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Books > Noises at Night

The Birth of Noises at Night
Illustrated by Bruce Whatley

book cover

While taking a little break from teaching in Wellesley, I was taking care of my first baby, Will. He was the inspiration for lots of my unpublished stories and for my first published picture book, Noises at Night. Will was two years old at the time, and we had moved into a new house in Stow, Massachusetts. The house had many new sounds that Will wasn’t used to: the hiss of the heater, the drip drop of the faucet, to name a couple. I sat next to Will on his bed (yup, he was out of his crib at an early age!) and told him my first version of Noises at Night to help him get back to sleep. Guess what? It worked! Will fell asleep and my first picture book idea was born!

award
In October 2007 Noises at Night won a
Mom's Choice award for most creative picture book.

Well, I went back to teaching, but kept on working on Noises as well as many other stories. It was after having my second child, Luke, that I decided to try writing full time. While at home, I wrote A Closer Look and Lemonade for Sale and sold them both to Rigby Publishing (now Harcourt Achieve!). I also wrote many educational articles for ParentsandKids newspaper. All the while, something was still bugging me about Noises! But what was it? My version of Noises at Night was rejected sooooo many times even after I re-wrote it and re-wrote it and re-wrote it. Publishers and editors loved it, but something wasn’t quite right. I suspected it was the meter (that’s the rhythm of the words and how parts of words have certain stresses ). I had joined a writing group in Wellesley, Massachusetts, led by children’s author, Jackie Greene, and kept working on my stories.

Elana

It’s a good thing that I met Susan Lubner, my co-writer, a few years later at Jackie’s writing group! We became fast friends. I noticed that Susan was so terrific with meter that I invited her to re-write Noises with me. I was so happy when she said, “Yes!” When we collaborated, Noises was re-born and we sent it out again…and again…and again! It was rejected soooo many times, until finally, our editor, Tamar Brazis of Abrams said, “We love it and we found a perfect illustrator, Bruce Whatley, who would like to illustrate your book!” So, that is how Noises at Night came to be.

Noises at Night was released on August 1, 2005. It is available at many bookstores including: Barnes and Noble, Amazon.com and many independent bookstores near you. If you're having trouble ordering Noises at Night, please contact Charlotte Dutton at c.dutton@abramsbooks.com or 212-519-1303.

Read more about Noises at Night here.

The Reading Tub

The Reading Tub recommends
Noises At Night

"Kids in early elementary still love bedtime stories. As they grow as readers, you can expand to include both picture and chapter books, as well as easy readers so they can share the fun of reading, too."

 

Unless otherwise noted, all illustrations are courtesy of Bruce Whatley