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Viewing: Blog Posts from the Writer category, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 26 - 50 of 231,749

FEBRUARY 20, 2016


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27. वासुदेव कुटुम्बकम

  वासुदेव कुटुम्बकम क्लिक करें गया वो जमाना जब आपका कही बाहर  धूमने का दिल किया और आपको बोरिया बिस्तर बांधना पडता था. अब जमाना वाकई में  बदल गया है !! अब उठाईए ऊंगली और निकल जाईए ह हा हा … जी हां उठाईए ऊंगली और निकल जाईए… एक क्लिक पर कभी दोस्तों की वॉल पर, कभी […]

The post वासुदेव कुटुम्बकम appeared first on Monica Gupta.

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28. Presidential Polar Bear Post Card Project No. 78 - 2.3.16

Like a mix of the polar bear and a grizzly, the Spirit Bear or Kermode Bear received recent favor in light of further and substantial Canadian protections of the Great Bear Rainforest. Good on 'ya Canada! Kind of like the President potentially adding further protections to the Arctic National Wildlife refuge... where a choice can be made in favor of the environment over continued exploitation of resources.

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29. Turning Pages Reads: THESE VICIOUS MASKS, by Tarun Shanker, Kelly Zekas

Welcome to another session of Turning Pages!Synopsis: Jaded, bored, and sarcastic, Evelyn Wyndham, at an eminently marriageable age, is deeply disinterested, and thought to be the tiniest bit odd both by her parents, and by well-bred Bramhurst... Read the rest of this post

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30. Congrats to Ezra Jack Keats Winners Don Tate and Phoebe Wahl

The 30th Annual Ezra Jack Keats Book Award winners were announced today, with top honors going to Don Tate for writing and Phoebe Wahl for illustration. Both winners have long-standing relationships with the SCBWI; Wahl won a Student Illustrator Scholarship in 2013, and Tate is a member of our Team Blog. The Jack Ezra Keats Award, named in honor of the author/illustrator of The Snowy Day, is given to new picture books that display an exceptional creative spirit and a dedication to cultural diversity.

Don Tate has embraced these ideals throughout his career as an author/illustrator, founder of the Brown Bookshelf blog, and artist outreach coordinator for the We Need Diverse Books Campaign.  Tate’s winning book Poet: The Remarkable Story of George Moses Horton of Chapel Hill (Peachtree, 2015), which he both wrote and illustrated, is the true story of a slave whose love of language led him to become the first African American poet published in the Southern United States. The book has already garnered star reviews from Kirkus and the School Library Journal, which called Horton's story “lovely” and “inspirational”. Tate previously won a Jack Ezra Keats Award honor three years ago for his book It Jes’ Happened: When Bill Traylor Started to Draw, and called the experience “one of the proudest moments of my career[…]There has always been a special place in my heart for Ezra Jack Keats. When he chose to picture brown children in his books, he chose to acknowledge me. I wasn’t invisible to him. As a creator of color in a field that sorely lacks diversity, it can be easy to sometimes feel unseen. This award serves as a reminder to me that I am not invisible and that my work matters.”

Phoebe Wahl won the illustration award for Sonya’s Chickens (Tundra Books), a bittersweet story about a farm girl tending chicks under the guidance of her multicultural family. Sonya’s lessons about responsibility and the circle of life are framed by warm, richly-textured art pieces that have earned Wahl a Kirkus star. In an EKJ press release, she spoke about the influence that Ezra Jack Keats had on her own signature style: “I can directly trace the roots of my obsession with pattern, color and my use of collage to my affinity with the lacy baby blanket in Peter’s Chair. Keats inspired me to create stories that are quiet and gentle, yet honor the rich inner lives of children and all of the complexity that allows.” Sonya’s Chickens is her debut book.

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31. Work of the Day - Amarillo by Vievee Francis

I think it's much easier to talk about poems from this second collection by Vievee Francis, Horses in the Dark Francis - Horses in the Dark(Northwestern University Press, 2012), by talking about the book as a whole. The poems interact with each other, memories mixing with the present, horses running throughout, a girl coming of age. However I think the opening poem in the first section shows some of what she does very well:



           Texas Panhandle, 1971



Inland, where no seagulls circled,

     no sea, but storms of dust and dust,

heartland: mouthless heart of thistles,

     and waves of sun, and salt, and fish,

shimmering in their cans of oil,

     as every surface boiled to rust.


This opening stanza does a nice job of showing just how well Francis evokes a sense of the place--the Texas Panhandle jumps out at me while reading her lines (and briefly cause laughter as I think of seagulls circling mall or grocery store parking lots when they're not full of cars, nowhere near large bodies of water).

Francis continues with images such as "Scruffs of scarecrows lined the fence posts, // coyotes with their lolling miens, // their smiles now fixed as any man's."  This is an image that pops up more than once in the collection--coyote heads atop fence posts, scarecrow-like to warn live coyotes--stay away.

It's a fantastic entry into her collection, and as good as this poem is, in my opinion it is only enhanced by continuing on and finishing up the poems behind it.


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32. Will it work?

Question: I am writing a new adult book, but it has magic in it because it is a fantasy/fiction novel. Will readers like the novel because it has magic

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33. Thursday Review: SECRET CODERS by Gene Luen Yang and Mike Holmes

Summary: I've been meaning to review this one for an embarrassingly long time. I had looked forward to reading it ever since first hearing about it—we are huge fans of our own (relatively) local Gene Yang here at FW and have not only interviewed... Read the rest of this post

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34. Work of the Day - Would Dying Alone Really Be So Terrible by Samantha Irby

The work this time around is an essay, Would Dying Alone Really Be So Terrible, from Samantha Irby's collection, Meaty (Curbside Splendor, 2013).  Man, 2013--that means I've had this collection for over 2 years now. In that time it has rarely not been somewhere in one of my main reading piles. It's not a collection I'd suggest one sit down with and three or four hours later put it down. It is one however that I highly recommend.

Irby - MeatyIrby's writing is both funny and a bit angry all rolled together and takes on topics rarely seen in essay, or even fictional, form. From the middle of this particular essay:


I don't know, man. I'm just not big on spending every waking minute with someone you show your privates to. People are boring. I'm fucking boring. My funny runs out, my cute runs out, my smart sometimes hiccups, my sexy wakes up with uncontrollable diarrhea. I have a fucking attitude.


This really is pretty typical of her writing. There's self-deprecation, dark humor, quick wit. Nothing to not like. You can really open this collection up to any page and get a quick paragraph or two that will brighten your day, make you think a bit, and think that you'd like to hang our with Samantha Irby, watch some television maybe, have some snacks. Just be ready to get up at the end of an hour or two as she's not up for the company staying too long.

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35. faith and email

There's so much in my life that goes better if planned.  That includes teaching, of course--if I walk in without having thought through what we're doing, how and with what materials and on what microschedule, it's bound to be a bit of a train wreck... except when I wing it and glorious teachable moments unfold.  (These are almost never quite in line with the prescribed curriculum.  Hmmmm.)

And family activities and obligations:  it's good that I enjoy the role of scheduling secretary, because even with an ordinary four of us, someone really does need to keep track of it all, BOTH electronically and on paper, in order for everyone to get where they're expected on time.

But this blog is one place where pinning things down isn't necessary.  Some weeks I know what I'll write, come late Thursday or early Friday, and it develops amid the mundane tasks all week.  Other weeks I have no idea what I'll feel like writing until I sit down to type, and I've learned that usually works too.  Here's a bit more evidence that I can take faith in the laissez-faire, low-effort approach, found in my Inbox this morning:


hello the document is here
if you press print 
you get to this new window 
and then you press
"current sheet" as well as "fit to width"
and then print
and then it takes you to a new window
and you should know this part
i need it on two separate pieces of paper 
(aka not back to back)
thank you so much 

Yes, this poem came to me almost exactly this way--I only deactivated the link and put in one extra line break...et voila.  In the comments, friends, I invite you (perhaps with reference to my long consideration of the art of language and novels-in-verse a couple of weeks ago) to remark on whether you also find a poem here and precisely why.  That should make for an interesting discussion--one that I could PLAN to round up next Friday!

Thanks to Tricia at The Miss Rumphius Effect for hosting today.  Wing on over there to see what gloriously unfolds.

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36. It's Live!! Cover Reveal: Diplomatic Immunity by Brodi Ashton + Giveaway (US Only)

Hi, YABCers! Today we're super excited to celebrate the cover reveal for DIPLOMATIC IMMUNITY by Brodi Ashton, releasing September 6, 2016 from Balzer+Bray. Before we get to the cover, here's a note from Brodi:   I'm so excited to share this cover! I love what Harper did with it. This is...

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37. How to Weigh On a Scale

How to Weigh On a Scale Tips for Weighing  Yourself on a Scale वैसे तो भरपूर खाना पीना किसे अच्छा नही लगता पर जब बात सेहत की आती है तो टाय टाय फिस्स हो जाती है और आलू पूरी , चावल, हलवा, खीर भूल कर अच्छी सहेत के लिए कंट्रोल करना पडता है. बहुत मेहनत […]

The post How to Weigh On a Scale appeared first on Monica Gupta.

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38. A Year Ahead

You plan a trip a year ahead,
The tour group tried and trusted;
Then suddenly you get a call
Which leaves you quite disgusted.

"We're sorry but we're cancelling.
Too few have joined the group.
How 'bout a slightly different time?"
Your spirits start to droop.

The flight's been booked, insurance paid
And everything arranged;
Yet you're supposed to say "Oh, sure"
When all must now be changed.

It doesn't pay to plan, for if
Experience does serve,
When you're prepared to swing away,
Life throws a nasty curve.

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39. Misused Words

Make sure you don't confuse these similar words.


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40. Day 5: Johnny Ray Moore


Johnny Ray Moore realized at an early age that writing was in his future. Thank goodness for his readers, he followed his passion. Share his literary journey and if you haven’t read his work, February is the perfect month to add his books to your collection.

The Journey

As a child, I was shy, and I spent a lot of time daydreaming. When I got into school, I loved reading, especially, reading poetry. I wrote my first poem while in the third grade. I don’t recall the name of the poem. In high school, I took creative writing classes. Years later, while in the

Army, I received two checks from Aim Magazine for two poems I had written. Getting paid to write felt good. Because I had studied and written so much poetry, to eventually write children’s books became my destiny. Thanks to poetry, I can say what I want to say with

very few words. And, my books, A LEAF, only 88 words; and, HOWIE HAS A STOMACHACHE, only 100 words, are both proof that I can communicate with very few words.
The Inspiration

As for writers and illustrators who inspire me, I am inspired by all writers and illustrators who are true to their profession. Maya Angelou, Langston Hughes, Alex Haley, Eleanora Tate, Kelly Starling Lyons, Don Tate, Carole Weatherford, and Tameka Fryer, to name a few, are blessed and creative people who inspire me. What I know of the few authors and the one illustrator that I have listed is that they were and are committed to their work. And, that is inspiration enough for me.




The Back Story

One of my children’s books that was a blessing for me and a struggle was THE STORY OF MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR., a 200-word board book biography. My former agent, Etta Wilson, informed me that Ideals Publication wanted someone to write a board book about Martin Luther King, Jr., in about 300 words, that would speak to young children. I thought about what I was being asked to consider, for a day or two. I struggled with what I could say about Dr. King that would be of interest to young children. Well, after musing over the opportunity at hand, then praying, I started to write. After about 10 rewrites, I emailed the manuscript to my agent. And, it was accepted.


HowieThe Buzz

As for the good things THE STORY OF MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. has caused, I have gotten a few emails from teachers expressing how their young students could not get enough of it. I have gotten similar responses from parents.

The mentioned board book has gotten pretty good reviews, in general. And, in December of 2015, I was informed by the publisher, Worthy Kids/Ideas, that THE  STORY OF MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. has sold well over 100,000 copies, is still selling well. Furthermore, the book has been reformatted to a slightly larger size. I am elated and blessed, to say the least.

The State of the Industry

As time goes on, I want to see more African-American children’s book publishers come on

the scene. I want to see more African-Americans write for children, period.

Why? Because, our children must be prepared to shine for us in the future as we have done and

are doing for them.

A LeafWe must make sure that WE TELL OUR OWN STORIES. If

you are not African-American, you cannot write about the black experience, convincingly. GOD

knows we are intelligent, creative and gifted enough to inspire, teach and support our very own,

first. So, let’s continue to INSPIRE; TEACH; and SUPPORT our children by writing and creating

the very best children books that we can.

Read more about Johnny’s fascinating journey here.

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Time for your second chance!

Our Red Light/Green Light Contest, judged by lovely literary agent Patricia Nelson of Marsal Lyon Literary is now open to take the next 25 submissions!

This submission window will remain open until we've filled all 50 contestant slots plus some additional alternate spots in case of disqualifications.

If you'd like to review the contest rules and format, go HERE.

Ready to enter? Go HERE NOW! ALL YOU NEED IS THE FIRST TWO SENTENCES of your MG or YA Novel for this round.

Here's the link again:


*** Please note. We're trying out a new submission form, so if there's an error, please be patient! We'll take the submissions and do our best to reconcile any changes that are required! : )

Good luck, everyone!

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42. Poet: The Remarkable Story of George Moses Horton – PPBF, Diversity Day, 2016

  Celebrating Black History Month! Title: Poet: The Remarkable Story of George Moses HortonPoet: Author and illustrator: Don Tate Publisher: Peachtree Books, 2015 Themes: slavery, illiteracy, poetry, African American, perseverance, Genre: biography Ages: 6-9 Opening: GEORGE LOVED WORDS. He wanted to learn how to read, but George was enslaved. He and his family lived … Continue reading

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43. Author Top 5 with Jake Gerhardt

  Today we welcome Jake Gerhardt to YABC! Jake's book, Me and Miranda Mullaly, is filled with humour and all the amazing awkwardness that comes from a middle school crush! Read on to learn a few things about Jake, his book, the top five books/writers that inspired him to write a humourous book,...

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44. Poetry Friday: Response to Picasso's Sculpture of a Cat

Response to Picasso’s sculpture of a Cat

She’s pregnant, this cat
or just given birth. She’s muddy;
her tail's been broken.
Look at her neck, stiff

as a stanchion. Look at her compact
head; so ill-made for big thoughts
you fear her tail is pulling
her backwards. She isn’t curled

by contentment, or preying
with merciless grace, or cagily
sinuous. Still—
she is Cat. She disdains

opinion. You can tell
by the vainglorious shine
of her ears, as if she is listening to
an undivided convent

of cats chanting her name
lapping up her blessing
as she passes them. She has lived
fully; they have been holy.

Picasso stretched time between
sculptures; using his brush to pry apart
skulls, turning to his hands only when the Muse
purred to him. He was never trained

to mold clay or pour bronze but
what he made, he kept
close. They fattened
his household. Did he speak

to Cat? Attempt to straighten
her tail, even as she hissed? How do
you feed a Muse who doesn’t need
you? She’s given birth; he stirs mud.

                        ----Sara Lewis Holmes (all rights reserved)

Thanks to Liz Garton Scanlon for discovering the intriguing Picasso sculptures, which provided the inspiration for this month's ekphrastic poetry challenge. (The Poetry Seven plans to respond to an image or piece of art every other month in 2016.  I'm already researching which artist to choose when it's my turn...)

Here are the links to my Poetry Sisters' poems (each of us chose a Picasso sculpture from a select group, so there's some overlap in the inspiration images, but glorious uniqueness in the response!)

Andi (taking a breather this month)

More about Picasso's sculptures.

Poetry Friday is hosted today by one of the Poetry Seven's own, Tricia, at The Miss Rumphius Effect.

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45. John Roy and George and Don and me

To commemorate Black History Month, the Texas Book Festival has posted an interview with Don Tate and me about his book Poet: The Remarkable True Story of George Moses Horton and our book The Amazing Age of John Roy Lynch. Here’s a bit of what Don has to say about the stories he wants to […]

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46. FAN MAIL WEDNESDAY #226: Word from an Aspiring Author




Here’s a kind note from an aspiring writer.

Hi! My name is ___ and I am a fifth grader from Sacandaga Elementary school. I was sick when you came and I was so sad. I love to write and your books inspire me! I am reading Justin Fisher Declares War and it makes me randomly laugh! I love having your signature in it! I wish I could have met you! I write to get my mind off things. I am going to start a book called Fake inspired by Bystander! Please get back to me, wish I could have seen you!

Confession I never liked the cover to this one, was hoping for something much more funny and school based, but I do like the tag line: "Fifth grade is no joke."

Confession: I never liked the cover to this one, was hoping for something funny and school-based, but I do like the tagline: “Fifth grade is no joke.” Too bad you can’t see it. Grumble, grumble.

I replied:

 ____, what a bummer! I’m sorry you were sick, I could have used a friendly face in that rough crowd. Just kidding. Everyone at Sacandaga was great — in fact, I loved it so much, I even learned how to spell Sacandaga. When in doubt, type an “a.”

I wrote Justin Fisher immediately after Bystander, which was fairly serious, so I felt like writing something that was humorous and light-hearted. I’m glad you enjoyed both of them, my yin and yang. 
Please give me your address and I’ll try to get something in the mail to you one of these days. But be patient, I’ll be traveling soon. 
I’m always glad to hear from a fellow writer. And for the record, Fake is a great title.

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47. Friday Linky List - 5 February 2016

From The Guardian: Fances Hardinge's THE LIE TREE Wins Costa Book of The Year 2015 - I want to read this!

From Scholastic's On Our Minds: Statement on Claim of Self-Censorship by Advocacy Groups (over "A Birthday Cake for George Washington")

From The Observer: What the Blues Can Teach You About Life, Art and Everything In-Between (also a great commentary on writing voice, although it's all about music)

From The Scottish Book Trust: Grimm Stories: Why fairy tales are not just for children's

From School Library Journal: Support Pours In for 11-Year-Old Girl Gathering 1,000 Books with Black Girl Protagonists

From Den of Geek! (via PW): From The 5th Wave to The 100: The State of Onscreen YA

From Literary Hub (via PW): Our Fairy Tales Ourselves: Storytelling From East to West

From Slate (via PW): Quiz: Match the Mouse to the Storybook - FUN! I got them all, how about you?

From The Bookseller: Said campaigns for more children's book reviews - HEAR! HEAR!

At It's Nice That: The man behind the best hand-painted classic film posters, Steven Chorney

From Scary Mommy: Kids Develop Better Language Skills When Dad Does The Bedtime Story

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48. Spotlight on The Awkward Phase by Tyler Gillespie and Claire Linic, Plus Giveaway!

  THE AWKWARD PHASE By Tyler Gillespie and Claire Linic We were coworkers at the time and decided to use our lunch breaks to do something creative. We threw around other ideas ­­ like the best of Mom haircuts ­­ but ultimately decided to land on something we both had in...

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49. Free 1st 5 Pages Workshop Opens Tomorrow!

Our February workshop will open for entries on Saturday, February 6 at noon, EST. We'll take the first five Middle Grade, Young Adult, or New Adult entries that meet all guidelines and formatting requirements. Click here to get the rules. I will post when it opens and closes on Adventures in YA Publishing and on twitter (@etcashman), with the hashtag #1st5pages. In addition to our wonderful permanent mentors, we have author Brian Katcher and agent Christa Heschke!

February Guest Mentor – BRIAN KATCHER

Brian, a Stonewall Book Award-winning author, is the author of THE IMPROBABLE THEORY OF ANA AND ZAKALMOST PERFECTEVERYONE DIES IN THE END, and PLAYING WITH MATCHES. Brian’s worked as a fry cook, a market researcher, a welding machine operator, a telemarketer (only lasted one day), and a furniture mover. He lived on an Israeli military base one summer, and once smuggled food into Cuba. When he’s not writing, he works as a school librarian. He lives in central Missouri with his wife and daughter.


The Improbable Theory of Ana and Zak is Stonewall Book Award-winning author Brian Katcher’s hilarious he said/she said romance about two teens recovering from heartbreak and discovering themselves on an out-of-this-world accidental first date.

It all begins when Ana Watson's little brother, Clayton, secretly ditches the quiz bowl semifinals to go to the Washingcon sci-fi convention on what should have been a normal, résumé-building school trip.If slacker Zak Duquette hadn't talked up the geek fan fest so much, maybe Clayton wouldn't have broken nearly every school rule or jeopardized Ana’s last shot at freedom from her uptight parents.

Now, teaming up with Duquette is the only way for Ana to chase down Clayton in the sea of orcs, zombies, bikini-clad princesses, Trekkies, and Smurfs. After all, one does not simply walk into Washingcon.

But in spite of Zak's devil-may-care attitude, he has his own reasons for being as lost as Ana-and Ana may have more in common with him than she thinks. Ana and Zak certainly don’t expect the long crazy night, which begins as a nerdfighter manhunt, to transform into so much more…

Purchase it at your local bookstore, or online. And add it to your shelf on Goodreads!

February Guest Agent – CHRISTA HESCHKE

Christa started in publishing as an intern at both Writers House and Sterling Lord Literistic, where she fell in love with the agency side of publishing. Christa has been at McIntosh and Otis, Inc. in the Children's Literature Department since 2009 where she is actively acquiring for all age groups in children’s. For YA, she is especially interested in contemporary fiction, thriller/mystery, and horror. She is always on the lookout for a compelling voice combined with a strong, specific hook that will set a YA novel apart in its genre and the flooded market. She is open to all types of middle grade and especially enjoys adventure, mystery, and magical realism, whether in a voice that is more light and humorous or one with more of a timeless, literary feel. For both YA and MG, she is particularly interested in unique settings and cultural influences, interesting storytelling structure, complicated romances, diverse characters, sister or friendship-centric stories, and stories that feature artists of any kind.

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It's time!

Our Red Light/Green Light Contest, judged by literary agent Patricia Nelson of Marsal Lyon Literary is now open to take the first 25 submissions until 3PM Eastern today!

The submission window will remain open until we've filled 25 contestant slots plus some additional alternate spots in case of disqualifications.

If you'd like to review the contest rules and format, go HERE.

Ready to enter? Go HERE NOW! If you miss the window, try again at 3pm Eastern/Noon Pacific, when we'll take an additional 25 entries plus alternates!

*** Please note. We're trying out a new submission form, so if there's an error, please be patient! We'll take the submissions and do our best to reconcile any changes that are required! : )

Good luck, everyone!

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