By Carol Coven Grannick
During the time I’ve been a Cynsations Reporter for “Heart and Spirit,” my now-debut middle grade novel in verse, Reeni’s Turn (Regal House, 2020), popped up in numerous Cynsations columns as a work-in-progress.
It’s been quite a journey for Reeni and me, with plenty of obstacles, some major disappointments, and an immense amount of joy and positive meaning to me as a writer.
Continue Reading Heart & Spirit: Carol Coven Grannick on Depth of Emotion in Writing Character »
By Cynthia Leitich Smith
Anne Bustard is a successful children’s author with a long, distinguished career.
In children’s-YA writing and illustration, maintaining an active publishing career is arguably an even bigger challenge than breaking into the field. Reflecting on your personal journey (creatively, career-wise, and your writer-artist’s heart), what bumps did you encounter and how have you managed to defy the odds to achieve continued success?
Continue Reading Career Achievers: Anne Bustard on Thriving as a Long-Time, Actively Publishing Children’s Author »
By Robin Galbraith
I had the pleasure of interviewing Katia Raina and Sofiya Pasternack, two authors who each have a 2019 debut novel that takes place in Russia and deals with anti-Semitism. Although Katia wrote a realistic young adult novel and Sofiya wrote a middle grade fantasy, these two debut authors each chose this very specific setting because of their own personal or family history.
Their discussion on how they were each drawn to such a specific setting,
Continue Reading New Voices: Katia Raina & Sofiya Pasternack on the Challenges of Using Personal or Family History in Your Novel »
By Robin Galbraith
In today’s world of author branding how do you market yourself if you’re interested for writing for more than one age level? What are the joys and challenges of working across age levels? Are agents still willing to work with someone who doesn’t commit to just one age level?
These are the questions I asked five currently publishing authors: Hena Khan,
Continue Reading Author Interview: Writing & Marketing for Multiple Age-Levels »
By Stephani Martinell Eaton
Today I am excited to introduce Gillian McDunn and Julia Nobel, two middle grade, debut authors who have found real life settings as inspiration for their stories.
What first inspired you to write for young readers?
As a kid, I was a voracious reader and re-reader. I read some books so many times,
Continue Reading New Voices: Gillian McDunn & Julia Nobel Find Inspiration in Real-Life Settings »
by Stephani Martinell Eaton
I am excited to share the publishing journeys of Lisa Moore Ramée and Jeanne Zulick Ferruolo. Both are members of the Novel Nineteens author group. Both of their middle grade novels debuted this month.
Lisa Moore Ramée
What was your initial inspiration for writing A Good Kind of Trouble (Balzer + Bray)?
Continue Reading New Voices: Lisa Moore Ramée & Jeanne Zulick Ferruolo on Questions Arising During Middle Grade Years »
Yona Zeldis McDonough
by Yona Zeldis McDonough
I hate weapons, especially firearms. Always have, and always will. Even the sight of a legally sanctioned gun—police office, hunter—makes me recoil and I literally take a step back.
Along with hating weapons, I hate war and though I concede that some wars have been necessary, I fail to see warfare as heroic or noble.
So when Scholastic tapped me to write a book about the evacuation at Dunkirk [of World War II.],
Continue Reading Guest Post: Yona Zeldis McDonough on Staying True to Yourself »
By Traci Sorell
I’m delighted to feature the prolific, award-winning poet and author Joseph Bruchac and his latest middle grade novel, Two Roads (Dial, 2018) on Cynsations.
From the promotional copy:
It’s 1932, and twelve-year-old Cal Black and his Pop have been riding the rails for years after losing their farm in the Great Depression.
Cal likes being a “knight of the road” with Pop,
Continue Reading Interview: Joseph Bruchac on Telling Stories and Two Roads »
Learn more about Barbara Dee.
By Barbara Dee
for Cynthia Leitich Smith‘s Cynsations
About a year ago, on a NerdCamp panel called “Tough Topics in Middle Grade Fiction,” we were talking about how middle grade was evolving, growing up, tackling subjects that used to be considered taboo—for example, sexuality, terrorism, refugeeism, and drug use.
I asked the educators in the room which underrepresented topics they’d like to see on their bookshelves.
Continue Reading Guest Post: Barbara Dee on Keeping it Middle Grade: Handling Tough Topics in Fiction »