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On Choosing Hope

Updated: May 15, 2020



Social Distancing.


Economic Uncertainty.

Worry for our loved ones.

It's all enough to cause some major stress and anxiety.

But I choose hope.

I'm not trying to tell you that your fears are invalid or that you should be happy-go-lucky through all of this. But I do hope that you can find hope in all of this.

I find that motivation makes a big difference in my life. What is the driving force behind my choices? Why do I do what I do? In the last couple of weeks, I've learned that if our actions in the midst of this pandemic are motivated by hope instead of fear, we will find happiness and healing amidst the difficulties.

And I'm not talking about the passive-can't-do-anything-so-I-sure-hope-things-work-themselves-out kind of hope. I'm talking about an active, expectant kind of hope... the kind of hope that we know that things are going to be okay if we do what's being asked of us. If we come together to make the difference.

I self-isolate and social distance not for fear of contracting the virus, but because I hope that doing so will flatten the curve, stop the spread, and save even just one life.

I skipped our spring break trip because I hope that we can make a difference and stop spreading this thing beyond borders. And I hope for one epic trip when all of this is done.

I suddenly home school because I hope that our teachers will be protected and healthy. I hope that my little ones will feel some sense of normalcy and even increased love through all this. I hope that they will be able to see friends again soon.

I keep writing even though my drafts are crummy and my focus is shot because I hope to create something of beauty, something that will make me laugh, and something that will take me out of the stress of it all. Plus, we need good stories now more than ever.

I taught my almost-5-year-old about the importance of flattening the curve because I hope she will understand why we have to postpone her birthday party. When I told her that bad news, she gave me a big hug and said "It's okay, Mommy. We have to do our part to not spread the sickness." And yes, I cried. If that's not the perfect example of hope, I don't know what is.

I call my grandparents instead of visit them because I hope that they won't come anywhere near this virus. I hope that a month or so of distance will bless us with years more of memories.

Mostly, I hope that every single one of us will do the hard things now. That we will stay home, stay healthy, and create a miracle.

I hope. I do everything I can do be the difference. And I wait.

Now, all that being said... there are moments that I'm sure we'll all go crazy. For example, we were in the midst of a big remodel with all of this started... so right now, our living room, family room, and kitchen are torn apart and on hold for the forseable future... so our liveable space is super limited. But we get outside in the backyard for hours every day and we mostly make it work. Until we don't. Ha! In times like that, we all need something to look forward to. That's why I'm thrilled to offer one more moment of HOPE to my lovely picture book writing community.

The Coronavirus Critique Giveaway came together incredibly fast based on wonderfully generous individuals! I am beyond thrilled to tell you that we have 37 critique donations to give away this week!

Tomorrow, Tuesday the 23rd, the list of donors will be revealed. I hope you will all take the time to follow them and thank them for their generosity!

Thursday, the 26th through Saturday the 28th, the giveaway will go live on twitter.

Winners will be announced here and on Twitter on Monday the 30th.

I hope that this gives us all something wonderful and exciting to look forward to. Help me spread the word, and let me know...

How are you choosing hope during this time of uncertainty?

Meet Kailei Pew

Kailei believes in books. She believes in imaginative play. She believes in having fun, getting messy, and being silly with her kids. Thus For Little Readers was born.​ Kailei also writes picture books and is currently seeking representation. She loves creating books that bring children and parents together. Kailei hopes that her own books will one day be featured in her blog. ​Prior to staying home with her children and writing picture books, Kailei worked as a reading teacher and middle school mentor. She was a 2019 Write Mentor Mentee and a finalist in Susanna Leonard Hill's 2019 Holiday Writing Contest.



Mar 26, 2020

Ps As a teacher your words hit home! Thank you too, for the generosity of those donating their time and effort to provide critiques!


Mar 26, 2020

This is an amazing, hope-filled idea! It's such a positive effort to bring the spirit of "hope" to our writing community!

So many emotions...all at the same time! Thank you, thank you❣


I love the idea of spreading hope Kailei! In all that we do, in all that we can control, and in every way imaginable. I teach 3rd grade and miss my students immensely. But their hope is my hope. And as we navigate this surreal time, it is my hope to be a blessing to others. So, thank you, and the many gracious agents/writers/donors, for sending this ray of sunshine and giving people something to take their mind off of the crazy.


Mar 24, 2020

You have a great attitude. Thank you for helping others during this stressful time. Thanks, too, to all those who are donating critiques. Picture book writers are so generous.


Ana Siqueira
Ana Siqueira
Mar 24, 2020

I choose hope too. I choose to see this as a time to be with my family, to keep writing and to pray for those under bad circumstances.

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