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Almost 40 years before "M" came out with his film "The Village" about a hidden town of present day Amish-Like occupants of a small Pennsylvania village who are made to think it's really 1897, and kept secluded by the woods from venturing into the modern (evil) world, it seems Action Comics #324 had the same plot.
Remember this cartoon where our poor mermaid is sad because she’s missing the legs necessary to run??
Well, I posted a similar layout on my Facebook account and started getting emails and requests from people who loved the design and begging me to turn it into my next running shirt! Eventually enough people responded to where I got serious about it.
So, by popular demand I WILL be offering an exclusive ‘Life’s Better With Legs’ design to my running shirt line!!! Yay…I’m excited! Are you excited? Well, you should be. Even if you’re a runnerdude there have to be some super awesome runnerchicks you know that would LOVE this shirt. Mayyybe win some brownie points if you’re still working on that speed goggle effect. Jk.
Because I’ve already got orders placed, I will only be waiting a couple more days before finalizing the order. That means you need to reserve your shirt TODAY!
Don’t miss the boat (arrrg!)…order the latest, awesome new design!!
* White, Sublimation Tee 100% Polyester
* Unisex sizes (XS-Large) See size chart below
* $36.50 + shipping
If you have any questions email me: firstname.lastname@example.org
Head on over to the STORE and check out all of my running shirts!
Turns out my recipe for almondy cookies easily adapts to a gluten-free version. I made a half-batch last week just to test it out. Everyone loved them, including visiting gluten-eaters. They are not too sweet and have a nice shortbready-type texture.
Cream together butter, sugar, egg, and almond extract. Beat in flour, almond meal, and salt.
Make a ball and flatten it, wrap in wax paper and place in the fridge for an hour or a day.
Preheat oven to 325°, roll out dough, and use cutters to cut shapes. Ours were a little thicker—in the 1/4 inch range, but you could go thinner, depending on how crispy or chewy you want yours. Just watch the time—you definitely don’t want to overcook them.
Bake for 8-10 minutes or more. They should be very lightly browned. I should’ve cooked ours a little longer, but I got impatient.
I’m tempted to up the almond meal further and lower the flour portion. Maybe next time. Also hoping to try out a GF molasses cookie recipe. Stay tuned. For other eating and cooking adventures (including gluten-free) click here.
Submissions are open for the 2014 PEN New EnglandSusan P. Bloom Children's Book Discovery Award. This award contest is open to not only unpublished authors in Connecticut but unpublished authors throughout New England. Winners will present their work at the Discovery Evening in May and have their work submitted to a participating publishing house.
Guidelines, people. February 2, 2014 is your deadline.
So now you have something to look forward to once you're past the hurdle of Christmas.
Might that be why your fiction has been more readily admired in so-called literary circles—that it’s more engaged with human complexity and psychology?
It’s helped to make my stuff more accessible to people who don’t, as they say, read science fiction. But the prejudice against genre has been so strong until recently. It’s all changing now, which is wonderful. For most of my career, getting that label—sci-fi—slapped on you was, critically, a kiss of death. It meant you got reviewed in a little box with some cute title about Martians—or tentacles.
Also, this killed me: "My father knew Alfred Knopf personally. I’d had recorder lessons with Blanche Knopf when I was seventeen. Blanche—she was a real grande dame, oh God, she was scary. And I’d go in with my little tooter." Like, can you even PICTURE THAT? I can't.
And then later she compares genre fiction to poetry—because in both cases, you're writing within a form—and a response to that "I don’t read fiction because it isn’t real" statement and holy crow, I just want to QUOTE EVERYTHING.
So, yeah. It's an AWESOME interview, not to be missed.
It’s been a while since I blogged, but I’ve been hard at work on a story that Pink told me while I was sleeping. She crept up close while I was dozing in the armchair and whispered in my ear and said I’d better get on and write up some of her better adventures, not the latest ones, but the ones she had when she was younger. Pink isn’t altogether stupid. Mostly she just pretends to be silly because it means she can avoid difficult and lengthy tasks by claiming they’re beyond her. But she’s clever really and she knows stuff. She was quite right about the story. I’d been letting things slide and it was high time I got to work. Here’s a link to what she dictated. While I was writing it Pink perched somewhat cheekily on the back of my office chair and watched what I was typing, in case I got anything wrong, and if there was anything she didn’t approve of she chirruped a warning and told me to blot.
Michael Morpurgo says: "Booktrust is batting for literature in all its forms. The organisation is particularly meaningful for me: my late stepfather, Jack Morpurgo, was Director of the National Book League, from which Booktrust grew. What Booktrust continues to do is to not simply promote reading, but to enthuse teachers, parents and children with the joy and wonder that can be found in books. To be invited to join them as their president is an honour, and I hope I can make a significant contribution."
I find it depressing that Katniss Everdeen made the list not for inspiring people to start looking at the parallels between Panem and our own present—not to mention real-life activism via We Are the Districts—but BECAUSE SHE INSPIRED SUCCESSFUL PRODUCT LINES.
Every year around this time all the children’s services staff in our District gather together for one full day of staff development. It’s always a fun day; a chance to see everybody and catch up on news, and the trainings are interesting and relevant. One of the highlights is when our collection development librarian does her annual roundup of patron concerns and challenges, with a timely reminder of District policies and procedures relating to the same. It’s not as dry as it sounds, this particular librarian has a great sense of humor, and there is undoubtedly some humor to be found in a few of those instances (how did that end up in the juvenile collection?). I believe it’s also important to be discussing these things frankly with all staff. This year it was also a timely reminder that I ought to follow up with my newest staff member to see if the training had raised questions, and to ensure that he was aware of the policies and procedures we have in place in the event of any patron concerns.
A week later I got a chance to sit down with him and I was happy to find that the training had piqued his interest and he did indeed have questions. From there the conversation spilled over into patron privacy issues and a discussion of the ALA Library Bill of Rights and Freedom to Read Statement. Being passionate about intellectual freedom I took full advantage of this “teachable moment” to encourage and foster his interest in how the library profession is upholding the first and third amendments and how much of why-we-do-what-we-do-the-way-that-we-do-it is related, and how important it is that we continue to value these core values of our profession, and I probably ran on as much as this sentence does, if not more. (*Breathe now*) But really, advocacy should begin at home, and he was surprised, as many folks new to library work are, at how hard we librarians work towards the rights that library users enjoy.
How do you introduce the subject with your new hires? How do you keep the topic alive within your workplace? Please share!
Claire Davies for the ALSC Intellectual Freedom Committee
As of November 20, 2012 (that is, Midnight Eastern Time tonight) I am closed to queries. I will reopen to queries January 7, 2013.
If I already have your work, you should hear from me by January 7. (That's the point of taking the break, I have to catch up!)
I'm sorry to say that I cannot respond to new queries sent during this time.
The exceptions will be: work that I've requested -- conference material -- client or editor referrals -- and people I actually know in real life. If this is you, please be sure you've said so, along with the word Query, IN THE SUBJECT LINE of your email. Otherwise, your query will be deleted.
For all other regular queries, please feel free to try any of my colleagues at Andrea Brown Lit, or else try me again in January.
Thanks again for thinking of me in regard to your work.
It's not as cold out on the fire escape during the winter now that I live in California, but it's still a busy season with little time to read, write, or reflect. Sigh. Don't those three verbs sound lovely? I'll resume blogging in the New Year, but you may also follow me on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, where I post more succinctly and frequently. Have a wonderful holiday season, friends.
I was very pleased to hear from a librarian at the American International School in Monrovia — a new iteration of the school I attended back in the 1980s, and which Linus Tuttle would have attended in the book Mamba Point. I wanted my book to be read in Liberia, and now I know it has been — I even have proof!
These kids hale from the U.S., Zambia, Sweden, and Nigeria. The school formerly known as ACS and other international schools are real melting pots, and it made for an interesting childhood. I hope this book rings true for these kids, even though it is decades old and Liberia and the rest of the world has changed around it. Special thanks to Denise Burress, a librarian at the school, for the photos, to the kids for reading and posing with the book, and to their parents for letting me use these photos.
This is the coolest thing that’s happened this year in my book world, even cooler than knowing that Ron Gardenhire had one of the Topps League books on his desk, and that was pretty darn cool.
All right, meanwhile The Winter of the Robots has been out in the world. I use my Facebook page (go ahead and friend me) to link to reviews and events, and should do more of that here, because I do realize not everyone has been sucked into the Zuckerbergtronvoid. But here are a few notable ones, and I am sorry if I forgot any (the Booklist review is behind a paywall, sadly, because it’s great.)
The Buffalo News includes The Winter of the Robots on this list of things for kids to read, do, and learn. Love that they combine it with Legos, where kids can begin their robot-building adventures (even programmable robots!)
The Southern Newspapers Publishers Association is publishing and offering several of Artie’s children’s stories to newspapers across the United States. The latest is his Christmas story titled Bipper and Wick. To read the first five stories, please click on the illustration below.
Use of any of the content on this website without permission is prohibited by federal law
That's how the students at Washington DC's Ballou Sr High School and their librarian Melissa Jackson feel about the recent Guys Lit Wire Holiday Book Fair. Via the Powells Books wish list, 59 books were bought and shipped to Ballou where they have been very gratefully received.
I love seeing something like this happen - it's really what the holiday season is all about. Thanks so much to everyone who helped make these kids happy and to all of you out there who believe in the power of books to change lives. :)
It’s been a good week and it’s only Thursday! I’ve cooed and oohed and aahed over NYPL’s 100 Titles for Reading and Sharing 2013 list before. Nothing new to say . . . or is there? I don’t suppose you happened to see NPR’s interactive booklist consisting of their Best Books of 2013 (in a rare moment of bliss, I like all their children’s book choices though some diversity wouldn’t have been out of place). Well, NYPL took one look at that list and thought, “Heck. We can do that.” And so they did! Meet the Interactive Books List of NYPL. It’s gorgeous. It’s user friendly. It’s the only place you can find animated Melissa Sweet. Overall, I rather love it. Hope you do too.
In other best book news, Colby Sharp and Donalyn Miller teamed up at BuzzFeed and produced a list of 20 of the Best Children’s Books 2013. And AGAIN I like all the choices. Do you know how rare this is? Extra points for including Donner Dinner Party. Love that thing. Love anyone who includes it on a list.
Having trouble keeping track of all the Best Of lists out there? Mr. Schu’s your man. Thanks to him, we now have a nicely compiled 2013 Best Books Lists posting. It’s very attractive. Of course, if you want the most complete listing out there, there’s no better place to go than Chicken Spaghetti. The information is AMAZING over there.
A lot has been said lately about how big Best lists of children’s books this year have neglected to include any Latino characters (NPR and The New York Times most notably). Perfect timing then for the 2014 Reading Challenge suggested by Latin@s in Kid Lit. Take a look at the guidelines and join, but seriously? One book a month? I think you can handle that. They even have some suggestions to start you off (yay, Nino!).
And, of course, if you read only one Best list, read the 100 Scope Notes highly hilarious Year in Miscellanea. Plus he mentions my superfluous little cupcake. Quoth he it’s, “the Axl Rose Hair Metal hair of picture book cover cupcakes.” You’re just going to have to read his piece to understand what that means.
Tempted to see Saving Mr. Banks in the theater this holiday season? Feel free but be aware that the film may be throwing P.L. Travers under the bus in the process. A great piece from Jerry Griswold, former Director of the National Center for the Study of Children’s Literature.
Anyone who has ever attended one of James Kennedy’s 90-Second Newbery Film Festivals will attest that they are a bundle of fun. Just the most delightful little films, created by kids, turning Newbery winners into concise 90-second films. Some are, understandably, better than others but there’s nothing cooler than sitting in a theater next to a kid who gets to see their film projected on a big screen for the first time in their young lives. Want to join in? The deadline for the next 90-second films is January 20th. So get cracking, young geniuses! For lots more information about the events and the showings, go here.
Awww. This is so sweet. Over at Mocking It Up, Rebecca did me a solid and created this simply gorgeous infographic on the books that are topping the Mock Newbery lists around the country (she compiled results from 19 different Mocks). That’s a ton of work but the results are simply gorgeous. Wowzah! Well done, madam.
Superworm is an upcoming picture book from the UK-based team that created The Gruffalo, Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler. Superworm is a large worm who is much loved for his flexibility and his willingness to help other creatures. When Superworm is kidnapped by Wizard Lizard, his friends set out to save him.
Superworm is relatively text heavy for a picture book. All of the text is in rhyming couplets, like this:
"Superworm is super-long,
Superworm is super-strong.
Watch him wiggle! See him squirm!
Hip, hip hooray for SUPERWORM!"
The above sequence is repeated a couple of times throughout the book, giving kids a chance to chime in. There's some less-common vocabulary, like "chant", "mope", and "lair" (each of which ends up working well with the appropriate rhyme). Personally, I found it a bit too much rhyming, across the whole of the book. But I suspect it's one of those books that grows on you through multiple read-alouds. Once I have the final printed version in hand, I will try it with my daughter.
I do quite like the creativity modeled throughout the book. The other animals and insects find creative uses for Superworm, treating him as a swing, a slide, and even a hula hoop. And when the other creatures set out to rescue Superworm, they each take advantage of their own strengths (the spider weaving a web, etc.). The villain has a satisfying comeuppance. Here's a snippet:
"The web is strong. The web is tough.
The web is plenty big enough.
The wizard wakes. "This isn't funny!
I'm wrapped in leaves and stuck with honey!"
Pretty sure kids WILL find that funny.
Scheffler's insect-scaled illustrations are colorful and eye-catching, with oversized flowers, and big-eyed, cartoon-like creatures. Superworm is pink and wrinkled, and usually has a smile on his face. While not quite realistic in their depiction, the garden creatures are impossible not to like. Young readers may never look at worms and other small creatures the same way again.
I recommend Superworm for home or library use. The U.S. edition is due out in late January, and is sure to be a hit.
Publisher: Arthur A. Levine Books (@Scholastic)
Publication Date: January 28, 2014
Source of Book: Advance review copy from the publisher
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This site is an Amazon affiliate, and purchases made through Amazon links (including linked book covers) may result in my receiving a small commission (at no additional cost to you).
...I wrote about Alison Cherry's Red, which I felt all mix-y about.
One of the major STRENGTHS, though, is that the heroine is... kind of a pain:
Felicity is extremely self-absorbed—her only real concerns are keeping her secret under wraps and her popularity intact. In the age of Hermione Granger and Katniss Everdeen, it’s unusual to find a character who is quite as disinterested in social justice as our Miss St. John. Her cluelessness and her selfishness will drive some readers bananas, but for others (like me), her voice will ring true and feel refreshingly honest.
Beatrix Potter decided to take control of her own future after getting fed up of receiving rejection letters from publishers for a story she had made up to entertain a sick child.
The Tale of Peter Rabbit was printed with 41 black and white woodblock engravings and a colour frontispiece, and proved so successful that, within a year, it had been picked up by one of the six publishers who had originally turned it down. By Christmas of 1902, Frederick Warne had sold 20,000 copies of the book, with Potter's own watercolour illustrations, at 1 shilling, and 1/6d for a luxury clothbound edition.
If Harry Potter was The Boy Who Lived, Nancy was The Girl Who Dared. She was brave, rash, fierce. She had a snazzy car. She solved crimes that flummoxed the cops, snuck around in old abandoned houses, got locked in closets by bad guys … and she always kept her cool. Her mom had died when she was little, but her dad adored and trusted her and gave her free rein to save others. She was in charge, not her boyfriend, Ned Nickerson. She was beautiful, but she wasn’t an object. She was a doer.
Little did I know Nancy Drew had such a troubled past.
Thanks to everyone who entered the Maggie Gift Book Giveaway. It was heartwarming to read your thoughtful essays, from as far away as Australia! Gift-wrapped copies of Maggie Vaults Over the Moon will be sent to prize-winner’s friends and loved … Continue reading →
It’s the time of year for sharing – and I’d like to share Wiggle Jiggle Free. Eggy Leggy is on promotion too. ‘Wiggle Jiggle’ – my picture story ebook is FREE to download on Amazon on 19th, 20th, 21st December 2013. (Kindle Edition) Click HERE to … Continue reading →