Thursday, April 27, 2017

Literally a Childhood Dream Come True

Yup. That's a book I wrote in a Scholastic flyer that goes to schools. The same type of flyer I ordered books from as a kid and thought of as, like, the ultimate sign of book awesomeness.

I have to admit I was taken by surprise by how goosebump-y seeing that made me. And then I got a copy of the paperback and... yeah... it's like... like... all the feels, you know?

Thanks to the Book Club folk for choosing Strike, and even bigger thanks to Arthur A. Levine for publishing me (the Big Dream) and allowing this moment to happen. And more thanks to everyone at Arthur A. Levine Books and Scholastic who helped make The Homework Strike into what it is

And who knows... with this happening, maybe I shouldn't give up on my dream of playing professional baseball!

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Homework and the Parent Angle

Here's an article that really resonated with me after all my Homework Strike research (and real life experiences): Never Mind the Students; Homework Divides Parents.

Parents have a lot of reasons that they want their kids to get homework far beyond the "we had it, so they should have it" variety. But who is school for? What best serves kids? These are tricky, tricky issues for schools, parents, and students, too. The comments on that article are pretty fascinating as a snapshot.

If any of you have strong opinions on this particular angle, I'd love to hear 'em....

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Come Say "Hi!" at the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books!

If any of y'all are coming to the LATFoB this Sunday, April 23rd, come say hello! I'll be signing the Homework Strike at the wonderful Once Upon a Time booth (#732 on your map) from 3:00-3:45ish and probably hanging around/looking around long before then, too.

Hope to see you there!

Friday, March 17, 2017

Allergic to Homework - a poetry re-issue

Greg Pincus

I said “I’m allergic to homework.
It makes me cough and wheeze.
You send me home with mounds to do,
And I just snuff and sneeze.”

My teachers would never believe me.
“Allergic? We think not.
Maybe see a doc,” they’d laugh,
“And you can get a shot.”

Today my teachers aren’t laughing,
And I don’t mean to gloat,
But they can’t give me homework now:
I’ve got a doctor’s note!

Originally posted here back in 2008, this poem makes an appearance in The Homework Strike, too. Oh... and if only it had been true!

It's Poetry Friday, so why not check out this week's roundup o' poetry goodness over at Robyn Hood Black's Life on the Deckle Edge?

And if you want to get all my new poems (and only the poems) emailed to you for freeee as they hit the blog, enter your email address in the box below then click subscribe!

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Congrats to the Cybils Winners!

Congratulations to all the 2016 Cybils winners!

These awards hold a special place in my heart, not just because I was a judge in the early years, but even moreso because they truly highlight books that really deserve attention and celebration.

So yay for another year of the awards. And I really hope you go check 'em out!

Monday, February 13, 2017

An Interview with MOI!

Fellow author  Laurisa White Reyes has an interview with me up over at her blog today. I'm talking The Homework Strike, embarrassment, and what book I'd like to live inside. Check it out, I say to you! (And thanks, Laurisa!)

Friday, February 10, 2017

Poetry Re-Issue: My Dad's a Hippopotamus

Greg Pincus

My dad’s a hippopotamus.
He’s dad to quite a lot of us.
You think that’s strange? I don’t know why,
Since we’re all hippopotami.

We’re friends with a rhinoceros,
Who I think looks preposterous.
I’m glad that I don’t spend time bein’
Something so rhinocerian.

We live next to a crocodile.
He’s over there on his own isle.
He’s got big bumps on each short limb.
I’m glad that I don’t look like him.

We also know a chimpanzee,
The strangest creature that you’ll see.
Those gangly arms look out of place,
And I would never want his face.

Right nearby’s an ocelot.
He likes to mew and roar a lot.
With spots and splotches hard to miss,
I think he looks ridiculous.

But there’s one creature that we see
That’s most absurd. We all agree.
It comes to visit at our zoo.
And... oh... how sad! It looks like you.

Every now and then, this particular poem pops into my head (particularly when I've been thinking a lot about taking other perspectives). This is one of those times, so I figure I'd share the poem with y'all... particularly since it's Poetry Friday! And since it is that most poetic of days, why not check out the roundup of this week's posts over at The Logonauts? Good!

If you want to get all my new poems (and only the poems) emailed to you for freeee as they hit the blog, enter your email address in the box below then click subscribe!

Friday, January 27, 2017

Poetry Re-Issue: The Crayola Caper

Greg Pincus

There’s crayon on the tabletop.
There’s crayon on the floor.
The baby got my crayon box
And drew and drew some more.
The house is full of colors now,
Each wall and every door.
Let me look more closely. Yep...
He used all 64.

This poem was first published back here in 2006 (!!!), so I'm thinking it's probably new to most of you. I've been doing some blog maintenance and re-reading some older posts... and I gotta say, I look forward to dusting off some more this year. None of the others, however, will make you think of burnt sienna (or that's my guess!).

This week's Poetry Friday roundup is over at Beyond LiteracyLink. You oughta check it out, cuz, like, poetry is a good thing!

Also, if you want to get all my poems emailed to you for freeee as they hit the blog, enter your email address in the box below then click subscribe!

Friday, January 20, 2017

Poetry Re-Issue: Instructions for Helping the World

Instructions for Helping the World
Greg Pincus

Write a poem.
Work with clay.
Draw or paint a day away.
Knit or dance.
Make a song.
Film a movie all night long.
Use your hands,
Brain and heart.
Live! Create!
Go make some art.

(originally published on January 6, 2012)

It is Poetry Friday yet again! Check out Violet Nesdoly's blog for the weekly roundup of links o' poetry related goodness. And go create some art!

Also, if you want to get all my poems emailed to you for freeee as they hit the blog, enter your email address in the box below then click subscribe!

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Tea! With Me (And More Authors and Illustrators!)

If you live anywhere near Thousand Oaks (that's out here near Los Angeles for those of my readers who are wondering), why not come to a Book Talk Tea on Sunday, January 29th at 2PM with me and a group of amazingly talented folk (Lisze Bechtold, Barbara Bietz, Mary Ann Fraser, Joan Bransfield Graham, Laura Lacamara, Kirsten Larson, Michelle Markel, Alexis O'Neill, Antoinette Portis, Greg Trine and Eugene Yelchin are all scheduled to be there!)? It promises to be a blast.

Tea and book talking sounds calming and invigorating at the same time, don't you think? It does to me, and I cannot wait to be at this Ventura County Reading Association event. Hope to see you there!

Friday, January 13, 2017

Night Write - a writing poem

Night Write
Greg Pincus

Cannot sleep.
Turn on light.
Grab a pen -
Time to write!

Brain's awake.
Words fly fast.
Write and then
Read, at last.

Sometimes words
Come out right.
Sadly, this is not that night.

This was actually a poem started during the writing of The 14 Fibs of Gregory K. Then I thought about similar topics again when I was working on The Homework Strike, but the poem never fit either book. It's possible that it's autobiographical, but I'm not saying :-)

It's Poetry Friday once again! This week, you can check out the roundup of posts over at Keri Recommends. Lots o' good stuff piling up there (read her post and click on the "click this widget" widget to see more!).

And, if you want to get all my poems (and only the poems) emailed to you for freeee as they hit the blog, enter your email address in the box below then click subscribe!

Friday, January 06, 2017

In Middle School - a school poem/a middle school poem

In Middle School
Gregory K.

History's a mystery.
Science is a curse.
My English grade could use some aid -
My math one's even worse.
My Spanish skill is nearly nil.
PE's like a punch.
The only class I think I'll pass
In middle school is lunch!

(©2017 Greg Pincus)

The above poem kicks off The Homework Strike (my new novel out this week from Arthur A. Levine Books/Scholastic. Makes a great gift. Find a great local store or buy online or both!). As in the 14 Fibs, main character Gregory K. writes poems, and one starts each chapter. There might be others lurking in the 272 pages o' Strike, too, but you'll only know if you read it. I think you should, though I am biased. Also, while the poem and book aren't autobiographical, for the record, I passed lunch every year of school.

It's time for the first Poetry Friday roundup of the year, hosted over at TeacherDance. There are tons of great poetry links there to kick off your new year, so you really oughta check it out.

And, if you want to get all my poems (and only the poems) emailed to you for freeee as they hit the blog, enter your email address in the box below then click subscribe!

Tuesday, January 03, 2017

Hooray! It's Launch Day for The Homework Strike!

Today, January 3rd, 2017 = the official debut of The Homework Strike. Let's all have cake, shall we?!

If you'll pardon me for a moment... "Yay!"

Saturday, December 31, 2016

Order a Signed Copy of The Homework Strike! (And a Launch Party)

Thanks to the fine folk at Children's Book World here in LA, you can order a signed or personalized (or, you know, blank) copy of The Homework Strike! You've potentially only got a week to do so, though, as I am signing books at my launch party there on Saturday, January 7th at 2:30 in the afternoon. You're invited to the party, too, by the way.  (The book officially debuts January 3rd, if you're keeping track (aka - Hi, Mom!))

I hope to see you at the launch or somewhere else during 2017. And to all of y'all... Happy New Year! Here's to a year of good health and happiness.

Thursday, December 15, 2016

The Homework Strike is a Junior Library Guild selection!

Not to be tooting the Homework Strike horn or anything, but... hey, y'all... it's a Junior Library Guild selection! Okay - fine: Toot! Toot!

(It's also available for pre-order everywhere cuz it comes out January 3rd. And Linzie Hunter's cover is pretty awesome, so I'll share it again. And yay!)

Sunday, December 04, 2016

Would You Believe: A Real Life Homework Strike in Spain

It's life imitating art imitating life or some variation on that theme: all November long, parents in Spain were asked to put their kids on a homework strike. The strike was for weekends only, and if a school sent home homework, parents were asked to send it back with a note saying "nope" and excusing their kids from doing the work.

The strike was organized by CEAPA - Spain's national organization of parent associations - because, they said, homework is detrimental to children. Based on a 2014 report by the OECD, Spain ranks 11th on a list of amount of time the average 15 year old spends on homework per week. The US is 15th.

There were news stories throughout Europe, unsurprisingly, but I was fond of the article and comment thread on The Guardian.  I have yet to read an article on the impact of the strike and would really love to find one from the student perspective. If you've run into one, please let me know!

I hope another country goes on strike when my book comes out in January. :-)

Tuesday, November 01, 2016

One Minute Till Bedtime Is Now!

It's launch day for One Minute till Bedtime, an anthology anthologized by Kenn Nesbitt and including a whole slew of poets... including me! The book is fantastic, and I think that's unbiased (while I'm biased). I base that not only on reading it myself, but also on the three starred reviews to date. The art by Christoph Niemann is fantastic, too.

And if you're in Los Angeles, you can come see a small slew of us included poets at the fantastic Children's Book World this Saturday, November 5th, at 2:00 PM. (That's also where I'll be having my Homework Strike launch party in January, by the way!). I hope to see you there... and even moreso, I hope you can check out the book.

Friday, October 14, 2016

Found Poetry - family

(click to see the found poem in all its found glory)
(a found poem)
Greg Pincus

Perhaps you like a puzzle even if it is a puzzle
that does not have an answer.

The mystery
is this, "How did
the answer
have such history?"

Perhaps you will come up with an answer.

One of the unexpected highlights of the Poetry Camp (for Adults) was the craft/found poem event run by poet/artist/inspire-er Robyn Hood Black the night before the conference at Bellingham's Village Books. If you know me, you know that while I'm a huge fan of arts and crafts and such as a concept... actually doing them isn't always tops on my list. But there I was, sitting at a table along with Bob Raczka, Peg Cheng, and Brenda Olson chatting, glue-ing, picking words, laughing, and having a blast.

I felt lucky: my source material included that rather amazing sentence that beings my poem. It also had a mystery/history rhyme I liked AND included the word "conchologists" which I was not able to fit into the poem (and had never heard before). You can see a bunch of the poems and read more about the conference at Peg Cheng's wonderful post about the whole event. Did I mention the whole thing was a blast? Good.

Today is Poetry Friday here in the blogosphere, and you can see the roundup of this week's posts over at fellow-Poetry-Camper Irene Latham's blog. Check it out!

Plus, if you want to get all my poems (and only the poems) emailed to you for freeee as they hit the blog, enter your email address in the box below then click subscribe!

Monday, October 03, 2016

OMP! (Oh My Poetry!) - Thoughts After WWU's Inaugural Poetry Camp

I am just back from Western Washington University's first ever Poetry Camp for Adults. It was awesome. I can't talk all the highlights, so I've picked the three that are tied in my head as "tops."

1) 38 poets!!!! On Friday, the day before the conference, 38 poets (camp counselors?) who have been part of the Pomelo Books Poetry Friday Anthologies gathered together to talk all sorts of things poetry-y. I've been to a lot of conferences and met a lot of poets, but his was a whole 'nother beast. And it was better than good. I'd met a few folks there before, and it was great to see them again. But there were mannnny who I only knew from email and social media and getting to meet in person was fantastic. It seemed impossible to top, really.

Poetry Camp Signage Tells What It Takes to Write Poetry

2) Except that on Saturday, it was the Poetry Camp itself, and there were 150 of us there... poetry lovers of all ilk. It was teachers and librarians - those who champion poetry and get poetry in front of kids. It was writers and parents and students. And it was so unbelievably satisfying that instead of being drained after a day of breakouts and keynotes, I was energized and excited and grateful. It would be hard to imagine anything matching the feeling... except the day before. And then...

3) Jack Prelutsky! I had never had the opportunity to see Jack Prelutsky perform, and I thought that would remain the case since he has retired from visits and the like. But the Poetry Camp got him to come. He was fantastic. He owned the room - all us kids from the age of 2 to 102 were eating out of his hand. It was like he had never taken a day off, let alone years off - singing, reciting, voicing, laughing, storytelling, playing guitar. It was the perfect end to the Camp.

I give my huge thanks to everyone who created and organized and volunteered and attended. More specifically, thanks to Syvlia Tag and Nancy Johnson at WWU who made this first time conference feel like it had been established forever. Plus they shuttled us poets around, as needed, going beyond the call.

And finally... huge hat tips and huzzahs to Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong for inviting me (and all of us), creating the Poetry Friday Anthologies, helping build our community, and celebrating poetry wherever they go. Thanks to all of y'all for including me in this weekend. I hope there are many others like it in the future!

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Will I See You in Washington at Poetry Camp?

I'm so excited to be heading to Western Washington University (in Bellingham, WA) at the end of this month for Poetry Camp - a day about sharing, teaching, and understanding poetry. Yeah, it's a one day camp/conference about children's poetry - be still my heart (and thanks to Janet Wong, Sylvia Vardell, and the folks at WWU for putting it together). I'm part of a presentation (on blogging and poetry along with the fabulous Jone and JoAnn) but I'm also an avid attendee who is kinda giddy with anticipation.

You really gotta check out all the people going and talking... culminating with a performance by Jack Prelutsky!

If you're gonna be there, please say 'hi.' If you think you could go... please check it out!

Friday, September 09, 2016

Rules of Writing (Part One) - a poem about writing

Rules of Writing (Part One)
Greg Pincus

There are many rules of writing,
But here's one that's a myth:
You can never end a sentence
A preposition with.

It's true. I mean, it's true that it's a myth. That's something I'm sure of. I'm also sure it's Poetry Friday here in the blogosphere, and you can check out this week's roundup of posts over at Amy's amazingly awesome Poem Farm.

Plus, if you want to get all my poems (and only the poems) emailed to you for freeee as they hit the blog, enter your email address in the box below then click subscribe!