Compiled by Cynthia Leitich Smith
Promote Your Novel With a Two-Minute Version of the Story by Brian Yansky from Brian’s Blog: Writer Talk. Peek: “It’s easy to do. It’s kind of fun. It’s basically free.”
Drowning in the Well by Laura Ruby from The Storyteller’s Inkpot. Peek: “If this sounds like depression, it was a very specific sort of fiction-centered depression. What good is a story when the people around you are suffering? Shut up and make them something to eat! I had forgotten how nourishing stories could be.”
On the Quilting of One-Liners (and Second Coming of Once-Dead Darlings) by Julianna Baggott from Writer Unboxed. Peek: “The bins are also important because they remind me that I don’t just have a bunch of blank pages to fill. I have something to fill them with. I don’t have to create from nothing.”
The Villain’s Big Reveal by Mary Kole from Kidlit.com. Peek: “Not only will this give your readers more to latch on to, it will give your hero more to work with when it comes time to face their foe.”
Four Tips for Writing About Unfamiliar Character Issues from Elizabeth Spann Craig. Peek: “The folks who live with these issues deserve accuracy, respect, and empathy. It’s our job to get it right.”
What Rejections Can Tell You by Chris Eboch from Project Mayhem. Peek: “If you have a strong idea and a well-written query letter, you may get a request for a partial manuscript. That’s a great sign that your topic is marketable.”
Why the Opening of If I Stay by Gayle Forman Works from Deborah Halverson at Dear Editor. Peek: “Forman intrigues by triggering and stoking anticipation. Her chapter header is “7:09 a.m.”, setting up the expectation that a big thing will happen any minute.”
IBBY Honors Inclusion of all Voices in Books From Around the World by Terry Farish from The Pirate Tree. Peek: “IBBY introduced their 2014 Honour List, a biennial selection of outstanding, recently published books honouring writers, illustrators and translators from around the world. The books were honored with this passionate Mexican celebration of trumpets and gorgeous illustration in this slide show…”
It May Be Perfectly Normal, But It’s Also Frequently Banned by Rebecca Hersher from NPR. Peek: “Now in its fourth edition, the book has sold more than a million copies. Harris asks experts like pediatricians, biologists and even lawyers to fact-check each edition, to make sure updates to AIDS prevention information or birth control laws are accurate.”
Sensory Fiction by Felix from MAS 565: Science Fiction to Science Fabrication. Peek: “By using a combination of networked sensors and actuators, the Sensory Fiction author is provided with new means of conveying plot, mood, and emotion while still allowing space for the reader’s imagination.” Source: The Official SCBWI Blog.
Mental Illness Booklist for Teens by Pam from Strong in the Broken Places. Categories include: depression, bi-polar, self-harm, eating disorders, PTSD, disassociation, borderline personality disorder, OCD, anxiety, agoraphobia, and schizophrenia/paranoia.
The Advantages of Author Portraits by Simone Collins from Jane Friedman. Peek: “Having a portrait drawn from informal personal photos or selfies can save a significant amount of money. Some of the most popular portrait styles on ArtCorgi hover around $25–$45, making them far less expensive then traditional photo shoots with professional photographers.”
The Dreaded Rewrite by Isaiah Campbell from Project Mayhem. Peek: “My stomach burrowed its way through my body and into the car seat. ‘But that’s the whole book!’ I said. ‘If he doesn’t want my book, maybe I don’t want him.'” Notes: (1) Isaiah lives in New Mexico, but was “born and bred” in Texas; (2) post includes giveaway. See also You Should Always Carry a Notebook by Dawn Lairamore from Project Mayhem.
James Dawson: “There Are Too Many White Faces in Kids’ Books” by Alison Flood from The Guardian. Peek “‘In an ideal world, every title released would reflect a diverse world,’ said Dawson. ‘This doesn’t mean there should be a gay character in every book, but if every character in a title is white, straight, able-bodied and wealthy, that book is not reflecting the real world. Is this insidiously suggesting an ideal?'” See also Why Gay Characters Matter by Kristin Pekoll (Assistant Director, ALA Office for Intellectual Freedom) from The Huffington Post.
Reservation Sunsets and Stephen King’s Salem’s Lot by Eric Gansworth from PEN America. Peek: “The small town culture of (Salem’s Lot, ethnicity aside, was nearly parallel to the reservation’s. A nosey writer like Ben wouldn’t be tolerated, but the reservation would have held a bounty of opportunities for an industrious vampire like Barlow. Some folks disappeared for days on end without raising anyone’s eyebrows, and a few roads were home to only one or two houses…)”
Cover Reveal: Rose Eagle by Joseph Bruchac from Lee & Low. Peek: “Set to be released next month, Joseph Bruchac has written an e-novella that’s a prequel to Killer of Enemies (Tu, 2013), titled Rose Eagle.”
This Week at Cynsations
- Barbara Bottner on Miss Brooks’ Story Nook (where tales are told and ogres are welcome)
- Author Dori Hillstead Butler & Illustrator Aurore Damant on The Haunted Library Series
- We Need Diverse Books Announces Incorporation as a Non-Profit & Inaugural Advisory Board
- Mari Mancusi on When the Problem Isn’t the Manuscript, It’s the Market
- Irene Latham on Author Infidelity: When One Genre Isn’t Enough
Cynsational Screening Room
Summer reading PSA with animated art by Don Tate.
|Author-illustrator Divya Srinivasan at the launch for Little Owl’s Day (Viking, 2014) at BookPeople.|
|Young reader-artists enjoy coloring tie-in pages to Little Owl’s Day.|
Congratulations to Katie Bagley for signing with literary agent Sara Crowe and to Sara for signing Katie! Here’s to many books to come!
|K.A. Holt with fellow author E. Kristin Anderson|
Kudos to children’s author K.A. Holt for her graceful handing of this CBS This Morning interview about having been questioned for letting her son play outdoors by himself. Note: I spent much of my childhood playing outside without constant round-the-clock supervision, which–among other things–was key to the development of my imagination.
Link of the Week: Touch the Hearts of Your Readers: Entangle Their Emotions by Tom Bentley from Writer Unboxed.
For educators, The Kid-friendly, Kid-maintainable Classroom Library by Nicole Hewes from The Horn Book.
See also 2014 Children’s-YA Books by Austinites and 2015 Children’s-YA Books by Austinites from Greg Leitich Smith.
Note: Visit Cynsations tomorrow for full coverage of Lindsey Lane‘s launch at BookPeople!
Personal Screening Room
Remarkable animated fan art trailer (by Stephen Byrne) for all of you “Buffy: The Vampire Slayer” fans out there!
This one’s for all of you heading to YALSA’s YA Literary Symposium this fall or the Texas Library Association conference this spring. Or who just love gorgeous photography and/or Austin!
- Almost All the Books People Say Influenced Them Were Written for Children
- Rupert Giles, MLS
- Highland Park (TX) ISD Parents Start Group to Protest Book Suspensions
- Dear Teen Me from Author Sam Bond
- Beagle Returns Lost Items to Travelers at Amsterdam Airport (So adorable!)
- These Marvel Comics Anti-Bullying Covers Will Make You Believe in Superheroes
- New Batmobile is Armed and Ready
- Why Indie Bookstores Are On the Rise Again
- Buying Comic Books as an Investment
- How is the Native American College Experience Different?
- Top Five Cities with the Most Native Americans
- Talking to Kids About Current Events and Conflicts
- Why We Need to Protect Public Libraries
- Austin Climbs the Ranks of America’s Coolest Cities
- John Green & Bill Gates Team Up for Clean Water in Ethiopia
- Truth Behind Men & Women’s Body Wash & Other Gendered Products
- A Guide to the Fairy-Tale Characters on “Once Upon a Time”
- Wonder Woman Was Based on This Real-Life Lady
- Meet Your New Aquaman
Greg Leitich Smith will speak and sign at Tweens Read Sept. 27 at South Houston High School in Pasadena, Texas.
Cynthia Leitich Smith will speak on a panel “Where Are the Heroes of Color in Fantasy & Sci Fi Lit?” from 1:30 p.m. to 3 p.m. Nov. 15 at YALSA’s YA Literature Symposium in Austin.