Today, I’m happy to introduce you to Debbie from Rainbows Within Reach.
OH HAPPY DAY!! Today’s my birthday!
As a special present and a unique way to celebrate I’ve been given the spotlight here at “Growing Book by Book!” What fun. What delight! I have the honor of contributing a guest post today. Thank you for this opportunity, Jodie! It’s a thrill to introduce myself to new readers. Let’s get this party started! Oh yeah!
|Debbie Clement Three Picture Books|
Let me tell you a little about myself. I am the author and illustrator of three picture books based on songs that I have written and recorded.
Let’s start with the way-back machine: I grew up in a home that appreciated reading and all things book. While we may not have had all the extra bells and whistles of the time — we ALWAYS had library cards and that was my magic carpet to the wider world. We read together as a family. That’s me in my mommy’s lap. From the very beginning, we were read to. Here’s the evidence — from before color had been invented!
I leap from my childhood and the family album to my appreciation for all things in the world of the Arts. This is my seventeenth year as a ‘music-lady.’ I’ve written over a hundred original songs for children onto six albums. From there I’ve added my latest layer of becoming an ‘Author/Illustrator’ in my joyous appreciation for the open-ended exploration of the Arts. My first picture book is featured below. It’s entitled,“You’re Wonderful” and the text of the book follows the lyrics of my song by that name. As you may have guessed, I’ve made the illustrations from fabric as small quilts. Sixteen small quilts turns into a 32 page picture book.
|“You’re Wonderful” by Debbie Clement|
Its an honor to be invited to make school + library visits. I get to come for a day — or sometimes two — and my plan is to share my ‘story’ with the children in the room. My goal is to encourage all readers. Inspire them. Delight them. Sing with them. And yes, explore my appreciation for color in the midst of my music + Art. I have spoken to Preschool kiddos all the way through to mature eighth graders!
These little projects of mine have taken me on some amazing adventures. Can I have a whooop-whoooop?
|Long Island, NY Collaborative Kindergarten Project|
My favorite thing on earth during my school visits is to bring my original quilts and we compare them to the presentation of the images in the books. When the students see and compare my quilts and the open books they *finally* connect the dots that I’m the one who made the book!
Often times the children have created art projects in response to my work. The students are so proud to show me what they’ve created in response to my ideas. My favorite part of what I do is inspiring others! It’s a special treat when the school’s Art teacher coordinates my visit.
My story is a compelling one. I am the poster child for ‘do-what-you-love and amazing opportunities will present themselves’. I could ramble on and on about:
- my two European adventures to present concerts and presentations to the children of our troops stationed abroad PLUS my day in Reggio, ITALY
- my other two books and classroom responses to those works
- taking out a loan on our house to get my first book into your hands
- being a two-time Breast Cancer survivor with a zest for living
- my quest to get my own blog connected to a wider world
- my travels giving keynotes and workshops across the country
***Just last weekI gave my first-ever-NATIONAL-keynote for the National Head Start Association. It was the thrill of a lifetime. I have written extensively about the ‘process’ of staying true to your dream and working LONG&HARD to bring it to fruition. I’d highly recommend you pop over to my blog and read my pep-talk for creative endeavors.
|LUV me my Pinterest!|
As a visual learner I’m absolutely wild about growing my Pinterest collection, where 76,500++ of your peers have already got a jump on you and my ever-growing pin-boards! I have over 20,000 ideas pinned for your pin-spiration. HURRY!
My newest evolution is to be offering my songs in digital download format in zipped files with Mp3 format and pdf’s of support materials. You can find those immediate download products over at Teachers Pay Teachers.
Let me close by offering an opportunity for you to look over my shoulder at a kindergarten school visit in Amityville, NY as we started off our time together in their school gym. Thank you for helping me celebrate my day. Keep reading. Keep creating. Keep inching forward toward your dreams.
— Debbie —
***If you ever order from my website, please enter the promo code“great” and receive 10% off your order.
Every little bit helps, right?