Alison Paul is a Storytime alum dating back to the first year of the series. Co-creator of the Art in the Park series with Program Manager Jen Smith, Paul has authored and illustrated such Burnside Park favorites as The Crow and Sunday Love. Paul has now released her newest book, THE PLAN. It is her first literary collaboration.
We were lucky enough to get a sneak peek as Alison read her “folded and gathered” (the original printed, unbound publisher’s copy) of her new book, THE PLAN, to the rapt, sun-kissed faces of children enjoying our weekly Storytime and Art in the Park series.
Now, just in time for winter, you can curl up with your little ones and enjoy the candid drawings of Caldecott-winning artist Barbara Lehrman (The Red Book). The hardcopy lends itself to fully appreciating the clever word play Paul used to structure her tender work.
“The 20 words help to ground the story as it unfolds, telling why the plane sits in the weeds, who flew it before, how it will get back into the air. They offer listeners and beginning readers a way to understand and participate in the narrative arc. Finally, girl, father, and dog come round to “plan” again—accomplished at last as they fly home from a picnic under a starry sky.” – Kirkus Review
Alison came up with the idea while watching PBS.
“It’s funny where we find inspiration, consciously and otherwise. . . in the intro credits a seedling sprung up from a view of the Earth from space. I sleepily thought how interesting it was that ‘plant’ and ‘planet’ were only separated by a single letter, and that there was also a ‘plan’ in there. . . I let the words branch-off where they could, and would. . . In the end I looked at what I had and quite simply saw a story there.”
Once she had her words, Alison knew that she wanted Lehrman to illustrate The Plan.
“. . . I wanted to respect her take on the words, so I sent [the manuscript] out with only an outline of the story I saw, and with no visual notes, and I am not exaggerating when I say that she delivered nearly exactly what I had in mind.”
THE PLAN was released this fall to glowing critical reception, being awarded a starred Kirkus review, and praise from Publisher’s Weekly: “This lovely story blends a sense of rootedness with the spirit of exploration—a rare combination.” Congratulations Alison and Barbara!
Alison Paul is the author/illustrator of The Crow and Sunday Love, which have both been previously featured at Storytime. She is also an animator and a professor, specializing in the art of storytelling. Alison is currently writing and illustrating a new book. She missed the illustrating bit.
Did You Know…
That the DPPC hosted over forty free arts and education programs for children in the summer of 2015? Sign up for our e-newsletter!
Subscribe to our mailing list