Once in a while it does the brain a bit of good to go a little off-topic. So while most of this is children’s literature related, there’s a whole slew of other topics worked in for spice as well. Have at it.
I haven’t been recommending that you read Collecting Children’s Books nearly enough lately, so let’s select something particularly good. Not too long ago Peter managed to work into a single post elements that could have made into at least 30 individual pieces. In Sunday Brunch with Birds, Bees, Blyton and Beatrix, Peter he weighs in on bees vs. hummingbirds (he is staunchly Team Hummingbird), considers a far worse Peter Rabbit celebrity author than Emma Thompson, has a conversation with Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle (has anyone ever considered writing a Mr. Piggle-Wiggle novel?), lists cranky neighbors, compares a Newbery Honor sequel to a box of soap pads, and wonders why Enid Blyton never made it big here in the States. I can put an answer to that last question, I think. For many librarians, the mere mention of Blyton’s name gives them the heebie jeebies. They just do not like her writing. Not one little jot. I’ll have to try one sometime to see how it is.
- They call it The Museum of Online Museums, a kind of collection of online sites that collect things. A collection of collections, if you will. Everything from fading billboards to The Museum of Questionable Medical Devices (once my favorite place to visit in Minnesota). If you wanna waste a good week’s worth of your time, you’d explore the links. If you wanted to do some research for that book you’re writing on obscure topics like improvised prison escape tools, it might also be of use. Personally, the site that collects any and all images of monsters and men holding fainting women in their arms (called, appropriately, In My Arms) kept me far too amused to get any serious work done last night. Thanks to Wilson Swain for the link.
- It’s not a half bad idea, you know. If you’re an author hoping to promote your book, why not create a teacher’s guide for it? James Kennedy recently did just that for his The Order of Odd-Fish. Smart thinking.
- Here you go. A comprehensive list of every movie in the English language containing a prominent librarian. Who could have predicted that An Extremely Goofy Movie would have contained one of the more positive librarian portrayals in film?
- I need a new way to promote my library’s books. We used to make little reader recommendation slips, but they were constantly getting lost or ripped. Plus, I wasn’t entirely certain whether or not folks would feel more inclined to pick up the books. Travis Jonker at 100 Scope Notes shows his own library’s recommendation suggestion signs, then includes one from a McNally Jackson bookstore that, I will admit, is just shy of genius. I must steal this idea. I don’t know how, but I will.
- Neato. I’ve a review or two in the newest NCTE publication Language Arts this month alongside some other reviewers. It’s a fun little piece called Children’s Literature Characters Forming Community in an Almost 2.0 World. Fun!
- Hark, A Vagrant meets Nancy Drew. What more do you need to know?
- We can find people’s blogs in all sorts of different ways these days. In the case of the blog Young and Writerly, I discovered this young lady when she started following me on Twitter. She’s just a sophomore in college studying journalism, but she has an interest in middle grade and YA fiction and has a great voice on her blog.
- I know that a fair amount of people have weighed in at this point, but I feel that the Pat Scales take on Commonsense Media as published in Booklist under the title Weighing In: Three Bombs, Two Lips, and a Martini Glass is the required reading of the week. Show ’em how it’s done, Pat!
- From Cynopsis Kids, some happy news for fellow Simon’s Cat fans. Remember, it was recently a book as well:
Simon’s Cat ( www.simonscat.com ), the popular online viral animated shorts created by Simon Tofield, will make its TV debut on CBBC this month. The Simon’s Cat short, Let Me In (2-minutes), on Monday, August 30 at 3:45p as part of the channel’s My Toons Summer Special, which features the top eight popular animations from the CBBC website. The newest Simon’s Cat animated short, The Box, recently debuted on YouTube, where it was viewed 1+ million times over two days. Earlier this year United Agents named RDF Rights as the UK licensing agent for Simon’s Cat, which recently inked a deal with Portico to produce a range of paper products including greeting cards, gift wrap, gift tags, gift bags, stationery gifts and calendars and diaries.
- BookFest is back, baby! The catch? It’s not being held at New York Public Library anymore. A pity but have no fears. Bank Street College of Education is on hand to pick up the slack. For those of you unfamiliar with BookFest, this is a day-long program for adults who love literature for children and teens. Think of it as like my Children’s Literary Salons, but lasting all day. Space is limited (200!) and the registration closes soon (Sept. 10) so you’ve only a little time left if you’re interested. For more information, go here: www.bankstreet.edu/library/bookfest.html
- Daily Image:
Overseas, Puffin has been getting creative with their children’s classics. They’ve started churning out these limited edition covers with all kinds of cool looks. Here’s their James and the Giant Peach:
And their Secret Garden (created by Lauren Child):
Thanks to bookshelves of doom for the link.