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For the last five days, I was three hours behind my Greenwillow cohorts in green, beautiful Portland, Oregon. Over the weekend, I participated in the SCBWI-Oregon chapter’s spring conference (Hi, new SCBWI friends!). But for a couple days before that, I visited with former Greenwillow designer-turned-author/artist, Vicki Jamieson and her husband (Hi, Vicki & Herm!).

Because Vicki has her priorities straight, the first thing we did was go for milkshakes. Where I just happened to sit on a stool that JFK also once sat on. How do I know this? Well…

I swear, I only read this after I sat down. Clearly, I think just like JFK did when it comes to choosing counter stools.

And then we went to Klickitat Street, where Ramona Quimby lived in Beverly Cleary’s novels. Vicki’s husband called us nerds for being excited about this, but he stayed in the car reading a comic book. You decide who the bigger nerd is.

Vicki on Klickitat Street!

Then we went to see the Ramona statue in Grant Park.

Ramona Quimby, Ribsy, and Henry Huggins statues

Me and Ramona. We're almost the same size!

The next day, we stopped by the Portland Library, where they have this Beverly Cleary ala Han Solo-in-carbonite plaque/bust/statue(?).


And, of course, I had to visit the famed Powell’s City of Books. It lives up to the hype!


And then it was time to leave Vicki and begin the conference, where I taught a YA workshop with Emily Whitman, author of Radiant Darkness and Wildwing. Emily and I had a great time together at the conference, so hopefully the writers in our workshops did, too!

Me & Emily during the conference

Vicki wanted to take me to the gorge and on a scenic drive to see some of the places the Twilight movie was filmed, and Emily told me about more tasty places to eat that I didn’t have time for. So I guess I’ll have to go back soon!


  1. Herm says he is suing for public defamation and libel. You’d better hope that Greenwillow has deep pockets, because we are about to empty Lilly’s Purple Plastic Purse. BTW, great to see you, Martha!

  2. Emily Whitman says:

    It was wonderful having you here in Portland. But three hours behind, us? No, you’re three hours too fast!

  3. I see Portland didn’t disappoint on it’s rainy reputation, sorry about that. Here you were in my own backyard and I missed the conference! It looks like you were in great hands and had a good time despite the weather though.

  4. You and Emily gave amazing and inspiring talks at the conference this weekend. Thank you so much for visiting us here in the Pacific Northwest. :-)

  5. cindy says:

    loved this post and all the fotos as well!
    i hope to visit one day…

  6. mwt says:

    Okay, I’ve never thought before about what it would be like to have my characters made into life sized bronze statues, but seeing Ramona, I am thinking it would be way cool. A (statue?) bust of myself emerging from the carbonite would probably freak me out.

  7. Virginia says:

    I am currently reading RAMONA THE PEST to my daughter. The dogs listen, too. It’s the best.
    A Gen statue, of course, would also be good.

  8. mwt says:

    Ooooh, how long until you read her The Thief and the dogs start stealing things?

  9. Martha Mihalick says:

    The most appropriate place for a Gen statue would be balancing along the edge of a roof, right? That would be hard to pose for pictures with.

  10. […] in May, I had a lovely trip to Portland, Oregon, where I pretended to be one of the Quimbys for a few days. Last week, I was back in […]

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