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Blog: Kelly Hashway's Blog (Login to Add to MyJacketFlap)
JacketFlap tags: promotion, publishing, reading, Writer Wednesday, writing, Add a tag
Blog: Here in the Bonny Glen (Login to Add to MyJacketFlap)
JacketFlap tags: Art, Assorted and Sundry, learning in public, Add a tag
One of the earliest lessons of having a special-needs child was learning to recognize his progress not by comparing him to typically-developing children of the same age, but by comparing him to his own earlier self. I say ‘lesson’ and ‘learn’ but in truth this was something that happened naturally and almost instantaneously after his multiple diagnoses and the beginning of various therapies—physical, occupational, speech. As soon as I had an understanding of his developmental challenges, I was able to rejoice over each increment of progress, each small accomplishment along with the big ones. It was like my brain was wiped free of comparisons to other babies, including my first three, and all that existed was this baby, making these tremendous (even when tiny) strides.
That mental shift keeps popping into my mind lately as I keep working (and working and working) on drawing. Only here, it isn’t natural and instantaneous. Here, I have to keep relearning the lesson; some days I practically have to shout it at myself. The trouble, of course, is that I have so many friends who are spectacularly good artists. Years of training, years of dedication and work. Hundreds or thousands of pages of finished art under their belts. If I compare my drawings—or my slow progress—to them, I feel bleak. I don’t have it, that thing they have. Vision, natural talent, hand-eye coordination, vast knowledge of technique—you name it, I don’t have it. All I have is…earnestness. A belief that everyone can learn to draw, and that includes me. And this long-simmering desire to learn, kindled last fall into a full-boil determination.
So I keep reminding myself, baby artist, to compare myself to the even babier artist I was a few months ago. I remember when my son was finally able to climb up stairs on his own. He was well past a year old. He had motor planning issues, and we spent hours and hours over a period of several months, moving his limbs for him up stair by stair by stair. Hand, knee, hand, knee. Or was it hand, hand, knee, knee, I don’t remember now. Either way, it took so much practice. Until one day his brain figured it out. The pattern was learned. The pathways were formed. Soon after that we could hardly remember what it was like before he learned to climb stairs. We had to scramble to help him learn how to climb down.
Stair by stair, I’m making progress. For every ten drawings I hate, I make one that I like. But I like looking at the bad ones, too, because I know that the fact that I can see what’s wrong with them is another sign of my progress. My eye is improving along with my hand. (“Your taste is killer. Your taste is why your work disappoints you.”)
Today I looked at something I’d done, a couple of quick, surreptitious gesture sketches of some women in a meeting, and realized I’d attempted people—in complex postures, no less—without even thinking about it. Six months ago, I wouldn’t have done that. It’s nice to know I’ve made it up a stair or two.Add a Comment
Blog: ALSC Blog (Login to Add to MyJacketFlap)
JacketFlap tags: Early Literacy, Guest Blogger, Programming Ideas, Add a tag
Ever envy those fabulous, expensive play spaces some libraries have? You can create a temporary, educational play environment within your existing library space that promotes adult interaction, is highly inclusive, and creates opportunities for outreach to the underserved.
Introducing, SMART STARTS!
Three years ago, we founded Smart Starts, a hands-on, interactive environment where adults help children develop early reading, writing, math and science skills through fun play activities. This drop-in program is offered several times over the course of a few days during weeks we are not holding storytimes. Patrons can come anytime during the posted hours and stay as long as they wish.
The goal of Smart Starts is to provide a richer, more meaningful library experience where adults can play side-by-side with their children, enhancing learning experiences. Dad John Witte observed, “The chance to interact with other kids in a learning environment is valuable both for the kids and the parents.”
Each Smart Starts program has a theme, developed around an educational focus. Six to eight stations are created for each theme. PowerPoint slideshows display scrolling instructional slides featuring the various stations.
Smart Starts has allowed us to embrace the community’s educational initiatives as well as reach out to the underserved. We encourage community groups to schedule special sessions just for their members.
CREATE YOUR OWN LEARNING THROUGH PLAY PROGRAM
Wanted: Head Coach. Find a staff member who will lead others in choosing activities and gathering supplies. You could then recruit one person to find science experiments, another to work on crafts and a third to handle parent tips and extension activities, etc. Once planned, various individuals can run the program while it is open. Their role is to help visitors get started and model conversation and play behavior.
Brainstorm themes. These can be derived from educational initiatives in your community or staff interest and expertise. Many of our themes have been STEAM-related. For instance, we have created programs featuring air, measurement, plant growth, patterning and weather. After you have selected themes, search preschool curriculum books and websites for ideas for the activity stations. These might include . . .
Kids love to experiment with hands-on science. We have explored how polar bears stay warm in the arctic, compared the speed of objects traveling down ramps and practiced using all five senses. Imagine a child’s face when they smell cotton balls soaked in vanilla, mint, lemon or garlic!
Offer crafts that can be used to explore the subject further. A kaleidoscope promotes discussions of light. A feeder allows children to observe backyard birds. A texture collage may prompt additional investigation of the five senses at grandma’s house. These crafts should be accessible to a wide range of developmental levels. The emphasis is process, not product. I always say, “If it looks too much like the sample, something is wrong!”
Gather a collection of your library’s books, puzzles, and other resources related to your theme ready for check-out. We set out a couple of beanbag chairs for those who want to curl up with a book. We also provide a sheet explaining the educational research and suggesting extension activities. These materials promote further learning and exploration of the topic at home.
“Go Fish!” Games are a fun way to encourage learning and repeatedly practice skills. Create and laminate your own matching games and sequencing cards. Ask for donations of educational games and puzzles or scout for them at garage sales and re-sale stores. Kids also love to play with real objects made into a game. Sort small, medium and large kitchen items. Match socks or mittens. Make sets of 2, 5 and 10 blocks.
Here’s where you can get creative and courageous! Here are some ideas we have tried – with success!
- Build walls with stones and play-dough
- “Mess-free” fingerpaint using instant pudding in a sealed plastic bag
- Bubblewrap hopscotch
- Climb in various moving boxes
- Guess the object based on its shadow
- “Paint” a chalkboard with water
- String cereal, beads, dry pasta and straw pieces on chenille wires and bending them into letter shapes
- Create iSpy games with stickers, beads and sequins
- Pretend to be a gardener with a shovel, rake, watering can, spray nozzle, silk flowers, etc.
- Make up narrative stories with puppets or dollhouse figures
Tips for Success
Patrons are delighted that such an enriching program is not only available at the library, but free. Many intentionally add Smart Starts to their weekly schedule and arrange to meet friends. Mom Melissa Drechsel remarked, “I am homeschooling my kindergarten-aged daughters this year and Smart Starts has been the perfect complement to reinforce some of the things we are learning about at home. We have enjoyed the many activities at Smart Starts and I have recommended the program to many other mothers with little ones at home.”
This program has also allowed us to interact with our patrons and attract previous non-users in a whole new way. Adults feel more comfortable to ask questions, and children enjoy playing with the library staff in this informal setting. The variety of activities and levels of engagement allows all children to participate, including those with special needs and beginning English language learners. We even host special sessions of Smart Starts for at-risk preschool classes, the local Newcomers chapter and young moms groups from area churches.
Once set-up, we offer the space at various times over the course of a few days. Themes may be repeated every year. This type of program is also be easily modified to a smaller scale or for outreach at local community events.
Author Diane Ackerman wrote, “Play is our brain’s favorite way of learning.” Through activity programs such as Smart Starts, we can provide a fun, educational environment at our libraries to help equip our local children for a life of learning.
(All photos courtesy Glen Ellyn Public Library)
Our guest blogger today is Bari Ericson, Youth Programming Associate at the Glen Ellyn Public Library. Bari enjoys combining her experience as an art student, corporate paralegal, law firm librarian, preschool teacher and mom to serve local families at GEPL.
Please note that as a guest post, the views expressed here do not represent the official position of ALA or ALSC.
If you’d like to write a guest post for the ALSC Blog, please contact Mary Voors, ALSC Blog manager, at email@example.com.Add a Comment
Blog: The Miss Rumphius Effect (Login to Add to MyJacketFlap)
JacketFlap tags: jumping into form, National Poetry Month, Add a tag
More ancient than haiku, the Korean SIJO shares a common ancestry with haiku, tanka and similar Japanese genres. All evolved from more ancient Chinese patterns.Tap Dancing on the Roof: Sijo Poems. This book provides a wonderful overview and introduction to the form. Park's poems will have kids laughing and thinking at the same time. As the form demands, they are full of little surprises. Here are two of my favorites from the book.
Sijo is traditionally composed in three lines of 14-16 syllables each, totaling between 44-46 syllables. A pause breaks each line approximately in the middle; it resembles a caesura but is not based on metrics.
Lightning jerks the sky awake to take her photograph, flash!
Which draws grumbling complaints or even crashing tantrums from thunder--
He hates having his picture taken, so he always gets there late.
For this meal, people like what they like, the same every morning.
Toast and coffee. Bagel and juice. Cornflakes and milk in a white bowl.
Or -- warm, soft, and delicious -- a few extra minutes in bed.
Poems ©Linda Sue Park, 2008. All rights reserved.
How do you write a sijo? Here is a brief summary of the advice Park gives at the end of her book.
Three line poems should contain about 14 to 16 syllables per line. Six line poems should contain 7 or 8 syllables per line.In his sijo primer, poet Poet Larry Gross writes:
The first line should contain a single image or idea. The second line should develop this further. The last line should contain the twist.
Remember the three characteristics that make the sijo unique — its basic structure, musical/rhythmic elements, and the twist. It is shorter and more lyrical than the ghazal. It is more roomy than the haiku, and it welcomes feelings and emotions which haiku either discourage or disguise. It should please lovers of ballads, sonnets and lyrics, and the downplay of regular meter and rhyme should appeal to writers of free verse.Before introducing sijo in the classroom, you may want to try writing some sijo yourself! Here's a video primer to get you started.
Once you are ready to begin, here are some resources that will help you tackle introducing and writing sijo in your classroom.
- Read sijo written by third grade students at The Bronx Charter School for Better Learning.
- You can also read poems written by students in the 2009 sijo writing competition. (Note that most of these are winners.)
- The Sejong Cultural Society has an extensive list of resources on teaching the sijo.
- This sijo poetry slam lesson contains a number of helpful resources on writing sijo.
- Though written for high school, there are many terrific resources in this two-week unit on teaching the sijo.
Blog: Young Adult (& Kid's) Books Central (Login to Add to MyJacketFlap)
JacketFlap tags: Cover Reveals, Add a tag
Today we're super excited to celebrate the cover reveal for YOUR VOICE IS ALL I HEAR by Leah Scheier, releasing September 1, 2015 from Sourcebooks. Before we get to the cover, here's a note from Leah:
Ready to see?
Scroll, YABCers! Scroll!
Here it is!
*** If you choose to share this image elsewhere, please include a courtesy link back to this page so others can enter Leah's giveaway. Thank you! ***
YOUR VOICE IS ALL I HEAR
April won't let Jonah go without a fight. He’s her boyfriend—her best friend. She’ll do anything to keep him safe. But as Jonah slips into a dark depression, trying to escape the traumatic past that haunts him, April is torn. To protect Jonah, she risks losing everything: family, friends, an opportunity to attend a prestigious music school. How much must she sacrifice? And will her voice be loud enough to drown out the dissenters—and the ones in his head?
About the Author
Leah Scheier is the author of Secret Letters, a historical mystery featuring the daughter of the Great Detective. After finishing up her adventures in Victorian England, Leah moved back to modern times, and currently writes about teens in her hometown of Baltimore. During the day she waves around a pink stethoscope and sheets of Smurf stickers; at night she bangs on her battered computer and drinks too much caffeine. You can visit her website at leahscheier.com or say hi to her on Twitter @leahscheier.
Two winners will each receive a signed copy of YOUR VOICE IS ALL I HEAR (when available).
During each giveaway, we ask entrants a question pertaining to the book. Here is the question they'll be answering in the comments below for extra entries:
What do you think about the cover and synopsis?
Read More Add a Comment
Blog: Illustration Friday Blog (Login to Add to MyJacketFlap)
JacketFlap tags: artists, editorial submissions, Add a tag
Post by Natalie
Marcel George is a freelance illustrator living in London. He studied Illustration at Brighton University and graduated in 2010 with first class honours. He specializes in creating hand painted, contemporary watercolour illustrations.
See more of his work on his website.
More art inspiration!
Title: Becoming Rain
Author: K.A. Tucker
Publication date: March 3, 2015
Summary: Luke Boone doesn't know exactly what his uncle Rust is involved in but he wants in on it—the cars, the money, the women. And it looks like he's finally getting his wish. When Rust hands him the managerial keys to the garage, they come with a second set—one that opens up the door to tons of cash and opportunity. Though it's not exactly legal, Luke's never been one to worry about that sort of thing. Especially when it puts him behind the wheel of a Porsche 911 and onto the radar of a gorgeous socialite named Rain.
Clara Bertelli is at the top of her game—at only twenty-six years old, she's one of the most successful undercover officers in the Washington, DC, major crime unit, and she's just been handed a case that could catapult her career and expose one of the West coast's most notorious car theft rings. But, in order to do it, she'll need to go deep undercover as Rain Martines. Her target? The twenty-four-year-old nephew of a key player who appears ready to follow in his uncle's footsteps.
As Clara drifts deeper into the luxurious lifestyle of Rain, and further into the arms of her very attractive and charming target, the lines between right and wrong start to blur, making her wonder if she'll be able to leave it all behind. Or if she'll even want to.
Review: I absolutely loved this book! It is the first book in a really long time I've been able to just jump into. At first I will admit I wasn't quite sure I would be able to read it. For me it started out kind of dull and slow. But soon enough I was hooked and hoping to not have to go to work so I could just keep reading. I fell in love with Rain and Luke quickly and always hoped for the best. Books like this always renew my belief in Love. The best part about this is that the whole focus is not romance. Yet it feels like that's all that matters. I absolutely will be looking for more books by this author. As always I wish the story would never end! 4 starsAdd a Comment
Scientists who exhumed the original skeleton of Equihominid aprilis near Volos, Greece in 1980 report that they have uncovered more than a dozen new individuals in the exposed shoreline sediments near Samsun in northern Turkey.
"The preservation of these fossils is extraordinary," said Project Director Manolis Ipponikos, who led a team from the Istanbul University of Turkey. "Having a larger sample size of these rare specimens allows us to better understand the variability of this species."
However, the creatures appear to have perished from a mass drowning event, most likely when the Black Sea was inundated from the Bosphorus, as suggested by Walter Pitman's Black Sea deluge hypothesis. Radiocarbon evidence from the skeletons confirms the 6500BC date for the flooding event.
Blog: PowellsBooks.BLOG (Login to Add to MyJacketFlap)
JacketFlap tags: Shelf Talkers, Staff Pick, Add a tag
After hearing my colleagues rave nonstop about Blue, Minnesota, I realized I better give it a read, and fast. Man, was I glad I picked it up. It absolutely blew me away! If I had nine lives, I would use each one to read this book again for the very first time. Books mentioned in [...]Add a Comment
The most recent addition to the complete review is my review of Octave Mirbeau's The Diary of a Chambermaid -- another in my preparation for Dalkey Archive Press' forthcoming 21 Days of a Neurasthenic (see their publicity page, or pre-order your copy at Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk), after Torture Garden.
This is probably his best-known work -- in no small part due to the two film-versions of it: few books have gotten such prominent double treatment (Lem's Solaris, filmed by Tarkovsky and Soderbergh is one of the few others), as this was filmed by Jean Renoir in 1946 (starring the husband-and-wife team of Paulette Goddard and Burgess Meredith !), and by Luis Buñuel in 1964 (starring Jeanne Moreau and Michel Piccoli).
(Bonus Hollywood trivia reminder: Goddard's husbands before and after Meredith were Charlie Chaplin and Erich Maria Remarque, respectively.)
Blog: Monica Gupta (Login to Add to MyJacketFlap)
JacketFlap tags: Cartoon, april fool, monica gupta, Add a tag
हमेशा हंसते मुस्कुराते खुश रहना चाहिए इसी बात को ध्यान में रखते हुए ये कार्टून बनाया है बस आपको अपने कम्प्यूटर पर B टाईप करके और स्टार पर क्लिक करना है और आपको दिखेगा गुदगुदाता कार्टूनAdd a Comment
Blog: YALSA - Young Adult Library Services Association (Login to Add to MyJacketFlap)
JacketFlap tags: Prof. Development, Programming, 30 Days of Teen Programming, Add a tag
As the chair of YALSA's Programming Guidelines taskforce, I'm excited to announce that the Teen Programming Guidelines are now available! The guidelines cover all aspects of programming, from idea to evaluation. They were developed in alignment with The Future of Library Services For and With Teens: A Call to Action, and with input from YALSA members. Our hope is that these guidelines will be a valuable tool for you in your library work with teens, both as how-to guide and as an advocacy tool.
To celebrate, YALSAblog is hosting 30 Days of Teen Programming, a month-long series of posts to help get us all started thinking about the guidelines in concrete terms. Each post will tie into one of the ten guidelines with examples, ideas, best practices, or problem-solving.
We'd love to hear from you as well. How do the guidelines reflect the work you're already doing? How do you hope to use the guidelines in your library?Add a Comment
Blog: Kid Lit Reviews (Login to Add to MyJacketFlap)
JacketFlap tags: 5stars, Board Books, Books for Boys, Children's Books, Library Donated Books, NonFiction, Series, beards, Bob Lentz, Book-O-Beards, Capstone Young Readers, Donald Lemke, hats, imaginative play, interactive books, masks teeth, Wearable Books, Add a tag
Series: Wearable Books
Written by Donald Lemke
Illustrated by Bob Lentz
Capstone Young Readers 2/01/2015
12 pages Size: 8” x 8” Age 1 to 6
“Fun interactive board book that children and adults can wear like masks, allowing for make-believe games and hilarious snapshot moments! With catchy rhymes, colorful illustrations, and interactive dialogue, everyone will enjoy this laugh-pout-load read-along.” [catalog]
New for 2015, Book-O-Beards allows young children to become a lumberjack—TIMBER!—a pirate—ARRRG!—a cowboy—YEEHAW!—a sailor—ANCHORS AWEIGH!—a police officer—You’re under ARREST!—or Santa—HO, HO, HO! The Book-O-Beards helps young children role-play different personas as they try these full-spread, fully bushy beards. Read the rhyming text, and then try one on..
“This orange beard
is softer than fur. I
In a deep voice
shout out, ‘TIMBER!’”
While the Book-O-Beards will appeal more to young boys, girls can certainly use this imaginative interactive board book. Made of heavy cardboard, the Book-O-Beards will stand-up to many hours of play. Young children love to play make-believe. The Wearable Books series lets kids try on teeth, hats, masks, and beards, all the while producing giggles. The love of reading can begin with one spark from these unusual dual-fun books.
BOOK-O-BEARDS (A WEARABLE BOOK). Text copyright © 2015 by Donald Lemke. Illustrations copyright © 2015 by Bob Lentz. Reproduced by permission of the publisher, Capstone Young Readers, an imprint of Capstone, North Manakato, MN.
Purchase Book-O-Beards at Amazon—B&N—Book Depository—Capstone.
Learn more about Book-O-Beards HERE.
Meet the author, Donald Lemke, at his bio box: http://www.capstonepub.com/library/authors/lemke-donald/
Meet the illustrator, Bob Lentz, at his website:
Find more interactive fun at the Capstone website: http://www.capstonepub.com/
Capstone Young Readers is a Capstone Imprint.
Also available in the Wearable Books series.
Filed under: 5stars, Board Books, Books for Boys, Children's Books, Library Donated Books, NonFiction, Series Tagged: beards, Bob Lentz, Book-O-Beards, Capstone Young Readers, Donald Lemke, hats, imaginative play, interactive books, masks teeth, Wearable Books Add a Comment
Yesterday, we posted an April Fools’ Day Trivia Quiz. Were you fooled, or did you guess the answers?
- What date is April Fools’ Day?
ANSWER: April 1st.
- According to one belief, April Fools’ Day is said to have started in which country? (Hint: Eiffel Tower)
ANSWER: France. According to one story, in 1582 Pope Gregory XIII changed New Year’s Day from April 1 to January 1. People weren’t happy with this, and kept celebrating on April 1. The January people made fun of the April people, and tricked them into running “fools’ errands” and playing tricks on them. Hmm . . . sounds complicated. I’ll just stick to putting rubber bugs in my family’s beds!
- In 1998, which restaurant published a fake advertisement for a hamburger for left-handed people? (McDonald’s or Burger King)
ANSWER: Burger King! They put an ad in the newspaper announcing a new menu item: the Left-Handed Whopper. It had the same ingredients as the original Whopper, but rotated the condiments 180 degrees. Thousands of customers went into BK requesting the new sandwich which was not real!
- Back in 2011, which celebrity teen heartthrob singer pretended to let talk show host Jimmy Kimmel shave off his hair?
ANSWER: Justin Bieber! Luckily, it was all a joke.
- TRUE or APRIL FOOL: In 2005, NASA posted on their website that water had been found on Mars. Was water really found on Mars?
ANSWER: APRIL FOOL! Well . . . actually yes and no. When readers scrolled down, they saw a picture of a glass of water placed on a Mars candy bar. (Good one!)
- What would YOU rather do: put Vaseline on your parents’ toilet seat OR a mustache tattoo on your sister while she’s sleeping?
ANSWER: No wrong answer, you sneaky trickster, you!
- TRUE or APRIL FOOL: In 1957, Swiss farmers enjoyed a surprise “spaghetti crop” when spaghetti grew on trees.
ANSWER: APRIL FOOL! It was a BBC prank.
Did you pull any good pranks for April Fools’ Day? I’m looking for some good ideas for next year, so let me know in the Comments below!
-Ratha, STACKS WriterAdd a Comment
There have been inquiries for larger orders of signed Lunch Lady books for School Lunch Hero Day. Odyssey Bookshop is my local indie, and they would be more than happy to help you! You can call the store at 413-534-7307
and ask for Hannah, the head of the children's book department. Orders would need to be made by end of business day on Thursday for books to arrive in time for May 1st. Thanks!
What not to do when using social media.
Blog: PW -The Beat (Login to Add to MyJacketFlap)
JacketFlap tags: Breaking News, Comics, News, Publishers, Top Comics, Top News, Valiant, valiant 25th anniversary, Valiant Next, WonderCon, Add a tag
Ladies and Gentlemen we are officially in convention season! After celebrating Emerald City Comicon last weekend, it’s already time for WonderCon! Luckily Valiant is headed to the Anaheim Convention Center to take part in the festivities alongside comics fandom. The publisher is bringing along a few giveaways and prizes to the upcoming event. A tease at Bloodshot: Reborn #1 is going to be distributed in Valiant’s booth numbered #405.
Also shared is the following teaser image drawn by Tom Fowler celebrating the Valiant 25th Anniversary Convention Tour. The art features a group of heroes owned by the superhero company with Archer & Armstrong, X-O Manowar, Eternal Warrior, Bloodshot, Dr. Mirage, Faith, Livewire, Quantum and Woody, and Vincent Van Goat.
Creators at the show include James Asmus, David Baron, Joshua Dysart, Ryann Winn, and Fred Van Lente. The first Valiant panel is for beginners labeled Valiant 101: The Story Starts Here. This gives new readers a chance to jump in on the fun in the Valiant Universe, and takes place on Friday April 3rd at 3:30pm at Room 208. The next panel is the Valiant 25th Anniversary Celebration where fans will hopefully learn more about the mysterious Book of Death down at the show. The panel takes place on April 4th at 12pm at room 211.Add a Comment
Okay, I'm a bit late with this .. but then most of you probably already knew and had celebrated that Yan Lianke receives Twitter Literary Prize.
No ? Still ... an intriguing headline, right ? I kept my fingers crossed that at least it was an award for 'tweeted' fiction. Alas, not even that, apparently -- it seems to be this (and this), and Yan Lianke's Lenin's Kisses was the top vote-getter in the international category of this Japanese prize. Of a very limited number of votes -- thirty-four was enough to win: see the full run-down here. (It is an interesting list -- with Brian Evenson's Fugue State seventh (with sixteen votes) -- but not too many folks seem to have played along.)
Okay, so this is not an award that can/should be taken too seriously. The China Daily article doesn't even bother trying to find the title the novel was published under in English, referring to it as The Joy of Living (but it is, indeed, Lenin's Kisses). But the article does provide some additional interesting information, claiming the Japanese edition of the winning title was:
published at the end of last year with a first run of 8,000 copies, which immediately sold out. As of right now, the book has been reprinted three times, with each run consisting of 3,000 copies.That's not bad -- probably more than it's sold in English. But the article claims that those numbers mean the novel: "has broken all records of sales of Chinese writers' works". So the bestselling Chinese work in nearby Japan has sold ... less than 20,000 copies ?
We're still waiting for the big Chinese breakthrough in the English-speaking world, but I'm surprised that closer to home success seems also to have been limited, so far.
Meanwhile, Yan's novel The Four Books has just come out in English; see the publicity pages from Grove Press and Chatto & Windus, or get your copy at Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk. I haven't seen it yet, but I'll probably have a look; I wonder whether it will sell more than 20,000 copies in the US/UK. Or Japan. Add a Comment
Blog: Original Content (Login to Add to MyJacketFlap)
JacketFlap tags: butt-in-chair, the unit system, time management for writers, Time Management Tuesday, Add a tag
The Myth of 9-to-5 Writing: Why Butt in the Chair May Not Work by Nikki Stern at Talking Writing describes Stern's experience with managing writing time. After having to start getting up and moving every hour because of osteoarthritis, she noticed that she was coming back to work sharper after the breaks, sharper than when she was "pushing through" and putting her butt in a chair for the 9 to 5 hours she'd expected to put in writing.
Stern refers to Tony Schwartz. "Schwartz believes the focused ninety-minute approach is the optimal way to work productively. He cites classic studies by sleep researcher Nathaniel Kleitman—particularly Kleitman’s 1960s observations of the basic rest-activity cycle (BRAC)—as the biological basis for recommending that workers take a break to rest and refresh every ninety minutes." We've talked about Schwartz's ninety-minute thing before here.
Ninety minutes, folks. That's a unit of time.
One of the interesting things about breaking your work time into units, whether they are ninety minutes long, forty-five minutes, twenty minutes, or something else, is that there is research, such as that cited above, to support it. I haven't seen any research about butt in chair.
An unrelated interesting note from Stern's essay: She says that a C. Northcote Parkinson came up with the expression “work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion” in the 1950s. Betty Friedan said that about housework in The Feminine Mystique at a later period, something I've never forgotten. Presumably she was paraphrasing Parkinson and so I have been, too, all this time?
Part of the appeal of NA is that the storylines are about characters who are taking on adult responsibilities for the first time without guidance from their parents. And the storylines generally have a heavy romance element.
Keep this in mind as you revise your wonderful story, New Adult books are mostly about that specific time in every person's life—the time when the apron strings are cut from your parents, you no longer have a curfew, you're experiencing the world for the very first time, in most cases, with innocent eyes. New Adult is this section of your life where you discover who you want to be, what you want to be, and what type of person you will become. This time defines you. This is the time of firsts, the time where you can't blame your parents for your own bad choices.
An NA character has to take responsibility for their own choices and live with the consequences. Most storylines are about twenty-something (18 to 26) characters living their own lives without any parents breathing down their necks, and learning to solve things on their own as they would in real life. New Adult fiction focuses on switching gears, from depending on our parents to becoming full-fledged, independent adults.
I am a firm believer that if you’re going to write a certain genre that you should read it, too. So I’m going to recommend that you start devouring NA novels to get a real sense and understanding of the genre before you write one.
Here are some great recommendations: https://www.goodreads.com/genres/new-adult-romance and http://www.goodreads.com/genres/new-adult and https://www.goodreads.com/shelf/show/new-adult-romance
Just as YA is fiction about teens discovering who they are as a person, New Adult (NA) is fiction about building your own life as an actual adult. As older teen readers discover the joy of the Young Adult genres, the New Adult—demand may increase. This, in turn, would give writers the chance to explore the freedom of a slightly older protagonist (over the age of 18 and out of high school, like the brilliant novel, "BEAUTIFUL DISASTER" by the amazing talents of author, Jamie McGuire) while addressing more adult issues that early 20-year-olds must face.
Quote from Georgia McBride, author (Praefatio) and founder of #YALitChat and publisher at Month9Books: "New Adult is a fabulous idea in theory, and authors seem to be excited about it. But in a world where bookstores shelf by category, to them, it is either Adult or Young Adult. Some booksellers even call their YA section “teen.” And when you have a character who is over a certain age (19 seems to be the age most consider the start of New Adult), it is received as Adult. In some cases, the designation by publishers causes more confusion than not.
Let’s face it, YA is associated with teens, and at 19, most no longer consider themselves teens. So, it would support the theory of placing these “New Adult” titles in the Adult section. However, with the prevalence of eBook content, it would seem that the powers that be could easily create a New Adult category if they really wanted to...."
- Jamie McGuire
- Jessica Park
- Tammara Webber
- Steph Campbell
- Liz Reinhardt
- Abbi Glines
- Colleen Hoover
- Sherry Soule
Does it sound better than YA (teen novels)?
Do you consider YA to include characters that are over the age of eighteen?
Blog: Reading Teen (Login to Add to MyJacketFlap)
JacketFlap tags: 2 pieces, 3 pieces, Other Paranormal, Retelling, Reviews: Sara, YA, Add a tag
Review by Sara THE WICKED WILL RISEDorthy Must Die #2Series: Dorothy Must Die (Book 2)Hardcover: 304 pagesPublisher: HarperCollins (March 31, 2015)Goodreads | Amazon In this sequel to the New York Times bestselling Dorothy Must Die, who is good—and who is actually Wicked?My name is Amy Gumm—and I'm the other girl from Kansas.After a tornado swept through my trailer park, I ended up in Oz.ButAdd a Comment
Snigdha Poonam's look at how: 'India's male and female romance writers follow opposing codes', Terms Of Endearment, is now freely accessible at The Caravan -- maybe not many authors familiar to non-Indian readers, but still of some interest.Add a Comment
Blog: Cartoon Brew (Login to Add to MyJacketFlap)
JacketFlap tags: Music Videos, Andy Powell, Carmen, Kirk Hendry, Neil Boyle, Nicolette van Gendt, Stromae, Sylvain Chomet, th1ng, Add a tag
Sylvain Chomet teams up with Belgian music star Stromae to warn of the tweetpocalypse.Add a Comment
Blog: PW -The Beat (Login to Add to MyJacketFlap)
JacketFlap tags: DC, Marvel, Top News, Video Games, batman arkham knight, Halo 5, Marvel Mighty Heroes, mortal kombat x, playstation, ps4, XBox, Add a tag
Over the last few days even more Batman: Arkham Knight tidbits have dropped, Mortal Kombat builds towards its launch, Halo 5 announced a release date, and Marvel delivers a new mobile game.
Playstation Blog delivered the announcement of a limited edition PS4 console that comes with a limited edition Steel Grey PS4 system chassis with a custom Batman: Arkham Knight faceplate, a matching DualShock 4 wireless controller in Steel Grey and the disc based version of the game. This special bundle will be available for $449.99.
In addition, Sony is also doing a regular PS4 console that comes with the standard black system, controller, and Batman: Arkham Knight game for $399.99.
The bundles will be available when the game launches on June 23, 2015; currently the consoles are available for preorder at most major retailers.
It was obvious Electronic Arts, Star Wars: Battlefront would have a presence at the upcoming Celebration in Anaheim. Today it was revealed when exactly that will take place. DICE, developer of the Battlefield game series, will debut the Star Wars: Battlefront official reveal trailer during its Star Wars Celebration panel on April 17th, starting at 10:30 am PT. Those who can’t make it out to the show can catch the reveal trailer on EA’s website and official Star Wars channels during the convention, which itself runs from April 16-19 in Anaheim California.
Though a sliver of the game was shown at E3, this will be the first time actual gameplay will be on display for the public to enjoy. Star Wars: Battlefront is expected to arrive in stores later this year and what better place for a release date announcement than Star Wars Celebration.
IGN has the first 25 minutes of Mortal Kombat X gameplay. There’s a lot of information in this extended video for fans to digest, including an opening cinematic that sets the story going forward. Outside of the exciting helicopter fight between Scorpion, Sub Zero, Kenshi, and Johnny Cage, players will get a good look at the undead army of Quan Chi and Shinnok as they take on the Earthrealm Special Forces.
So far the digital comic series from DC has almost caught up to the events of the opening. As in the book Sub-Zero and Scorpion are set to be possessed and do battle with Earth’s champions while Kenshi has yet to join Cage and Sonya Blade. The footage looks impressive as the game seamlessly transitions from interactive moments to cut scenes and then to the actual fights themselves.
The Story looks as amibtious and cohesive as their previous entry Injustice: Gods Among Us was. Netherrealm, the game’s developer, has up’ed the ante for this one. Mortal Kombat X releases on PS4, PC and Xbox One this coming April 14 while the PS3 and Xbox 360 versions will follow in the Summer.
Today, DeNA and Marvel Entertainment today launched Marvel Mighty Heroes, a real-time co-op brawler written by Fred Van Lente. For the first time on mobile devices players must defend the world by assembling a dream team of Marvel Super Heroes including Iron Man, Thor, Spider-Man, Captain America, Star-Lord, Hulk, Hawkeye as well as dozens of Super Villains yet to be announced. In game events will be available to download such as today’s “Infinity” series were players will team up to battle Thanos.
The game feels like a compact version of Marvel Ultimate Alliance, we’ll give you some more thoughts on it as we spend a little more time with it. Mighty Marvel Heroes is currently available as a free download on the Apple App Store for iPhone, iPad, iPod touch and on Google Play for Android phones and tablets. Plus if you download the game this week you get a free special in-game Hulk as a reward.
During Sunday’s season finale of The Walking Dead on AMC, two new TV spots revealed the worldwide release date for the highly anticipated Halo 5: Guardians. The commercial showed the same events from both of the game’s main characters: Master Chief and Agent Locke. You can see it for yourself, there’s a lot of tension and drama that was missing from Halo 4.
Although with the game being an October release, it leaves Microsoft with no big exclusive for November. It could be that this spot will go to Rise of The Tomb Raider, a game that was announced during E3 but has not been talked about much since.
So what games are you excited for? Have the problems of the Mortal Kombat X digital series wavered your excitement for the game? Are you getting the Arkham Knight edition PS4?Add a Comment
Blog: Boys and Reading, Writing and Learning (Login to Add to MyJacketFlap)
JacketFlap tags: Author Interview, Tor Seidler interview, Add a tag
|Photo of Seidler by Charles Gold|
Some of my favorite email exchanges are with the authors of the books I read and review on my blog.
Interview with Tor Seidler:
author of: Firstborn, Toes, Brothers Below Zero,
Brainboy and theDeathmaster
Tell us about your experience doing research for Firstborn. How long did you spend observing wolves? Where?
Seidler: By my standards, I did a lot of research for Firstborn. Beyond the whimsical premise of the animals speaking in complete sentences, I wanted the story to be as close to nature as possible. I read fictional and nonfiction accounts of wolves, but more importantly I had a friend who was a great source of information: Jean Craighead George, author of Julie of the Wolves, among many other books. Best of all,I went wolf watching with Jean in and around Yellowstone Park in late May and early June, 2005. The wolves had been reintroduced into the park in the mid 1990’s, and by the time of our visit they were pretty well established. The pack we observed in the northeast corner of the park had twenty-six members. We would arrive before sunrise and set up our viewing scopes on a hillside above a creek. Often we got to see the alpha male lead the other hunters back from their night hunt on the other side ofthe creek and distribute food among the pack’s six new pups. An amazing experience! In more recent years I’ve also visited the wolf reserve in northern Westchester County. But there’s nothing like seeing animals in the wild.
What did you find most challenging about writing your book?
Seidler:There are always a lot of challenges for me in writing any novel, but in this one I think the biggest was figuring out how to tell the story. I initially wrote it from an omniscient point of view, focusing solely on the wolves. The story began with Blue Boy, the alpha male wolf, awaiting the birth of his pups. But the story wasn’t quite lifting off. When I hit on the idea of writing it from the point of view of a bird, a magpie who attaches herself to the pack, it seemed to give the material another dimension.
After writing a book about animals, do you have a favorite animal? Which one and why is it your favorite?
Seidler: I’m a great believer in bio-diversity, so I like all animals. But I must say in studying the wolves I gained a deep respect for them. Their life is very hard. Few live to see their first birthday. But the way they learn to work together, both socially and in the hunt, is awe-inspiring. I also have a soft spoke for coyotes, who lead much more individualistic lives than wolves.
Unlikely friendships develop in Firstborn. Did you observe any unlikely animal behavior or relationshipsin doing research?
Seidler: I’ve read about unlikely relationships developing between different species, but to be honest I didn’t observe any in my wolf watching. I love the idea of multi-culturalism, though, and I’ve written about it before in the animal world, especially in a book called The Wainscott Weasel.
Your book involves conservation efforts for wildlife reintroduction. Are there any conservation efforts you would like to encourage in your young readers?
Seidler: I’m a fan of all conservation efforts, be it joining the Sierra Club or encouraging your parents to recycle orminimizing your carbon footprint. I have a particular fondness for the World Wildlife Fund.
What made you want to become a writer?
Seidler: Reading. I enjoyed books so much as a kid that I thought, “Hey, maybe I can do that!”
What suggestions do you have for young readers who might like to become writers someday?
Read. And then read some more. And don’t accept what people tell you. Look at things with your own eyes and reach your own conclusions.
Is there anything you would like to add about your writing and/or books?
Seidler: Well, I hope some of you enjoy them!
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