Monday, February 28, 2011

Thanks to you...

Elephant and Piggie's I BROKE MY TRUNK! spends its 2nd week on the New York Times Bestseller list at #9, being joined by WE ARE IN A BOOK! which returns after an absence at #10! 


Similar great news awaits on the Indie Bestseller lists.

Their Children's Interest list features I BROKE MY TRUNK at #6 and WE ARE IN A BOOK! returning at #13. 

AND, on the Indie Children's Illustrated list, KNUFFLE BUNNY FREE returns as well, at #13!


Thanks Indie Booksellers and thanks to you for this awesome news!

More good news from the fine folks at CLA, who have just released their Notable Book list which includes Elephant and Piggie's WE ARE IN A BOOK! and CITY DOG, COUNTRY FROG.  Thanks to the committee for the recognition.

Friday, February 25, 2011

New photos!

A few weeks back in NYC I had the chance to get some new publicity photos taken with the always awesome Marty Umans.  Marty shoots a great deal of author photos, because he's so fun.

Usually I HATE having my picture taken, but when Marty and I had a session a few years back (when I was younger and less hairy) and I had a blast doodling all over his studio.  Marty had so much fun, he's now working on a cool project photographing pals like Peter DeSeve and Harry Bliss inside their drawings.

I hope you like this batch:


Note: this pix are for articles and publicity.  You must credit Marty Umans if you use them. Please contact Hyperion Books for Children at "Info(at)pigeonpresents(dot)com for high res pix.

In other news, the New York Times has a nice piece on the background of Knuffle Bunny: A Cautionary Musical, which runs this weekend in NYC.  The full schedule of the touring production is here.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Knuffle Funny Exhibit in Marshall Texas

Today is the opening of Knuffle Funny: The Art and Whimsy of Mo Willems at the Michelson Museum of Art in Marshall, Texas.

The traveling solo exhibit features loads of original drawings, doodles and sketches featuring many of my book characters and other work.  If you're in the area, please drop by and see the show.  It runs until April 23, 2011.

Here is the back story on the exhibit, with some images.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Thanks to you, Wed. edition.

Team Willems had great fun on our recent jaunt to Montreal for a signing at Babar's Books.

The Montreal Gazette marked the occasion with a very nice feature/interview on my work.

The Gazette also likes I BROKE MY TRUNK! and KNUFFLE BUNNY FREE.

As for the trip, first we stopped off in Burlington VT to have lunch with American Elf cartoonist & Vermont's Cartoonist Laureate James Kolchalka and family along with Tanya Lee Stone's family.  The lunch even made it into a recent American Elf comic:

In Montreal, besides having a great time at Babar's Books, where we hung out with Drawn & Quarterly's Tom Devlin & family, we also visited Drawn & Quarterly's awesome comic shop (here's Tom's report), and had a fun dinner with Scaredy Squirrel's  Melanie Watt & her young man.

Montreal was also a lovely place to spend a few days eating, ice skating, & cooking marshmallows on open bonfires throughout the old town while watching fireworks.

While we were away, fun things continued to happen without us:

I'm thrilled to say that, thanks to you, Elephant and Piggie have done great out of the gate, debuting on both the New York Times Bestseller List and the Indie Besteller list at #4!

Thanks, you!

Also, maybe your newspaper will be carrying THE GOODS on Sundays.  If so, you'll get to see some fun Elephant and Piggie Comix and games soon! (Mo' info later)

The Huffington Post's Business section took a look at a certain Pigeon for advice on how to negotiate deals.  (Good to see AOL didn't waste their money buying that site)

The Maryville Times has a quick look at the Touring Knuffle Bunny Musical.

Here's a nice look at fun kids books from Chicago Now.

Speaking of Montreal: here's a doodle I did for pals Cecil Castellucci's new doodle project.

And what's coming up this week?

If you're in Holyoke, MA on Friday, please drop by the Barnes and Noble at 7pm to hear me read Elephant and Piggie's brand new adventure, I BROKE MY TRUNK!

Friday, February 18, 2011


I'm off to MONTREAL, CA for some fun and a signing.  While I'm away, I thought I'd post my public plans for next month...

There are a few local and international appearances scheduled this March that I'm quite looking forward to.  Please come on by if you're in the area and remember to confirm with the venue before you do.

Northampton, MA

The Academy of Music

See the Musical! After that, I'll be answering questions. There will be a signing to follow.

This is a ticketed event.

Paris, France

Book signing
"L’Attrape Cœur"
4 place Constantin Pecqueur
75018 PARIS

This will be my first signing in France where I'll be reading from books like Guili Lapin
Léonardo, le monstre épouvantable, and 
Vive la pluie !  in my broken french along with translation services by an old Swiss pal from my traveling days
If you're in Paris, please drop by!
This event is open to the public

Amherst, MA
Cole Assembly Room, Converse Hall, at Amherst College, Amherst

This should be great fun; two great writers (and great pals) and I cutting up.  We'll be discussing form and function in children's books all to benefit the fine folks at Family Outreach of Amherst.
This is a ticketed event. Tickets are available by calling 413-549-5999.

SUNDAY, MARCH 27, 11:30 am
Amherst, MA
The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art

"Join The Carle’s bookseller, blogger, and book-lover, Andy Laties as he engages picture book artists and authors in conversation about their beginnings and their books." Always fun at the Carle.  Lots of art and art making.  I'll be signing after the talk.

Free; does not include Museum Admission

That's it for March.  Please do say 'hi' if you're in the neighborhood.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Local Interview

Here's a nice short interview with a local magazine about my work, living in a small town, and the Knuffle Bunny Musical Tour.

I hope you enjoy.

Speaking of local, the animated THE PIGEON FINDS A HOT DOG! will be screened in Northampton's beautiful ACADEMY OF MUSIC on Tuesday, Feb. 22nd.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

WE ARE IN A BOOK! recieves 2011 CYBIL AWARD!

A big thank you to the CYBILS committee for awarding one of my favorite books, Elephant and Piggie's WE ARE IN A BOOK!, their 2011 award for Easy Readers.   As you can see, both Gerald and Piggie are thrilled.

They say:

Exquisite use of limited language? Check. Laugh-out-loud humor? Check. Meets new readers on their level but doesn't condescend to them? Check. Intertextual connections? Yes, indeed.

The CYBILS are a 'peoples' award, given by and voted by enthusiastic bloggers, librarians, teachers, and their ilk who are on the front lines of reading books to REAL kids.

In past years WATCH ME THROW THE BALL! and I LOVE MY TOY! have been picked in this category, so it's a triple thrill to know Elephant and Piggie are still in the game.


Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day

Have fun commemorating the patron Saint of beekeepers.

Here is some music from the Off-Beats Valentine's Day Special that ran on Nickelodeon in 1999.

In other happy news, Scripps Howard has a nice piece about easy readers, including Elephant and Piggie.

The Cooperative Children's Book Center has come out with their Choices list for 2011, which include Elephant and Piggie's WE ARE IN A BOOK! and CAN I PLAY TOO? in addition to KNUFFLE BUNNY FREE and CITY DOG, COUNTRY FROG.  Thank, CCBC! Whole list as a downloadable pdf here.

Friday, February 11, 2011


I've got a feeling today is going to be one of the 15,706th best days of my life!

And thanks to these guys over at the Happy Birthday Author blog for this awesome video:

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Sausage Fest '11

This week started off with Knuffle Manor's 4th or 5th annual Sausage Fest, an afternoon of food & drink to thank all of the great folks that have helped make my books and tours and work actually get done.

This year we had folks from Harper Collins, Hyperion Books,  and The Wernick & Pratt Agency (unfortunately the guys at Weston Woods had to, uh, work).

It was also a great opportunity to draw and (these being editors 'n such) write on the walls:

Thanks to all who made last year a great year for my work and joining in the imbibing and ingesting and doodling!  Huzzah!

(Here are the highlights from last year, plus a description of some of the Dutch treats enjoyed)

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

I love foreign editions!

The old mailbag just came in with more French language editions of the adventures of Emile et Lili  as Elephant and Piggie are called in French.

Just in time for my upcoming appearances in Montreal and Paris!


Tuesday, February 8, 2011

I BROKE MY TRUNK! publishes today!

Gerald is careful. Piggie is not.
Piggie cannot help smiling. Gerald can.
Gerald worries so that Piggie does not have to.
Gerald and Piggie are best friends.

In I Broke My Trunk! Gerald tells Piggie the long, crazy story about breaking his trunk. Will Piggie end up with a long, crazy story of her own?

I hope you enjoy Elephant and Piggie's latest adventure!

Get it at your favorite local shop, library, or on-line merchants here.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Thanks to you...

Astute readers may have noticed that in the spirit of Anti-Garfield-ism, I am reporting a weeks worth of good news on MONDAYS, the THANKS TO YOU post:

Thanks to you, Knuffle Bunny Free spends week 17 on the NYTimes Bestseller list at #9 and is on the Indies bestseller list at #13.  Elephant and Piggie's We Are in a Book! makes #9 of the Children's Interest category of the Indies list.

But that's not all!

Elephant and Piggie's WE ARE IN A BOOK! has been awarded the 2011 Gryphon Award by the fine folks at the Center for Children's books (They're the guys behind the BCCB reviews). This is a thrill! The Gryphon is given to transitional books (i.e. books for kids starting to read) & apparently comes with a monetary prize (this is a first) which will be put in the pot for next year's Friendiversary.

I'm also pleased to announce that CITY DOG, COUNTRY FROG was awarded a 2011 Charlotte Zolotow Honor for picture book writing. (The announcement isn't on their site as of yet, so you can see the winners here KNUFFLE BUNNY was granted an Honor back in 2004, so an added thanks to the Zolotow folks!

I love are awards voted on by kids. Turns out a school holding just such a contest including a "Best Performance by a Mo Willems Book" category!  Tee Hee! Rock on and nice to see Leonardo in the mix!