Writer Reading List: Fictional Authors

Dear Mr. Henshaw by Beverly ClearyDEAR MR. HENSHAW by Beverly Cleary (Morrow, 1983). While writing to his favorite children’s book author, Leigh deals with his parents’ divorce and being the new kid at school. Ages 8-up.

KISSING BRENDAN CALLAHAN by Susan Amessé (Roaring Brook, 2005). Sarah wants to be a writer. She wants to enter a local writing contest, judged by her idol–romance writer Antonia DeMarco, and she wants to win first place. Unfortunately, her just-the-facts mom says she’s ineligible to enter and has a less-than-stellar opinion about Antonia herself.

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Guest Post & Giveaway: Ann Angel on The Power of Secrets in Things I’ll Never Say

Ann Angel

By Ann Angel

Right about the time I pitched my first anthology, a writer friend said she’d hate that sort of work.

“It would be so time-consuming to read all those stories,” she said. “I can’t imagine having to edit all that content and you’ll have to write all that front and back matter and it will take away from your own writing.”

Even though everything she said is true,

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Cynsational News & Giveaways

The cat on the cover was modeled after Anne’s cat!

By Cynthia Leitich Smith

The 10,000th Try: Rejecting Rejection with Anne Bustard from The Writing Barn. Peek: “That I had a story was the good news. That it was deeply flawed, the bad. And that I must start completely-from-the-very-beginning-over, the scariest.” Note: check out Anne’s newly redesigned official author website.

Reviews: Positive,

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Cynsational News & Giveaways

By Cynthia Leitich Smith

Beyond Bollywood: South Asian American Middle Grade Fiction from From the Mixed-Up Files of Middle Grade Authors. Peek: “Our stories are funny, tragic, brave, silly, and, most importantly, varied.” See also Diversity in YALSA’s Best Fiction for Young Adults by Malinda Lo from Diversity in YA.

A Valentine from the Teacher by Louise Hawes from Write at Your Own Risk.

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YA & Adult Short Pieces

YA Short-Form Writing

Three of Cynthia Leitich Smith’s short stories—“Cat Calls,” “Cupid’s Beaux” and “Haunted Love”—are set in the TANTALIZE-FERAL universe.

FORESHADOW: STORIES TO CELEBRATE THE MAGIC OF READING AND WRITING YA, edited by Emily X.R. Pan and Nova Ren Suma (Algonquin, 2020).

A trove of unforgettable fiction makes up the beating heart of this book, and the accompanying essays offer an ode to young adult literature,

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New Voice: Debra McArthur on A Voice for Kanzas

Debra with Midge, Italian Greyhound and writing helper

By Cynthia Leitich Smith

Debra McArthur is the first-time novelist of A Voice for Kanzas (Kane Miller, 2012)(author blog). From the promotional copy: 

“Kanzas” Territory in 1855 is a difficult place to settle, particularly for a 13-year-old poet like Lucy Thomkins. 

Between the pro-slavery Border Ruffians and Insiders like her father who are determined to make Kansas a free state (not to mention the snakes and the dust storms),

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Author Lena Coakley Interviews Author Alan Cumyn on Tilt

By Lena Coakley
 

Alan Cumyn is the author of many acclaimed novels for both children and adults.

Books in his Owen Skye series have won the Mr. Christies and Hackmatack awards and were nominated for the Governor General’s Award, the Ruth Schwartz Award, the TD Canadian Children’s Literature Award, and the Canadian Library Association Book of the Year for Children Award.

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Cynsational News & Giveaways

Teaching to Learn by Louise Hawes from Write at Your Own Risk. Peek: “I know now, what this mildly famous author missed by not working with new and emerging writers. He missed the chance to grow, to change, to be inspired far beyond his own lonely dreams.”

Pacifiers or Catalysts: Your Choice by Kristi Holl from Writer’s First Aid. Peek: “What fills our lives–what quells our anxiety–can be either positive or negative.

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