Saturday, September 22, 2012

FYI and Thanks

Today's a catching-up sort of day here on the blog:

For the 15-18-year-old writers out there, a chance to apply for a Master Class in writing, taught by Beth Kephart. From Beth's blog:
"Those who are selected—in nine disciplines—are eligible for the week-long immersion in the arts (Miami, early January), for U.S. Presidential Scholar in the Arts recognition, and for monetary awards." The deadline to apply is October 19; see Beth's blog post here.

The blog "From the Mixed-Up Files" is hosting a giveaway for libraries that serve middle-grade readers. Follow the link to donate books or nominate a library. (Nominations due October 16.)

I recently blogged at Boylit.com about "Armchair mountaineering."

This is now my favorite quote about finding a title for a story: "Titles are difficult, like wrestling a bear when armed with a pair of pantyhose. Not easy. You are trying to do too many things at once and nothing at all." (from Reif Larsen, in an interview at OneStory) So often I try to find the "perfect title" that encapsulates my whole story, and it takes me forever to find a title. As Larsen puts it, "trying to do too many things at once."

Kelly Fineman, poet and author of At the Boardwalk, will be appearing in Belmar, NJ next weekend for boardwalk-themed fun: follow the link for more details!

Finally, I want to share a pretty picture from last night:
cbw sept 2012
photo courtesy of Children's Book World, Haverford, PA

(Left to right: David Levithan, me, Beth Kephart, Ellen Hopkins, Eliot Schrefer). I was honored to be in such company last night, and energized by the wonderful crowd at Children's Book World--which included A.S. King, K. M. Walton, Tiffany Schmidt, Jessica Dimuzio, and many other book-lovers who helped make our panel discussion a fun and thoughtful exchange about books and writing. If you ever get the chance to hear any of these authors speak, or to go to an event organized by David Levithan, or visit Children's Book World, do so! Beth whisked us to Spain, Ellen discussed the human costs of war, Eliot showed us pictures of bonobos and took us to Africa with his prose, David made us contemplate the connection between our inner and outer lives and what identity means, and I shared a bit from my novel about recovery from a suicide attempt. Children's Book World provided an amazing array of books and refreshments. I can't tell you how exciting it is to be in a roomful of people all devoted to the world of reading, and how much I appreciate those who come to these events, and listen, and ask questions, and share your own stories. Thank you.

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