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Hawaii Book & Music Festival 2013

Come see us at the annual
Hawaii Book & Music Festival!

Saturday, May 18 (10AM – 5PM)
Sunday, May 19 (10AM – 6PM)
Honolulu Hale Grounds

This year, our booth has moved and we’ll be right next to the Hawai‘i Council for the Humanities Pavilion, where all weekend long, authors and experts will talk about “Telling Lives” in a series of discussion panels centered on the theme of memoir and biography. Several of our own Watermark Publishing authors will be taking part on the panels, and if you’re interested in publishing your own memoir, come talk to us about our new imprint, Legacy Isle Publishing!

Our booth is located in the new “Hawaii Publishers Village” so you can shop not just our books, but the rest of the local publishers’ as well.  This is a wonderful opportunity to score great deals, support the Island publishing industry and discover new books from local authors! We already said “great deals” but we just can’t emphasize enough the fantastic bargains you’ll find on books! (Scroll down to the end of this post for a special coupon offer from us.)

Here’s a look at which of our authors will be taking part in the Festival and where you can find them:

2013SpeakersGov. Ben Cayetano
BEN: A Memoir from Street Kid to Governor
Sat., May 18 | 10AM
“Kiss & Tell — The Naked Truth”
Telling Lives Discussion Panel
Hawai‘i Council for the Humanities Pavilion

Makia Malo with Pamela Young & Jeff Gere
My Name is Makia: A Memoir of Kalaupapa
Sat., May 18 | 10AM
Talk-Story and Reading
ALANA Hawaiian Culture Pavilion

Andrew Catanzariti, illustrator
Wordsworth! Stop the Bulldozer!
Sat., May 18 | Noon
Children’s Book Read-Aloud
Illustrating Children’s Books Discussion
Keiki Read-Aloud Pavilion

Gail Miyasaki & Ted Tsukiyama (Hawaii Nikkei History Editorial Board)
Japanese Eyes, American Heart — Vol. 2
Voices from the Home Front in World War II Hawaii
Sat., May 18 | 3PM
“Living Memory — Honoring the Past”
Telling Lives Discussion Panel
Hawai‘i Council for the Humanities Pavilion

Tom Moffatt
Showman of the Pacific: 50 Years of Radio & Rock Stars
Sun., May 19 | 3PM
“Perfect Pitch — Telling Musical Lives”
Telling Lives Discussion Panel
Hawai‘i Council for the Humanities Pavilion

And, as promised, here’s a special savings coupon for you! Bring it to our booth on Saturday, May 18, or Sunday, May 19, and we’ll give you $10 off your $25 purchase. (Sorry, but the discount does not apply to purchases of our super bargain priced used books, and cannot be combined with other offers.)

HBMF2013CouponCan’t make it to the Festival? We’re sad to hear we won’t see you. But you can still get a 25% discount on our books by shopping online during the HBMF week (May 13 through 19). Free shipping on all orders over $25. Use coupon code HBMF13 at (Excludes our used book selections.)

Wordsworth’s Poe-TREE Contest Winners

Happy Earth Day, everyone! We are celebrating by announcing the winners of the Wordsworth the Poet “Poe-TREE Contest!”

In the Wordsworth Poe-TREE Contest, students were asked to write a poem celebrating their favorite tree, following the model of Wordsworth the Mouse and his friends in the book Wordsworth! Stop the Bulldozer! The young mice in the story campaign to save the trees in their community by writing poems reminding all the neighbors about the special qualities of the trees around them.

Poems were judged based on creativity, poetic merit and how well they conveyed what makes the trees special to the students. The six contest winners will receive a copies of each of the three books in the Wordsworth series, a gardening tool kit and a Koa Legacy Tree from the Hawaiian Legacy Reforestation Initiative, donated by Hawaiian Legacy Hardwoods.

MakaylaRoseMolden (current)

Makayla Rose Molden

K-5 Division Winners:

Makayla Rose Molden (age 6, Kapolei, Mauka Lani Elementary), untitled

The Mountain Apple tree is yummy to me.
The fruit is up so high to knock it down is a game I try.
I collect the fruit and make apple pie.



Eli Wolfe

Eli Wolfe

Eli Wolfe (age 5, Honolulu, University Laboratory School), “Banyan Tree”

I like to climb the
Banyan tree
at Barwick.
I can climb to
the sky.
You should try it too
It is so fun.


Grade 6-8 Division:

Cindy Tsou

Cindy Tsou

Min-Hua (Cindy) Tsou (age 11, Kapolei, Kapolei Middle School), “Red Maple Tree (Acer rubrum)”

A bright, scarlet leaf blew by.
A red lobed leaf fall and fly.
It can be red, yellow and even green.
Red maple trees makes a beautiful scene.
It grows in the north, with it’s flower blooming back and forth.
A red maple tree brings red, bright shines.
A red maple is of course, very fine.


Emerson Goo

Emerson Goo

Emerson Goo (age 12, Honolulu, Niu Valley Middle School), “Forest Guardians”

Sentinels at watch
Forest guardians holding
Treasured memories




Grade 9-12 Division:

Sophie Corless

Sophie Corless

Sophie Corless (age 15, Upper Saddle River, New Jersey, Northern Highlands Regional High School), “The Lemon Tree”

The cool sticky air clings to me;
my bare feet squelch in the grass
just after the rain shower.
The lemon tree stands in the back corner
towering over the garden, and has a prevailing presence.
Under the tree lies my step ladder,
with my initials carved in the leg.
The wicker basket dangles
on a tiny branch at my height.
I have my technique down,
twist and snap over and over again.
Even the bees and ants are fixated on my movements,
their fragile wings and tiny legs
seem to stop to observe.
Little droplets collect in the pores of the rind,
making my hand cool,
droplets of lemon juice ooze through the pores
and run down my hand to my wrist and to my elbow,
stopping and then dripping off.
By the end I am covered in a mixture of rain and lemon,
dried and sticky.
With every lemon I snap off,
the branch snaps back and sprinkles me with rain.
I swear I hear my sweltering forehead
sizzle against the cool droplets.
In the kitchen I squeeze every last lemon,
popping the juice into the pitcher with the yellow flowers,
along with a fistful of sugar and a splash of water.
I crack the ice tray in half, scooping out the cubes.
The first sip makes my face contort
into an uncomfortable position,
one you can’t avoid,
but the last is always the sweetest.


Zoe Edelman Brier

Zoe Edelman Brier (age 18, Allendale, New Jersey, Northern Highlands Regional High School), “Veins of Color”

I remember maple Leaf picking
with my father before the bus
came to ship me off
to a grey school building
with a grey blacktop
and grey windows.
The colors of the Leaves
were brighter than anything
I’d ever seen, standing out
against the blah of morning.
even through fog,
the Leaves shown like bright beacons
of change and hope for the future.
the Leaves would vein and crinkle
in red and orange and yellow,
mixing in a thin canvas.
My father would sit me on his shoulders
and have me reach the highest branch
possible to get the best Leaf
to press in a book that I still have
12 years later, the colors frozen in time,
unbrowned and delicate, red stains
clashing with the dark green of Leaf.

Congratulations to all our winners! Go give your favorite tree a hug!

Wordsworth the Poet’s Poe-TREE Contest

Frances H. Kakugawa, author of the Wordsworth the Poet children’s books, and Watermark Publishing announce the Wordsworth the Poet “Poe-TREE Contest,” open to children in grades kindergarten through 12th grade. (Contest rules follow.)

In Wordsworth! Stop the Bulldozer! — the newest Wordsworth the Poet adventure released this month — a bulldozer has invaded the little mouse’s special koa grove where he often writes his poems. What should Wordsworth do? His new friend, Akiko, has an idea! Wordsworth, Akiko and their friends, Dylan and Eliot, have all written poems about the special qualities of the trees they see around them — mango trees, coconut trees, kukui trees. Akiko tacks poems to each tree and reminds their neighbors of how important a part of their community the trees really are.

To enter the Wordsworth the Poet Poe-TREE Contest, kids can follow Wordsworth and his friends’ example and write a poem that celebrates their favorite tree. For an example, see Akiko and Eliot’s “Save This Tree” poems (above and below; click on the images to enlarge).

Six prize packages will be awarded, two per grade division (K-5, 6-8 and 9-12). Each prize package includes a copy of each of the three books in the Wordsworth series, a child’s gardening tool kit and a Koa Legacy Tree from the Hawaiian Legacy Reforestation Initiative, donated by Hawaiian Legacy Hardwoods.

Send entries ATTN: Wordsworth’s Poe-TREE Contest to or to Watermark Publishing, 1088 Bishop St., Ste. 310, Honolulu, HI 96813. Download an entry form here.

Contest Rules:

  • The contest is open to all children kindergarten through 12th grade residing in the United States.
  • Each entry must include the child’s name, age and grade, school, hometown and parent, guardian or teacher’s contact information and signature. Download an entry form here.
  • Poem must be about the entrant’s favorite tree.
  • Winning poems will be selected by the judges, including Frances Kakugawa, based on creativity and poetic merit.
  • Materials submitted will not be returned.
  • Entries must be received by January 15, 2013 DEADLINE EXTENDED: March 1, 2013.
  • Winners will be notified February 1, 2013 April 15, 2013. Winners may be asked to submit a photo of themselves for publicity purposes. Winners’ name, hometown and likeness may be used for publicity purposes.

For those who are ineligible to enter the Poe-TREE Contest, or who aren’t inclined to write poetry, Frances and Wordsworth have another way to celebrate trees: They invite readers far and wide to plant trees in their own communities. “It’s not only about trees being cut down where we live,” Frances writes in the introduction to Wordsworth! Stop the Bulldozer! “Our children and their children must have trees in their future to hug and enjoy and sit under in the shade. Trees also help keep us alive and healthy.”

Frances has created Wordsworth’s Plant A Tree Society to recognize readers of all ages who plant a tree in Wordsworth’s honor. To receive a membership certificate in the Plant A Tree Society, readers must plant a tree for Wordsworth in their community (in the backyard or at school, for example) and post a photo of themselves with their tree on Wordsworth’s Facebook page. Photo submissions should indicate the variety of the tree and where it was planted. Submissions may also be e-mailed to or mailed to Watermark Publishing. Photos will not be returned and will be posted online.

We understand that not everyone can plant a tree in their own backyard, so we have teamed up with the Hawaiian Legacy Reforestation Initiative to offer a solution: A program to plant Wordsworth Legacy Koa Trees on Hawaiian Legacy Hardwoods’ 1,000 acres of conservation land on the Hamakua Coast of Hawai‘i Island. Groups or individuals may sponsor a Wordsworth Legacy Tree for $60. The purchase also includes a copy of Wordsworth! Stop the Bulldozer!, a certificate bearing the GPS coordinates of the planted tree, and automatic membership in Wordsworth’s Plant A Tree Society. Additionally, $10 of the sponsorship fee will be directed to a fund dedicated to providing Legacy Trees for underprivileged children. Wordsworth Legacy Trees may be purchased at

We are very excited to work with the Hawaiian Legacy Reforestation Initiative to help return native growth to the Hamakua Coast! The land set aside by Hawaiian Legacy Hardwoods for this conservation program once belonged to King Kamehameha I, and some original koa trees still remain on the property. HLH uses seeds from these ancient Hawaiian trees to grow the Legacy Trees. Each tree is implanted with an RFID chip which transmits information on the tree’s growth, as well as identifying it as the sponsor’s tree. What an amazing project!

A Mouse Who Loves Trees

Our little friend Wordsworth the Mouse has been very busy lately. He (with the help of Frances Kakugawa and illustrator Andrew Catanzariti) has a new adventure for you to read, Wordsworth! Stop the Bulldozer!, has visited the Big Island and planted his very own koa tree with the Hawaiian Legacy Reforestation Initiative, and has started up the Wordsworth Plant A Tree Society! Phew, that’s a lot for a small mouse to do!

Wordsworth’s new book, Wordsworth! Stop the Bulldozer! comes out on November 1. You can meet Wordsworth and Frances at Barnes & Noble, Kahala Mall, at 1PM on Saturday, Nov. 3, when Frances will read from the new book. Purchases made on that day will help benefit the University of Hawai‛i at Mānoa Children’s Center.

A second reading will be held on Saturday, Nov. 10, at the Japanese Cultural Center of Hawai‛i. The children’s book reading begins at 11AM, but Frances will be holding presentations throughout the morning. Visit our website for the full schedule, along with a listing of her other events.

As Wordsworth! Stop the Bulldozer! begins, we learn that Wordsworth’s life has been full of changes — his best friend Emily has moved away, a new girl from Japan named Akiko is sitting in Emily’s chair at school, and worst of all, a bulldozer has invaded Wordsworth’s special koa grove where he thinks up new poems. What should Wordsworth do?

“I would want someone to be nice to Emily,” thinks Wordsworth. So he and his friends, Eliot and Dylan, invite Akiko to teach them about Japanese poetry. And what a good thing, too, because it is Akiko who has a clever idea to save the neighborhood trees from being knocked down.

In the book, Wordsworth’s favorite tree is a koa tree. We purchased a tree from the Hawaiian Legacy Reforestation Initiative, where it will grow on private conservation land, helping to provide a habitat for native wildlife and preserve our natural resources. As luck would have it, Frances was able to take Wordsworth out to the Hamakua coast to plant his own tree! Here are a few photos from Wordsworth and Frances’ tree planting adventure:

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In the introduction to Wordsworth! Stop the Bulldozer! Frances and Wordsworth ask readers of all ages, far and wide, to each plant a tree in their own community. “It’s not only about trees being cut down where we live,” Frances writes. “Our children and their children must have trees in their future to hug and enjoy and sit under in the shade. Trees also help keep us alive and healthy.”

Wordsworth wasn’t the first one to plant a tree in honor of his new book, though. Frances’ niece, Tammy Antonio, planted her Wordsworth tree quite a while ago, and it’s already as tall as she is! Tammy planted a native ‘ōhi‘a lehua tree with beautiful orange blossoms in her garden in Hilo.

Because she planted the first of what we hope will be many Wordsworth trees, Tammy gets to be Member #1 in Wordsworth’s Plant A Tree Society. Frances hasn’t signed it yet, but here is the certificate that Tammy will receive.

If you would like to be a member of Wordsworth’s Plant A Tree Society and receive your own membership certificate, all you need to do is plant a tree for Wordsworth in your community (your backyard, your school, etc.) and post a photo of you with your tree on Wordsworth’s Facebook page. Please also tell us where you planted it and what kind of tree it is. (You can also email it to Wordsworth at

Happy planting!


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