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Nonfiction Matters
Inside Nonfiction Matters

Two Words and the Themes of American History

What I Learn By Reading About Lewis and Clark As I read Undaunted Courage, one word kept drawing my attention. And as I thought about it, I came to understand a fundamental problem we as American’s need to face. The word was "friendly" matched with its opposite "hostile." The Corps of Discovery kept hoping the […]

What You Gain By Seeing the World From a Differnt Angle

I Am Writing This Blog From Curacao We exchanged homes with a family from this island, and while they explore New York, we get to see Curacao. Our boys are in a day camp by the water, which is both challenging and interesting. Challenging b/c only some kids speak English — the dominant languages here […]

The Lay of the Land

What Is the Landscape of Nonfiction for Younger Readers Today? The tsunami that swept through the national economy has left wreckage all over our world. Every author — I can say with personal conviction — has lost trusted editors, publishers, managing editors, designers. The people we have worked with for years, and have come to […]

Of the Literal Minded and the Defenseless

When Adult Authors Show Their Passions, Are They Overwhelming Readers or Freeing Them? Over at CCBC, the listserv run by the Cooperative Center for Books for Children in Wisconsin, the focus has been on a new book by Perry Nodelman — the highly respected expert on books for young readers. They have been examing ways […]

void–so sorry

Teacher Time

What I Learn, Again and Again, When I Meet Teachers I spent the first two days this week at the Reading and Language ARts institute that Linda Pavonetti and Jim Cipielewski run at Oakland University in Rocherster Michigan. I was there to introduce teachers — from elementary to High School — who are working towards […]

Update on BBYA

I’ve Been Asking Around to Find Out What The YALSA Board Decided, Here Is What I Know Apparently the board did not decide anything, but did use the moment for an airing of issues around BBYA and to consider proposals. The essential issues seem to be 1) the amount of reading committee members have to […]

BBYA — Whose Award Is This Anyway?

The Blogosphere Buzz If you search the blog chat about the BBYA issue, you quickly see that authors are the most vocal about the importance of the list, and the problems involved in a People’s Choice award. However de-linked the BBYA and PC award issues may be in the minds of the YALSA board they are clearly […]


I Am Writing This Without Having Seen the Results of the YALSA Board Meeting So anything I say will be old news. Anyone who knows more, please post. Last week I heard from a former BBYA member that there was a plan afoot to eliminate the list. Then today I saw in Rocco Staino’s ALA […]

The Woodstock Example

Where is YA Nonfiction? I recently read a story about Woodstock and the New York Times. At first, the newspaper of record covered the gathering as a disaster. But the reporters who were actually there came back and refused to take that editorial line. While it was wet, the mood was hopeful, optimistic, not grim. […]