Saturday, August 30, 2014

Happy Birthday Ted Williams

During his playing days, Ted Williams told everyone his birthday was October 30, because he didn't want to be distracted by a birthday during the baseball season. Throughout his career, his birthday was even listed wrong on his baseball cards. But it's actually today, August 30. So happy birthday to Ted Williams, The Greatest Hitter Who Ever Lived!

http://matttavares.com/theregoestedwilliams.html
Here's the back of my dad's 1954 Topps Ted Williams card, which he gave to me when I was a kid, and I still keep VERY safe.
 





Wednesday, August 27, 2014

The Original Art 2014

Great news! Jubilee! was selected by the Society of Illustrators to appear in their exhibit of the best children's books of the year, The Original Art 2014!

The exhibit opens on October 22 at the Museum of American Illustration at the Society of Illustrators in New York City. It's always an amazing show, so if you are a fan of children's books and you happen to find yourself in New York City between October 22 and December 20, definitely check it out.

Here's my illustration that will be on display:

Monday, July 7, 2014

Growing Up Pedro, first proofs

Looking over first proofs for Growing Up Pedro (Candlewick, 2015)!



For more regular updates leading up to the publication date, find me on facebook and twitter.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Last Visit of the School Year


Yesterday I wrapped up my school year, with one last presentation at Thoreau School in Concord, Massachusetts. By my count, this was my busiest year of school visits yet- I did 115 presentations at 38 schools, from Birmingham, Alabama, to Bellevue, Washington, to Benton, Maine...

I've gotten so much great feedback from teachers, librarians, parents, and students. And I just wanted to use this space to say a great big THANK YOU to all the people who made this such a great school year for me. I know it takes a lot of work form a lot of people to make a successful school visit- from the parent volunteers who organize the book orders, to the librarians who read my books to the kids leading up to the big day, and all the teachers who follow up my presentations with fun writing and art projects.

When I set out to be a children's book author-illustrator, I had no idea I'd end up spending so much time talking in front of large groups of people. And as someone who used to dread getting up in front of the class to speak, I never imagined how much I would enjoy it.

So thanks! Looking forward to another great school year in 2014-15. But first... SUMMER!

bulletin board in Middlebury, CT, with awesome student artwork based on my books


Thursday, June 5, 2014

Becoming Babe Ruth Giveaway!

It's been a very busy spring (traveling around for lots of school visits, finishing up my Pedro Martinez book, helping out with my daughters' little league teams...), so I haven't been keeping up with my "monthly" book giveaway on my facebook page. But here it is!

I'm giving away this signed copy of Becoming Babe Ruth, with an original ink drawing of Wade Boggs inside. To enter, just visit my facebook page and like, share, or comment on this post to enter. I'll set a deadline of midnight on Friday, June 6, 2014, and I'll announce the winner on Saturday morning. If you're not on facebook, you can enter by leaving a comment on this post.

Boggs, like Ruth, was a star for the Red Sox and the Yankees. He was also one of my favorite Red Sox players when I was a kid, and I remember what a bummer it was when I heard he signed with the Yankees. He was part of the first Red Sox team I really knew (Boggs, Barrett, Rice, Clemens...) and even though he spent those years with the Yankees, I'd like to see his number 26 retired at Fenway someday.

 Here are some pictures of the book:

Becoming Babe Ruth, with original pen drawing of Wade Boggs on page 1



























And here's a picture I drew of Wade Boggs when I was a kid:


Find Becoming Babe Ruth at an independent bookstore near you.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Red Sox Reading Game 2014!


I'm happy to be teaming up again with my favorite team, the Boston Red Sox, my pal Wally, the Massachusetts Teachers Association, and this year's new spokesperson, World Series champion Craig Breslow, on the 2014 MTA Red Sox Reading Game.

In the coming weeks, 15,000 posters and 500,000 entry forms will be distributed in schools around the state. This year's materials feature Craig Breslow and Wally reading my book, Zachary's Ball, at Fenway Park!

So teachers, librarians and Massachusetts students in grades K through 8 should be on the lookout for the posters and entry forms. In the meantime, you can visit readingmatters.org to download an entry form and print a free poster.

To enter, students simply need to list nine books they pledge to read over the summer, for a chance to win two free tickets to a Red Sox game in September! 100 students will win tickets, so it's definitely worth entering!

Good luck, happy reading, and GO RED SOX!








Monday, March 24, 2014

Spring 2014 Events

With Chris Van Dusen on the 207 show back in 2012. CHris and I have a couple fun events coming up in April!

I've been busy trying to finish up my Pedro Martinez book, so I haven't been leaving my studio (or updating my web site) much lately. But I do have some fun events planned for this spring, so I wanted to make sure I took a few minutes and posted them here. Here's where I'll be...

March 30 UPDATE: This event has been postponed until April 6, 12:00-1:00. Celebrate Opening Day! I'll be teaming up with my friends at the Wells Public Library and the Wells-Ogunquit Little League for a fun baseball event at the Wells High School gym. I'll be reading a couple of my baseball books and doing a drawing demonstration, followed by a fun baseball clinic with Wells-Ogunquit Little league coaches. All ages and skill levels welcome. Bring your glove!
April 5 10:30 am. I'll be reading and signing books with my good friend (and one of my favorite author-illustrators),the amazing Chris Van Dusen, at Letterpress Books in Portland, Maine. Very excited to welcome Maine's newest independent book store! Chris will be introducing his brand new book, President Taft is Stuck in the Bath, written by Mac Barnett, and I'll have my new book, Jubilee!, written by Alicia Potter.
April 26
Time TBD. Another awesome event with Chris Van Dusen, at The Children's Book Cellar in Waterville, ME.
May 17
2:00 pm. Indies First Storytime Day! I'll be reading some of my favorite picture books at Porter Square Books in Cambridge, MA, alongside my friends and fellow author-illustrators Joe McKendry, Jarrett Krosoczka, and Jef Czekaj.



School visits
March 3
Cutler School, South Hamilton, MA
March 12
South Memorial School, Peabody, MA
March 14
Centre School, Hampton, NH
March 26
H.O. Smith School, Hudson, NH
March 27
Hills Garrison School, Hudson, NH
March 28
Mill Pond Elementary School, Westborough, MA
April 1
Windham Center School, Windham, NH
April 2
Tenacre Country Day School, Wellesley, MA
April 3
Acton Elementary School, Acton, ME
April 9
Worcester Public Schools, Worcester, MA
April 10
East School & Foster School, Hingham, MA
April 11
Hall School, Waterville, ME
April 14
Maude H. Trefethen Elementary School, New Castle, NH
April 15
Winchester Authorfest, Winchester, MA
April 16
CK Burns School, Saco, ME
April 17
Holderness Central School, Holderness, NH
April 29
Pomperaug School, Southbury, CT
April 30
Gainfield Elementary School, Southbury, CT
May 1
Long Meadow Elementary School, Middlebury, CT
May 2
Middlebury Elementary School, MIddlebury, CT
May 20
Wheelock School, Medfield, MA
May 29
Bennett Elementary School, Bellevue, WA
May 30
Eastgate Elementary School, Bellevue, WA
June 2
Benton Elementary School, Benton, ME
June 3
Beaver Brook Elementary School, Abington, MA
June 9
Varnum Brook Elementary School, Pepperell, MA