Award Round-up for First Dinosaur

The First Dinosaur

Hello All!

It's been awhile since I've posted here, but I needed to share some very nice things have been said (and been awarded) to my book, The First Dinosaur. Just in the last month, it was named :

–Kirkus Best of 2019
–A National Science Teacher Award for best books of 2019 (I'm REALLY proud of this one)
–An Orbus Pictus Recommended Title
–Golden Kite Honor Award
–and as you can see from the image, it won the Cybil Award for Best Middle-Grade Non-Fiction

Midwest Book Reviews loves The Absolutely Positively No Princesses Book

The Absolutely, Positively No Princesses Book

Man, when you come up with a long title for a book, it seems like a lot of fun. But then, you suddenly find yourself typing it over and over again for titles of articles like this one. Now I kinda yearn for an acronym to save me time. I guess the acronym for this would be TAPNPB. Or maybe TAPPB. Or maybe I can create an acronym for the acronym and simply call it APP.

Hey, Y'all! I'm in Entertainment Weekly!

One Day a Dot
Book Ref

Due to great laziness, there are looooong gaps between me posting updates. However, every once and a while enough coolness comes along that simply forces me to alert the world:

I'm in EW this week! They did a cover reveal of my picture book that will be coming out in Spring 2018: One Day A Dot.

Here's the link:

Saturday is here! The reviews are in....

Coutndown to Saturday
Book Ref

Hey y'all!

So Saturday is here. It's real. It exists, and some reviews are in. I thought I'd just leave there here on the table:

Booklist said:

"Bloch’s childlike cartoons cultivate a chaotic atmosphere well matched by Lendler’s playful story of an egocentric child in a carefree world. The contrast between the character’s uncomplicated (but havoc-wreaking) mindset and the weariness of the parents is uproarious. A bittersweet note closes this lively celebration of Saturdays."

Moments From My Week

–That moment 50 pages into a book when I realize I don’t like it and I want to stop reading but I also think I might be betraying literature and literacy if I put it down.

–That moment when I read a friend’s manuscript and laugh and think, “Crap, that’s WAY better than anything I’ve written this month.”

–That moment in my school visits when the kids realize Romeo & Juliet are about to die and suddenly they get REALLLLLY quiet.

Presenting My Next Picture Book...

Little Sid, Xanthe Bouma, Ian lendler, Buddha, picture book
Book Ref

Hey y’all!

It’s been…uhh…a long time since I last posted, basically because I’m lazy and the thought of dealing with HTML makes me break out in a cold sweat. On the upside, this ensures that when I do post it’s for a darn good reason.

Today’s Darn Good Reason: I am able to proudly announce that my next picture book will be Little Sid: Tales of a Tiny Buddha, and that it will be published by First Second (aka The Greatest Graphic Novel Publisher Of All Time)!

Author brings Shakespearean plays to life with graphic novels in visit to Kingsbury High School

Ian at school

Alright, so I'm sure you're all getting sick of me talking about my UK trip (see previous posts). And my hair is WAAAAY funky in this picture, but I got to talk to my sister-in-law's old high school, which I thought was very cool. Plus, I got a little write-up from them with tons of pictures showing me prowling the stage like some sort of primeval author/panther hybrid...only less panther-like. My movements were probably more of a scurry like an author/squirrel.

Here's the link below:

Notes From The UK (Part 2)

UK joy

Here’s a story I like to tell from the trip: I visited one prep school that was the fanciest school I have ever seen in my life. It was a castle. Not figuratively. Literally. It was built for a 15th-century Earl. (The picture above is not a stock photo. I took it before my talk.) So anyway…

I did my normal talk. And after my talk, I always ask if anyone has questions and I usually chat to kids for about 15-20 minutes about stuff. This is actually my favorite part because it lets me see the world from their perspective.

Notes From the UK (Part I)

Ian Lendler stratford zoo Macbeth author tour

I just got back from England…and boy are my arms tired! Am I right, folks? Hello? Anyone? Sigh…

So…I just spent two weeks touring around the UK, talking to various schools about Shakespeare. Yes, that’s right. English schools paid an American to talk about Shakespeare. The phrase “bringing coals to Newcastle” comes to mind.

I don’t have the energy or discipline to create a well-crafted essay about the whole experience, so instead I’ll simply offer a few random thoughts on the experience.

Stormageddon: The true story of what happens when one writer took on a Pineapple Express and lived to kvetch about it.

Creative uses for beer coolers in a flood.

See that picture up above? That’s me during the storm yesterday. And sadly, that’s not a cooler full of beer, it’s full of rain-water. Rain-water which I’m bailing and dragging out to the street. At this point in the storm, I’ve had to get creative.

From this angle, the ground looks dry and fine, but if you turned the camera the other way, you’d see my entire backyard full of water about to enter my house.

Sneek Peek: Romeo & Juliet Cover Art

Stratford Zoo: Romeo and Juliet

Howdy Folks!

I’ve been getting one question a lot recently: “Are you a big fat liar?”

To put this in context, they are not asking me whether I murdered a man or not (on that, I please the 5th). No, they are simply asking about the final page of The Stratford Zoo Presents Macbeth.

In case you don’t remember (or haven’t read it…for shame!), the final page features a peacock writing up a Coming Attractions billboard for the Stratford Zoo’s next performance: Romeo & Juliet.

Macbeth: The Yearbook (Lady Macbeth)

Lady Macbeth

Lady Macbeth

Voted: Most Likely To Run A Presidential Campaign

Hobbies: Cleanliness; nagging; calling on the gods to make her a man; knitting doilies

School Play Credits: Blanche Dubois in Street Car Named Desire; The Little Engine in The Little Engine That Could Kill You All

Typical Small Talk: “…The babe that milks me- I would, while it was smiling in my face, Have pluck'd my nipple from his boneless gums And dash'd the brains out had I so sworn as you Have done to this.”

4 Things I Learned When I Wrote Macbeth


For many people today, Macbeth is a bit academic. It’s either “that thing I had to read in high school” or “that really expensive show that that really famous actor is doing to show that he can really really act.”

But for me, Macbeth is the play that I co-wrote with Shakespeare. Okay, technically I just adapted it into a graphic novel for kids, but by sticking my head under the hood and seeing how the play’s engine worked, I learned some interesting things along the way.

1. Even Shakespeare needs help sometimes.

Macbeth -vs- The Marshmallow

Getting kids to understand Macbeth

When I tell people that I’ve written a graphic novel of Shakespeare’s Macbeth for kids, most people say, “Macbeth?! You mean the horribly bloody play by Shakespeare? How on earth can you do that for kids?”

Quite frankly, a lot of Shakespeare’s work is a bit tricky to translate for the younger set.

How Much Is Your Love Worth? Ask Your Vet...


How much is your love is worth?

Your first answer is, of course, “My love has no dollar value. My love is priceless. Love is one of the great inventions of this wondrous thing we call the universe.”

But the real answer is, “Ask you vet.” Because your vet knows how much your love is worth down to the penny.

For instance, I have a friend who paid $6,000 to give his dog a taint-hole. Yes, a taint-hole.

3 Things Clash Of Clans Has Taught Me About Being A Dad (Answer: I suck at it.)

Clash of Titans

Disclaimer: This may or may not make any sense to you unless you’ve played Clash of Clans. Which you shouldn’t, because it’s a major time-burn. But if I’m too late and you’ve already been pulled in, then here are a few things I’ve learned from playing this game with my son.

Advice To My Children In The Event Of My Death

Floss, when no one is looking. Seriously. Sometimes those chunks go flying.

Dance, when no one is looking. Then, if no one was looking, videotape it, upload it onto youtube, use the ensuing traffic to establish a platform from which you can leverage yourself into a six-figure deal for a reality show based on your dancing at which no one was looking.


First internet picture

What to write for my first post? Well, I’m not quite sure what to say for myself except “Welcome!” I probably won’t be a frequent blogger but I will post from time to time when I run across something of interest.

For instance, my first post got me thinking about other “firsts,” and I thought you might find them interesting.

First Picture Ever Posted To The Internet