in all blogs
Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: authors, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 26 - 50 of 3,541
Looking to bring a young reader to a nuanced and thoughtful tale of family, identity, and history? Michael Morpurgo, author of the international bestseller War Horse, has written \"an intricately layered story within a story,\" A Medal for Leroy, published first in Britain and now available in paperback in the U.S.
Michael, growing up biracial in 1940s London, remembers nothing of his father, Roy, an RAF pilot. And no one in the family will talk about him. Then, he receives a parcel after his Auntie Snowdrop has died, and discovers a hidden note that reveals the real story of his father, and intrigues him with his grandfather’s activities during World War I. Determined to find the truth among long-hidden family secrets, Michael learns that his grandfather, Leroy, made three excursions into a battle zone to rescue wounded men. His fellow soldiers insisted he deserved special commendation for his heroic efforts but his actions went unacknowledged because of racial barriers. Michael sets out to change that.
Writing in Newsday, Mary Quattlebaum notes that through his efforts, Michael \"begins to understand the forces that shaped him and his family.\"
Morpurgo’s inspiration for A Medal for Leroy was Lt. Walter Tull, the first black combat officer in the British army whose exceptional bravery during the war was never recognized. In his book, his protagonist Michael rights the family record. And Morpurgo includes a postscript about his discovery of Walter Tull’s tale, information on Tull’s life, and stories of other black soldiers whose bravery has been honored, finally.
Have you ever received a heartwarming letter from one of your favorite authors? J.K. Rowling bestowed such a gift to one Harry Potter fan last summer.
The bibliophile, a Scottish resident named Johnnie Blue, shared Rowling’s letter with BuzzFeed. Blue confessed that reading it brought tears to his eyes.
Here’s an excerpt: “What you say about Harry helping you at what was clearly a dreadful time in your life means more to me than I can easily express. I freely confess that I loathe bullying and the way it is still so often ‘handled’ in schools. Your experience is shocking and disturbing and that you have turned out to be a compassionate, moral, highly motivated person is high testimony to your courage. Gryffindor for you, my lad…” (via Refinery29)
Author Oliver Sacks has just discovered that he has a terminal form of liver cancer.
The 81 year-old author revealed the news in an heart felt piece in The New York Times. With so little time left, Sacks is inspired to make the most of the limited time he has left. “I have to live in the richest, deepest, most productive way I can,” he wrote, explaining his inspiration from philosopher David Hume, who wrote a short autobiography in a day after receiving similar news.
Here is more from Sacks’ piece:
I have been increasingly conscious, for the last 10 years or so, of deaths among my contemporaries. My generation is on the way out, and each death I have felt as an abruption, a tearing away of part of myself. There will be no one like us when we are gone, but then there is no one like anyone else, ever. When people die, they cannot be replaced. They leave holes that cannot be filled, for it is the fate — the genetic and neural fate — of every human being to be a unique individual, to find his own path, to live his own life, to die his own death.
Margaret Atwood, Jackie Collins, Lemony Snicket and Chuck Wendig are among many authors participating in this year’s Twitter Fiction Festival.
The event is sponsored by AAP, Penguin Random House and Twitter and will take place virtually on May 11-15, 2015.
During the event, authors will share their text, photos, and video on Twitter. Each author will be assigned a daily time slot to live-stream their work on the social network.
The Festival will also host a competition for aspiring writers. There is an open call for submissions beginning March 2.
Kody Keplinger has written a companion book to her 2010 novel, The Duff. Scholastic will release Lying Out Loud in April 2015.
The author set the story for this new book in Hamilton High School. That means it will feature appearances from the characters of all three of Keplinger’s past young adult titles: The Duff, Shut Out, and A Midsummer’s Nightmare.
According to Keplinger’s blog post, Lying Out Loud stars “a girl named Sonny, who happens to be best friends with Amy Rush (Yep, Wesley’s little sister from The Duff, which means Bianca and Wesley will show up!) But when Sonny unintentionally catfishes a boy from her class, who thinks he’s been chatting with Amy online, things get complicated.”
age range: 8-12
setting: Florida, 1974
visit Augusta Scattergood’s website
The cast of lively characters, including spunky and tough Anabel who befriends Theo, come to life under author Scattergood’s talented hand. A heartwarming story of friendship, family, and finding one’s place in the world despite hardship and heartache. – School Library Journal
Please tell us about your book.
THE WAY TO STAY IN DESTINY, my second middle-grade novel, was recently published by Scholastic Press. It’s the story of a boy named Theo who’s forced to move to a little town called Destiny, Florida, with an uncle he doesn’t really know. Theo’s a resourceful, talented boy. His uncle’s an unhappy Vietnam veteran who doesn’t know how to raise a kid. But there’s a bright ray of sunshine in their new life together— Miss Sister Grandersole, dancer, advisor, and owner of the Rest Easy Rooming House and Dance Studio, where they fortunately have landed.
What inspired you to write this story?
We had recently moved to Florida and I was feeling a little like Theo! Where am I? Why are all these lizards in my garden? Also, as a child, I had some remarkable dance and piano teachers. Not always remarkable in their ability to teach—though some were extremely talented!—but certainly interesting characters. Once I convinced my critique group and my early readers that “Sister” was not a retired nun wearing red tap shoes, Miss Sister Grandersole was the most fun character to write. I guess you could say I was inspired by memories and moving.
Could you share with readers how you conducted your research or share a few interesting tidbits you learned while researching?
My new book doesn’t focus on one truly important historical event like Freedom Summer, the backbone for my first novel, GLORY BE. The aftermath of the Vietnam conflict plays into the story, and there were details from that time that I wanted to get right. I used veterans’ sites to read of others’ experiences coming back from Vietnam. And I consulted my friends who had served.
I also verified all the baseball facts, but that part was easy. I loved reading about Hank Aaron’s journey. Because of his career milestones, THE WAY TO STAY IN DESTINY is set in 1974. Sometimes that seemed so recent, I had trouble remembering that made it historical fiction!
The hardest part of writing for me is that first draft. I struggle. A lot. But I love the revision process. Generally, I try to break it down and not tackle too many things at once. I’ll revise first for plot and character arcs. Then I’ll get to the fun part, making the language and the dialog read in a way I hope enriches the story.
I could go on and on, but I don’t want to make new writers think it’s not fun to write a book. Even on the days that nothing seems to work, writing really is more than hard, gut-wrenching work. It’s often a joy.
What are some special challenges associated with writing historical fiction?
Make the story sing and make the plot move quickly! Of course, these are challenges all writing presents, no matter the genre.
When creating historical fiction, it’s tempting to dump all the important facts into readers’ laps. But the smallest details like skate keys and 45s (those are musical recordings, for those of you too young to remember!) and anti-war buttons on knapsacks really bring the time period alive.
What topics does your book touch upon that would make it a perfect fit for the classroom?
Quite truthfully, the story behind THE WAY TO STAY IN DESTINY is timeless. A boy finds himself an outsider in a totally new place, meets someone who’s been there forever, makes a friend. Theo’s a kid who’s resilient, in the worst of situations. The post-Vietnam time period, the uncle who can’t quite get past his wartime experiences, families that were split apart by strong feelings during the Vietnam conflict should offer teachers an opportunity to discuss so many things. Perhaps even a few things not too often found in middle-grade novels.
But at heart, THE WAY TO STAY IN DESTINY is really about discovering family, not only the family you are born into, but the family of your heart. Those are the people who come into your life when you most need them.
The post Classroom Connections: THE WAY TO STAY IN DESTINY by Augusta Scattergood appeared first on Caroline Starr Rose.
Aija Mayrock has landed a deal with Scholastic to publish a revised edition of The Survival Guide to Bullying: written by a kid for a kid.
Mayrock (pictured, via) had originally self-published the title as an eBook back in September 2014. The newly revised book will come out in digital and paperback formats in July 2015. A hardcover library edition will be released in September 2015.
Here’s more from the press release: “Written by a teenager who was bullied throughout middle school and high school, The Survival Guide to Bullying offers a fresh and relatable perspective on bullying. Along the way, author Aija Mayrock offers guidance as well as different strategies that helped her survive even the toughest of days. The Survival Guide to Bullying covers everything from cyber bullying to how to deal with fear and how to attain the self-confidence to achieve the life the reader dreams of having—from inspiring \"roems\" (rap poems), survival tips, personal stories, and quick quizzes. The updated Scholastic edition also features new, never-before-seen content, including an epilogue and an exclusive Q&A with the author.”
Author Nick Hornby has signed on to adapt Love, Nina: A Nanny Writes Home. The BBC plans to transform Nina Stibbe’s 2014 nonfiction title into a five-part drama series.
In the past, Hornby actually gave a blurb for the book. Throughout his career, he has served as the screenwriter for several adaptation projects: An Education, Wild, and Brooklyn.
Here’s more from Variety: “The book tells the true story of Stibbe, who moved when she was 19 years old from the English provinces to London to work as a nanny for Mary-Kay Wilmers, the editor of the London Review of Books. It is told through letters sent by Stibbe to her sister over a five-year period.”
Philip Levine has died. He was 87 years old.
According to NPR.org, Levine served as the United States poet laureate from 2011 to 2012. He also devoted more than three decades of his life to teaching at California State University (Fresno). Throughout his career, he earned a Pulitzer Prize and two National Book Awards. Follow this link to hear him recite his poem, “What Work Is.”
Here’s more from The New York Times: “In spare, realistic free verse, Mr. Levine explored the subjects that had long animated his work: his gritty Detroit childhood; the soul-numbing factory jobs he held as a youth; Spain, where he lived for some time as an adult; and the Spanish anarchists of the 1930s, a personal passion since he was a boy. Mr. Levine in 1995, after learning that ‘The Simple Truth’ had won the Pulitzer. These were themes with which few American poets were concerning themselves when his first collection, On the Edge, appeared in 1961. ‘A large, ironic Whitman of the industrial heartland’ is how the poet Edward Hirsch, writing in The New York Times Book Review, described Mr. Levine in 1984.” (Photo Credit: Geoffrey Berliner)
Artist Pharrell Williams is getting into kids books.
The singer of the hit song “Happy” has signed a deal with Putnam Books for Young Readers to write a series of four children’s books, one of which will be inspired by the song.
AP has the scoop:
Putnam announced Tuesday that the book, “Happy,” will be published Sept. 22 and will feature photographs of children from around the world “celebrating what it means to be happy.” It plans a first printing of 250,000 copies.
Elon Musk, the head of Tesla and SpaceX, has signed a book deal with Penguin.
According to a report in Business Insider, the book fetched $3.5 million in a bidding war.
Business Insider has more about the book:
We’re told it’s a book about Earth and Mars. It will be half about the issues facing us on Earth — sustainability issues in particular.
The second half will be about the idea of a multiplanetary existence — about what’s possible, about the adventure of experience.
Google has created a Doodle to celebrate Laura Ingalls Wilder’s 148th birthday. The image features Wilder and her older sister Mary Ingalls. Follow this link to learn more about the creative process behind this piece.
In the past, Google has crafted Doodles in honor of Pride & Prejudice author Jane Austen, poet Langston Hughes, Russian writer Leo Tolstoy, two-time Caldecott Medal winner Maurice Sendak, science-fiction novelist Douglas Adams, and more. Here’s a video from Google headquarters spotlighting the artists behind the doodles. Which authors would you suggest as future Doodle subjects? (via The Independent)
The lovely Lynda Mullaly Hunt, whose newest novel, FISH IN A TREE, released last week, has arranged a spectacular giveaway. One lucky teacher will win all sixteen middle-grade titles you see here. All books will be autographed, too.
To enter, leave a comment below or on Lynda’s blog. OR tweet about the giveaway, using the hashtag #MGAuthorsLoveTeachers. It’s that easy! The contest closes 11:59 on Wednesday, 2/18. The winner will be announced Thursday, 2/19. Stop by here for the young adult giveaway.
Good luck! And thank you, teachers, for the way you love middle-grade books and authors. We love you right back.
The post Mid-Grade Authors Love Teachers – A Giveaway appeared first on Caroline Starr Rose.
David Carr, the media columnist for The New York Times, sadly passed away yesterday.
Since then, his memoir The Night of the Gun: A Reporter Investigates the Darkest Story of His Life. His Own has sold out on Amazon.
In the book, Carr recounts how he turned from a crack addict into one of the most respected journalists in the field. Here is more about the book from its description:
The kaleidoscopic narrative follows Carr through failed relationships and botched jobs, in and out of rehab and all manner of unsavory places in between, with cameos from the likes of Tom Arnold, Jayson Blair, and Barbara Bush. Admittedly, it’s hard to love David Carr–sometimes you barely like the guy. How can you feel sympathy for a man who was smoking crack with his pregnant girlfriend when her water broke? But plenty of dark humor rushes through the book, and knowing that this troubled man will make it–will survive addiction, fight cancer, raise his twin girls–makes you want to stick around for the full 400-page journey.
Filmmakers Robert Weide and Don Argott hope to raise $250,000 on Kickstarter to fund a documentary film on author Kurt Vonnegut.
Weide met Vonnegut in 1988 and spent years filming the author. The two became close friends, so much so that Weide never completed the film. Here is more about the project from the Kickstarter page:
What started out as a conventional documentary about an author, had now become a highly personal experience that suddenly felt exploitative to release publicly. And the years kept ticking by. (Incredibly, in 2015, Weide is just five years short of Vonnegut’s age when he first approached the author.) Finally, it was a Vonnegut intimate, close to the project, who suggested full disclosure, citing that the evolving friendship between author and fan should be folded into the film — in the same way that Vonnegut often interacts with characters in his own fictional narratives.
Weide has brought on Argott to help direct the segments in which Weide stars.
The late children’s author Roald Dahl was adamantly pro-vaccine. The Charlie and the Chocolate Factory author lost his oldest daughter, Olivia, to measles in 1962, a year before the vaccine came out.
In the 1986 letter, “Measles: A Dangerous Illness,” Dahl recounts the sad story of how the disease killed his daughter and stresses the importance of getting a measles vaccine. Here is an excerpt:
It is not yet generally accepted that measles can be a dangerous illness. Believe me, it is. In my opinion parents who now refuse to have their children immunised are putting the lives of those children at risk. In America, where measles immunisation is compulsory, measles like smallpox, has been virtually wiped out.
(Via Electric Literature).
British celebrity chef Jamie Oliver has reportedly hired bankers to help sell a stake in his publishing business.
The Naked Chef, as he is known, has authored more than a dozen cookbooks and starred in even more television series. Oliver could potentially raise more than $75 million if he sells a minority stake in his publishing division, claim reports. The Telegraph UK has the scoop:
A spokesman for Jamie Oliver Group told Sky News: “Like any well run private company, we regularly review our funding policy and requirements.
“All options, including bringing on board an external investor, are considered in order to position the group to take best advantage of the clear market opportunities that lie ahead.”
Mr Oliver has hired US investment bank Raine to oversee the sale, which would not include the restaurant business and its Jamie’s Italian chain of more than 30 sites.
George Martin‘s latest volume in the Song of Ice and Fire series, The Winds of Winter, will not be published this year.
HarperCollins revealed the news this week. However, they do have plans for an illustrated edition of three previously anthologized novellas coming out in 2015.
The Guardian has more:
A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms takes place nearly a century before the bloody events of the A Song of Ice and Fire series, when the Iron Throne was still held by the Targaryens. Out in October, it is a compilation of the first three official prequel novellas to the series, The Hedge Knight, The Sworn Sword and The Mystery Knight, never before collected, and now set for release in a new illustrated edition.
George R.R. Martin attended his first Super Bowl last night.
The author told the Associated Press that while he is not a big football fan, he did write a TV pilot a while back that featured an alien landing at the Super Bowl. The show was never filmed, but the author has plans to turn it into a graphic novel.
But in the meantime, he’s got work to do on Song of Ice and Fire.
Vlogger Hank Green recently shared that 50 Shades of Grey has already sold more copies than the number of books Ray Bradbury sold in his lifetime. This doesn’t worry author Neil Gaiman.
In a Tumblr post, he responded to this by pointing out that this isn’t new. “Nothing’s changed,” he wrote. “Some books are, often inexplicably, bestsellers. That’s been the way of it for a hundred and fifty years or more.”
He pointed out that if you look at the annual bestseller lists for previous years, you’ll see how trendy books do really well around publication but tend to fade out over time. Here is an excerpt from his post:
You’ll find a lot of books that sold an unbelievable number of copies when they were fashionable. I’m sure The Revolt of Mamie Stover also sold more books than Ray Bradbury will ever have sold in his whole life in its year. Have you read it? Heard of it? Off the top of my head, Peyton Place in its year, orThe Gospel According to Peanuts, or The Ginger Man, or Jonathan Livingstone Seagull in their years undoubtedly outsold all of Ray Bradbury.
Bradbury, on the other hand, has sold a ton of books ever since he started writing and he continues to sell books. “…he found his readers for his books and his stories in every year,” wrote Gaiman. ” And I’ll wager a hundred years from now he’ll still be read…”
Scott Westerfeld (pictured, via), Margo Lanagan, and Deborah Biancotti will collaborate on a new young-adult trilogy. The trio of writers have devoted two years to developing the characters and crafting the story for this project.
Simon Pulse will release book one, entitled Zeroes, on September 29th. Publisher Mara Anastas negotiated the deal with Jill Grinberg of the Jill Grinberg Literary Management. Editorial director Liesa Abrams will edit the manuscript.
Here’s more from the press release: “Who are the Zeroes? There’s Ethan, aka Scam, who’s got a voice inside him that’ll say anything you want to hear, whether it’s true or not. There’s Chizara, aka Crash, who can bring technology to its knees; Riley, aka Flicker, who can see through anyone’s eyes but her own; Thibault, aka Anonymous, who’s out of sight, out of mind; Nataniel, aka Bellwether, who can focus any crowd’s energy on a single goal; and Kelsie, who can amp up or damp down a mob’s emotions. They were all born in the year 2000, and live in Cambria, California. Their abilities make them anything but heroes—until a high stakes crisis changes everything.”
Pulitzer Prize-winning author Harper Lee has revealed plans to publish a second book.
The To Kill a Mockingbird author revealed today that Harper would publish Go Set a Watchman this year. The book will be available on July 14th and is currently available for presale on Amazon.
The book is a kind of sequel to To Kill a Mockingbird, however it was finished earlier. “In the mid-1950s, I completed a novel called ‘Go Set a Watchman,'” stated Lee. “It features the character known as Scout as an adult woman, and I thought it a pretty decent effort. My editor, who was taken by the flashbacks to Scout’s childhood, persuaded me to write a novel (what became `To Kill a Mockingbird’) from the point of view of the young Scout. I was a first-time writer, so I did as I was told.”
Will You Read Harper Lee’s New Book?
Author Harper Lee is “happy as hell” about the publication of her second novel. HarperCollins issued a statement from the author’s attorney in which shared Lee’s response to her upcoming book Go Set a Watchman.
The Associated Press has the scoop:
In the statement given to the publisher by Lee’s attorney, Tonja Carter, the author says “she is alive and kicking and happy as hell with the reactions of ‘Watchman.'”
Lee revealed plans to publish the new book this week and the sequel to “To Kill a Mockingbird” came out in 1960. Since then, presages for the book shot up to No. 1 on Amazon.
View Next 25 Posts
How did J.K. Rowling spend her morning? BuzzFeed reports that the Harry Potter series author surprised five Twitter users by answering their questions.
The fans asked Rowling about the basilisk of the Chamber of Secrets, the resurrection stone, the house at 12 Grimmauld Place, Fluffy the three-headed dog, and her favorite brand of tea. Below, we’ve chronicled all of the exchanges in a Storify post embedded below—what do you think?