As the Book Release Nears…

On January 31, my picture book, MY BUSY GREEN GARDEN was released! (Okay, since you had to ask, I’ll show you the cover).


And I’m super-fortunate to have my first board book, MAMA LOVES YOU SO coming out in March (Well, if you insist, here’s that cover, as well!)


Now, before you go thinking this all about me shamelessly promoting my new books, let me say I do have a point. And it’s an important one. And important and fun part of the “book deal to publication” process. What is Terry, you eagerly ask?



I recently took a copy of my book to my local library to donate to their children’s library. I was also running a bunch of errands so as I left my house I grabbed the book. Then it suddenly occurred to me…ack! I needed to sign in. What to say? What to say?

Here’s my point. With each book, comes the opportunity to create an inscription that fits with the theme of the story. It’s one of the many fun things about a new book! When my easy reader, TAE KWON DO! I always signed it, “Get a kick out of reading!” When my picture book, BLACKBERRY BANQUET, came out I often signed it, “Reading is a banquet for the mind.”

Back to me running out of the house, I hadn’t given a single thought as to how I would sign my new books. Yeah…I’ve been kind of busy AND I’m out of practice! And not only that, I know it’s wise to have more than one inscription for your book. I recalled a school visit I did where, at an after-school signing, a parent walked up and set four of my books down in front of me. I thanked her and asked who to inscribe the books to. She said each book was for a different child in the family (including some cousins). It struck me that it would be a letdown if I signed them all the same, so on the spot I made up four different inscriptions (not my cleverest moment as it had been a long day and I was getting tired). Ever since then I always think of three theme-based inscriptions for each book.

My criteria for a good inscription is that: 1) it ties into the theme of the book, 2) is fairly short and hopefully clever, and 3) I print it out because many children don’t know how to read cursive writing (although I do write my name in cursive and I alter my signature so it differs from the one I use on legal documents).

For MY BUSY GREEN GARDEN, the story is about a developing chrysalis hidden in the garden. Thus, I’m thinking something like, “Reading gives you wings” as one possibility. But that’s just one, so I thought I’d throw it out there to see if I can solicit any other suggestions for anyone who wants some practice on creating inscriptions. Also, I’d love to hear your own clever inscriptions!

Any suggestions?


PierceHeadshotUCLA (2)About Terry Pierce…

Terry writes picture books, easy readers and board books and is whittling away at a middle-grade adventure novel. She lives in the California desert but avoids the summer heat by retreating to Mammoth Lakes every summer to hike, bike, write and dip her head in high mountain sky. She’s a Vermont College of Fine Arts graduate and teaches online children’s writing courses for UCLA Extension (go Bruins!).



Filed under Book signing, Writing

12 responses to “As the Book Release Nears…

  1. I like “Reading gives you wings!” If you want something different you could alternate with “Nature is amazing!”

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Christina Uss

    “Reading gives you wings” is perfect. How are you at simple sketches? Maybe for variety you can develop a quick ladybug, chickadee, inchworm, or butterfly and you can put it next to your signature? (One of my fave adult authors signed a bunch of books for me with these hilarious horse sketches, and I treasure them.)

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Carleen M. Tjader

    I received your beautiful picture book in my mail and love both the book and your inscription! I like that you added, “So soar!” Pe


  4. Carleen M. Tjader

    I was typing “perfect,” when I accidentally hit send! Me, not so perfect!


  5. Reblogged this on Terry Pierce and commented:

    Today on EMU’s Debuts, I talk about the fun task of creating an inscription.


  6. Great idea to have more than one inscription in mind! Thanks! And congratulations!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Debbi. Yes, you never know when you’re going to need multiple inscriptions and why not have them ready, rather than having to “think on your feet” at the end of a long day 😉


  7. mariagianferrari

    I like to do the same, and “Reading Gives You Wings” hits all the right notes!! Congrats on your books, Terry! 🙂 And I love Christina’s idea about a simple bug–that would be so cute!

    I have been printing my name (since my signature is highly illegible) 😉 I usually sign with a heart & a pawprint (since all of my books thus far feature canines, plus one assorted feline)

    Liked by 1 person

    • I love the heart and pawprint, Maria. And kids get SO excited if you doodle a little picture. For one book, I sketched a funny cat face (pet joke book) and kids would ask if I was an illustrator (so funny to me!). But then I kind of got away from drawing because my cat face was too detailed and it was taking me forever when I had a lot of books to sign. That’s why I’m so glad Christina mentioned it to me. I had forgotten about doing that. Now I just have to keep it simple!


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