Every week or so, Debbie Ridpath Ohi shares new art, writing and resources for those who read, write and illustrate books for young people; subscribe below. Browse the archives here.

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My first book as author/illustrator! Launches from Simon & Schuster in May/2015.

LA Times list of "30 Summer Books That Kids Will Gobble Up"

Read the *starred* review for WHERE ARE MY BOOKS? in Kirkus

What people are saying about I'M BORED:

"Read I'M BORED to children's choir last evening. They have never, ever laughed aloud so much! Reading Success!" - Twitter post by Marjorie Bowman


I'm Bored Bonus Page
Ruby Rose On Her Toes

Video review of JE M'ENNUIE (French version of I'M BORED)

Thanks to Crik Crak Crok for the review (with added English subtitles) of the French version of I'm Bored, which is called JE M'ENNUIE.

One correction: Although I write some of the lyrics for my music group, my music partners Jodi Krangle and Allison Durno also write lyrics. The music clip included in the video is from "The Lady," a song written by Jodi Krangle; the voice you hear in the short clip is Jodi's.

Thanks again to Crik Crak Crok!


New holiday season gift cards, free to download and print

Feel free to download and print these new holiday gift cards featuring characters from the Michael Ian Black picture books I'M BORED and NAKED! Info and instructions here.


Thanksgiving-themed I'M BORED print-ready activities and freebies

To you Americans out there: Happy Thanksgiving week! Click on any of the following to download a print-ready I'M BORED-themed Thanksgiving activity writing or coloring sheet, or print-ready card:

Greeting card template

Coloring sheet



Michael Ian Black answers a second-grader's question about the Potato

By Debbie Ridpath Ohi, I'M BORED illustrator

Last week, I did a Skype visit with a class of second graders at A.Blair McPherson School in Edmonton, Alberta about I'M BORED, a picture book written by Michael Ian Black and illustrated by yours truly. So much fun! I read I'M BORED to the class, talked about the process, wrote an I'M BORED song with help from the students, gave them a drawing demo.

During the Q&A, one of the students asked me a question I couldn't answer:

Q. Why does the Potato like flamingos so much?

I told the students I'd ask the author, and here's Michael Ian Black's answer:

A. Because he saw one once on an old television show about Miami and thought to himself, "One day I would love to go to sunny Miami and hang out with those crazy-looking birds." Thought that was self-explanatory.

So now you all know. :-)

If you'd like a free Skype classroom visit about I'M BORED or NAKED! from me (the illustrator), here's more info. For a free Teacher's Guide, print-ready activity sheets and other fun, please see my I'M BORED Bonus Page.


*NEW* Halloween activity sheet for I'M BORED and NAKED!

Click thumbnail for full print-ready PDF


Halloween activity sheets for I'M BORED

Activity sheets for Halloween (click for full PDF) - also see print-your-own Halloween cards:

NOTE: activity sheet is b&w for coloring.


Also see my other print-ready I'M BORED activity sheets!


My letter to the British Potato Council and their response

While talking about potatoes on Facebook with my friends Mary Ellen Wessels (of Hopeful Romantics) and Tim Walker (Wilderwood), I was excited to discover that there was a British Potato Council. I packaged up a signed copy of I'M BORED and sent them the following letter:


Dear Potato Council,

As a fan of potatoes, I recently enjoyed browsing your website. Although I live across the pond, it was heartening to see that potatoes are appreciated just as much in the UK as they are in Canada.

I’m the illustrator of I’M BORED, a picture book written by Michael Ian Black, about a talking Potato and a bored little girl. It was published by Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers and was a Junior Library Guild selection as well as a New York Times Notable Children’s Book.

I enclose a copy for your enjoyment. I do not ask for anything in return but merely wish to celebrate our shared appreciation of potatoes, no matter what the nationality.

Sincerely yours,

Debbie Ridpath Ohi
Children’s book writer and illustrator


I just received a response back from Rob Clayton, Director of the Potato Council in the UK (!!!):


For those with text-only access:


"Debbie, hi!

Just a short but heart-felt note to say thanks for the book that arrived yesterday. The potato council team can be a stern lot at times so it was great to see the thirty-somethings chuckling their way around the office. Nice to know there are potato-lovers around the world.

all the best,

p.s. is there a flamingo council?"


Love this so much. :-) THANK YOU, POTATO COUNCIL!!!!

To all: You can find out more about the British Potato Council on their website at www.potato.org.uk.



I'M BORED voted as YouDecide! pick by first-graders at A. Blair McPherson School


Teachers and Librarians: Tell me how your students enjoyed I'M BORED and you may win a free Skype visit


Canine boredom comic from Mandy Yates

Love this comic from children's author and teacher Mandy Yates: