Sandcastles and Dragons

This past Saturday, August 6, was a cloudy/overcast day in Amagansett, NY. Nevertheless, the East Hampton Sandcastle Contest had 88 groups enter the sand sculpting competition and spectators swarmed the area as if it were a sun-shiny day.

Copies of When a Dragon Moves In (written by Jodi Moore, illustrated by Howard McWilliam) were among prizes for select winners.  I guess it really is true… “if you build a perfect sandcastle, a dragon will move in.”

Thank you to Rossetti Perchik and the Clamshell Foundation for all of their cross-promotional efforts.

Summer Reads for Kids

With at least one more month of beaching it this summer, check with Bianca Schulze’s post on suggested reads. When a Dragon Moves In  tops the list!

From When a Dragon Moves In, written by Jodi Moore, illustr. by Howard McWilliam

Dragon visits Kidz ‘N Kastles Sandcastle Competition at US Open

The Kidz ‘N Kastles Sandcastle Competition, sponsored and organized by the U.S. Open Sandcastle Committee and the Imperial Beach Optimists Club, took place Saturday, July 23, in Imperial Beach, CA.  Khari Johnson reported on the event in the Imperial Beach Patch.


  • About 20 teams competed in 15’x 15′ plots of sand; all team members were 12 years of age or under
  • Decorations were permitted but had to be biodegradable materials or things found at the beach, like seaweed or seashells. Food coloring was also permitted.
  • Each team of five was accompanied by an adult supervisor who was not allowed to assist in the construction of sand castles or sculptures.
  • Top placing teams won a trophy, a $10 savings account from North Island Credit Union, a gift card for the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center, a free haircut at the Hair Force Barber Shop, and a copy of the book When a Dragon Moves In, a story about a little boy, his sandcastle and a dragon.
  • Awards were presented by Miss Imperial Beach Meghan Sherman.

Congratulations to the winning teams in each category:

Sand Sculptures

1st Wave Riders
2nd Daialya Cub Pack #306
3rd Simply Awesome


1st Sand Eggos Cub Scout Pack #306
2nd Griffins
3rd Sand Warriors

Creatures of the Sea

1st Speed Demons
2nd Sea Dragons 2
3rd Hammer Heads
From When a Dragon Moves In, written by Jodi Moore, illustr. by Howard McWilliam

When a Dragon Moves In to BookFest PA, a first-hand report by author Jodi Moore

Jodi Moore signing copies of When a Dragon Moves In at BookFest PA

I’m one of these people who just can’t wait to bite into the chocolaty center of a Tootsie Pop, the creamy middle of a sugary doughnut, the gooey core of a caramel bar. So imagine my reaction when I was offered the chance to participate in BookFest PA, a book festival tucked into the heart of The Central PA Festival of the Arts. Sweet!

And what do you get when you combine arts enthusiasts with avid readers? Some quite extraordinary people who, while varying in age, background, and interest, have come together to celebrate the power of the imagination.

Nothing short of a little slice of heaven.

Between 10 am and 5 pm on July 16, thousands of folks browsed the BookFest PA tent to share words and stories, and to meet some very talented writers and illustrators. (Yes, I was admittedly fan-gushy to be in such lovely company.) I’m thrilled to say that Dragon “moved into” many a new, loving home that day! There is nothing more heart-squishy than watching a child hug your book.

In addition, I was honored to present When a Dragon Moves In during a late morning story time inside Schlow Library. Our young audience became artists themselves, drawing pictures of their own “perfect sandcastles” – which I‘m sure are now proudly displayed on refrigerators across the nation! Each child received the highly regarded “Dragon” sticker for his/her work, as well as a bookmark. And of course, the Dragon himself made an appearance!

A standing ovation – and a ton of thanks – to the organizers and volunteers of this amazing event. This was only the second year for BookFest PA, but with the success and smiles it brought to so many, I know I’m not the only one looking forward to many more!

Summer’s In Full Swing, Dragons Are Moving In

Jodi Moore, author of When a Dragon Moves In (Flashlight Press 2011, illustrated by Howard McWilliam), talks about her first picture book in an interview on WHVL TV, State College, PA. It aired April 2011.

Win a free When a Dragon Moves In book through NYJB

The New York Journal of Books offers book giveaways through its website.

This week When a Dragon Moves In (author Jodi Moore, illustrator Howard McWilliam) is up for grabs. There is a bit of information they would like from you first of course, to be entered into the drawing. Click here for the giveaway page and good luck.

Fiery debut for Dragon

When a Dragon Moves In (Jodi Moore & Howard McWilliam) has made its fiery debut and is an INDIE NEXT KIDS’ PICK (Inspired Recommendations for Kids from Indie Booksellers), summer 2011.

Read all the way through this exciting post to see what a few real kids have to say about this tale.

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