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"What Do You Do with an Idea?" Protect and Grow It



COURTESY OF COMPENDIUM

One brilliant idea combined with a child’s confidence helped Fremont publisher Compendium launch a New York Times bestseller. This story is for everyone, at any age, who has ever had an idea that seemed too big, too odd and/or too difficult. 

Written by Kobi Yamada and illustrated by Mae Besom, What Do You Do With An Idea? has received several honors, including the Independent Publishers Book Award, the Washington State Book Award, and the Moonbeam Children’s Book Award.

“I wrote What Do You Do With an Idea? to encourage both children and adults to believe in their ideas, protect them, and help them grow,” says Yamada. “I’m amazed by the way this book has resonated with people, and the new ideas it continues to inspire.”

This is the first book for both Yamada and Besom. Yamada, the president of Compendium, has two kids who inspire him. Besom, who is based in China and speaks no English, agreed to illustrate the book through a translator after Yamada had seen a sample of her work. Besom’s illustrations actually inspired Yamada as he wrote the book. 

What Do You Do With an Idea? has been a source of inspiration since its publication in February 2014 and has motivated many to share its message. From elementary teachers to university professors and companies such as Google and General Electric, What Do You Do With an Idea? has been shared with both children and adults alike. 

The book is currently being adapted into an animated short film by producer Steve Waterman of Waterman Entertainment (Stuart Little, Alvin and the Chipmunks). The film is scheduled to premiere in late 2016. The Inlet Dance Theatre in Cleveland is developing the book into a dance performance, scheduled to premiere in late 2017.

The follow-up title, What Do You Do With a Problem?, was recently released and features the same child as he is faced with a persistent problem, one that he isn’t so sure how to deal with. The longer the problem is avoided, the bigger it seems to get. When the child finally summons up the courage to face it, the problem turns out to be something quite different than it first appeared. What Do You Do With a Problem? has quickly risen up the New York Times bestseller list. 

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