Baltimore is still partly shut down after that rip-roaring nonevent that trickled through town on Saturday - how could a hurricane that barely bothered my willow tree have taken out power to so many people, including my place of work and half the schools in the city and county?
In other words, why are my children still in their pajamas and bothering me at 10:30 in the morning on what should have been the second day of school?
All this quietus has put a song in my head for days: The New World by X.
honest to goodness the bars weren't open this morning
they must have been voting for a new president of something
Now, I roll my eyes at most celebrity picture books (seriously, Cheech Marin?) (and don't get me started on Perez Hilton), but I would LOVE to see a kids' book written by Exene Cervenka. She's kind of an artistic polymath already, ooh and I want that profanity tattoo.
Where was I? Oh. I was going to talk about news and events.
I was talking to Sam Musher (Parenthetical) one time about who reads our blogs (her: "oh, mostly my friends"; me: "not even my mother") and I came to the realization that unlike a lot of great kidlit blogs (see blogroll to the right), Pink Me is not very involved in the community conversation - I mostly only do book reviews, so I don't do a lot of linking. Ergo, I think that the people who read Pink Me are not the same people who read MotherReader or Chicken Spaghetti or even 7 Impossible Things Before Breakfast. So I'm probably not being reiterative when I post a couple announcements of upcoming events and other cool things from the kidlit world.
COOL THING #1: The Cybils are underway! The Cybils (Children's and Young Adult Bloggers' Literary Awards) are a uniquely democratic suite of awards. Nominations are open to anyone, and the judging proceeds in two phases: phase one judges read EVERYTHING THAT IS NOMINATED and, after heated discussion, agree on a set of finalists. The phase two judges read the finalists and decide on winners.
The call for judges has begun - if you write about children's or teen literature on a regular basis, you are qualified and you should throw your hat in the ring! I am especially excited that this year, there will be a Cybils Award for Best Book App. This new category is being headed up by Mary Ann Scheuer of Great Kid Books.
Speaking of Mary Ann, COOL THING #2! Mary Ann proposed a talk about book apps for the annual KidLitoSphere Conference, which is out in Seattle this year, and she asked me - along with Betsy Bird of Fuse #8, probably the closest thing to a celebrity in the children's book blogger world (except maybe Roger Sutton) - to get up and present with her!
We'll be talking about the book app features that we've come to expect, the features that we'd like to come to expect (more multilingual plz), and the sweet spot between interactive and distracting. Pretty sure we'll also come up with something that we can post to our blogs, if you're not planning to join us in the great PNW.
COOL THINGIO NUMERO THREE-O: Registration for the KidLitCon has just closed, so if you missed it, you missed it. But registration for Baltimore's own Books for the Beast teen literature conference is still going on, and it's open to all interested parties! It's not that expensive, it's on a Saturday, and you get:
- a keynote address by Kenneth Oppel, whose new book, This Dark Endeavor: The Apprenticeship of Victor Frankenstein, is on my list,
- energetic small-group discussions of books in two categories of your choosing,
- afternoon talks by Melissa Marr (Wicked Lovely), Felicia Pride (Patterson Heights), and Casey Scieszka and Steven Weinberg (To Timbuktu: Nine Countries, Two People, One True Story). Any time there's a Scieszka involved, you know it's going to be a party.
- a flash drive loaded with "If you liked..." booklists written by the event facilitators, and
I'm going to be a facilitator in the Suspense/Horror category. You end up in my group, I guarantee a spirited discussion.
Bonus random coolness:
Here's something that I get asked ALL THE TIME. So, apparently, does Leila Roy at bookshelves of doom, one of my favorite blogs, because Leila posts A LOT, and briefly, and with great wryness. When it came to the perennial "books for a precocious tween girl" question, she threw it open to the masses. Here's the compiled list. It's long, and really good. I'm thinking of printing it out for the children's department desk at work.
Three words: Ninety Second Newbery. Do it. I'm gonna. Possibly with LEGO.
Etsy is a wonderland. This crib mobile made from a Swedish children's book is worth every krona.