Fusenews: Private jet, please
- First up, my little sister. My daughter recently had her third birthday so my sis came up with a craft involving what she calls Do It Yourself Cupcakes. Each cupcake sported a teeny tiny cover of one of my child’s favorite books. Then we took them to her daycare where she delightedly set about pointing out all the books she knew. I have zero crafting skills but if you do then you might want to try this sometime. It was kind of friggin’ amazing.
- Now in praise of Kevin King. The Kalamazoo Public librarian has long been hailed as one of the best in the country. Fact. Children’s authors and illustrators everywhere know his name. Fact. But when a man attended a summer reading kickoff for Kalamazoo Public Library with a gun, who confronted the fellow and asked him to please leave? Kevin King. So basically, he’s an amazing librarian AND he has the guts to talk to someone packing heat around children. Kevin King, today we salute you. I don’t know that many of us would have the courage to do what you did.
- Look, we all talk about how we don’t have enough of one kind of book or not enough of another. But what do we actually DO about it? Credit to Pat Cummings. She doesn’t take these things lying down. Check out the Hero’s Art Journey Scholarship then. As the website says, “The Children’s Book Academy is proud and excited to offer merit scholarships for writers and illustrators of color, identifying as LBGQTI, or having a disability, who are currently underrepresented in the children’s publishing industry. In addition, we are offering scholarships for low income folks who might not be able to take this course otherwise as well as to SCBWI Regional Advisers and Illustrator Coordinators who do so much unpaid work to help our field.” The first and only scholarship of its kind that I’ve certainly seen.
- Sometimes it’s just nice to find out about a new blog (even if by “new” you mean it’s been around since 2012). With that in mind, I’d like to give a hat tip and New Blog Alert to The Show Me Librarian. I believe it was Travis Jonker who led me to St. Charles City-County Library District librarian Amy Koester’s site. It doesn’t have a gimmick. It’s just an honestly good children’s librarian blog with great posts like this one on Reader’s Advisory and this one on picture book readalouds. Them’s good reading.
- Jules would never alert you to this herself, but don’t miss this interview with the woman behind the Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast blog as conducted by Phil and Erin E. Stead. Even if you know Jules you’ll learn something new. For example, I had no idea she enjoyed Marc Maron’s podcast too.
- Speaking of Jules, who is the most tattooed children’s author/illustrator (since we already know the most tattooed bookseller)? The answer may surprise you.
- “There’s not just one way of believing in things but a whole spectrum.” That would be Philip Pullman talking on the subject of fairy tales and why Richard Dawkins got it wrong.
- I’m sorry. I apparently buried the lede today. Else I would have begun with the startling, shocking, brilliant news that they’re bringing back Danger Mouse. Where my DM peoples at? Can I get a, “Crumbs!”? That’s right.
- I don’t read much YA. Usually I’ll pick out the big YA book of a given year and read it so that I don’t fall completely behind, but that’s as far as I’ll go (right now deciding between We Were Liars and Grasshopper Jungle). But I make exceptions and Marissa Meyer’s Lunar Chronicles fall into that gap. Now I hear that Meyer wrote a prequel called Fairest giving her villain some much needed background. That’s cool enough, but the cover? You only WISH you could see more jackets like this:
- Speaking of YA, and since, by law, nothing can happen at this moment on the internet without some mention of The Fault in Our Stars at least once, I was rather charmed by Flavorwire’s round-up of some of the odd TFIOS merchandise out there. Favorite phrase: “for the saddest party ever.”
- It’s important to remember that school library cuts aren’t an American invention. They’re a worldwide problem, a fact drilled home recently by the most recent post on Playing By the Book. If you’re unaware of the blog it’s run by the wonderful Zoe Toft and is, to my mind, Britain’s best children’s literature blog, bar none. Now Zoe’s facing something familiar to too many school librarians and it’s awful. Does anyone know of a British children’s literary magazine along the lines of a School Library Journal or Horn Book? The fact that her blog hasn’t been picked up by such an outlet is a crime.
- “I should think there would be more chance of your child choking to death on a chocolate bar than of becoming seriously ill from a measles immunisation.” As a woman with a child too young at the moment to be vaccinated against diseases like measles, every parent that refuses to get their own children vaccinated is a threat to mine. So I read with great interest what Roald Dahl felt about vaccinating your kids. It ran on BoingBoing back in 2009 but this kind of thing never dies.
- Father’s Day has come and gone but it’s never too late to look at a bunch of adorable pictures of dads reading to their kids. Particularly when one of the dads is married to yours truly. See if you can spot him.
- And the award for Best Summer Reading List of All Time goes to . . . Mike Lewis! His Spirit of Summer Reading list for reluctant readers can only be described in a single word: Beautiful. Designed flawlessly with books that I adore, this is the list I’d be handing to each and every parent who walks in my library door, were I still working a reference desk somewhere. Wowzah.
- A whole exhibit on Appalachian children’s literature? See, this is why I need my own private jet. Why has no one ever given me a private jet? Note to Self: Acquire private jet, because it’s exhibits like this one that make me wish I was more mobile. You lucky denizens of Knoxville, TN will be able to attend this exhibit between now and September 14th. Wow. Thanks to Jenny Schwartzberg for the link.
- So pleased to see this interview with Nathan Hale on the Comics Alternative podcast. Love that guy’s books, I do. Great listening.
- New York certainly does have a lot of nice things. Big green statues in the harbors. Buildings in the shape of irons. Parks that one could call “central”. But one thing we do not have, really, is an annual children’s book trivia event for folks of every stripe (librarians, editors, authors, booksellers, teachers, etc.). You know who does? Boston. Doggone Boston. The Children’s Book Boston trivia event happened the other day and The Horn Book reported the results. One could point out that I could stop my caterwauling and throw such an event myself. Hmm… could work. We could do it at Sharlene’s in Brooklyn… it’s a thought…
- C.S. Lewis on the Three Ways of Writing for Children and the Key to Authenticity in All Writing. Need I say more than that?
- Daily Image:
There are bookshelves that seem kooky or cool and then there are bookshelves that could serve a VERY useful purpose, if you owned them. Boy howdy, do I wish I owned this because useful is what it is. It’s a “Has Been Read” and “Will Be Read” shelf.
Thanks to Aunt Judy for the link.
Filed under: Fusenews
About Betsy Bird
Betsy Bird is currently the Collection Development Manager of the Evanston Public Library system and a former Materials Specialist for New York Public Library. She has served on Newbery, written for Horn Book, and has done other lovely little things that she'd love to tell you about but that she's sure you'd find more interesting to hear of in person. Her opinions are her own and do not reflect those of EPL, SLJ, or any of the other acronyms you might be able to name. Follow her on Twitter: @fuseeight.
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