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You can read more about our company at www.capstonepub.com.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween from everyone at Stone Arch Books!

Just because you work in an office doesn't mean you can't proudly sport an impressive costume on Halloween — if anything it makes the work day go faster! (Well, that and the excessive amount of candy floating around...) Check out some of the creative costumes our office has seen. What are you dressing up as this year?

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Music to our ears...

This week, I asked the fiction crew what they like to listen to as they write, design, edit, and work in general. The answers were surprisingly detailed and varied. So I thought, "Why not make this a reoccurring feature?" It is interesting to consider how one art form influences another.

First up is our editorial director and in-house writer, Michael Dahl. Michael recently created a whole new world for his upcoming series Troll Hunters. And this is what he listened to while he was there....

I needed to get my mind into a new universe, a world of light versus darkness, good versus evil, epic battles, close escapes, and otherworldly creatures. Sounds like Beethoven to me. I love big, sweeping, emotional, orchestral music, and Beethoven is perfect for that. I can put on his 5th or 6th or 9th Symphony. What power! And the music changes so much, just like a battle, first one side gains power, then the other, back and forth like ocean waves.

For some specific sections of the story:

The ending of Book 3, I listened to Widor’s
Toccata from his 5th Organ Symphony. Turn out the lights and listen to this at night! It sounds like something swirling and rising and soaring into the heavens. Inspiring and triumphant. Perfect for the action at the end of the final chapter.

For the encroaching battle in that same book, I listened to the weird, war-like song
O Fortune! from the eerie and dramatic Carmina Burana by Orff.

And when I was writing the chase scene at the end of Book 1, I put on John Williams’ soundtrack for
The Empire Strikes Back and selected The Asteroid Field. One of the coolest, most exciting pieces of music ever written, not to mention that it’s pure fun. You can see the asteroids rolling toward you, or in this case, the giant trolls at your heels! Run!

-Michael Dahl

Friday, October 21, 2011

Moving on Up

After working in an old, windowless space for almost 10 years, I am happy to report that we are relocating today! While I will miss some aspects of our current location (namely the beautiful campus), it is exciting to move to a newer building in a different part of town. Here's hoping the move will bring more creativity, comradery, and positive vibes for everyone.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

New York Comic Con

Last week was a crazy one. I was lucky enough to go to New York with a few co-workers to attend NY Comic Con, a huge convention that hosts the latest in comics, graphic novels, video games, toys, movies, television, publishers, you name it. There were more than 100,000 people packed into the Javitz Center in Manhattan, many of whom came dressed in elaborate costumes. Needless to say, it was a crazy experience.

Luckily, I was able to take a break from the madness while I was there and meet with Kate McMullan, the talented author behind our Myth-O-Mania series! Kate and I had a great lunch with our editorial director, Michael Dahl, and even discussed the possibility of adding to the Myth-O-Mania series in 2013 with a title about the Trojan War, tentatively titled, "Hit the Road, Helen!"

One of our other authors, John Sazaklis, also stopped by our booth at Comic Con. John has written several DC Super Pets books for us, and we were lucky enough to have him and legendary illustrator Art Baltazar do a signing at our booth!

John Sazaklis and the Stone Arch Books crew at the booth.

John Sazaklis and Art Baltazar signing DC Super Pets books at the booth.

Monday, October 17, 2011


We received great news last week that some of our books had won Moonbeam awards!

In the Picture Book-Preschool category, Crabby Pants by our very own Julie Gassman won a Gold! Roger the cat shouldn't be so crabby now that he has that gold medal.

In the Juvenile Fiction-Early Reader /1st Chapter Books category, Kylie Jean Blueberry Queen by Marci Peschke won a Gold! I think Miss Kylie Jean would be mighty pleased.

And last, but certainly not least, in the Pre-Teen Fiction-Historical/Cultural category, A Time For War, from our Bloodlines series, won a Silver. This set is amazing!

Congrats to all of the winners!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Sometimes Design Nature Takes Over

During every book production season, there are moments you will always remember and treasure until the end of time. Certain "Je n'est-ce pas" that make you hold your breath, like the moment before sending a cover to print, or even the day before you start designing a book you love. The excitement builds up and makes you push the project to a higher level. You are guided by so much conviction and truth that it gives you chills to work on it. Yes, I know it sounds funny, but I know people out there understand what I'm talking about.

This season, I had these sort of experiences while designing Fairieground, a series co-written by Beth and me. I've never had to design anything I've written before. This was a first, and it was definitely a challenge. It took many drafts, many hours of research, and many trials and errors. Yet, Beth and I are very proud with the outcome. It was a joint effort. Odessa Sawyer, our super talented illustrator, influenced the design and the book narratives with her gorgeous realistic illustrations.

The books come out this spring, but here is a little sneak peak of what the fairies in the Willow Forest are hiding from all of us. Enjoy!

Monday, October 10, 2011

A Heartwarming Letter

Below is a letter from a struggling reader to a librarian about Michael Dahl’s Library of Doom and Dragonblood books. And this is why working for a children’s book publisher is an incredible job!

Dear Mrs. Grigsby,

Thank you for helping me find some interesting books now I know that reading can be fun now!!! Now when I go in the library, I know what to pick out now. I found three fantasy books. When I go home I can read it to my little brother now and when he gets to middle school he'll want to read books a lot too. I'm learning a lot from the books I got from the library. Every one in my class loves their books!!! You lighten my life now it was dark when I hated reading. Like they say out with the old and in with the new!! For this I say thank you.



Friday, October 7, 2011

Ready for some mystery?

If you're anything like me, a crisp fall day always seems like the perfect time to curl up with a good mystery. Whether it's a mystery novel or a marathon of cheesy Halloween movies (I'm looking at you, ABC Family's "13 Nights of Halloween"), there's something about fall that just puts you in the mood. In that spirit, I'd like to introduce you to Echo and the Bat Pack! These adorable, funny chapter books revolve around a group of mystery-solving siblings and their pet bat, Echo, and provide just the right amount of spooky mystery. They're perfect for kids — or scary-story wimps like me! The books won't be available till this winter, but here's a sneak peak at the covers. Whether they're unearthing the truth behind a mysterious mummy at a local museum or discovering treasure in the graveyard, there's always another mystery to solve for Echo and the Bat Pack!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Kylie Jean is a Football Queen!

For many, fall means football. While personally, I am not a really a fan of the sport, Kylie Jean certainly is! In one of her new adventures, she is on a quest to prove that she is THE #1 fan. We love Kylie Jean because she is so positive and never gives up. I think young readers will love her too. The next four books in the Kylie Jean series will be out this winter. Go Team!

Monday, October 3, 2011

Do you like crafting?

As the weather turns cooler and the days shorter, many of us pick up our knitting, quilting, or, in my case, felt play food making. So it is fitting that October 7-16 is American Craft Week.

Did you know our Katie Woo books feature a fun craft in the back? Why not get a stack of them together and get ready for American Craft Week?