Cynsational News & Links

The Children’s Africana Book Awards: “presented annually to the authors and illustrators of the best children’s books on Africa published or republished in the U.S.” Established by the African Studies Association (ASA). See 2007 nomination process. Note: I saw a heads-up on the new nominations at A Fuse #8 Production.

Jennifer Armstrong Publicity Etc.: a debut author blog. Jennifer’s latest book is The American Story, illustrated by Roger Roth (Knopf, 2006). Visit Jennifer’s main site to learn more, and see a recent recommendation of The American Story by Chris Barton at Bartography.

The Authors Guild has relocated. The phone number and email address remain unchanged. The new snail mail address is: Authors Guild, 31 E. 32nd St., 7th Fl., New York, NY 10016. Note: I recommend joining the guild to those writers who are eligible for membership.

Badgerdog Literary Publishing, Inc.: Austin organization follows a two-fold mission that seeks to serve both professional creative writers and young writers in grades 3-12. In short, Badgerdog was created to publish and to teach. Noteworthy aspects include: relaunching “American Short Fiction;” work on writing with school students; and sponsoring creative writing camps.

Take a sneak peek at the cover art for Your Kind of Mommy by Marjorie Blain Parker, illustrated by Cyd Moore (Dutton, March 2007).

Heather Brewer: official site of the author of Eighth Grade Bites, the first book in The Chronicles of Vladimir Tod series (Dutton/Penguin, August 2007)(excerpt). Learn more about Heather and her book and contests & free stuff. Then visit Heather’s blog, Bleeding Ink.

Lost Loves: It All Adds Up for Teen Author John Green: an interview by Linda M. Castellitto from BookPage. Of his days on the Booklist staff, he says: “I got the chance to review a lot of books, and it made a huge difference in my . . . writing life and reading life.” John’s latest book is An Abundance of Katherines (Dutton).

Bringing Asha Home by Uma Krishnaswami, illustrated by Jamil Akib (Lee & Low, 2006): a recommendation by Josephine Bridges from The Asian Reporter. Read a Cynsations interview with Uma.

Congratulations to the following novelists on their September 2006 hardcover releases: Kimberly Willis Holt, author of Part of Me (Henry Holt)(excerpt)(author interview)(a movie intro on Kimberly’s website); Amy Goldman Koss, author of Side Effects (Roaring Brook)(a recommendation from bookfurious); E. Lockhart, author of The Boy Book (Delacorte)(excerpt)(LJ); Robin Merrow MacCready, author of Buried (Dutton)(an interview from TeensReadToo); Laura Ruby, author of Good Girls (HarperTempest)(author interview)(a recommendation from bookshelves of doom); and Laurie Faria Stolarz, author of Bleed (Hyperion)(author interview).

Congratulations to the following novelists on their September 2006 paperback releases:Cecil Castellucci, author of Boy Proof (Candlewick)(excerpt)(author interview)(LJ); E. Lockhart, author of The Boyfriend List (Delacorte)(author interview)(recommendation).

“Embrace the Conflict” by Jan Fields from the Institute of Children’s Literature. In part, she says, “What conflict means is struggle. Conflict occurs when needs are thwarted.”

A Day in the Life with Jennifer L. Holm from Random House. Big fun! See inside Jenni’s writing life and times, including her kitty, office, and Babymousetastic bike! Don’t miss the photo of her in that heavenly pink dress in the sidebar. Learn more about Penny From Heaven by Jennifer L. Holm (Random House, 2006).

Manuscript Formatting for Beginners by Kent Brewster from Speculations: For Writers Who Want to be Read.

Rising Star: Pija Lindenbaum by April Spisak from the Bulletin of the Center of Children’s Books. Spisak writes: “Lindenbaum believes that her child audience can have an ironic sensibility and a sense of humor that can accommodate both the expected and the offbeat…”

Author-illustrator Annette Simon reports she was pleasantly surprised to find her Mocking Birdies (Simply Read Books, 2005)(recommended) as “product placement” in the Stanton Large Wire Basket at Pottery Barn Kids. She also notes that An Egg Is Quiet by Dianna Hutts Aston, illustrated by Sylvia Long (Chronicle, 2006)(author-illustrator interview) is featured in the Catalina Magazine Rack. “Book reviews, author interviews, spotlight pages, contests, an up-to-date book release calendar, and the world’s largest young adult/teen author directory.” Author interview highlights include: Brad Barkley and Heather Hepler; Barbara Dee; Gail Giles; K.L. Going; Brent Hartinger; David LaRochelle; Wendy Mass; Donna Jo Napoli; Laura Ruby; Tanya Lee Stone; and JoAnne Whittemore. Authors should see promotional opportunities related to the site.

Meet Tony DiTerlizzi, Caldecott Honor recipient and co-creator (with Holly Black) of The Spiderwick Chronicles, from BookPage. Tony’s latest is G is for Gzonk! (Simon & Schuster).

Writers and Depression by Nancy Etchemendy from the Horror Writers Association. Nancy observes, “The courage it takes to deal with rejections and keep going may fail us at times. Without courage, we become fair game for depression.” Nancy’s books include Cat in Glass and Other Tales of the Unnatural (Front Street, 2002) and The Power of Un (Front Street, 2000). Note: this link is featured periodically; take care of yourselves and each other.

Writing Picture Books by Marisa Montes. Includes tips and diagram.