A Visit to Lee & Low

When I graduated from college, a friend gave me a copy of Charlotte Zolotow’s SOMETHING IS GOING TO HAPPEN. It was a meaningful gift, because I had been studying children’s literature, and I love Zolotow. Her books always remind me of my childhood home, and the school librarian who set aside her books for me after I kept THE NEW FRIEND alarmingly long.

SOMETHING IS GOING TO HAPPEN popped into my head again today, not only because we are waiting for snow, but because Zolotow perfectly captured what it feels like to visit your publisher and see piles of proofs and endpapers and realize that your book, too, is a something that is going to happen. It is exciting in precisely the same way as waiting for snow.

Today I thought of Charlotte Zolotow, and I thought about José Martí, who one hundred and twenty-nine years ago almost to the day, wrote about the Blizzard of 1888 in his essay “Nueva York bajo la nieve.” Tomorrow may be the first storm to actually top Martí’s blizzard.

I hope that MARTÍ’S SONG FOR FREEDOM will bring Martí and Zolotow, two writers who shaped my childhood and my soul, a little closer together. I’m grateful for picture books, and grateful to be a part of one’s creation

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