“Once you learn to read, you will be forever free.” — Frederick Douglas
Thanks to the Maryland Writers’ Association
I’d like to thank everyone in the Maryland Writers’ Association who worked on the 2017 Conference. The speakers were great, and I know that I learned a lot. Thanks again!
Thumper Will Soon Be on Bookshelves!
I’m happy to report that my novella, Thumper, or, Life on the Farm, will be published by 1st Ride Publishing later this year. In my latest book, a revolution is underway and a way of life is disappearing. Growing up on a small tobacco farm in Maryland in the 1960s, a boy faces challenges from his family and society. In the midst of this turmoil, a dog named Thumper barges into his life: an animal with the face of a hound, the legs of a dachshund, and a tail that can’t stop wagging.
Photo credit: David Illig
Reactions to The Elephant and the Bird Feeder:
Children’s Literature, one of the premier book reviewers serving schools and libraries across the country, recently praised The Elephant and the Bird Feeder as “a story of compassion and friendship.” The Delmarva Review, one of Maryland’s critically acclaimed literary magazines, included it in its section on “New Books by Regional Authors,” saying that all the books are “testimony to the continually evolving literary history of the Chesapeake and Delmarva region . . . which show the diversity of regional creative talent.” Thank you, Children’s Literature and The Delmarva Review!
Thank you to the Green Gables Elementary School in Lakewood, Colorado, for using The Elephant and the Bird Feeder in their after-school program! The book was chosen to celebrate National Elephant Appreciation Day, September 22, 2016.
Thanks to the MD/DE/WV Regional Chapter of SCBWI for their August 2016 interview with me. It’s great to be a member of such a friendly and professional organization! For a transcript of the interview, “Happy Book Birthday: Coffee and Conversation with Leona Illig,” just go to their website at https://aseraserburns.wordpress.com.
My children’s chapter book, The Elephant and the Bird Feeder, was published by 1st Ride Enterprises. It is available in print and on Kindle and Nook (ISBN 978-1-530740956). For members of SCBWI, it is also listed on SCBWI’s On-Line Bookstore. Enjoy!
Should I trust my enemy? Befriend a stranger? Believe the impossible? Three youngsters living in northeast Thailand—an elephant, a parrot, and a boy—must find answers to these questions. Their responses could determine their survival.
Book Reviews for Children’s Literature.
Current Book Projects
Emails from Dogs
First, there was a dog. Then there were many dogs—all shapes, sizes, colors, and breeds. But they all had the same mission: to cheer up their young friend Rory, whose mother had died. There was a problem, however. The dogs lived in Maryland. Rory lived in New Jersey. How were they going to talk to each other? For photographs of the actual dogs who star in this two-book series, see the
Emails from Dogs section.
Charmed City: Tales of Baltimore and Beyond
Baltimore—a city or a state of mind? In this collection of short fiction, diverse characters with their roots in Baltimore find themselves in strange and sometimes dangerous situations. From the Middle East to Asia, and from the 1800s to the distant future, the protagonists must use their intelligence, determination, and wit to survive some truly out-of-this world experiences. But why should anyone be surprised? Welcome to Baltimore, Hon!
Americans in post-war Laos must choose sides in a deadly game of cat and mouse.
Special Issues Reporter (Environmental), 2011—2014, League of Women Voters of Anne Arundel County
Publicist, 2011-2014, League of Women Voters of Anne Arundel County
Newsletter Editor, 2008—2009, League of Women Voters of Anne Arundel County