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July 3, 2013


Nina Ignatowicz at her desk.On the shelf behind her my Babas thanking her
for all she did for them and me as Editor, Mentor and Friend. 

Photo with permission/Joan Sandin. 

Just out of art school in 1967.
Off to NYC portfolio in hand.
First stop Harper & Row Publishers.
The top of the heap. 
Publisher of Sendak and Arnold Lobel.
49 East 33rd St, NY, NY 10016.
First meeting, with Nina Ignatowicz,
Children's Book Editor.
Russian accent.
Attractive, sturdy, blond hair, bemused smile, direct manner.
Positive, encouraging.
Asked for samples of several portfolio pieces.
Would like to see more.
A statement I took seriously and she may have
begun to regret as I continued to return for 12 years
with new work, eventually some published by other publishers.

Then I sent her my BABA EDIS'S SOUP and she
offered me my first contract as an Author as well as Illustrator.
Retitled by Charlotte Zolotow - TOO MANY BABAS.
The first of a memorable 1/2 dozen or so books with Harper.
Wonderful writers, Eleanor Coerr, Nancy Smiler Levinson,
Lee Bennett Hopkins. So many stories behind the stories.
Fondest memories.

Profoundly sad to learn Nina Ignatowicz passed away January 19, 2013.
Shall always remember her with deep appreciation and great affection.

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