looks like a duck and quacks like a duck, but can’t stand up and walk like a duck. They worry that Lemon won't be happy if she can't do all the things ducks love to do, and work together to help Lemon thrive. Through caring for Lemon, the students share in her victories and learn that acceptance, love, and extra special care can go a long way. They also come to understand that her difference doesn’t make Lemon any less special.

Author Laura Backman and the real Lemon live in Portsmouth, Rhode Island. Learn more at

What drove you to adopt Lemon?

Shortly after Lemon hatched, I had her assessed by several veterinarians. They agreed that Lemon’s condition was permanent. The good news was that she was not in any pain and she really seemed to be a happy little girl, despite her challenges.

I searched out Sanctuaries that could care for her properly…I quickly realized that they were not prepared to care for an animal that needed such extensive care. That just wouldn’t do for this wonderful animal with such a zest for life. With the guidance of Kim Link at the Majestic Waterfowl Sanctuary, I was able to provide Lemon with the proper nutrition and care that she needed.

Why did you choose to share Lemon’s story with others?

First, I think Lemon is an inspiration. She is a spunky, loveable creature who never lets her challenges get her down.

I also wanted people to see that all life is precious, and one’s quality of life is so important. I wanted children to know that they can make a difference in someone’s life. Lemon’s story is a “safe” way to talk about disabilities, to ask questions, and brainstorm ways to make a difference in someone else’s life. Lemon provides those teachable moments for kids.

Finally, I also wanted to honor my dad who recently passed away from MS. He was a wonderful man, father, and inspiration. Lemon’s story is dedicated to him.

How did Lemon’s presence help after your father’s death?

I feel that by giving Lemon the best life she can have, I am continuing to honor him. I know he would be very proud of how I am caring for Lemon. He and Lemon share some of the same symptoms, and I know that helping my dad has made me a better caregiver for Lemon.

When I was younger, and long before my dad was diagnosed with MS, we had 21 pet ducks. I remember my dad taking me to get our first two ducks – Diana and Daffy. I have such wonderful memories of my childhood “ducky days”. Lemon reminds me of him and those times.

How do you bring Lemon to school?

I’ve been fortunate enough to have administrators that see the value in having Lemon interact with the students. Lemon comes to school with me in her basket and she gets to visit the students in some of the classrooms and at recess.

How do the students react to Lemon?

They are always excited to see Lemon. She’s happy to see them too. The students come to greet her and give her some love. Sometimes I put her in her scooter and they crouch down and encourage her to walk around the blacktop with them.

In the classroom some of the children give her “massages” or read her stories. They are always looking for the latest update on Lemon. One of our favorite classrooms to visit is the intensive special needs classrooms. The children enjoy her visits and I think she helps provide an opportunity for them to practice social interactions.

Has adopting Lemon changed your life in other ways?

Oh boy has it! I never would have believed that a duck could rule the house until Lemon. I’ve even learned to understand “duck language”. Lemon has different quacks for different commands she gives me. And, believe me, I follow them!

For the most part I’ve always been a pretty shy person, but you can’t get away with that with a duck by your side. Wherever Lemon is, there’s usually a crowd. I’ve become her spokesperson.

I’ve definitely come to have an appreciation of the amount of time, caring, and emotion that it takes to care for a handicapped animal.

Does Lemon have any idiosyncratic habits?

My favorite one is when Lemon wakes me in the middle of the night for kisses on her bill. And she loves to be cuddled and petted. You would normally think a duck would avoid people. Not Lemon – she loves people. She especially enjoys swimming with children. When Lemon sees other birds and ducks, she is interested in them, but prefers her “people” friends.

What are Lemon’s favorite hobbies?

Swimming, swimming, swimming, preening, preening, preening!
How old is Lemon now?
Lemon was born on April 11th, 2006, so she is about 2 ½ years old.
Do you have any other interesting stories you'd like to share about Lemon?

I do, but you’ll have to wait to read about them in Lemon’s next book!