Ladybug Lil Wins An Award


Ladybug Lil Wins An Awar

Just learned that my picture book, The Ladybug Known as Lil, won the Bronze Award in the prestigious Royal Palm Literary Awards (RPLA) competition given by the Florida Writer’s Association (FWA). The 2019 awards were announced at FWA’s four-day annual conference in Altamonte Springs, Florida. 

The Royal Palm Literary Awards competition is a service of the Florida Writers Association established to recognize excellence in its members published and unpublished works while providing objective and constructive written assessments for all entrants.  I’ve had good results with this organization and the contest!

Chris Coward, RPLA chairperson, declared, “This year was the most competitive RPLA we’ve ever had,” In all, there were 513 qualified submissions in 28 adult genres and 5 youth genres, with published and unpublished entries considered separately.

The Ladybug Known as Lil, won the Bronze award for Unpublished Children’s Picture Books.  My other entry, Danny the Dragon, was a Finalist in the Published Children’s Picture Books.

Mouse in the Manager was a Finalist in the 2015 RPLA, and Tommie Turtle’s Secret was best Children’s Picture Book and Book of the Year in 2008. All three books have been endorsed by the American Dyslexia Association for easy reading for children.

In case you’ve forgotten the story of Ladybug Lil — Ladybug Lil, star singer at the Pumpkin Club, rides her roach through the night to find sheriff Bugaboo, and ride with the posse to save Pumpkin Town from the invasion of the dreaded Aphid Gang.

There is an extensive THINGS TO LEARN section with information about the insects in the story.  It’s a good introduction to entomology, the study of insects.

Visit for information about my award winning books.

14. Deputy Daddy

14.   Deputy Daddy

When I was very young, I liked to pretend I was an Indian, and try to walk silently through grass or in the barn. One day, “Indian Bobby” crept into the barn.  Stepping down into the cattle part of the barn, I carefully avoided walking on the planks because they would rattle.  As I approached the door leading to the big barn, I heard voices.  That’s strange, I thought, no one is working at the farm.  No one should be in the barn.

I peeked through the door.  No one was in sight, but the voices were coming from under the barn floorboards.  “Indian Bobby” carefully retraced his way out of the barn, and ran as fast as I could to the house.  I told Mom about the men hiding under the barn floor, and she called Daddy, who called the sheriff.  Daddy arrived first and got his 10 gauge shotgun, then followed the sheriff’s deputy to the barn as backup.

Daddy shared later that the deputy was skeptical of my story, especially when there was no one under the floor.  But, he condescended to climb the high ladder to look in the loft over the sheep shed.  Daddy laughed and told us that the deputy almost dropped his gun, trying to get it out when he saw the two men were there.

They had rifles stolen from the sport shop a half mile south of us the night before.  They were two young guys who had escaped from the medium security prison outside of Ionia the day before.   With no food, and getting dirty, and tired from running, they decided to give up peacefully.