Tuesday, January 24, 2023

Now Available: CUT!

My debut picture book biography, Cut!: How Lotte Reiniger and a Pair of Scissors Revolutionized Animation, is now available! Matt Schu is the illustrator, and his drawings spectacularly bring Lotte's real-life world of early-1900s art and cinema to life, while also paying tribute to the exquisite use of shadow of light in Lotte's films. 

Who was Lotte Reiniger? She was the creator of the oldest surviving full-length animated film, the inventor of an early multiplane camera, and a revolutionary silhouette artist whose influence can still be seen in the works of artists and filmmakers to this day.

Here are two sample pages from Cut!, photographed by Matt Schu, along with reviews for the book.

“With a refrain of ‘snip, snip, snip!’ the story introduces readers to German film pioneer Lotte Reiniger (1899–1981). Lotte’s adolescence coincided with the dawn of cinema, a time when movies ‘were silent but filled with magical sights’ . . . Schu’s exquisite digital illustrations possess a strong sense of illumination and depth, often suggesting a tactile quality, as if constructed from paper.” 
Horn Book (starred review)

“Dream-centered text by Winters articulates the labor put in by its subject, making for an informative account of a successful life in the movie business, involving ‘a pair of scissors, a great deal of patience, and her talented hands.’”
— Publishers Weekly

Cut! features extensive backmatter, including a timeline of Lotte Reiniger’s life, an author’s note, and sources.

Please see my Events Page to learn where Matt and I will be signing copies of the book. If you're curious about the various ways I conducted research into Lotte's life, please head to this conversation between Fiona Robinson and me at Publishers Weekly.   

Huge thanks to my editor, Martha Mihalick, for giving Cut! a publishing home and for using her editorial skills to make the book shine!

Wednesday, January 4, 2023

Upcoming Readings and Pre-Order Info

January 24 will mark the publication of my debut picture book, Cut!: How Lotte Reiniger and a Pair of Scissors Revolutionized Animation, illustrated by Matt Schu

To pre-order a copy signed by both me and Matt, please make your purchase through Green Bean Books and indicate in the comments section that you'd like your copy signed. 

Because Matt and I both happen to live in the Portland area, we'll both be discussing and reading from Cut! at two local events later this month. Here's our schedule:

Meet Author C. E. Winters and Illustrator Matt Schu! Saturday, Jan. 28, 2023, 11 am, Barnes & Noble, Hillsboro, OR;  Sunday, Jan. 29, 2023, 2 pm, Green Bean Books, Portland, OR

Please note that masks are required for the Green Bean Books reading. That particular event will be held on an outdoor, heated patio, so please also bundle up if the weather is cold.

More info about Cut!:

✁ Written by C. E. Winters 

✁ Illustrated by Matt Schu

Coming Jan. 24, 2023
ISBN 9780063067394

“With a refrain of ‘snip, snip, snip!’ the story introduces readers to German film pioneer Lotte Reiniger (1899–1981). Lotte’s adolescence coincided with the dawn of cinema, a time when movies ‘were silent but filled with magical sights’ . . . Schu’s exquisite digital illustrations possess a strong sense of illumination and depth, often suggesting a tactile quality, as if constructed from paper.” 
Horn Book (starred review)

Long before Walt Disney, a young woman revolutionized the landscape of animation using light, a pair of scissors, and her imagination. From acclaimed author C. E. Winters and debut illustrator Matt Schu, STEM meets the arts in this engaging nonfiction picture book biography about Lotte Reiniger. Cut! is an exceptional choice for classrooms and for fans of Hidden Figures, I Dissent, and the Questioneers books. 

In the 1920s, when young women had limited opportunities, Lotte Reiniger used her curiosity and ingenuity to change the landscape of animation forever. Inspired by the films of her youth, and encouraged by teachers and mentors working in film at the time, Lotte Reiniger honed her skills in cutting out paper silhouettes to use in stop-motion animation. 

Eventually, her talent and her drive led her to invent the multiplane camera, which allowed her to give her animation depth of field. With her small team, Lotte designed and directed the oldest full-length animated film in existence. 

Acclaimed author C. E. Winters and debut artist Matt Schu expertly introduce young readers to Lotte Reiniger, a remarkable and often overshadowed historical figure. Balancing biographical information with a compelling story, Cut! follows Lotte Reiniger from childhood to her first groundbreaking accomplishments. Matt Schu’s dynamic illustrations draw inspiration from Reiniger’s own artistry and are full of detail, color, and light. Cut! is an excellent nonfiction picture book perfect for classrooms and family sharing. 

Features extensive backmatter, including a timeline of Lotte Reiniger’s life, an author’s note, and sources.  

More pre-ordering options:




Sample artwork from Cut!, illustrated by Matt Schu.