Guest Post: Avery Fischer Udagawa: Our Children’s Books Put America (and English) First

September is #WorldKidLit Month, a time to notice if world literature is reaching kids in the form of translations.

By Avery Fischer Udagawa

The movie “You’ve Got Mail” recently turned 20, with a New York Times critic noting both its staying power and its “dark commentary on how capitalism absorbs its critiques.” After all, this classic rom-com has the chain bookstore owner Joe Fox (Tom Hanks) woo the indie children’s bookstore owner Kathleen Kelly (Meg Ryan) while putting her indie out of business,

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Author-Illustrator Interview: Carolyn Dee Flores on Inspiration, Translation & Dedication

By Gayleen Rabakukk

Carolyn Dee Flores is the author-illustrator of nearly a dozen books. Her latest, The Amazing Watercolor Fish (Arte Publico, 2018), has the unique distinction of rhyming in both Spanish and English. I’m very excited to share Carolyn’s insights with Cynsations readers!

What was your initial inspiration for writing The Amazing Watercolor Fish?

The initial idea came about ten years ago when I saw a little aquarium with two Beta fish in it.

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Guest Interview: Lawrence Schimel on The Treasure of Barracuda & The Wild Book for #WorldKidLit Month

Lawrence Schimel, photo by Nieves Guerra

By Avery Fischer Udagawa

September is #WorldKidLit Month, a time to notice if world literature is reaching kids in the form of translations. 


Read a Cynsations interview with co-organizer Marcia Lynx Qualey.


Lawrence Schimel wears many hats: translator,

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Guest Post: Lyn Miller-Lachmann on Literature in Translation as Empowering Own Voices

By Lyn Miller-Lachmann

Before becoming a translator, I wrote historical fiction set in part in Chile, a country I knew from working with exiles who had fled the Pinochet dictatorship in the 1970s and 1980s as well as with musicians inside the country who were working underground to restore democracy.

In addition to my knowledge gained from personal relationships and spending time in Chile, I read works of fiction and nonfiction by Chilean authors, Continue Reading Guest Post: Lyn Miller-Lachmann on Literature in Translation as Empowering Own Voices »

Guest Interview: Marcia Lynx Qualey on #WorldKidLit Month

#WorldKidLit Month image (c) Elina Braslina

By Avery Fischer Udagawa

September is #WorldKidLit Month, a time to notice if world literature is reaching kids in the form of translations.

(See this Book Riot list of 100 Great Translated Children’s Books from Around the World.)

Leading the effort are Cairo-based writer Marcia Lynx Qualey, translator Lawrence Schimel, and Alexandra Büchler of Literature Across Frontiers.

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Guest Interview & Giveaway: Translator Cathy Hirano (Pre AFCC 2016 Con)

By Misa Dikengil Lindberg, Alexander O. Smith and Avery Fischer Udagawa

This month, the Asian Festival of Children’s Content in Singapore will feature Cynsations’ own Cynthia Leitich Smith speaking on “The Irresistible Fantastical Supernatural: Writing a World that Beckons.”

Also featured at AFCC 2016 will be Cathy Hirano, a leading translator of Japanese children’s literature into English. Hirano’s translation of the middle grade realistic novel The Friends (by Kazumi Yumoto) won the Boston Globe-Horn Book Award for Fiction and a Mildred L.

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2016 SCBWI Bologna Author Interview: Kathleen Ahrens

By Patti Buff
for SCBWI Bologna 2016
and Cynthia Leitich Smith‘s Cynsations


Kathleen Ahrens was born in the suburbs of New York City and aspired to be an astronaut and to live in a skyscraper. Poor eyesight led her to forgo the first dream, but her move to Hong Kong allowed her to finally fulfill the second.

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Guest Interview: Translator Marian Schwartz on Playing a Part

Marian Schwartz

By Avery Fischer Udagawa
For Cynthia Leitich Smith’s Cynsations

Marian Schwartz is a master translator of Russian literature into English. Active in PEN and past president of the American Literary Translators Association, she has translated more than seventy books including the bestseller The Last Tsar by Edvard Radzinsky and a re-translation of Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy.

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Guest Interview: Helen Wang on Children’s Book Translation

Wenxuan’s Bronze and Sunflower, translated by Wang

By Avery Fischer Udagawa

What do old coins, the British Museum, and Chinese novels have in common?


Helen Wang.


Wang is Curator of East Asian Money at the British Museum and also translates Chinese literature into English. Among her works are the middle grade novels Jackal and Wolf by Shen Shixi (Egmont,

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2015 SCBWI Europolitan Con: Translator Laura Watkinson

By Mina Witteman

Translator Laura Watkinson founded the Dutch chapter of the SCBWI. She also translates books into English, from Dutch, Italian and German. Her literary interests vary and her projects range from children’s picture books to adult novels and comics.

Her translation of Bibi Dumon Tak’s Mikis and the Donkey, illustrated by Philip Hopman (Eerdman’s), won the American Library Association’s Batchelder Award 2015 for a translated children’s book.

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