All around this great nation you will find chapters of 826. Which is to say, storefronts converted into free tutoring facilities for local kids. There’s an 826NYC (in Brooklyn, inexplicably), an 826DC, an 826 Valencia, you name it. They encourage folks to volunteer in their cities. They also encourage artists to get a little freaky with their advertising creativity. Each storefront has a faux store going on. In New York it’s a superhero supply store, in Valencia it’s for pirates, Michigan is robots (naturally), and Boston is for bigfoot. And in LA it’s a time travel mart. So this art was created to advertise it. As you can see to the left here, they’re cautionary time traveler posters. You can purchase them at their online store. Wow. Well worth checking out.
Over at the Lee & Low Blog, folks are polling for an answer. Say they, “It’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pride Month, and we’re wondering what our readers would think about picture books portraying the growing number of families led by same-sex parents—would you buy or review picture books featuring same-sex parents, whether for your library, classroom, kids, or personal collection?” You can vote your answer on their site. Mind you, I do agree with what Cynthia Leitich Smith says when she writes that, “I can’t think of a title that features characters who aren’t white folks.” Um . . . huh. Feeling a little bad I haven’t noticed that before. Talk about a gap. I suppose you could argue that the parents in Mommy, Mama, and Me and Daddy, Papa, and Me might be interracial. But it’s hard to say. Guess we’ll all have to wait for the picture book versions of Dykes to Watch Out For instead. That definitely has some non-white gay parents in it. Thanks to Miriam Newman for the link.
- Random Thought of the Day: I want Mac Barnett to do mock Mac and PC ads with either Patrick Carman or Christopher Paul Curtis. They’d stand in a white space and Mac could say, “Hi! I’m Mac” and Christopher Paul Curtis could say, “And I’m Christopher PC.” Then they could talk about their latest books and banter. This is the kind of stuff that occurs to you when you’ve been cataloging books all day long.
- Author Mark Nobleman provides a scientific analysis of what the best time to speak at a conference is. These numbers don’t lie. Take heed, oh ye upcoming speakers at ALA. He’s dead on about what happens at 2:00.
- So I’m puttering around a website showing Children’s Book-of-the-Month Club images, and I run across this:
You may have click to enlarge it, but when you do, take a gander at the upper right hand corner there. Holy cats, is that a twenty-year-old image of Lane Smith and Jon Scieszka? Wow! You don’t often see such pics used in contemporary ads for their older books. Update time!
- “I really miss being number one. I’m going to catch Harry one way or another.” That would be John Grisham talking about Harry Potter and the fact that until J.K. Rowling came along he was, by his own definition, “number one.” You may be aware that he tried writing a children’s book recently. I say “tried” because after reading Monica Edinger’s hilarious encapsulation of Theodore Boone, Kid Lawyer, I want nothing to do with the thing. Except, possibly, to get Leila Roy‘s take on it someday. Oh, Leila . . . .
- Daily Image:
Certain things in my life make me happy. One of them: The Hark, A Vagrant webcomic. Another: Its creator, Kate Beaton, recently created this poster for Janus Films. Click on it to see a larger version. You’ll be glad you did.
I want her to illustrate graphic novels for kids. Someday . . . someday . . .