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1. जरा सोचिये

जरा सोचिये Jara Sochiye किसी का गुस्सा किसी पर निकालने में कहां की समझदारी है !! जरा सोचिए कि कही आप भी तो ऐसे नही हैं ना !!  एक जानकार के घर गई तो वो अपने बच्चे को होमवर्क करवा रही थी और बीच बीच में उसे बहुत बुरी तरह डांट भी रही थी और […]

The post जरा सोचिये appeared first on Monica Gupta.

2. ‘Miss Hokusai’ Trailer: GKIDS Sets U.S. Release for October

"Ghost in the Shell" maker Production I.G. travels back in time for its new feature, "Miss Hokusai."

The post ‘Miss Hokusai’ Trailer: GKIDS Sets U.S. Release for October appeared first on Cartoon Brew.

0 Comments on ‘Miss Hokusai’ Trailer: GKIDS Sets U.S. Release for October as of 1/1/1900
3. Skirts, ladies and India’s Tourism Minister

  Skirts, ladies and India’s Tourism Minister Advice – हमारा भारतीय पहनावा और संस्कार . केंद्रीय संस्‍कृति और पर्यटन मंत्री महेश शर्मा ने कहा है कि भारत आने वाली महिला विदेशी पर्यटक स्‍कर्ट या अन्‍य छोटे कपड़े नहीं पहनें.ये सुनकर भारतीय लडकियां सोच में हैं कि किसलिए उन्होनें विदेशी महिलाओं को कहा होगा. Tourism Minister […]

The post Skirts, ladies and India’s Tourism Minister appeared first on Monica Gupta.

4. RIP Gene Wilder: Children’s Literature’s Avatar

Consider, if you will, the life of Gene Wilder.  Since his death, many people have been doing precisely that.  It makes me happy, but since I’ve harbored a not-so-secret crush on the man for decades (a quick search of this blog will back that up) I felt it necessary to point out that for all that he was a great actor, he was also, and often, key in bringing to life various famous children’s literary characters.

The most obvious of these was, of course, Willy Wonka.  Without Wilder’s mad genius, the film Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory could never have been the wonder that it was.  A brief hat tip to Gene there:

Mr. Wilder also portrayed The Fox in the live adaptation of The Little Prince.  Though not as odd as Bob Fosse’s Snake, it’s still a mighty peculiar role.

Some would then forget but Mr. Wilder also portrayed the Mock Turtle in a made-for-TV adaptation of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.

In his honor, then, allow me to post all the funny links related to Mr. Wilder and his roles as I can come up with.


 

First up, long before wrote the picture book Let Me Finish, Minh Lê created this stellar little post about a reality show called The Sweet Life.


 

I loved it when he was portrayed as one of the many American actors in this faux montage Celebrating 50 Years of American Doctor Who.

Admit it.  He would have been glorious.


 

Next up, one of my favorite How It Should Have Ended videos:


 

This other little gem came up not too long ago:


 

And in parting . . .

YellowBrick

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5. Welcome to the Tuesday Slice of Life Story Challenge

WRITE a slice of life story on your own blog. SHARE a link to your post in the comments section. GIVE comments to at least three other SOL bloggers.

6. Happy(Belated)Birthday, Gillian Rubinstein!


Image borrowed from the author's website

I only found out about this last night on Twitter, when this wonderful writer received birthday congratulations under her pen name of Lian Hearn. See, she doesn't even appear on the Famous Birthdays web site, where there are a whole lot of celebrities, even among the authors, of most of whom I've never heard. I'd heard of Nancy Holder, but not read any of her work.

So, happy birthday, Gillian/Lian!

I read some of her fiction in my early days as a librarian. In Space Demons a bunch of kids playing a game not unlike Space Invaders find themselves inside the game - which reacts to you according to how you behave. If you're angry and in the mood for shooting things...well, you're going to get what you put into it. We used this one for Literature Circles and it made for good discussion. A bit dated, but still has something to say. 

I read some others, of course - Foxspell, Galaxarena, the rest of the Space Demons trilogy ...

And then Tales Of The Otori came along, under a pen name. I confess I've only got around to reading the first one, Across The Nightingale Floor, but I loved it! It was set in an alternative Japan, in which the ninja fighters really did have the magical powers ascribed to them in our own world. They were called something else, of course, but they were definitely ninjas. I won't go further, because spoilers, but read it!

I have been fortunate enough to hear her speak, some years ago, at the Melbourne Writers' Festival. She was talking about how she got her impressions of such things as country and city children from the likes of Enid Blyton, which she read enthusiastically as a child. Country children good, city children, spoiled and horrible.

It didn't affect her writing, though.

So, happy birthday and many more to come!

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7. TBR Monday: Diverse Reads and Long-Awaited Sequels

Yep, you guys. I went to the library again! Whee! That one on the top left? It's by Mariko Tamaki, who has also written a number of wonderful graphic novels for kids and teens.Top right: the final (I think) book in the Dream Thieves series, which is... Read the rest of this post

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8. A Bench in the Shade

You’ve got it made
With a bench in the shade
When the sun is boiling hot
But you’ve been played
For this charade
Is part of Nature’s plot.

See, I’m afraid
You’ve been betrayed
For thinking that this spot
Will masquerade
The heat that’s weighed
You down – but it will not.

It’s just delayed
The rays displayed
From letting you know what
You might have prayed
To barricade
Has added up to squat.

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9. Wonder Women

Sam Maggs has written a fun collected biography (as we call them in the library trade) about women in science, medicine, innovation, espionage and adventure titled - wait for it - Wonder Women.

Maggs writing style is up-to-the minute and whip smart.  I'm only one third through this book and my mind is totally boggled.  Without flipping another page, I would give this book 5 stars.  Maggs searched long and hard and found women heroes from Asia, Europe and the Americas, of all colors and persuasions.  Her mini-bios between segments - Maggs arranges the books by the various disciplines cited above - give peeks into the lives of other accomplished women.  Maggs also includes interviews with women professionals who work in those disciplines.

Anyway, I am so excited by this book's content and writing style that I couldn't wait to tell you all about it.  Thanks to Sam and to Quirk Books for offering this title.  Not out til October!  You can pre-order it here  (This is not an affiliate link.  I just don't like Amazon all that much.), or order from your favorite bookseller.  Don't let ME tell you what to do.

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10. WHAT LIGHT: Cover Design

I want everyone to read my next book. That would be awesome for so many reasons! But I'll be plenty happy if the only people who read it are the people who want to read a story exactly like the one I wrote. (Although, I think the world would be a much better place if everyone did read it, which I feel morally obligated to say.)

So the most important job of a cover is to grab the attention of people looking for a story just like the one behind the cover. A good title helps, too, which is why I'm glad we settled on what we did rather than those...other ideas of mine.

Until I publish something that's illustrated (no...just checked...I can't say anything yet), one of the most exciting parts of having a book in production is seeing the cover. Or different versions of a cover. With What Light, I saw five potential cover designs. I went back and forth between two designs, but when I showed all five to a couple of people, they chose a different one. So I showed them to a few more people (authors, librarians...), but none of them agreed with me, which was the entire point!

What they kept landing on, whether they knew the premise of the book or not (I wanted both perspectives) was this...


And I liked that one, but I didn't love it. When they told me what they liked about it, I understood where they were coming from, but I imagined myself giving a PowerPoint presentation at a school or library, excitedly showing the covers of Thirteen Reasons Why and The Future of Us, and then casually putting up my latest offering.

How could I tweak this cover to become the cover I would choose? Thankfully, it was winter, and as I was strolling downtown, I came across this poster in a store window...


I snapped a photo of it and emailed it to my publisher and editor. I'll admit, I did not do the best job in telling them how I thought the image of the girl would be enhanced by adding light "flares" or "bursts" or "shimmers" or whatever I called them. And their casual response echoed that I did not describe my vision well enough to convince them.

So I had to show them.

To repeat myself, thankfully, it was winter. That meant I didn't have to climb into the garage attic to fetch a string of Christmas lights, I could simply untangle them from the tree! Then I pulled up the original design onto my laptop, which has a reflective screen, plugged in the lights, and snapped a photo of the cover that included reflected light flares/bursts/shimmers.


And I emailed them this...


Now they understood, and they sent back this...


Thank you, Theresa Evangelista, for working on this cover, which I absolutely love! It represents a book exactly like the one I wrote.

If you'd like to know what What Light is about, or pre-order it, here's a link!

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11. Behind-the-scenes: How new picture book PIRASAURS! was created, with insights from author Josh Funk and illustrator Michael Slack

Back in May 2013, I posted an interview with Celia Lee, an editor at Cartwheel Books / Scholastic, and Celia invited Inkygirl readers to submit manuscripts for a limited time; apparently Celia received over a thousand submissions (!). A couple of years later, I met Josh Funk at nErDcampMI and found out that he had sold one of his picture book manuscripts to Celia as a result of my Inkygirl post, and it was being illustrated by Michael Slack.

I'm thrilled that PIRASAURS! is launching this week from Cartwheel/Scholastic. You can find out more about the book at the Scholastic page about the book, Josh Funk's Pirasaurs! page (where you can also find lesson ideas, reviews, links to other interviews and more), and the trailer below:

I asked Josh Funk how PIRASAURS! got created, and here's what he told me:

On February 27th, 2013 at 2:53 in the morning, I woke up. I don't remember what I was dreaming of. I don't remember what I watched on TV the night before or what I ate for dinner (or late night snack). I do know that I sent a text with a single word to myself:

pirasaurs

Ok, maybe that's not a word (yet). But it was a single string of letters. And I knew what to do with them.

Over the next two days, I furiously wrote a story featuring pirate-dinosaurs and a slew of other characters. It was my first time using internal rhyme (rhymes within a single line of text) and I had a blast with it. It turned out to be sort of a concept book. There were a bunch of crazy characters. The ending didn't really make all that much sense. But about 40 hours later, I had a full first draft that was ready to be sent to a critique group.

Here is the opening section of the 'Concept Book' version of Pira-Saurs!

I brought the manuscript to my critique group twice over the next three months, and while much of the manuscript was tweaked, the opening Pira-Saurs! section stayed pretty much the same.

And then on May 20th, 2013, Debbie Ohi posted an interview with Celia Lee, editor at Cartwheel Books an imprint of Scholastic. Within a week, news had spread that a fancy Scholastic editor was accepting unsolicited submissions of picture books for ages 0-5. The funny thing was, Pira-Saurs! was the only manuscript I had that really fit the 0-5 age range. Most of the manuscripts I'd written fell more into the 5-8 area (although I personally believe that most of what I write is good for anyone between the ages of 0 and 92).

So, in late May, I sent Pira-Saurs! to the Scholastic offices in NYC via snail mail. I never sent Pira-Saurs! to anyone else. And then I went about my business, because at the time, I had no book deals, no agent, and really, I'd never received any positive feedback on anything I'd sent to an industry professional up to that point.

PIRASAURS! author Josh Funk with his editor, Celia Lee

And then on July 9th, my phone buzzed. I'd received an email with the subject "Pira-Saurs! for Cartwheel Books" and everything slowed down. I was used to getting email rejections, so when I saw that it was a writing-related email, I instinctively thought, "oh, well, another no." But a few more synapses fired and I realized that I'd only sent Pira-Saurs! to one person, and it had been snail mail. And why would an editor bother sending an email rejection to a snail mail submission? That just wouldn't happen. Could this actually be good news?

Yes! Celia Lee had found the manuscript and liked it! It wasn't perfect (yet), but she wanted to work on it before bringing it to acquisitions. The next ten days were a flurry of emails and brainstorms and waking up in the middle of the night with new lines and rhymes. And on July 19th, Celia thought the manuscript was ready to bring to acquisitions. Hooray!

Or not hooray? On September 5th, Celia wrote back that Scholastic was going to pass on Pira-Saurs! ... but, they editorial team liked my voice and writing style. Celia asked if I would write another story, this time featuring just Pirasaurs - and cut the rest of the slew of other characters. My answer was "Of course!

But all I had were those three stanzas. And I needed to create a whole story with a full plot and compelling characters. And as an unpublished, unagented writer, I felt I needed to strike quickly before Celia Lee forgot who I was. I frantically wrote a draft, shared it with a few critique partners:

Thank you, Paul Czajak for suggesting I add an adventure and Anna Staniszewski for pushing that I add a little heart. Within a week of rejection, I had sent Celia a brand new completed manuscript. We revised it over the next few days, and on September 19th (which happens to be Talk Like a Pirate Day), I handed it off to Celia to take to acquisitions again. I didn't hear anything until a month and a half later, I received an offer on Lady Pancake & Sir French Toast and subsequently signed with an agent. At that point, Celia mentioned that the editorial director and art director were trying to set up a meeting to discuss potential illustrators before taking to acquisitions. I was told this was a good sign. And by late January of 2014, 8 months after Debbie's interview, Scholastic offered to acquire Pirasaurs! And pretty quickly they found the perfect illustrator... Michael Slack.

Illustrator Michael Slack's creative space.

From Debbie: 

Illustrator Michael Slack worked with art director Patti Ann Harris, editor Celia Lee and designer Jessica Tice-Gilbert for Pirasaurs!

Michael says that he did a lot of sketches early on. "Pages and pages of dinosaurs, hats, swords, and cannons."

 

"Once I found the characters I did a few rounds of really loose thumbnails. After  I had the story pacing in good shape, I switched from pencil and paper to digital to create the sketch dummy. Ultimately I ended up with three different versions of the dummy. The final illustrations were digitally painted in Photoshop."

Thanks to both Michael and Josh for sharing about the process of creating PIRASAURS!

You can find out more about PIRASAURS! at the Scholastic website.

More about Josh Funk and his work at JoshFunkBooks.com.

More about Michael Slack and his work at Slackart.com.

------

For more interviews, see my Inkygirl Interview Archive.

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12. DESIGNERS WANTED - uppercase

UPPERCASE magazine are currently running two great opportunities for designers. The first is to appear in their UPPERCASE Surface Pattern Design Guide Second Edition (Jan/Feb/March 2017) that will feature the best in established and up-and-coming surface pattern designers. The second is to win a licensing contract with Windham Fabrics!. The deadline is September 12th so please visit this page

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13. Embrace Complexity/Write It for the Young at Heart (video series)



A month ago, we shared our first video series on the making of memoir, a Udemy offering that can now be found here.

This past week, we filmed a series of ten video essays all relating to the big challenges, themes, and opportunities that present themselves to those writing for the young at heart. These essays reflect the thinking I've done over the past many years on topics ranging from the question, What is excellence? in this category, to the essential truths in all fictions, to the development of authentic voices and complex characters. Some of the pieces are adapted from keynote talks; most of the material is brand new, fashioned from the challenges I've faced as a writer, from the conversations I've had with teen readers and fellow prize jury members, and from my ongoing dialogue with the leading practitioners of YA and MG.

The full suite of videos will be up on Udemy by week's end.

Today I'm sharing this single episode from the series. I'm focused on complexity here—why it is important, and how it is achieved. I hope you'll find the time to watch it through. If you like what you see, perhaps you'll share it with a friend. If you'd like to receive an update when the series goes live, you know where to find me.

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14. My Cat Copies Me

My Cat Copies Me. Yoon-duck Kwon. 2007. Kane/Miller. 40 pages. [Source: Review copy]

First sentence: My cat copies me. We tunnel under newspapers, and crouch behind doors. If I hide under the desk, or in the closet, she hides with me.

Premise/plot: A young girl loves, loves, loves her cat. The book shows the two interacting with each other--copying each other. It's a sweet, must-have for cat-lovers.

My thoughts: I absolutely LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this one. It's one of my favorite picture books that I've discovered since I began blogging ten years ago. I love the writing. I love the illustrations. I love that the first half shows the cat copying the girl, and that the second half shows the girl copying the cat.

Text: 5 out of 5
Illustrations: 5 out of 5
Total: 10 out of 10


© 2016 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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15. My tweets

16. Book Review: The American Girl by Kate Horsley

The American Girl
On a quiet summer morning seventeen-year-old American exchange student Quinn Perkins stumbles out of the woods near the small French town of St. Roch, barefoot, bloodied, and unable to say what has happened to her.

Quinn's appearance creates a stir, especially since her host family, the Blavettes, has mysteriously disappeared. Now the media, and everyone in the idyllic village, are wondering if the American girl has anything to do with the missing family.

A Boston reporter named Molly Swift travels to St. Roch, prepared to do anything to learn the truth and score the ultimate scoop. After Quinn is arrested and a trial by media ensues, she finds an unlikely ally in the young journalist. Molly unravels the disturbing secrets of the town's past in an effort to clear Quinn's name, but even she is forced to admit that the American girl makes a compelling suspect.

Is Quinn truly an innocent abroad, or is she a cunning, diabolical killer intent on getting away with murder?
Writing
Another entry in the "thrillers with the word 'girl' in the title" and I think that pretty much sums up the writing.  Another entry.  It's nothing bad, but nothing stands out about it as exceptional either.  It reads quickly, and it's entertaining, but it doesn't bring anything new or outstanding to the genre.  The ending wasn't particularly shocking or thrilling and I wasn't kept guessing up until the end.  I also wasn't captivated by the characters or drawn to any aspect of the story line in a way that stands out from the herd.

Entertainment Value
Again, it was a great diversion.  I went through it quickly, it kept my attention, I wasn't bored.  I also wasn't blown away and I doubt that it'll be one that I can recall the plot for a year or two down the road.  It's a fine book and I don't have anything negative to say about it as far as the reading experience is concerned, but I also don't have many raves for it either.  It's another entry in the generic thrillers about girls who may or may not be telling the truth category and it does a fine job of being what it is.

Overall
If this is your genre, I think it's a fine title to grab.  I'm enjoying all of the Gone Girl, Girl on the Train, etc, etc, etc spin offs, and this one isn't an exception.  I'm not sure it lives up to the high standard of those titles, but it's a fine diversion for an afternoon.  If you're not just super into the genre, I'd say maybe skip it and pick one of the more well known iterations that's getting all the buzz.  Sometimes the hype is there for a reason.

Thanks to TLC for having me on the tour and providing me with a copy of this one to review.  Click here for a link to the other stops on the tour!

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17. Three Dark Crowns: Review

This is the dark, twisted tale of three sisters fair destined to destroy each other. Or rather, only two need die. One will emerge victorious. On the island of Fennbirn, when the queen gives birth it is always to triplet girls. Each new queen is either a poisoner, a naturalist, or an elementalist. The queen identifies which queen is which and then abdicates. The new queens are raised together until the age of 6, when they are claimed by their different factions and trained in their powers. In the year of their 16th birthday, the Ascension year, the queens will each put their powers on public display and then proceed to attempt to murder each other. They have one year to accomplish their tasks. The last queen standing wins. Of the three sisters, we spend the most time with Arsinoe, the naturalist. The naturalists live in a seaside town that evokes a humble,... Read more »

The post Three Dark Crowns: Review appeared first on The Midnight Garden.

18. Monday Poetry Stretch - Haiku Sonnet

Hello all! I'm back after a bit of a hiatus and hopefully am in the swing of things now that we are in week 2 of the fall semester.

The haiku sonnet is a form developed by David Marshall, an English teacher and writer living in Chicago and blogging at Haiku Streak. Essentially, this form combines four haiku with a final two-line “couplet” consisting of seven and/or five syllable lines.

You can read some examples of David's work at Haiku Sonnet. While his poems don't rhyme (as haiku do not), I'm thinking I may attempt to include rhyme in my stretches.

So, there's your challenge. I hope you'll join me this week in writing an haiku sonnet or two. Please share a link to your poem or the poem itself in the comments.

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19. If You Care about American Indians... Keep abreast of Native news.

Dear Parents, Teachers, and Librarians,

If you care about American Indians, you're likely aware of what is going on in North Dakota. You may have read David Archambault's opinion piece in the New York Times on August 24th. He's the chairman of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe. He began with this:

It is a spectacular sight: thousands of Indians camped on the banks of the Cannonball River, on the edge of the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation in North Dakota. Our elders of the Seven Council Fires, as the Oceti Sakowin, or Great Sioux Nation, is known, sit in deliberation and prayer, awaiting a federal court decision on whether construction of a $3.7 billion oil pipeline from the Bakken region to Southern Illinois will be halted.
The decision to say 'no' to the Dakota Access Pipeline is one that matters for Native people and for anyone whose health will be at risk when that proposed pipeline leaks. As the people who are gathering there and elsewhere are saying, this is about water. We all need it. The people of Standing Rock are taking action to protect their rights, and everyone's water. With each day, I see resolutions from tribal councils who declare that they stand with Standing Rock. I'm also starting to see resolutions from entities that aren't Native.

You may have friends, or your children may have friends, who aren't where you are in terms of knowing that we're part of today's society. Far too many people think we no longer exist, and far too many think that if we wear jeans and drive cars, then, we aren't "real" Indians. They don't know what "real" Indians are!

American citizens don't dress like George or Martha Washington, but that doesn't mean we aren't "real" Americans. Somehow, there's this idea out there that if we don't live and dress exactly like our ancestors did, we can't possibly be "real" Indians. That's bogus. There's also this idea out there that Native people have high cheekbones. Or glossy black hair. Dark eyes. That's not accurate, either!

I hope you'll follow the news and tell others to follow it, too, but I also want you to make sure that the books you give to your children and students are ones that don't frame us in narrow, stereotypical ways. Check out, for example, this response from elders and leaders,  to a story at the New York Times that was clearly biased.

If you want to get your child or students a book that accurately depicts someone of the Great Sioux Nation, pick up Joseph Marshall's In the Footsteps of Crazy Horse. The main character in the story is a blue-eyed Lakota boy, on a road trip with his grandfather. It's a winner. 

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20. On ‘Cats Don’t Dance,’ Eric Goldberg, And The Difference Between Watching and Seeing Cartoons

Asking questions about animation is what separates the connoisseur from the fanboy.

The post On ‘Cats Don’t Dance,’ Eric Goldberg, And The Difference Between Watching and Seeing Cartoons appeared first on Cartoon Brew.

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21. Critiquing Other People's Works

Here are some things to consider before agreeing to look at someone else's manuscript.

http://www.helpingwritersbecomeauthors.com/tips-for-editing-other-writers/

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22. Changes.

Tomorrow, the little girl starts kindergarten.  This will reduce our little girl time to 2 or 3 hours a day.  Am I happy?  Actually, um, no.  She has a lot of playing left.  And I am not all that enamored of our public education system.  

Still, she is ready.  But who will play with me during those extra hours? 

Everybody else keeps growing up!!!

In The Secret of Goldenrod, Trina is almost 11 and entering fifth grade and her father is so embarrassing.  They are off to refurbish Goldenrod, a stately home in the middle of nowhere, that has been empty for almost a century.  Unlike their other jobs that kept them busy for a month or two, Goldenrod will take a whole year and Trina will have finally time to make friends.  She hopes her mother will stop gallivanting around the world and finally return to the family. 

Then she sees the old house in a field of yellow weeds, and the house doesn't want them there.

A hidden room, a forgotten dollhouse and its tiny doll, a nasty schoolmate and a small town with secrets add up to a great story.

Author Jane O'Reilly sets this up as a convincing haunted house story, but with the discovery of the dollhouse things begin to change.   The last few chapters are the best as they pull everything together and give a happy ending that is also unexpected.


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23. Erman Yilmaz

Erman Yilmaz

Erman Yilmaz’s passion for street art highly influences his digital work. Like graffiti, his typographic arrangements intertwine with illustrations in an elaborate and colorful fashion. As the elements converge, he inserts hidden details that add extra significance to the message of each poster. To see more of his work, check out his street art and Instagram.

Erman Yilmaz

Erman Yilmaz

Erman Yilmaz

Erman Yilmaz

Erman Yilmaz

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24. Ten Year Blogoversary

Becky's Book Reviews turns ten today! Can you believe it?! In some ways, 2006 feels like yesterday, and, in other ways it feels like it's ages ago.

I'd love to hear from you. Are you new to the site? How long have you been coming around? I'd also really, really, really love to hear if you've picked up a book to read because of one of my reviews. I'd always love to know your opinions on books!!!

Your guess is as good as mine in terms of HOW many books I've reviewed over the past ten years. But definitely in the thousands. I wonder how many of them were rereads? Probably a third of them!!! I can't help myself when it comes to rereading favorites!!!

First book reviewed on the blog: New Moon by Stephenie Meyer
Last book reviewed on the blog: The Crate Train by Dorothy Z. Seymour
The year I was out of control with posts: 2008! (1144 posts in a single year?!?!)
Favorite author ten years ago: Orson Scott Card
Favorite author now: Could never pick. Really. I've discovered at least fifty favorite authors since 2006. Georgette Heyer. Anthony Trollope. Wilkie Collins. Anne Perry. Connie Willis. Ray Bradbury. Rex Stout. Agatha Christie. Josephine Tey. Dorothy Sayers. E. Nesbit. I mean I could go on and on all day.
Best thing to come out of blogging: My dear, dear, dear, dear bestest friend who introduced herself to me as "Anonymous L."

Favorite author that I've connected with online? ROBIN BRANDE is all kinds of WONDERFUL!!!!! And I still can't believe that Candice F. Ransom knows who I am. The Sunfire Romances from the 80s were my LIFE. I really got quite bonded with Winchester, her cat.

One thing I didn't realize when I started blogging was how quickly books go out of print. Some of my 'favorite, favorite' books I read in my early years are no longer available, and, the library has discarded some as well. I do have a tendency to take books for granted and book availability for granted and I shouldn't! (Another thing I have a tendency to do is--in the quickness of my typing--misspell library as LIBARY. I have to fix this often!!!)

A handful of publishers have been really, really good to me through the years:

Scholastic
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Candlewick

Other publishers have been nice as well:

Penguin Random House (I get RANDOM surprises but don't have an email contact)
Harry N. Abrams (got reconnected this past year!!!!)
Simon & Schuster (sadly lost touch)
Bloomsbury USA

One publisher that I sadly lost touch with years ago was Kane/Miller. I miss my Travel the World Wednesday posts.


© 2016 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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25. How to develop my ideas

Question: I have a plot in mind put it is very difficult to develop it. I don't know what to do. I have the idea but how to write about events and things

26. Celebrating 25 Books Over 25 Years: Jim Thorpe’s Bright Path

Lee_Low_25th_Anniversary_Poster_2_LEE & LOW BOOKS celebrates its 25th anniversary this year and to recognize how far the company has come, we are featuring one title a week to see how it is being used in classrooms today as well, as hear from the authors and illustrators.

Today, we are celebrating Jim Thorpe’s Bright Path, an inspirational story for children of all backgrounds. A biography of the legendary Native American Jim Thorpe (1888–1953), voted the Greatest Football Player and Greatest Athlete of the Half-Century by two AP polls, focusing on his early childhood and how school and sports shaped his future.

Featured title: Jim Thorpe’s Bright Path

Author: Joseph Bruchac

Illustrator: S.D. Nelson

Synopsis: The biographymain_large of the legendary Native American, Jim Thorpe (1888–1953), focusing on his early childhood and how school and sports shaped his future.

From the day he was born, Jim Thorpe’s parents knew he was special. As the light shone on the road to the family’s cabin, his mother gave Jim another name — Wa-tho-huck — “Bright Path.”

Jim’s athletic skills were evident early on, as he played outdoors and hunted with his father and twin brother. When the boys were sent to Indian boarding school, Jim struggled in academics but excelled in sports. Jim moved from school to school over the years, overcoming family tragedies, until his athletic genius was recognized by Coach Pop Warner at the Carlisle Indian School.

Awards and Honors:

  • Carter G. Woodson Book Award Honor, National Council for Social Studies
  • Choices, Cooperative Children’s Book Center (CCBC)
  • Teachers’ Choices, International Reading Association (IRA)
  • Best of the Best List, Chicago Public Library, Children & YA Services
  • Storytelling World Resource Award, Storytelling World magazine

Check out this interview with author, Joseph Bruchac, about Native American literature.

Resources for teaching with Jim Thorpe’s Bright Path:

jim thorpe image blog

 

 

 

 

 

Discover other books like Jim Thorpe’s Bright Path with the Joseph Bruchac Collection!

Book Activities:

  1. Draw attention to the use of similes in the book. For example: Jim took to it all like a catfish takes to a creek. It made him (Jim) feel like a fox caught in an iron trap. Epidemics of influenza swept through like prairie fires. Have students try to write their own similes for other events or actions in the story.
  2. Ask students to explore the National Track & Field Hall of Fame (www.usatf.org ) or the Pro Football Hall of Fame (www.profootballhof.com ) and plan an imaginary trip there or enjoy a visual visit on the Web.

Have you used Jim Thorpe’s Bright Path? Let us know!

Celebrate with us! Check out our 25 Years Anniversary Collection

veronicabioVeronica has a degree from Mount Saint Mary College and joined LEE & LOW in the fall of 2014. She has a background in education and holds a New York State childhood education (1-6) and students with disabilities (1-6) certification. When she’s not wandering around New York City, you can find her hiking with her dog Milo in her hometown in the Hudson Valley, NY.

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27. THE GALLERY Winner!




We have a winner! According to randomizer, the winner of the hardcover copy of THE GALLERY by Laura Marx Fitzgerald is



Congratulations, Jess! Expect an email from me soon.

I'll be back next week with a new review and another giveaway!


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28. Full of Beans, by Jennifer L. Holm -- (ages 9-12)

Does building resilience in kids mean they have to be able to handle everything by themselves? Or that they can weather the hard times, with their sense of self intact? I adore Jennifer Holm's newest novel Full of Beans precisely for the way that Beans struggles through hard times, learning about the consequences of his decisions, yet never losing his sense of humor or his loyalty to his family and friends. It is both delightful to read and wonderful to reflect upon.

Full of Beans
by Jennifer L. Holm
Random House, 2016
Your local library
Amazon
ages 9-12
*best new book*
Beans Curry knows life is hard with the Great Depression--his dad is out of work, leaving home to look for work up north, and his mom takes in laundry, raising the family in their Key West home. Beans tries to help, sifting through the garbage looking for cans because a local con man has promised him twenty cents a can.

Life keeps throwing bum deals his way--the con man refuses to pay Beans what he promised--but Beans won't give up. He helps his mother babysit his crabby baby brother; he leads his gang of friends, challenging other kids to marbles; and he keeps his eye out new opportunities. So when a rumrunner makes him a proposition, it seems like things are finally turning up. Beans just doesn't predict how his actions might put others in harm's way. As the starred Horn Book review wrote,
Beans’s earnest voice shows a young boy trying so hard to help out and to do the right thing, but getting caught up in dubious circumstances over which he has no control.
Readers may remember Beans from Jennifer Holm's popular Turtle in Paradise (my review here), but this new story stands on its own. I think that the setting Depression-era Key West becomes even more fully realized in Full of Beans, as Holm seamlessly weaves historical details into the story. I especially like what librarian Tasha Saecker wrote over at Waking Braincells:
Holm writes with a natural ease that is deceptively easy to read. Her writing allows readers to explore Key West in a time just as it is becoming a tourist destination due to the New Deal and its workers. Beans’ personal story is clearly tied to the story of Key West with his own despair and lack of money mirroring the city’s. His own journey through to honesty and truth follows that of the city as well. It’s a clever dynamic that makes both roads to change all the easier to relate to and believe.
This would make a terrific read-aloud, either as a family or in the classroom. Terrific sayings from the 30s infuse the dialog, and short chapters keep the pace moving quickly. Readers will root for Beans, whether it's as he's playing marbles against a rival gang or as he's struggling with hard decisions that will affect his neighbors and friends.

I'm especially looking forward to talking with my students in our Mock Newbery Book Club about how Beans responds to hard situations and how he changes. I wonder how they'll envision the setting of Key West, and themes they'll identify in the story.

Join me on Wednesday -- I'm looking forward to sharing an interview with Jenni Holm. I'm especially looking forward to sharing a slideshow of images of 1930s Key West. The review copies were kindly sent by the publisher, Random House Books. If you make a purchase using the Amazon links on this site, a small portion goes to Great Kid Books. Thank you for your support.

©2016 Mary Ann Scheuer, Great Kid Books

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29. Picture Book Monday with a review of What do you do with a problem?

Learning how to deal with problems is a vital skill to have. The funny thing is that many of us have no clue what to do when things go wrong. We wring our hands, have a panic attack, moan and groan, or burst into tears. We try to run away from our problems, or pretend that they are not there. Needless to say, none of these strategies improve our situation in the slightest.

Today's picture book will help readers of all ages to better understand how to deal with a problem. The narrative is beautifully presented without being preachy or pedantic. The story is supportive and it helps readers to think about their problems in a new way.

What Do You Do With a Problem?What do you do with a Problem?
Kobi Yamada
Illustrated by Mae Besom
Picture Book
For ages 5 and up
Compendium Inc, 2016, 978-1-943200-00-9
One day a little boy finds out that he is saddled with a problem, a problem that he does not like, did not ask for, and does not want. He has no idea what he is supposed to do with the problem or what it wants, and not surprisingly he would like it to go away. He tries shooing it, scowling at it, and even ignoring it but nothing works.
   The thing about problems is that they can cause a lot of new problems. People worry about them, and get anxious that their problem will do something to them or change their life in some dreadful way. The worry builds on itself and unfortunately this only makes the problem bigger.
   No matter what the little boy does his problem can always find him, and the more he tries to avoid it “the more I saw it everywhere.” The problem is taking over his life!
   No matter how old you are problems can get the better of you. They worry at you and make you so miserable that you start to feel as if your life is just one big, uncontrollable problem. Thankfully the author and the illustrator of this remarkable book understand exactly what this feels like, and they offer readers support that is simple and yet profound. It turns out that problems contain something special and surprising.

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30. A new (musical) direction for healthcare?

Most would agree with the idea that music can have a powerful hold over us—our thoughts, feelings, and movements. Given this, how might music help measure thoughts, feelings, and movements in a way that allows professionals in healthcare improve client treatment? The music therapy profession seems to be experiencing a surge in developing data-measuring tools that incorporate music in the client assessment.

The post A new (musical) direction for healthcare? appeared first on OUPblog.

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31. MMGM Links (8/29/16)

Here are this week's MMGM links!

- Jess at the Reading Nook is cheering for THE LAST KIDS ON EARTH AND THE ZOMBIE PARADE. Click HERE for her review. 
- Heidi Grange is feeling warm and fuzzy for FUZZY. Click HERE to see why. 
- Sally's Bookshelf is feeling lucky for LITTLE CAT'S LUCK. Click HERE to read her review.
- Mark Baker is spreading some love for HARRY POTTER AND THE CURSED CHILD. Click HERE to see what he thought. 
- Dorine White has a cover reveal for THE SAPPHIRE BLADE. Click HERE to check it out.
- The B.O.B. is caught up with THE OUTSIDERS. Click HERE to see why. 
- Greg Pattridge is celebrating MS. BIXBY'S LAST DAY. Click HERE to read his review.
- Rosi Hollinbeck is reviewing--and GIVING AWAY--IDA B. Click HERE for all the fun. 
- Jenni Enzor is spreading some sunshine for RAINY. Click HERE to see why.  
- Joanne Fritz always has an MMGM for you. Click HERE to see what she's talking about this week 
- The Mundie Moms are always huge supporters of middle grade. Click HERE for their Mundie Kids site. 
- Karen Yingling also always has some awesome MMGM recommendations for you. Click HERE to which ones she picked this time. 


If you would like to join in the MMGM fun, all you have to do is blog about a middle grade book you love on a Monday (contests, author interviews and whatnot also count--but are most definitely not required) and email me the title of the book you're featuring and a link to your blog at SWMessenger (at) hotmail (dot) com. (Make sure you put MMGM or Marvelous Middle Grade Monday in the subject line so it gets sorted accurately--and please don't forget to say what book you're featuring) You MUST email me your link by Sunday evening in order to be included in the list of links for the coming Monday. (usually before 11pm PST is safe--but if I'm traveling it can vary. When in doubt, send early!) (Also make sure the post you send me is a new post, not one from earlier in the week. I try to keep the content fresh)

If you miss the cutoff, you are welcome to add your link in the comments on this post so people can find you, but I will not have time to update the post. Same goes for typos/errors on my part. I do my best to build the links correctly, but sometimes deadline-brain gets the best of me, and I'm sorry if it does. For those wondering why I don't use a Linky-widget instead, it's a simple matter of internet safety. The only way I can ensure that all the links lead to safe, appropriate places for someone of any age is if I build them myself. It's not a perfect system, but it allows me to keep better control.

Thank you so much for being a part of this awesome meme, and spreading the middle grade love!


*Please note: these posts are not a reflection of my own opinions on the books featured. Each blogger is responsible for their own MMGM content and I do not pre-screen reviews ahead of time, nor do I control what books they choose. I simply assemble the list based on the links that are emailed to me. 

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32. Girls for Marriage – Matrimonial Site

Girls for Marriage – Matrimonial Site Craze for Selfie… शादी कॉम, जीवनसाथी डॉट कॉम , Jeevansathi.com. या रिश्ते ही रिश्ते साईट हो  हमारे देश में लडकी के बडे होते ही शादी के लिए उपयुक्त वर की तलाश शुरु हो जाती है. लडकी कमाती हो , नौकरी करती हो तो कोई दिक्कत नही पर अगर लडकी काम काज न करती हो […]

The post Girls for Marriage – Matrimonial Site appeared first on Monica Gupta.

33. Picture Books in Secondary Classrooms

Picture books are short, visual, and engaging, which makes them perfect for using as mentor texts with elementary AND secondary students.

34. The OWC Podcast: Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

Pride encounters prejudice, upward-mobility confronts social disdain, and quick-wittedness challenges sagacity, as misconceptions and hasty judgments lead to heartache and scandal, but eventually to true understanding, self-knowledge, and love. In this supremely satisfying story, Jane Austen balances comedy with seriousness, and witty observation with profound insight. If Elizabeth Bennet returns again and again to her letter from Mr Darcy, readers of the novel are drawn even more irresistibly by its captivating wisdom.

The post The OWC Podcast: Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen appeared first on OUPblog.

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35. SCBWI British Isles - 20-year Celebration!

SCBWI British Isles is 20-years-old! To celebrate, our Southeast Scotland division had a picnic in the Princes Street Garden just below the statue of Wojtek the Bear.

Kelly and I were the first ones to arrive - here we are with the castle in the background.
We set out my blanket and it quickly expanded with fellow SCBWIers and more blankets all around. And the weather, which was supposed to be a little dicey, was perfect.
Something nice happened this day. It was the first time I participated in an SCBWI even where I really felt like I was getting to know people - where I was surrounded by (albeit new) friends.
SUCH a nice feeling. We all talked about books and art. Three of the 6 illustrators in the group found each other.
We made plans for a future get-together at Waterstones. Our Regional Advisor, Sheila Averbuch was thrilled with that and the high attendance to report back to the main British Isles folks. (She's on the left.)
I thought I'd have time to kill before the panel I was attending at the Book Festival. But no - we all chatted for hours!
Truly, that's what SCBWI is all about - finding your peeps, a place to feel at home, you tribe. I love that I can find that anywhere in the world!

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36. UK food retailing and the challenge of the ‘new retail’

And yet on exactly the same day that ASDA was confirming just how bad its sales position is, Amazon announced that it would open in early 2017 another fulfilment centre – its thirteenth – in the UK. Part—but only part—of the reason why Amazon needs more capacity is due to the initial success of its Amazon Fresh food delivery business which launched in the UK in July 2016.

The post UK food retailing and the challenge of the ‘new retail’ appeared first on OUPblog.

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37. More Peeping on People

Here's a few more sketches of people on trains from all the recent rail trips to and from the Midlands.

Some people are contemplative.... 


...others bemused.
Activities on trains have changed over the years. There was a time when most people would be reading books or staring out of the window. Now there's an awful lot of tapping on little machines.
Though of course still plenty of dozing too...

... unfortunately he woke up before I could finish.

I've not only been drawing fellow travellers of course, whimsical doodles, experiments and so on have also been filling the pages on these journeys, though I've not been sharing my more imaginative wanderings on social media much recently. Partly because of deadline pressure, but also for reasons I outlined last week in this article for Words & Pictures.

However, maybe I'll share some of those shortly.

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38. Book Review: “This Night Sucks” by Elizabeth J. M. Walker…


Not for the fate of heart…or young ears for that matter, Elizabeth J. M. Walker’s newest book made me shoot coffee out of my nostrils (painful) with this laugh-out-loud young adult vampire read. Too funny and too short, with a dash of ‘Did she just drop the F-Bomb again?’ Filled with diverse characters and a different take on those shiny and oh-so-sexy vampires, it was a refreshing read and a great escape from the real world, which lately has been filled with bad news, chaos, and tragedies.

So what’s my take on a story that’s all about the horrors of high school and surviving vampire attacks? This is what I posted on Amazon and Goodreads…

4 Star Fangs and Fun! Elizabeth J. M. Walker had me at the first bite!

“This Night Sucks” is a gut-splitting, laugh-out-loud YA vampire read, sans the shiny, sexy ones. And that’s so refreshing. Walker’s tough-in-cheek dialogue and cast of eclectic characters made for one hilarious story. From the dynamics of high school cliques to what you think you know about vampires (and what you don’t), the reader is led on a merry chase to hunt down, and hopefully kill any bloodsucker that dares enter Lana and her high school friends’ world.

If you’re ready for something completely different in the vampire literary circuit, then “This Night Sucks” is a too funny, too short book that will keep you reading till the wee hours of the morning. Just don’t forget to pack your wooden stake and garlic spray…
  
About the Book:

Lana is a high school senior enrolled in Vampire Education – a class to teach students about the very real presence of vampires in the world. Lana and her classmates don’t really expect to meet up with any undead bloodsuckers. Vampires are a lot like other scary things that supposedly exist but you hope you’ll never come across: nudist colonies, mad cow disease, and your parents’ sex life.

What is part of Lana’s everyday reality is navigating through one last year of high school while desperately trying to be less nerdy. She still loves spaceships, fantasy novels, and cat stickers, but she also recently got her braces removed, grew boobs, and is working on the makeup thing. She never expected her crush-of-a-lifetime Pete to even notice her – let alone ask her out on a date. 

The date is going great until Pete’s ex-girlfriend Katy shows up, all bloody and pissed off. Lana quickly realizes that Katy is not just her ordinary bitchy self – she has been turned into a vampire. After a near death experience, Lana learns that she is changing into a vampire too.

Lana needs answers, and the only way to get them is to find the vampire who started the chain of events – and to find him before sunrise... 

Purchase Links:

Mirror World Publishing Link:  

Amazon Link: 

Meet the Author:

Elizabeth J. M. Walker lives in Windsor, Ontario, Canada. She has always loved books and writing. As a teen she discovered zines, which inspired her to publish her own litzine of odd fairy tales for over a decade.

She Dreamed of Dragons is her first novel.

Connect with Elizabeth J.M. Walker:

Facebook: 

Amazon US: 

Goodreads Author Page:

Publisher Website: 

Author Website: 
www.elizabethjmwalker.com

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39. They All Saw a Cat by Brendan Wenzel


In early 2014 I reviewed the picture book Some Bugs, written by Angela Di Terlizzi and illustrated by Brendan Wenzel. A fantastic, rhyming book, Wenzel's illustrations were unforgettable, calling to mind Eric Carle with a goofy undercurrent. I have been following Wenzel's career since then and am so excited to be reviewing the first picture book written an illustrated, They All Saw a Cat.



They All Saw a Cat is a story of observation and perspective, the idea for the book coming to Wenzel several years ago when he was teaching art classes in Nepal, noting that, "if every kid in the classroom draws the exact same thing - say, a cat - they will come up with a unique image, depending on their perspectives on and experiences with cats, that puts the animal in a different, new light." They All Saw a Cat follows a cat as it walks through the world, each person and creature who sees the cat viewing it differently. They All Saw a Cat is simple and brilliant, living up to all the praise that has been heaped upon it (see the end of the review for details of the heaps of praise.) 


Wenzel's text in They All Saw a Cat is sleekly repetitive - read it out loud and you will probably find yourself instinctively singing the words. The book begins, "The cat walked through the world, with its whiskers, ears and paws . . ." To the child, the cat is all sweet, big eyes and happiness. To the dog, the cat is skinny and suspicious, slinking past. And to the fox? The cat is a puffy, mouthwatering, marshmallow of a morsel.




They All Saw a Cat twist and turns, just like the titular cat. How the cat looks to prey and predators, how the cat looks to a bee and to a worm, a flea and a bat, are just a few of the perspectives we are treated to as the cat walks through the world. The climax of the book finds the cat, a patchwork of all the perspectives. In the final pages, the cat approaches a pond, glimpsing his reflection, the text asking, "imagine what it saw?"



As the article in Publisher's Weekly from 2014 revealed, They All Saw a Cat was part of an eight publisher bidding war that was won by Chronicle Books, earning Wenzel a two-book deal and a six-figure deal. As the press material that came with They All Saw a Cat revealed, an editor from one of the losing houses proclaimed, "You guy have the next freakin' Eric Carle." My time working as an assistant to an agent was coming to an end just as Brendan Wenzel was introduced to him by Angela Di Terlizzi. Having witnessed a few bidding wars for manuscripts, I can only imagine what it was like in the office on the day that Chronicle prevailed. It's not often that a talent - and book - like Wenzel's comes along, and, as Ginee Seo, children's publishing director at Chronicle said, "I feel a bit embarrassed using a cliché, but as soon as I saw the proposal , I felt I was looking at an instant classic. . . the book is so intelligent and well thought-out that form the very first words and images you know you're in the hands of someone who is confident and knows what he is doing. Brendan's writing is spare and has a rhythm and pacing that is unusual for an artist to achieve. And his art has a sense of movement that is just beautiful. As an editor, I knew immediately that this was really rare." 

Source: Review Copy

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40. Monday Mishmash 8/29/16


Happy Monday! Monday Mishmash is a weekly meme dedicated to sharing what's on your mind. Feel free to grab the button and post your own Mishmash.

Here's what's on my mind today:
  1. First Day of School :(  I'm one of those mothers who cries on the ride home from dropping my daughter off at school on the first day every year. It doesn't matter how old she gets or that I know she has a ton of friends. She's my best bud and I miss her like crazy.
  2. After Loving You Cover Reveal  If you missed the cover reveal for After Loving You this past weekend, here it is! You can preorder your copy today here
  3. Back to My Usual Schedule  Now that school is back in session, my writing/editing schedule is too. The days always feel so long this time of year because I'm not used to working for five and a half hours straight after breaking up my time during the summer.
  4. Editing  My editing schedule is packed from now through January. That's good though because I need to make money, right?
  5. WIP Put on Hold  I've written quite a bit this year, so I don't feel bad that I have to put my current WIP on hold in order to edit for clients. I might work on it slowly (a few thousand words a day), but we'll see.
That's it for me. What's on your mind today?

41. THE FINNIGAN EFFECT: A Guest Post by Mary T. Wagner

Writing has been an essential part of my life for as long as I’ve been an adult. I’ve written for newspapers, magazines, and courts of law. Who knew that now—as both a grownup and a grandmother—writing about a kitten would let me channel my “inner child” with such total abandon?!



I can’t claim to have been one of those writers who “just knew” from the time they could read that they wanted to write and to create their own stories. 

To the contrary, I buried myself in books as a child and was quite content to immerse myself in the stories that others created—first all books I could find about horses; then mysteries featuring the teenaged American sleuth Nancy Drew; and finally “regency romances” which usually featured a very difficult hero and a plucky damsel who won his heart by the last chapter. Quite often carriages and castles were involved. I grew up with a great vocabulary…and very little to show in the way of my own imagination!

However, after drifting through my first year in college as an “undeclared liberal arts major,” I took a stab at newspaper journalism, relying on the occasional praise of others that I wrote well in my earlier school assignments to crack open the door. After sitting through my first reporting class, I was hooked. “That’s it, I’m home,” I thought, and I eagerly rolled up my sleeves to practice writing snappy leads and funneling facts into an “inverted pyramid style” of news writing.

I wrote for two major daily newspapers in succession, keeping my prose short and clear, aiming to explain things at a fourth-grade reading level. After I married and started a family, I switched to freelance magazine writing, indulging in more complicated sentences and words with three or four syllables. At the age of forty, I switched careers completely and went to law school, where my early newspaper training served me well in simplifying legal issues. And when I began my career as a prosecuting attorney for the state, I quickly found that putting my legal arguments on paper could be an advantage.

At every step of the way, writing had been a tool to wield, to explain, to persuade, to illustrate. And then friends talked me into starting to write a blog, “Running with Stilettos,” where I finally began to write just for me…and to write for fun!!

And then Finnigan showed up.

Every book starts with a small idea, but Finnigan the Circus Cat started with an even smaller kitten. My youngest son and his wife called from school shortly before they came home for the Christmas holiday. They’d just adopted a kitten from a shelter. Given that my ex-husband was deathly allergic to cats, could they park the wee little Finnigan at my house for a few weeks?

I jumped at the chance! My household already held two adult cats and a large dog, but there’s nothing cuter than a kitten as the saying goes, and that window of “tiny and cute” only lasts so long. 

 Finnigan was the tiniest kitten I’d ever seen away from his mother’s side. So tiny, in fact, that I quickly realized that the standard kitten chow the kids had brought home was too large for him to eat with his tiny teeth and I raced to the nearest pet store for special food that was almost as finely granulated as sugar. 


For the next few weeks, my kitchen resembled a circus act…literally. I had fenced off the kitchen to keep the dog in there so that he didn’t bother—or step on—Finnigan. And so when it was time to give the bigger animals their nightly treats, I stood in the kitchen like a ringmaster and pointed to the far side of the gate. The cats soared over the divider like lions jumping hurdles, while Finnigan perched on my shoulder like a pirate’s parrot. Dog treats and cat treats dispensed, Finnigan and I could retreat to the living room sofa for some quality time.

Inevitably, the new semester began and the kids went back to school, taking Finnigan with. But in another year, he was back at my house for a half year while my son and his wife studied in Ireland. By this time he had grown into a sleek young feline, with a narrow face, legs that seemed a little too long for his body, and a long tail that draped like a rope behind him. There was something about his coloring—smudges beneath his nose like a mustache; grey and black stripes that resembled a leotard—and his natural swagger that reminded me again and again of a circus performer strutting around a ring.


The “circus” theme was naturally never far from my thoughts, since one of my daughters is in fact a contemporary circus aerialist, and somehow the thought of a foundling kitten in a circus setting just stayed in my imagination. Eventually, in the swirl of selling my house, moving to another, and hitting my marks in court, I began to write “Finnigan the Circus Cat.” Writing the story was just the start of the project, however, as it developed that I also drew the pictures inside the book that start every chapter. Call it a confluence of poor timing, looming deadlines, and pure cussedness, but yes, I rolled up my sleeves and summoned the vestiges of the sketching I did as a child, and drew the pictures too!!!

What I DID NOT expect, however, after getting this first book into print, was just how much the fictional Finnigan would stay in my head as a constant source of happy thoughts! 



I confess to doing “double duty” as my print deadline for the first book loomed. I brought my drawing pad and pencils and photographs of the real Finnigan with me to a law conference as time was running out, and sketched pictures of kittens and mice to my heart’s content as I trained my ear toward lectures on grim subjects such as “lethality assessments” and “drug treatment courts.” I dutifully listened to presentations about evidence and witnesses…while Googling pictures of mice in cute poses. Who says you can’t multitask?




Back in “the real world,” there are any number of sobering subjects to ponder from the time I get out of bed. Bills, car maintenance, yard work. And let’s face it, on the job, the subject matter for a criminal prosecutor is rarely the stuff of laughter. 

But I find to my delight that as I drive around town (or—gasp--as I sit in court waiting for the next case to be called!), there’s a part of my brain that’s engaged with wondering what Finnigan and his friends are going to be doing next. Just how are they going to convince a pair of con men that a circus wagon is haunted? How exactly will Leroy, the larger of the two mice (and a gentle soul quite sensitive about his size,) impersonate a rat in the next book? Which of Aesop’s fables will I work into the conversation in the third book, and how will I stage a faceoff between a circus lion and one of the villainous neighborhood cats? 

I could go on and on…and in my head, I certainly do! But for me it’s not just academic. Because as I feel the “Finnigan Effect,” it’s always with the blissful memory of just how soft that real  kitten was, sleeping in my lap, when he was absolutely, totally brand new. 


Mary T. Wagner
Award-winning author of When the Shoe Fits(Essays of Love, Life and Second Chances), Heck on Heels, and more...

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 Thank you so much Mary, Finnigan is a delight. 

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42. कैसे बने अच्छे इंसान-ऑडियो

  Click & listen audio of 2 mins & 12 secs कैसे बने अच्छे इंसान-ऑडियो How to be better person audio जिंदगी में हम सभी सफल होना चाहतें हैं आगे बढना चाहते है इसके लिए हम अच्छे बनना चाहते हैं पर अच्छे की क्या पहचान है हम अच्छे कैसे बने ये सुनने के लिए आपको […]

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43. Fusenews: Dem-o-gorgon or Dem-a-gorgon?

Morning, poppins!

Yesterday, for the first time in a long while, I submitted a Video Sunday for your approval.  Trouble is, I may have failed to mention one of the most fascinating videos out there with a tie-in to books for kids, so I’d like to rectify the situation today.

kidpresidentThe title of the article read, ‘Last Week Tonight’: John Oliver Turned a 20-Year-Old Kids’ Book with ‘Startling Parallels’ to Trump into a Bestseller.  Naturally I tried figuring out what book they were talking about but I was coming up short.  Turns out it’s good old The Kid Who Ran for President by Dan Gutman.  That’s a title that is consistently on New York City public school reading lists every single year.  Wouldn’t be surprised a jot if that’s how Last Week Tonight‘s writing staff heard about it (some of them must have kids).  Glad to see it getting a bit of attention here and there. I won’t give away which candidate the “startling parallels” refer to (kidding!).  Thanks to PW Children’s Bookshelf for the link.


A Gene Luen Yang comic piece for the New York Times simply called Glare of Disdain?  Don’t mind if I do!


Horn Book came out with their 2015-2016 Yearbook Superlatives post once more.  Fun bit.  I wonder if they collect them throughout the year as they do their reading.


Tis the battle of the smarty-pants!  Who did it better?  Adam Rex and Christian Robinson at Horn Book or Jory John and Bob Shea at Kirkus?  The choice is yours (though Christian Robinson probably sweeps the deck with his magnificent “Black people are magic” line).


See how I’m going from a Horn Book post to a Horn Book / Kirkus post to a Kirkus review?  That’s why they pay me the big bucks, folks.  In any case, usually when I post a review on this blog I like to link the books mentioned in the review to Kirkus.  Why?  Because they’re the review journal that has the most free archived older children’s book reviews online.  Generally this is a good plan but once in a while it throws me for a loop.  For example, a reviewer of the original Nate the Great back in 1972 had serious problems with the title.  Your homework for the day is to read the review and then figure out what precisely the “stereotype” the book was faulty of conveying really was.  I’ve read this review about ten times and I’m still baffled.  Any ideas?


winniepooh01-768x512So I worked at NYPL for a number of years (11 in total).  Of those, I spent about five or six of them working in close proximity to the original Winnie-the-Pooh toys.  And in all that time I never knew them to look as good as they do right now.  Oo la la!  Goggle at that restored Kanga!  And a Piglet where his skin ISN’T falling off his body?  I don’t even know the guy now.  No word on whether or not the restoration yielded more information on the music box in Pooh’s tummy (or if it’s even still there).  Still, they look great (and appear to have a whole new display area too!).  Thanks to Sharyn November for the link.


Did you know that Cricket Media (which runs Cricket Magazine as well as other periodicals) has a blog?  I tell you this partly because I’m trying to contact someone at their Chicago location and so far my efforts have been for naught.  A little help?


Did you know there was a children’s book award for science fiction?  Yup. “The Golden Duck Awards, which are designed to encourage science fiction literature for children, have been given annually since 1992.”  And as far as I can tell, they may still be going on.  Check out their site here to see for yourself.  You can suggest books from the previous year too, so have at it, peoples.


So I give up.  Slate?  You win.  You do good posts on children’s books.  I was wrong to doubt you.  That post about how your son loves “bad guys” so you read him Tomi Ungerer’s The Three RobbersThat’s good stuff.  And the piece on how terrible the U.S. is at translating children’s books?  Also excellent.  To say nothing of all the other excellent posts you’ve come up with and researched well.  I doff my cap.  Your pop-up blog is a rousing success.  Well done you.


Question: How often has a documentary been made about a nonfiction children’s picture book about a true subject?  Once at least.


Saw this next one on the old listservs and figured it might be of use to someone:

I just wanted to pass along an opportunity that I’m hoping that you’ll hope promote for ALSC. Every year, we give away four $600 stipends for ALSC members to attend Annual for the first time. Applications are open now and are being accepted up to October 1, 2016. For 2017, Penguin Random House is including one ticket for each winner to the Newbery-Caldecott-Wilder Banquet. Here is some more information.


Daily Image:

Because I just cannot stop with the Stranger Things.  This one came via my friend Marci.  Look closely enough and you’ll see Will hiding in the Upside Down.

http://charamath.tumblr.com/post/148762797238/i-know-the-internet-is-full-of-stranger-things-fan

Thanks to Marci Morimoto for the link.

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44. BOBBEE BEE: Wrestling With Politics: The Sinister Seeds of a Trumped Up Presidential Candidate pt.2


NORTH CAROLINA (BASN)-According to Peter Wehner’s article in Time Magazine entitled The Party’s Over..”Republicans became uncreative and intellectually lazy. They placed themselves in an ideological straitjacket, trying to be more Reagan than Reagan. As a result, too many Republicans lost touch with ordinary Americans. They had almost nothing to say about wage stagnation, the struggle of working-class Americans, the lack of social mobility, soaring tuition and health care costs, and how to extend health insurance to the uninsured. They were unable to explain, let alone address, huge structural changes caused by globalization, advances in technology and automation, which had harsh effects on low-skill workers. Blue collar Americans, in particular, felt unheard, ignored, and abandoned,” which, unfortunately, led to the presidential demise of Mitt Romney in 2008, after is 47% comment went viral.

As a result, the Tea-Party was born, which bred political candidates like Ted Cruz and Sarah Palin.  But, Donald Trump, has piggybacked off their alleged anti-establishment rhetoric, conservative Constitution politics and “high jacked” their voters and  turned the American political process into a Vince McMahon inspired WWE wrestling match. Unfortunately, the only thing missing are the colorful costumes, brake away tables and a few flying elbows. (Read my article Wrestling With Politics: Playing the Trump Card on BASN)

Playing the Trump Card

Well, I ‘ll take that back…Because, now, Donald Trump’s political rallies are filled with fist fights, sucker punches, and name-calling-WORST THAN any wrestling match…
Hell, it’s  a DAMN shame legendary Hulk Hogan was stripped from WWE for using the N-word, especially after all of the foolishness coming out of Donald Trump’s mouth on his way to the White House in 2016.
Because, with no teleprompter, to guide his speeches, the reality show star and former beauty pageant promoter  has questioned the veracity of Obama’s Hawaiian birth certificate, called Ted Cruz, “lying Ted” while  arguing that the Canadian-born Texas Senator, along with Cuban-American Florida Senator Marco Rubio, whom he calls “little Marco”  were ineligible to occupy the Oval Office.

The Jewish Factor

He also has claimed, without any evidence, to have seen televised footage of  Muslims celebrating in New Jersey after planes crushed in the World Trade Center on Sept.11.
Unfortunately, according to BlackAgendaReport managing editor Bruce A.Dixon, “the people doing the cheering weren’t Muslims: they were five young Israelis in a white moving van, who were observed in Liberty Park ecstatically taking pictures of themselves framed against the smoking ruins of the Twin Towers. As ABC News reported, the five were later arrested at gunpoint near the New Jersey Giants football stadium. Most U.S. intelligence sources believed the men were Israeli spies, and that their “moving company” was an Israeli intelligence cover.”
With that said, with every election, every politicians must prove, or better yet, pledge their love to Israel, which Trump, in the beginning, seemed to be going against the grain when he said, he would  be “neutral” in dealing with stalled Israeli-Palestinian negotiation on an independent Palestinian state as well as his refusal to denounce the support of former Grand Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan David Duke, who believes that Zionist influence every part of  American politics, during a recent interview with CNN.

Now, however, according to the USA Today report Shira Rubin, the GOP is encouraging American citizens who live in Israel-especially those from pivotal swing states like Florida-to vote for Trump.
Michal Adar, who originally from Atlanta and now lives in Raanana, Israel- is quoted as saying “We trust Trump, because we know he shares our values and that he has the right kind of worldview-that maybe not every Muslim is a terrorist, but that every terrorist is in fact a Muslim.”
Yes, this was the Frankenstein monster that the Republican Party had made and feared that they might have to destroy if he continued his destructive path throughout the American political arena.

Leading By Example


But, was Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, the best leadership America had to offer?-
According to Suzy Kassem in her book – Rise Up and Salute the Sun, the American people should… “Pick a leader who will not only bail out banks and airlines, but also families from losing their homes — or jobs due to their companies moving to other countries. Pick a leader who will fund schools, not limit spending on education and allow libraries to close. Pick a leader who chooses diplomacy over war. An honest broker in foreign relations. A leader with integrity, one who says what they mean, keeps their word and does not lie to their people. Pick a leader who is strong and confident, yet humble. Intelligent, but not sly. A leader who encourages diversity, not racism. One who understands the needs of the farmer, the teacher, the doctor, and the environmentalist — not only the banker, the oil tycoon, the weapons developer, or the insurance and pharmaceutical lobbyist.”
Unfortunately, the camera-loving Trump fails to meet many of Kassem’s qualifications. But, a large segment of the American pollution seems to love what he says and what he stands for.
Blaming Obama
But, the question remains-Is this all President Obama’s fault for creating this cult of personality, which “made” him President in 2008?
Did his eight years in office really destroy the fabric of American society?
Hell, white America has to blame somebody for their problems and short-comings?
But, seriously, was Obama’s MLK utopian dream  …or should  I say. His Audacity of HOPE for a better America  too much for the Washington insider’s to handle?
Shockingly, former President Bill Clinton, thinks President Obama does bear some of the blame for this years “wacky” election. Because, according to him, ” Millions of people look at that pretty picture of America he painted and they cannot find themselves in it.”
Boy, Slick Willie is back at again, saxophone and all….
Now, let’s analyze those words, “Million of people look at that pretty picture of America he painted and they cannot find themselves…..
Who could Clinton be talking about?-Especially, after this year’s Oscars, which comedian and host Chris Rock called “the white people’s choice awards,” where two sports-themed movies, lead by African-American actors, Michael B. Jordan (Creed) and Will Smith (Concussion) were overlooked.


The Silent Majority

Well, it seems, like that silent majority, is no other than the “white working class,” who are frustrated and angry because their jobs have been moved overseas to countries like Mexico, China, India, Vietnam and Thailand in exchange for cheap labor and larger wages for US corporations.
As a result, Trump’s has been ‘trumpin’ up his racial rhetoric, while feeding on the primal fears of the nation and  claiming he is going to make “America better again”by bragging boldly about  building a giant Wall and deporting all  illegal aliens and closing the borders to prevent all Muslims from entering the country and registering their names in a database.
He even, shamefully, stated that he could shoot someone in the Middle of Time’s Square and not loses voters in the poll, which was extremely foolish. Especially, when Black men, in seemed, were being shot and killed by the police on a weekly bases.
Matter of fact, after the shootings in Baton Rogue, Minnesota and Dallas, Trump, in rare form, tried to utilize those incidents to draw an even further widget between voters by using  Republican race-baiting code words like ‘law and order,’ which was reminiscent of the 1988 Willie Horton ad used by then- Republican candidate George H.W. Bush.

White Supremacy Theology


Not surprisingly, to many political scientists, Trump was simply displaying America’s greatest religion, which is not Christianity, which it confesses, but “White Supremacy….
Trump proved this when he went to Liberty University misquoting scripture when he said that “Christianity, it’s under siege…(and) We’re going to protect Christianity – and I can say that. I don’t have to be politically correct….Two Corinthians, right? Two Corinthians 3:17, that’s the whole ballgame…Where the spirit of the Lord … right? Where the spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.”
Despite that, he still was able to gain the political endorsement of the president of Liberty University Jerry Falwell Jr as well as televangelist Paula White, who has been his spiritual advisor for 14 years, the 700 Club’s Pat Robertson in 1988, who ran for President in and Dallas mega-church minister Joel Osteen along with other foolish “Negro ministers and leaders (Ben Carson, included),who wished to sit a his table and eat the bread crumbs off of his golden plate.
But, despite Trump’s constant bumbling remarks, his supporters continue to support him and his brand, while rallying behind his divisive message.

Worldwide View

Unfortunately, those who didn’t support Trump’s brand of bigotry, which include The Bloombergs, The Bushes, The Romneys, The McCains, The Cruzes, and The Grahams, continued to feel that his poisonous rhetoric was a threat to America’s democracy worldwide.
Greg Guma, of Toward Freedom magazine, in this in an article wrote in July 2000, summed up most people thinking about the 2016 election between Trump and Hillary, in article published in July 2000 when he wrote “around the world, the message received is that, whoever wins {the U.S. election}, expect only more of the same-national narcissism disguised as altruism, corporate appeasement, and the arbitrary use of U.S. military and economic might.”
Sadly, I was agree.
The evil empire stands, whether woman or man.

Eric D.Graham , a graduate from Winston-Salem State University, where he received a BA in Mass Communication with a concentration in Radio & Television and a minor in History with an emphasis in African-American Studies, is a sports columnist at Black Athlete Sports Network, where his thought-provoking articles and controversial cartoon Here Comes “The Hater” appear on a weekly basis.

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45. Busy Builders, Busy Week!

Guest Post & Giveaway!


I love being asked to feature new books on my blog. There is something so exciting about being part of an author/illustrator's latest work. When asked to review and feature Busy Builders, Busy Week! I was also asked if there was anything in particular I wanted the author to write about in her guest post. So I tossed out a couple of ideas, and love the one she went with. Because, you see, I have a sweet spot for truck loving kids. The post below brought a huge smile to my face and had me nodding away to my computer screen. 



WHAT I LOVE ABOUT KIDS AND TRUCKS
By Jean Reidy
When kids meet up with a crane or a digger or a dump truck, something important happens. You can tell by a kid’s furrowed brows, focused eyes and full-throated roars and crashes and beeps and bangs voiced in concert with the machine. The encounter is never frivolous. Because construction trucks mean business—serious business. They’re big. They’re cool. They’ve got the moves. And they make noise. What’s not to love? It’s why so many tots know an excavator from a back hoe. Why they celebrate a cement mixer sighting. And why a pint-sized bulldozer and a sandbox can keep kids busy for hours.
When kids have trucks, they have work to do. Important work. Call it play. But (I think) you’d be mistaken. Because trucks are powerful and purposeful and they put that power and purpose in a kid’s hands. Kids are in charge. And there’s energy. Awesome, positive energy moved from kid to machine and machine to the earth or the brick or the board. Visible, viable energy. For my kids, there was always a blurring of kid and machine. When they played “construction” you never quite knew if they were driving the truck or actually WERE the truck. Amazing!
Sure, it doesn’t hurt that when kids meet up with trucks, they’re introduced to the science of simple machines. Whether studying a construction site or working with their own equipment, kids absorb the phenomena of physics. And they’re making these discoveries on their own.
But perhaps what I love most is that when kids and trucks get together there might be an end creation in sight, but often there isn’t. Because kids can love the process—the digging, the dumping, the ‘dozing—more than the product itself. And, so, the wonder-filled work continues for another day.

Peek inside!

What a perfectly vibrant and lively cover! Take a look at some interior shots to feel the vibrations of the action, and to hear the rumbles of engines and tires! Beware, you might want to go play in the dirt after!








My thoughts on the book: I couldn't wait to share this book with my two-year-old son. My boy loves everything truck, car, construction, farm, etc. If it has wheels it's cool in his book. The latest obsession of his are traffic cones found at job sites or...anywhere. I often hear an enthusiastic "Cone! Cone!" from the backseat of the car.

I wish I had filmed the moment I showed the cover of the book to my son.
It went something like this:
"Rory, want to read this new book with me?"
"Whhhooooooooaaaaaaaaa! Whoa, whoa, wow!"
Seriously.

The text bounces off your tongue in a delightful way. Full of rhymes and vivid verbs, alliteration and (of course) onomatopoeia, the book begs to be read aloud. And just try to read it without smiling. Impossible! Follow these inner-city builders as they create something special out of a drab plot of land. Four enthusiastic thumbs up from the boy and I! 

Author Bio: Jean Reidy is a two-time winner of the Colorado Book Award. Especially gifted at
writing for very young children, Jean is a frequent presenter at national and local literacy, writing,
and education conferences and at schools across the country—in person and via Skype. She is a
member of the Colorado Council International Reading Association and the Society of Children’s
Book Writers and Illustrators, and she serves on the board of Reach Out and Read Colorado. Jean writes from her home in Colorado where she lives right across the street from her neighborhood library, which she visits nearly every day. Visit her atwww.jeanreidy.com and on Twitter: @JeanReidy.

Follow Jean on the BUSY BUILDERS, BUSY WEEK! tour!

Mon, Aug 22
Tues, Aug 23
Wed, Aug 24
Thurs, Aug 25
Fri, Aug 26
Sat, Aug 27
Mon, Aug 29
Tues, Aug 30
Wed, Aug 31
Thurs, Sept 1
Fri, Sept 2

Click here for a free classroom curriculum guide and storytime kit!

Enter to win!
One lucky winner will receive a copy of BUSY BUILDERS, BUSY WEEK! (U.S. addresses.)


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46. Seeing Red by Kathryn Erskine

Can one person make a difference in this world? Can one kid? If you are twelve-year-old Red Porter, you can. It may take you a while to understand that in 1970’s Virginia all it takes is one person to make a stand. Soon others will stand with you and change can be enacted. From grieving his father’s death, to defending the girl that just might be capturing his heart, to finding himself in a

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47. ‘I’m Dead Inside’ by Dan Britt

Music and animation by Dan Britt.

The post ‘I’m Dead Inside’ by Dan Britt appeared first on Cartoon Brew.

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48.

A good example of the exquisite technique called sfumato.
John William Godward's Contemplation, (1903)


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49. Taking Wing

Sitting on a branch, the hawk
Seems regular in size.
He doesn’t reach magnificence
‘Til he takes to the skies.

Potential’s sometimes hidden
With the benefits it brings
But for man or beast it’s soon released
With the spreading of one’s wings.

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50. BOBBEE BEE: Wrestling with politics: Playing the Trump Card

by Eric D.Graham

(BASN) North Carolina-Race has always been a factor in America.
We can’t deny that fact.
The election of America’s first African-American president showed us the ugliest part of some people’s psyche as well as  the hidden hatred dwelling in some of their hearts. As a result, we saw the rise of white supremacy theology, confederate flags, and the shouts of angry white men proclaiming that they “wanted to take their country back” become the norm.
With the world, seemingly, divided along racial and political lines, African-American voters continued to play plantation politics by pledging their allegiance not to the United of States of America but to the Clintons, who they were instructed to vote for regardless, who else ran-out of fear not strategy.
As a result, seemingly, out of nowhere, Donald Trump, who through his speeches and twitter feeds, became the anti-establishment boogeyman, while pretending to be a Constitutional Conservative Christian, fed off the fear of African-Americans and the anger of white men with promises of building a bigger and better wall to keep the Mexicans out, banning all Muslims, and bombing the hell out of Isis.
Matter of fact, Trump, it seemed, was speaking out of the Pat Buchanan’s playbook (Suicide of a Super Power), while mixing politics with professional wrestling as he offered insult after insult until he eliminated all of his opponents in Republican primaries.
Yes, in the age of the Kardashians, Fox News and Reality TV, Donald Trump’s “brand” of counterfeit politics was being applauded and cheered like one of Vince McMahon’s Monday night Raw wrestling matches on pay-per-view.
It was the “politics of fear” (Clinton) versus the “politics of Hate”(Trump).
So, I guess, former professional wrestler Jesse “The Body” Ventura was correct when he said that politics was no different than Vince McMahon’s WWE professional wrestling. Why? Because, “they provide you with two opposites, who pretend to be adversaries in front of the public-one playing the GOOD COP, the other plays the BAD COP, depending on whether you’re sitting in the high-priced seats or the bleachers-until ultimately, they’re both working for the same things; maintaining their power, getting richer and making sure their wealthy backers keep their control of their stakes in the government.”
But, was this political riff between Trump and Hilary real or fake? Or, simply entertainment.
Everyone seemed confused. Because, no matter what came out of Trump’s mouth, it seemed, as if, he couldn’t lose.
Sadly, Trump had successfully turned the political process into a circus, a clown show, or, simply another espoide of his reality TV program.
But, despite Trump’s tough New York trash talking demeanor and Taylor-made suits,  “it’s still was the economic stupid…”
Yes. This was the real driving force behind the anger of all these white men, who were bankrupted, jobless, homeless after foreclosures, while they found themselves swimming in debt and drowning in red ink due to stagnant wages.
So, in their desperation, they clung to their Bibles and their guns, a prayed to their Charles Manson looking saviour, that this rich, slick talking businessman, whose wealth and riches were proof enough for them that he could fix  their financial problems and political woes-swiftly and quickly and fly away in his helicopter.
Yes.
He was just like them.
So, they thought.
He wanted to make America Great Again or White Again-depending on who you were talking to.
Because, no matter what he said, he was still better than that “crooked Hilliary or lying Ted.”
Besides, they could tolerate a Black man being President named Barack Hussein Obama, who Trump claimed was from Kenya and the leader of Isis.
But, not a white woman in a pantsuit named Hillary Clinton.
Why? Because,, this is a “white man’s world” and a woman should know her place.
Eric D.Graham , a graduate from Winston-Salem State University, where he received a BA in Mass Communication with a concentration in Radio & Television and a minor in History with an emphasis in African-American Studies, is a sports columnist at Black Athlete Sports Network, where his thought-provoking articles and controversial cartoon Here Comes “The Hater” appear on a weekly basis.

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