Monday, February 11, 2013

Latest News from The Texas Sweethearts & Scoundrels

Grand Prairie, TX, Here We Come!  
The Texas Sweethearts & Scoundrels are coming to the Betty Warmack Branch Library in Grand Prairie, TX. Please join  
P. J. Hoover, Jessica Lee Anderson, K. A. Holt, and  
Jeanette Larson on Sunday, March 10th at 3:00 pm for an author panel and presentation. We look forward to seeing you there!  
  Grand Prairie Event Poster
The Texas Sweethearts & Scoundrels will be at the Region 13 Hill Country Library and Literacy Summit and it's sure to be a great pre-TLA event. We'll see you there.

During the month of January, P. J. Hoover enjoyed visiting both Taylor Middle School in Taylor, TX and Curtis Middle School in Allen, TX. P. J. spoke with 6th and 7th graders about mythology, writing, and the Hero's Journey we are all on. Thank you, both Taylor MS and Curtis MS for the wonderful hospitality. 
Jo Whittemore spoke on a panel for tweens at the Montgomery County Book Festival and later signed books, shirts, a pizza box and a cookie package. Next time, she'll bring extra bookmarks! 


Here's a link to the entire recap of the visit.
Don's schedule for the month of May is wide open. He will be visiting schools in the Dallas area on Thursday, May 2nd, and in the Houston area on May 9th and 10th. Don welcomes opportunities to visit schools near those dates. Please see his website for more information about school visits., or contact him directly at tate2 at aol dot com.
Jeanette Larson will be speaking to several groups of Girl Scouts and 4-H members in March and April. She recently spoke to a group of adults in the Hays County Master Naturalist group. Jeanette enjoys talking about all things hummingbird so consider inviting her to your next program or event.

Even if you are not in the Austin area, Jeanette may be coming to your neck of the woods and can coordinate a program while she is in the area.

Jessica Lee Anderson had an amazing time at the Young Adult Keller Book Festival, and she is looking forward to several school visits this spring. She is still booking spring visits, so please visit
her website for more information:
Emma Virj√°n has a new website, showcasing some of her latest illustrations, and invites you to take a look:
You can read about
Kay Honeyman, debut author and educator here and librarian
Leese Cole, here.
Please stop by the blog and read about the amazing things they have to say about the world of kidlit! 

Jeanette Larson 
March 2 Jeanette will be a featured author at the Take 190 West Fest in Killeen, TX. 

P. J. Hoover 
On Monday, March 11th, at 6:30 pm, P. J. Hoover will be speaking on the publishing journey for her upcoming debut YA novel, SOLSTICE. The event will be held at the Westbank Branch of the Austin Public Library and is open to the public. 

Kari Holt 
Kari is excited to spend the first few days of March in Rockdale, TX as part of the Tejas Book Festival. With a string of school visits on the calendar and some time set aside for writing, Kari is looking forward to a busy and productive springtime!  
Interested in an author visit? The Texas Sweethearts & Scoundrels would love to visit your school. We understand that library budgets are tight, so our honorariums are flexible and reasonable, and visits can often be combined with other trips to your area.  

Don looks forward to sharing with students his story about how he became a published author. And he draws! Lots of drawing! Contact him soon as his schedule is filling up.     
Jeanette recently added to her experience for school presentations by watching bird banders (have you ever been up close to the south end of a north bound bird?). Contact Jeanette about speaking at your school or library event at
Kari enjoys letting students in on a few of her writing secrets - authors are just regular people, and just because you write about zombies and chupacabras doesn't mean you can't write poetry. Contact to bring Kari to your school!

Creating new worlds, mythology, and monsters is what P. J. Hoover loves to talk about the most. As a former Electrical Engineer, P. J. will share with students her transition to writing, inspirations for her books, and tips that will help even the most reluctant kids believe being a writer is possible. P. J. also partners with Jessica Lee Anderson for school visits. Contact P. J. at
Jessica Lee Andersonis a certified teacher and loves sharing her journey from struggling writer to published author. She is happy to customize any presentation. Jessica also pairs with P. J. Hoover to provide exciting, interactive programs. Contact her at

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Featured Sweetheart: LEESA COLE

Hi, P. J. Hoover here, and today on The Texas Sweethearts & Scoundrels blog, we're very happy to feature LEESA COLE, the librarian at Highland Park Middle and Intermediate School.

Thank you so much for being here with us today, Leesa!


TxSandS: Can you tell us a little bit about yourself, what you do, and who or what inspires you?

LeesaC: I am a career educator since 1985. I taught elementary students for 7 years and have been a librarian ever since - 10 years at the elementary level and currently at the intermediate/middle school level. I am inspired by people of all ages and in a myriad of situations. What I mean is I like to observe and take in what's going on around me. You can find something inspiring in most any situation if you are open to it.

Students in a book pass

TxSandS: What were your goals when you first started working with kids and books, and how has that vision changed now that some time has gone by?

LeesaC: At first my goal as a teacher was to help students love reading and to expose them to a wide variety of reading material. Come to think of it, that's still my goal as a librarian. What has changed is the digital and electronic aspect of reading. My interest in all things technology drew me to the library and hasn't disappointed yet. Another thing that has changed is my mission to educate everyone, anyone who will listen, that there are many different types of reading. It doesn't have to be tied only to a novel.

With Jacqueline Woodson at the DMA. Volunteering for the BooksmART events keeps me in touch with authors so that I can share insider info with students.

TxSandS: What has been the biggest surprise since you've entered the world of books for kids and teens?

LeesaC: That others don't think like me. That others disagree that reading and reading material can come in many shapes and forms and won't entertain the broader idea.

As Professor Trelawney during a Harry Potter book release party at the University Park Public Library

TxSandS: How do you see reading changing for teens in the next couple years? What challenges do you see? And what can we do to help?

I see the trends in reading moving to more electronic and digital - audio, eBook, devices - but I won't be surprised to know that just as many teens still like the printed-on-paper book.

Funding is always a challenge whether you're funding a school or public library in order to offer materials to patrons or funding your own home library or downloading to your digital device.

Keep doing what you are doing - featuring reading and those that love reading in a fun and positive light. In my opinion, there can never be too much reading promotion - and as my soapbox has made clear thus far - reading in many forms and for many reasons.

Inviting displays help to promote books that might just sit on the shelf

TxSandS: Would you consider yourself a Sweetheart or a Scoundrel?

LeesaC: I'm definitely a Sweetheart but my Scoundrel flag gets flown from time-to-time.

TxSandS: Thank you so much for being here!


If you know of someone who would make a great Featured Sweetheart, please let us know! The best part? If you nominate someone, we'll send you a $5 Starbucks gift card :)