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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: leslea newman, Most Recent at Top [Help]
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1. Librarian Preview: Candlewick Press (Fall 2012)

You’ve got your big-time fancy pants New York publishers on the one hand, and then you have your big-time fancy pants Boston publishers on the other.  A perusal of Minders of Make-Believe by Leonard Marcus provides a pretty good explanation for why Boston is, in its way, a small children’s book enclave of its own.  Within its borders you have publishers like Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and Candlewick holding court.  The only time I have ever been to Boston was when ALA last had a convention there.  It was nice, though cold and there are duckling statues.

So it was that the good people of Candlewick came to New York to show off some of their finest Fall 2012 wares.  Now the last time they came here they were hosted by SLJ.  This time they secured space in the Bank Street College of Education.  Better location, less good food (no cookies, but then I have the nutritional demands of a five-year-old child).  We were given little signs on which to write our names.  I took an extra long time on mine for what I can only assume was an attempt to “win” the write-your-name part of the day.  After that, we were off!

First up, it’s our old friend and Caldecott Honor winner (I bet that never gets old for him) David Ezra Stein.  The fellow’s been toiling away with his paints n’ such for years, so it’s little wonder he wanted to ratchet up his style a notch with something different.  And “something different” is a pretty good explanation of what you’ll find with Because Amelia Smiled.  This is sort of a take on the old nursery rhyme that talks about “For Want of a Nail”, except with a happy pay-it-forward kind of spin.  Because a little girl smiles a woman remembers to send a care package.  Because the care package is received someone else does something good.  You get the picture.  Stein actually wrote this book as a Senior in art school but has only gotten to writing it officially now.  It’s sort of the literary opposite of Russell Hoban’s A Sorely Trying Day or Barbara Bottner’s An Annoying ABC.  As for the art itself, the author/illustrator has created a whole new form which he’s named Stein-lining.  To create it you must apply crayons to wax paper and then turn it over.  I don’t quite get the logistics but I’ll be interested in seeing the results.  Finally, the book continues the massive trend of naming girls in works of children’s fiction “Amelia”.  Between Amelia Bedelia, Amelia’s Notebook, and Amelia Rules I think the children’s literary populace is well-stocked in Amelias ah-plenty.

Next up, a title that may well earn the moniker of Most Anticipated Picture Book of the Fall 2012 Season.  This Is Not My Hat isn’t a sequel to 4 Comments on Librarian Preview: Candlewick Press (Fall 2012), last added: 4/25/2012

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2. One Writer's Process: Leslea Newman

Lesléa Newman admits that she is happier writing than not writing, even when the work isn’t going well. “I think the reason I still love writing and being a writer is that I’m really in love with language,” writes Newman, , the award-winning author of more than sixty books, including A Letter to Harvey Milk, Nobody's Mother, Hachiko Waits, Write from the Heart, The Boy Who Cried Fabulous, The

0 Comments on One Writer's Process: Leslea Newman as of 9/4/2011 6:46:00 AM
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3. Twitter FTW

By now, many of you have probably already heard the story the Twitterverse has dubbed #amazonfail - the revelation that Amazon.com has stripped sales rankings and searchability from titles it deems “adult.” Consider it the safesearch of the online shopping world. This might be a mere annoyance–most of us prefer to determine for ourselves the parameters of our searches–but many authors and bloggers contend that the stripped titles are overwhelmingly those that cover sexuality, feminism, and LGBTQ themes, with or without content that could be considered “explicit.”

[You can read more about the stripped titles, and why we should even care about rankings and searchability, all over the internets--but you might want to start with Mark R. Probst, Meta Writer, and Jezebel. Oh, and you can watch #amazonfail unfold by following that hashtag in action--if you hop on over to Twitter Search, you'll see that #amazonfail and #amazon are among the top trends at the moment.]

There are very real consequences here for us as young adult librarians–many of the titles being deemed “adult” are actually YA or children’s titles, like Rainbow Boys and Heather Has Two Mommies–but that’s not actually what I want to discuss now.

Anyone with a vested interest in social movements must be using Twitter.

Must. Not should, not could–must.

Over the past few weeks, I’ve seen stories and movements gain massive momentum by using Twitter. Marriage equality in Iowa and Vermont? Found out via Twitter. Earthquake in Italy? Tweeted. Warnings about viruses and scammers? All over Twitter.

While I’ve been writing this, I have tabs open for #amazonfail and #amazon, and just in the past few minutes over 200 updates have been added for each. Can you imagine if we tapped that same momentum for libraries?

I don’t want this to be another idealistic, vague post, so here are some concrete suggestions:

1. Join Twitter. This one’s sort of a no-brainer for me, but I know plenty of people still don’t see the value. Start out small. Join and just follow me, if you’d like, though I have to warn you I tweet a lot, and sometimes about my cats. (I’m mkeagle on Twitter.)

2. Retweet. See something you like? Pass it on. Make sure you make note of where you saw it–I prefer using my own words and “via @username,” but some folks just copy and paste with RT at the beginning.

3. Use hashtags. I usually don’t know a tag’s even in use until I see someone using it. If you’re going to tweet (or retweet) on the same topic, grab that hashtag. Or you can make your own–that’s what many of us at Women, Action & the Media (WAM!) did two weeks ago, using the general #wam09 tag as well as more specific tags for individual sessions. Hashtagging means you can quickly see the big picture. (If your updates are protected, however, even hashtagged tweets won’t show up in Twitter Search. But your followers will still see the tags.)

4. Cross platform lines. When I put up a new blog post, I immediately tweet it. Many Twitter users send their updates to Facebook. Major media outlets are starting to include tweets in their coverage–which makes sense, since stories are beginning to break through Twitter. You exponentially increase visibility for a cause when you start sharing it over multiple platforms.

5. Tweet about what’s important to you. Movements like #amazonfail pick up momentum because people care. It’s thrilling that so many folks out there are passionate about books and equal access, but I’d be even more thrilled if we could channel that passion into even more causes that need our help. I’m talking about library funding, education, youth advocacy.

Will you be part of the next big Twitter trend?

bookmark bookmark bookmark bookmark bookmark bookmark bookmark bookmark bookmark bookmark

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4. Rock Stars of Reading part 15: Lesléa Newman

Author/poet Lesléa Newman, author of the groundbreaking book Heather Has Two Mommies, talks to Mark about seeing in words (not images), writing for adults and children, and treasures in our brains.


Book by Lesléa Newman you may have seen…

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5. Fusenews: I speak for the trees . . . and oatmeal

Lest we forget that book banning and free speech issues are conversational topics appropriate beyond the brackets of Banned Books Week, a recent news item has me lost for words.  A federal appeals court has ruled, and this is true, that an Ohio high school teacher “has no First Amendment right to make assignments about book-banning or to select particular books for her students.”  Come again?  Well apparently a teacher decided to do an assignment on banned books with her class (of high school students, recall).  So they each picked a book that had been banned. . . and then their parents found out.  So because she was distributing racy literature like, oh say, Heather Has Two Mommies, the teacher’s contract was not renewed and she lost her appeal.  You may read more about the case here.  Thanks to Leslea Newman for the links.

  • Now that’s interesting.  I had not heard that Jacqueline Woodson’s novel Locomotion had been turned into a stage play.  Once in a while a book to theater adaptation just makes perfect sense.  This is one of those cases.  I suppose verse novels make excellent adaptations.  Huh!  Food for thought.
  • Funniest dang thing I’ve seen all day.  Bar none.
  • Feeling the absence of my Top 100 Novels poll results?  Well, much of my information came from Anita Silvey.  Now Anita turns it all around by starting a blog of her own.  Called Book-A-Day Almanac, the premise is that she will recommend a children’s book every day for a year.  At the end of the year, she’ll then turn those posts into a book.  Shoot.  That’s a good idea.  Clearly I’ve got to get around to turning my own polls into books.  Thanks to 100 Scope Notes for the link.
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6. Fusenews: What’s wrong with this picture?

With Book Expo going full-blast in town and my library celebrating its Centennial all at the same time, blogging is possible but slightly more difficult than usual.  I am amused to find that when I skip a day some folks worry that I might be in labor.  Fear not.  I’ll find a way to update the blog with that news, come hell or high water.  Tonight, meanwhile, is also my final Kidlit Drink Night (at least for a while) so if you’d like to view my largess (or, rather, largeness) here are the details.  Meanwhile, back at the ranch . . .

  • So I go into the administrative office the other day to pick up my room’s checks and WHAM!  Two gigantic Lego statues of Patience and Fortitude (the library lions) are just sitting there, chewing their cuds (or whatever it is Lego lions chew).  I showed them to a class of second graders on a tour a day or so later (they’re on display in our main hall, if you’re curious) and one kid said that looking at them was like looking at a computer screen.  He had a point.  They’re mighty pixilated.
  • Wow.  That’s pretty cool.  The organization Keshet (“a national organization working for the full inclusion of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Jews in Jewish life”) is releasing posters of LGBT Jewish Heroes.  One of the posters available?  Leslea Newman of Heather Has Two Mommies and my favorite LGBT board books Mommy, Mama and Me and Daddy, Papa, and Me.  Thanks to Marjorie Ingall for the link.
  • Do you have what it takes to take on the Sixth Annual 48 Hour Book Challenge?  I don’t want to hear your excuses!  I want to see you reading.  You’ve some time to prep so get those eyeball stalks limbered up.
  • Recently I attended SLJ’s Day of Dialog (slooooow emerging blog post to come on the subject).  The keynote speech was delivered by Katherine Paterson who began, much to my delight, with some praise of New Zealand children’s book superstar Margaret Mahy (who would be a superstar here if they just friggin’ republished The Changeover *coughcough*).  Anyway, it seems she recently won in the picture book category of the 2011 New Zealand Children’s Book Awards.  What would you like to bet me that someday they’ll rename those awards “The Mahys”?  I give it ten years, tops.
  • Speaking of aw

    10 Comments on Fusenews: What’s wrong with this picture?, last added: 5/26/2011
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