Robyn Hood Black - children's author, poet, artist

Hannah enjoying poetry workshop

(Scroll down this column for tags, archives and blogroll....)



Enjoy these Great
Children's Lit Blogs and Websites:

Hanging with fellow Georgia writers (from top, l-r) Tracy Walker, Heather Kolich, Donna Bowman, (bottom, middle) Janice Hardy and Paula Puckett
photo by Steve Kolich

Susan Rosson Spain, Robyn Hood Black, Elizabeth Dulemba, and Myra Meade at the Hall Book Exchange in Gainesville, Ga.
photo by Mel Hornsby

Southern Breeze Kudos Kites 09 - Donna, Robyn, Heather, Sarah, and Peggy

Robyn with Kathleen Duey, author extraordinaire

Robyn with Alaska Nature Writer Debbie Miller

photo by Robyn Hood Black
Paul B. Janeczko

Copyright 2005-2016 ©Robyn Hood Black. All rights reserved. Please ask permission before using any text or images on this website, except for reproducible
"4 Kids 2 Do" and "Press Kit" pages.

Life on the Deckle Edge

Poetry Friday - EVERY DAY BIRDS and Extra Credit Q&A with Amy LV!

March 30, 2016

Tags: Poetry Friday, poetry, poets, birds, Amy Ludwig VanDerwater, book tracks, National Poetry Month

Dear Poetry Friends,

Such a special treat today – No April Foolin’! If you’re a Poetry Friday regular, you know that our own Amy Ludwig VanDerwater is fluttering around with a beautiful brand-new book, EVERY DAY BIRDS, published by Orchard/Scholastic. If you’re a PF newbie, Welcome!

I’m one of those lucky ducks who can call Amy friend, as well as poetic inspiration in human form. You can learn more about Amy and her work here. And in case you haven’t heard… her debut poetry picture book, FOREST HAS A SONG, illustrated by Robbin Gourley (Clarion) just won the inaugural SCBWI Lee Bennett Hopkins Poetry Award!

EVERY DAY BIRDS, her second picture book for young readers, offers a closer look at many common birds, brought to colorful life with papercut illustrations by Dylan Metrano. Kirkus calls it “beginning birding at its best.” Here's a taste:

Hawk hunts every day for prey.

Cardinal flashes fire.

Woodpecker taps hollow trees.

Crow rests on a wire. …

Click around the Kidlitosphere and Poetry Friday blogs, and you’ll find lots of love for this book. Amy’s post celebrating its lift-off ihere. I thought it wouldt be fun to ask Amy just a few “Extra Credit” questions inspired by EVERY DAY BIRDS to give us a peek behind the scenes of her life poetic. Here we go!

Amy’s Extra Credit Q&A

Early bird or night owl?

I am a night owl who is trying to be an early bird!

Hummingbird drinks flower nectar. Coffee, tea, or something else for you?

Tea. I have a glass teapot, and my children and I enjoy trying all different kinds of tea, from flowery tea to fruity tea to herby tea. I like the varied colors of teas brewing, and holding a warm mug in my hands feels so cozy. This said, I am always happy to go out for coffee with a friend. And since I live in chilly Western New York, I am a fan of hot cocoa (lots of whipped cream) too.

Are you more chirpy bluebird or boisterous blue jay?

People often think of bluebirds as cheerful creatures, and I am a cheerful soul. To be truthful, though, I can also be bossy as a blue jay.

Chickadee wears a black cap. What’s your favorite hat?

My current favorite is a new crazy bird hat, a superb gift from Librarian Jim Worthington. I cannot stop laughing when I wear it because the birds’ wings flap on springs. Someone told me that she could not take me seriously in this hat, and I like this idea of not being taken too seriously.

In addition to being a poet, you’re a traveling speaker and teacher. How many times a year do you fly?

I try not to fly too frequently as I love being in my nest with my nest mates, but I do take three or four sky-trips each year.

Gull stares at the sea. What do you stare at when you are waiting for inspiration to strike?

Sometimes I stare out my window and sometimes into deep nothingness. Sometimes I stare at my empty paper and sometimes into my own head.

Thank you to my friend-with-the-beautiful-bird-name-Robyn for inviting me to your blog home today. I am a big fan of your work. xo, a.

Thank YOU, Dear Amy, for lighting on a branch over here this week to spread your sunshine!

For more great poetry sure to have you soaring, wing it on over to Amy’s home turf, The Poem Farm, where she happens to be our gracious host ringing in National Poetry Month today. Her blog is also celebrating its sixth anniversary this week. I’m sure there are still some cake crumbs around… (Which, by the way, Mr. Cornelius might find as he visits blogs for Jama’s roundup of National Poetry Month special events here, including links the 2016 Kidlit Progressive Poem organized by Irene.)


  1. April 1, 2016 1:14 AM EDT
    Robyn! I am giggling to see your KITTY reading this book. Perhaps it should be titled EVERY DAY PREY today. Actually, your Lance looks just like our Fiona. Thank you tons for having me here today, and big hugs for this, the start of Poetry Month. xxx
    - Amy Ludwig VanDerwater
  2. April 1, 2016 8:08 AM EDT
    The feline birder & the fabulous bird hat on creative Amy LV are enough to be chirping about. But then - this extraordinary Q/A visit!! So much goodness to sing about here. Appreciations to you both! HPM! HPM
    - jan godown annino
  3. April 1, 2016 8:26 AM EDT
    I agree with Amy, we shouldn't take anyone too seriously--especially not ourselves!

    Love that your cat reads, or at least knows how to improvise a blind!
    - Diane Mayr
  4. April 1, 2016 9:46 AM EDT
    Amy, So fun to kick off NPM with YOU! Thanks for playing along and thanks for hosting today. :0)

    Jan, Happy Poetry Month! Thanks for flying by today. Here's hoping your April brims with inspiration! XO

    Diane, an improvised blind - Ha! That goes more with his personality, for sure. ;0)
    - Robyn Black
  5. April 1, 2016 9:49 AM EDT
    Did your kitty need a snack after reading EVERY DAY BIRDS?! Thanks for the fun, bird-themed extra credit questions. It's always lovely to learn more about our favorite chicks! :-)
    - Keri Collins Lewis
  6. April 1, 2016 11:45 AM EDT
    Thanks, Keri - you're one of MY favorite chicks! Happy Poetry Month - :0)
    - Robyn Black
  7. April 1, 2016 12:17 PM EDT
    I love the picture of your cat salivating over those beautiful illustrations. Which page? So many birds, so little time... We have a neighbor whose cat was such a good birder that she dented the local population. The neighbor hung a mousepad (gray foam) around her cat's neck, and it bounced and threw off the cat's aim. The bird population has rebounded. Thankfully. And the cat is hilarious with its floppy bib.
    - Brenda at friendlyfairytales
  8. April 1, 2016 12:49 PM EDT
    That is the hungriest looking cat I've ever seen. Thanks for the fun interview, Robyn and Amy!
    - Buffy Silverman
  9. April 1, 2016 2:30 PM EDT
    Brenda - what a story! thanks for sharing. Well, good for the birds. Thanks for coming by!

    Hi, Buffy - the only kinds of birds he has access to, seeing as he's an indoor kitty. Woe to the poor anole who slips into the front screened porch, however. I try to make sure the coast is clear before letting him out there, but there has been the occasional casualty. Thanks for the visit!
    - Robyn Black
  10. April 1, 2016 3:02 PM EDT
    Love the expression on Lance's face! Is he working for minimum wage? What a fun interview. Enjoyed hearing more from Amy about her lovely new book. Thanks, both of you. :)
    - jama
  11. April 1, 2016 3:40 PM EDT
    Thanks for the fly-by, Jama! Well, Lance thinks he's royalty, so he doesn't much concern himself with monetary details. He just expects to be waited on. ;0)
    - Robyn Black
  12. April 1, 2016 6:18 PM EDT
    THAT HAT! So perfect!! An excellent interview, you two.
    - Doraine Bennett
  13. April 1, 2016 7:24 PM EDT
    I wrote of birds, especially Amy's, today, too, Robyn, but loved your "extra" Q & A with Amy, & that we got to see that fabulous hat. I do love Amy's book, & you gave it a great shout-out (caw-caw) today. The picture of your cat looking so intently makes me wonder, what does he really see? Thanks for a lovely post.
    - Linda Baie
  14. April 1, 2016 7:25 PM EDT
    Hi, Doraine - isn't THAT HAT the best? I had no idea she'd gotten it when I came up with the question following her Chickadee line. Serendipity! Thanks for swinging by.
    - Robyn Black
  15. April 1, 2016 7:37 PM EDT
    Thanks for coming by, Linda - I haven't made many rounds yet and look forward to your post, as always! Glad we're all "twittering" about these wonderful birds. (And, Lance likes to keep us guessing....!)
    - Robyn Black
  16. April 2, 2016 9:53 AM EDT
    I'm in love this this perfectly birdy interview! I'm looking forward to reading Amy's book. I know I'll love it because Amy has such a way with words.

    Thanks, Robyn and Amy :-)
    - Penny Parker Klostermann
  17. April 2, 2016 10:09 AM EDT
    I think Lance is deciding what from this new cookbook you're going to make him for lunch! Such a lovely write-up, Robyn— I really enjoyed the Q&A.
    - Michelle Heidenrich Barnes
  18. April 2, 2016 1:50 PM EDT
    Love this interview with its references to bird behaviors. The hat is something else! Very appropriate for school visits--when you fly somewhere, perhaps you send it on ahead, on its own?
    - Violet N.
  19. April 2, 2016 2:07 PM EDT
    Thank you for helping us get to know Amy a little better! I, too, giggled at your cat reading her book!
    - Mary Lee Hahn
  20. April 2, 2016 4:05 PM EDT
    Penny, thank you for visiting, and I know you'll love the book! :0)

    Howdy, Michelle - Hahaha! Poor kitty, living with a vegetarian and a vegan in the house... but he does get fishy cat food from Petsmart.

    Ha, Violet - that's hilarious. Accessories that can fly themselves!

    Mary Lee, thanks for coming over. And glad to make you giggle!
    - Robyn Black
  21. April 3, 2016 1:49 PM EDT
    You and all the other interviewers are getting me thinking about how revealing and interesting certain kinds of questions can be. Your exchanges here with Amy are a kind of Q&A poetry form...have I got you thinking now, too?
    - Heidi Mordhorst
  22. April 3, 2016 2:18 PM EDT
    I can only imagine why your kitty was so engaged by Amy's book!
    - Liz
  23. April 3, 2016 3:27 PM EDT
    Thanks for coming by, Heidi! Glad you enjoyed. I wrote hundreds if feature stories back in my life B.C. (Before Children), and now in this new empty-nester season, I seem to like simplifying and downsizing, even interviews! ;0). I had fun with Irene in a similar vein recently. More to come!

    Liz, Ha! His facial expression is a wee bit sinister, methinks. Thanks for visiting!
    - Robyn Black
  24. April 3, 2016 8:00 PM EDT
    Terrific interview, Robyn & Amy! My students and I adore Every Day Birds, but I'm not sure how my cat feels about it. :-)
    - Catherine @ Reading to the Core
  25. April 3, 2016 9:23 PM EDT
    Thanks, Catherine - :0) And, ha! I do wonder what the feline reviewers would say....
    - Robyn Black

Quick Clicks

bio, photos, interview links, etc.
Explore a poem or two or five....
Explore this genre of sparely crafted poetry which offers endless depth. Resources for students, teachers, and writers.
Author visits
In schools or other settings, Robyn shares her passion for writing and encourages creativity. Presentations for all age groups.
In addition to writing books, Robyn has sold her writing to major children's magazines.
A rhyming tale of a young boy's knightly adventure with an imagined dragon.
Nonfiction, interactive book on wolves featuring giant pop-up and tons of info!