YALSA 2016: Call For Proposals


The Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA) is accepting proposals for continuing education sessions to be presented at the 2016 ALA Annual Conference in Orlando, June 23 – 28, 2016. Proposals may be submitted through June 1 via this form.

YALSA is accepting proposals for creative, innovative programs that address topics of focus in the Future of Library Services for & with Teens: a Call to Action report.

Proposals must fall within one of the following categories:

  • Teens/demographics
  • Collections
  • Spaces (physical and virtual)
  • Programming
  • Staffing
  • Youth Participation
  • Outreach
  • Administration/Policy

Individuals may submit multiple proposals; however, no individual will be chosen to present or co-present more than one program. Proposals that are largely sales pitches or that focus on only one particular product will not be accepted.  All presenters, moderators, speakers, etc. will be expected to cover their own travel and conference registration costs.  Most program time slots are 60 minutes in length.  However, there are a limited number of 90 minute time slots available.

The YALSA membership will vote on all of the programs that were submitted to determine which programs will move forward. Those who submitted proposals will be notified of their status the week of Sept. 1, 2015. You must be a member to submit a proposal. If you’re a librarian, join up! If you’re not team up with someone who is.


March Releases

I collected 11 titles by authors of color that were released in March 2014, including Crossover by Kwame Alexander. If I hadn’t spent over 7 hours gathering new titles, I would have written a post today. Come back later this week. I’ll write a post.

This March, my list contains 15  16 titles.

updated 23 Mar

Hold Me Down by Calvin Slater (Coleman High #2); Dafina/Kensington
Xavier Hunter’s dreams of graduation and college are even more crazy-impossible this sophomore year. Flipping on his former BFF has put more than one target on his back. And thanks to vicious baby-daddy lies, his dream girl Samantha Fox has quit him for good. The only person who seems to understand what he’s going through is Nancy Simpson. She’s a gorgeous chance to make things right–but she’s more dangerous drama than Xavier has ever seen.

Samantha isn’t going to let heartbreak break her. Maybe Xavier wasn’t the down-deep-decent guy she thought. And maybe what they had wasn’t as true as she hoped. But there’s something about his new boo, Nancy, that’s screaming bad news. And exposing what’s real means she and Xavier must face some hard truths–and survive.

The Smoking Mirror (Garza Twins vol 1) by David Bowles; IFWG Publishing
Carol and Johnny Garza are 12-year-old twins whose lives in a small Texas town are forever changed by their mother’s unexplained disappearance. Shipped off to relatives in Mexico by their grieving father, the twins soon learn that their mother is a nagual, a shapeshifter, and that they have inherited her powers. In order to rescue her, they will have to descend into the Aztec underworld and face the dangers that await them.

Billy Buckhorn Paranormal (Pathfinders series) by Gary Robinson; 7th Generation
Cherokee teenager Billy Buckhorn’s uncanny intuition became apparent at an early age. In the course of the Billy Buckhorn supernatural adventure books, Billy’s abilities grow and develop, and his reputation spreads throughout the Cherokee Nation. In book one, Abnormal, Billy began to experience an enhanced level of ESP after he survived being struck by lightning. His powers grow in Paranormal, the second book in the series, when Billy and his friend Chigger continue their adventures in a hidden cave they discover. After a horrifying accident at the cave, Billy’s supernatural abilities strengthen when he returns to life in the emergency room after being pronounced dead.
The story heats up when Chigger becomes possessed by an alien creature. Billy knows that all the trouble started in the cave and realizes he must return there in order to save his friend. What he doesn’t know is that the horned serpent known to the Cherokees as Uktena is lying in wait. (ages 12-16)

Walking Two Worlds by Joseph Bruchac and David Fadden (illus); 7th Generation
“Eee-leee! Master Parker,” Reverend Stone, headmaster at the Baptist school, called. “The answer, please.”
“Four,” Ely thought.
But he also thought something else. Why is English so strange? In Seneca every word always meant the same thing. But in English the same sound could mean different things. It could be four. Or for. Or fore. So begins this inspiring story of the early education of a famous Native American who gained greatness in the white man’s world while staying true to his Seneca people.Hasanoanda was his Indian name. But in mission school he became Ely. He encountered racism and deceit but, against all odds, did not give up on his quest to walk between two worlds. (ages 12-16)

Under a Painted Sky by Stacey Lee; Putnam Juvenile
In 1845, Sammy, a Chinese American girl, and Annamae, an African American slave girl, disguise themselves as boys and travel on the Oregon Trail to California from Missouri. Agers 12-18.

Rivals in the City (The Agency series) by Y. S. Lee; Candlewick
Mary Quinn has a lot on her mind. James Easton, her longtime love interest, wants to marry her; but despite her feelings, independent-minded Mary hesitates. Meanwhile, the Agency has asked Mary to take on a dangerous case: convicted fraudster Henry Thorold is dying in prison, and Mary must watch for the return of his estranged wife, an accomplished criminal herself who has a potentially deadly grudge against James. Finally, a Chinese prizefighter has arrived in town, and Mary can’t shake a feeling that he is somehow familiar. With the stakes higher than ever, can Mary balance family secrets, conflicting loyalties, and professional expertise to bring a criminal to justice and find her own happiness?

Infinity Coil (the Ehrich Weisz Chronicles) by Marty Chan; Fitzhenry and Whiteside
Ehrich Weisz, Demon Hunter was introduced to steampunk fans in Demon Gate. Now, he is continuing his increasingly desperate quest to rescue his brother in an alternate universe in the sequel, Infinity Coil.
Now a fugitive from Demon Watch, young Ehrich Weisz hides in the underbelly of an alternate New York where immigrants from other dimensions mingle among Americans. Amid growing racial tensions, Ehrich searches for Kifo, the man who stole his brother’s mind and locked it inside an ancient medallion. He poses as a stage magician to draw out Kifo’s next target—the commissioner of Demon Watch. In the wings, an army awaits Kifo to accomplish his mission so interdimensional soldiers can invade New York. Ehrich is willing to risk the outbreak of war to save his brother, but he must decide whether or not he can betray his friends.

Mo’ne Davis: Remember My Name: My story from First Pitch to Game Changer by Mo’ne Davis; HarperCollins
In August 2014, Mo’ne Davis became the first female pitcher to win a game in the Little League World Series and the first Little Leaguer to be featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated, and a month later she earned a place in the National Baseball Hall of Fame. She was thirteen years old. (ages 8-12)

The Precious Ones by Marisa de los Santos; William Morrow
In all her life, Eustacia “Taisy” Cleary has given her heart to only three men: her first love, Ben Ransom; her twin brother, Marcus; and Wilson Cleary—professor, inventor, philanderer, self-made millionaire, brilliant man, breathtaking jerk: her father. Seventeen years ago, Wilson ditched his first family for Caroline, a beautiful young sculptor. In all that time, Taisy’s family has seen Wilson, Caroline, and their daughter, Willow, only once.
Why then, is Wilson calling Taisy now, inviting her for an extended visit, encouraging her to meet her pretty sister—a teenager who views her with jealousy, mistrust, and grudging admiration? Why, now, does Wilson want Taisy to help him write his memoir?
Told in alternating voices—Taisy’s strong, unsparing observations and Willow’s naive, heartbreakingly earnest yearnings—The Precious One is an unforgettable novel of family secrets, lost love, and dangerous obsession, a captivating tale with the deep characterization, piercing emotional resonance, and heartfelt insight that are the hallmarks of Marisa de los Santos’s beloved works. (ages 12-18)

The Memory Key by Liana Liu; HarperTeen
Lora Mint is determined not to forget.Though her mother’s been dead for five years, Lora struggles to remember every detail about her—most important, the specific events that occurred the night she sped off in her car, never to return. But in a world ravaged by Vergets disease, a viral form of Alzheimer’s, that isn’t easy. Usually Lora is aided by her memory key, a standard-issue chip embedded in her brain that preserves memories just the way a human brain would. Then a minor accident damages Lora’s key, and her memories go haywire. Suddenly Lora remembers a moment from the night of her mother’s disappearance that indicates her death was no accident. Can she trust these formerly forgotten memories? Or is her ability to remember every painful part of her past driving her slowly mad—burying the truth forever? Lora’s story of longing for her lost mother—and for the truth behind her broken memories—takes readers on a twisty ride. The authentic, emotional narrative sparks fascinating questions about memory and privacy in a world that increasingly relies on electronic recall. (ages 14 and up)

Catalyst by Lydia Kang; Penguin
In the past year Zel lost her father, the boy she loves, her safety, and any future she might have imagined for herself. Now she, her sister, and the band of genetic outcasts they’ve come to call their family are forced on the run when their safe house is attacked by men with neural guns. But on the way to a rumored haven in Chicago, Zel hears something–a whisper from Cy, the boy who traded himself for her sister’s safety. And when she veers off plan in order to search for him, what she finds is not what she expected. There’s more to their genetic mutations than they ever imagined…aspects that make them wonder if they might be accepted by the outside world after all. (ages 12 and up)

Written in the Stars by Aisha Saeed; Nancy Paulsen Books
This heart-wrenching novel explores what it is like to be thrust into an unwanted marriage. Has Naila’s fate been written in the stars? Or can she still make her own destiny? Naila’s conservative immigrant parents have always said the same thing: She may choose what to study, how to wear her hair, and what to be when she grows up—but they will choose her husband. Following their cultural tradition, they will plan an arranged marriage for her. And until then, dating—even friendship with a boy—is forbidden. When Naila breaks their rule by falling in love with Saif, her parents are livid. Convinced she has forgotten who she truly is, they travel to Pakistan to visit relatives and explore their roots. But Naila’s vacation turns into a nightmare when she learns that plans have changed—her parents have found her a husband and they want her to marry him, now! Despite her greatest efforts, Naila is aghast to find herself cut off from everything and everyone she once knew. Her only hope of escape is Saif . . . if he can find her before it’s too late. (ages 14 and up)

Under a Painted Sky by Stacy Lee; Putnam
Missouri, 1849: Samantha dreams of moving back to New York to be a professional musician–not an easy thing if you’re a girl, and harder still if you’re Chinese. But a tragic accident dashes any hopes of fulfilling her dream, and instead, leaves her fearing for her life.
With the help of a runaway slave named Annamae, Samantha flees town for the unknown frontier. But life on the Oregon Trail is unsafe for two girls, so they disguise themselves as Sammy and Andy, two boys headed for the California gold rush. Sammy and Andy forge a powerful bond as they each search for a link to their past, and struggle to avoid any unwanted attention. But when they cross paths with a band of cowboys, the light-hearted troupe turn out to be unexpected allies. With the law closing in on them and new setbacks coming each day, the girls quickly learn that there are not many places to hide on the open trail. (ages 12 and up)

Spirit Animals Book 7: The Evertree by Marie Lu; Scholastic
Everything comes to a head in this seventh book in the New York Times bestselling series. The world of Erdas will be changed forever. Conor, Abeke, Meilin, and Rollan were once ordinary kids. Then they discovered that they had spirit animals-wise and powerful partners who granted them with amazing gifts . . . and a legendary responsibility. Together, the team has journeyed across Erdas, racing to stop a merciless foe. They have laughed and fought together. They’ve won challenges and lost friends. Some have even lost themselves.Now that journey is about to end. They must reach a place forgotten by time and face off against an ancient enemy breaking free from his prison. They have just one chance to stop him . . . or the whole world will shatter. (ages 8-12)

The Boy Who Carried Bricks: A True Story by Alton Carter; Roadrunner
Abandoned by his father, neglected by his mother, shuttled between foster homes and a boys ranch, a young African-American man refuses to succumb to the fate that the world says should be his. Told by the man who lived it. (ages 12-18)

Tether by Anna Jarzab; Delacorte
Everything repeats. Sasha expected things to go back to normal once she got back on Earth. But now that she knows parallel worlds are real, and that an alternate version of herself exists in a world called Aurora, her old life no longer seems to make sense . . . and her heart breaks daily for Thomas, the boy she left behind. Troubled by mysterious, often terrifying visions and the echoes of a self she was just beginning to discover, Sasha makes the difficult decision to journey once more through the tandem.
Thomas is waiting for her on the other side, and so is strange, otherworldly Selene, Sasha’s analog from a third universe. Sasha, Selene, and their other analog, Juliana, have a joint destiny, and a new remarkable power, one that could mean salvation for Selene’s dying planet. With Thomas’s help, Sasha and Selene search for the missing Juliana. But even if they can locate her, is Sasha willing to turn her back on love to pursue a fate she’s not sure she believes in? (ages 12 and up)

The Sweetest Heist in History (Randi Rhodes Ninja Detective) by Octavia Butler; Simon and Schuster
A hard-to-prove art heist makes a New York City mystery for ninja detective Randi Rhodes in this second book in a series full of humor, adventure, and heart from Academy Award–winning actress Octavia Spencer. Randi Rhodes and her fellow ninja detectives, DC and Pudge, were flying high after solving the Case of the Time-Capsule Bandit. But life in sleepy Deer Creek has begun to feel…a bit boring. There are no crimes to investigate! But a trip to New York City to visit Randi’s aunt changes that! While the ninja detective trio explores Randi’s old neighborhood in Brooklyn, they uncover an art heist. Except no one will believe them. So they’ll just have to catch the criminals in the act… (ages 8-12)

Updating February

My most complete list of February releases. As I continue to find more titles by authors of color, I’ll add them to the comprehensive list for 2015.

Streetball Crew Book Two Stealing the Game Hardcover by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (Author), Raymond Obstfeld (Author); Disney Hyperion
When eighth-grader Chris’s older brother, Jax, is caught betting on the pick-up basketball games that Chris and his friends play, Chris becomes involved in the police investigation. Ages 9-12.
When Reason Breaks by Cindy L. Rodriguez; Bloomsbury
Elizabeth Davis and Emily Delgado seem to have little in common except Ms. Diaz’s English class and the solace they find in the words of Emily Dickinson, but both are struggling to cope with monumental secrets and tumultuous emotions that will lead one to attempt suicide. Ages 12-18.
Dove Arising by Karen Bao; Penguin
“On a lunar colony, fifteen-year-old Phaet Theta does the unthinkable and joins the Militia when her mother is imprisoned by the Moon’s oppressive government”. (ages 12 and up)
Feral Pride by Cynthia Leitich Smith; Candlewick
The explosive finale to the Feral series by New York Times best-selling author Cynthia Leitich Smith. A rousing blend of suspense, paranormal romance, humor, and high action. Ages 12-18. (ages 12 and up)
Rebellion by Stephanie Diaz; St. Martin Press
Clementine, Logan, and their allies have retreated into hiding on the Surface, with plans to infiltrate each sector and weaken Commander Charlie’s infrastructure from within, but Charlie has more weapons in his possession than guns and bombs, and he will do whatever it takes to stop the rebels. Ages 12-18.
Shutter by Courtney Alameda; Feiwel and Friends
With an analog SLR camera as her best weapon, Micheline exorcises ghosts by capturing their spiritual energy on film. She’s aided by her crew: Oliver, a techno-whiz and the boy who developed her camera’s technology; Jude, who can predict death; and Ryder, the boy Micheline has known and loved forever. 1(ages 12-18)
Gone Crazy in Alabama by Rita Williams-Garcia; Harper Collins/Amistad
Delphine, Vonetta, and Fern are off to Alabama to visit their grandmother Big Ma and her mother Ma Charles. Across the way lives Miss Trotter, Ma Charles’ half sister. The two half sisters haven’t spoken in years. As Delphine hears about her family history, she uncovers the surprising truth that’s been keeping the sisters apart. But when tragedy strikes, Delphine discovers that the bonds of family run deeper than she ever knew possible. Ages 8-12.
Listen, Slowly by Thanhha Lai; Harper Collins
Assisting her grandmother’s investigation of her grandfather’s fate during the Vietnam War, Mai struggles to adapt to an unfamiliar culture while redefining her sense of family. (ages 8-12)
My Heart and Other Black Holes by Jasmine Warza; Balzer + Bray
Seventeen-year-old Aysel’s hobby–planning her own death–take a new path when she meets a boy who has similar plan of his own. (ages 12-18)
The Glass Arrow by Kristen Simmons; Tor Teens
Stolen from her home, and being groomed for auction, Aya is desperate to escape her fate and return to her family, but her only allies are a loyal wolf she’s raised from a pup and a strange mute boy who may be her best hope for freedom … if she can truly trust him. (ages 12-18)
This Side of Home by Renée Watson; Bloomsbury
Twins Nikki and Maya Younger always agreed on most things, but as they head into their senior year they react differently to the gentrification of their Portland, Oregon, neighborhood and the new–white–family that moves in after their best friend and her mother are evicted. (ages 12-18)
Birchtown and the Black Loyalists by Wanda Lauren Taylor; Nimbus
Wanda Taylor recounts the incredible story of the Black Loyalists of Birchtown. With educational and accessible language, she introduces young readers to the journey of Black American soldiers taken from Africa as slaves, their quest for freedom, the settlement and struggle of Black Loyalists on Nova Scotia soil, and the enduring spirit of their descendants in spite of a history marked by hardship and loss. Includes informative sidebars, highlighted glossary terms, recommended reading, historic timeline, an index and dozens of historical and contemporary images. (ages 7-12)
The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind young readers edition by William Kamkwamba and Bryan Mealer; Penguin
When a terrible drought struck William Kamkwamba’s tiny village in Malawi, his family lost all of the season’s crops, leaving them with nothing to eat and nothing to sell. William began to explore science books in his village library, looking for a solution. There, he came up with the idea that would change his family’s life forever: he could build a windmill. Made out of scrap metal and old bicycle parts, William’s windmill brought electricity to his home and helped his family pump the water they needed to farm the land.
Retold for a younger audience, this exciting memoir shows how, even in a desperate situation, one boy’s brilliant idea can light up the world. Complete with photographs, illustrations, and an epilogue that will bring readers up to date on William’s story, this is the perfect edition to read and share with the whole family. (ages 10 and up)
Wish Girl by Nikki Loftin; Razorbill
Peter Stone’s parents and siblings are extroverts, musicians, and yellers—and the louder they get, the less Peter talks, or even moves, until he practically fits his last name. When his family moves to the Texas Hill Country, though, Peter finds a tranquil, natural valley where he can, at last, hear himself think. There, he meets a girl his age: Annie Blythe. Annie tells Peter she’s a “wish girl.” But Annie isn’t just any wish girl; she’s a “Make-A-Wish Girl.” And in two weeks she will begin a dangerous treatment to try and stop her cancer from spreading. Left alone, the disease will kill her. But the treatment may cause serious, lasting damage to her brain.
Annie and Peter hatch a plan to escape into the valley, which they begin to think is magical. But the pair soon discovers that the valley—and life—may have other plans for them. And sometimes wishes come true in ways they would never expect. (ages 8-12)


I recently posted the CCBC’s recent figures on diverse books, stepped back and watched the web. Some praised the numbers for gains. KT Horning cautioned the numbers easily go up from year to year. Some questioned the books written by ethnic minorities but not about ethnic minorities. How is that call made? Is it good or bad to see this phenomena? Is this a reflection of author’s choice or publishers pigeonholing?

The CCBC numbers can easily be manipulated. While comparing my list of young adult books by Native and POC authors to that of the CCBC, I realized that the CCBC’s numbers are dependent upon what publishers decide to send them and as a result, I have several books not on the CCBC’s list. With my numbers, I can only indicate an increase in the number of YA books released and cannot do a comparative analysis because I don’t know the overall number of YA books released. Perhaps

Some publishers at ALA Midwinter did create special displays of diverse books.

Some publishers at ALA Midwinter did create special displays of diverse books.

if more of us collect the numbers, and reflect on the numbers in various ways, we will remind people of the injustice that is being done to children. Debbie Reese is asking for assistance with collecting Native American titles. The CCBC is doing important work by supplying us with data to verify the growth, or lack there of, in books written by and about Native Americans and people of color. The more data that we create, the better our argument becomes.

Here in America, the dollar vote is what really matters. I’ve started watching Publisher Weekly’s listing of top selling children’s books and the number of first run books printed for new titles. I also watch for paperback releases, booktrailers, ebooks and audiobooks because they have a huge impact on the bottom line. Do books by authors of color have reading or teaching guides? Are they included in book fairs? Blog tours? It’s not just publishing the book that we need, but there needs to be work getting them to sell them. Elizabeth Bluemle writing at ShelfTalker recently commented that saying diverse books don’t sell is a meaningless statement because there are also books by white authors that don’t sell. I think she’s missing the real problem.

In publishing, there are A List authors and there are all the others. The A List is dominated by white authors and these are the ones who get promoted at conferences, get the books tours, have their books sent to selection committees and professional book reviewers while the others pretty much do their own marketing. “All the others” contains a slew of white authors as well as

Posters are most often created for picture books.

Posters are most often created for picture books.

the majority of authors of color. I don’t know how one gets to be an A List author but I do know that more time, money and energy goes to these authors.

At ALA recently, an author of color was told her books were not on display because no one was asking for them, that displays contained books that everyone wanted. Sujei writes about similar experiences. I find that logic so contrary to what would promote sales. Why not have a plan to place similar titles together or at the very least place those in high demand next to those in low demand? How will you increase the demand for books no one knows about?

Again at ALA Midwinter, there were numerous instances of publishers only having one ARC of books by authors of color. There were no posters, postcards or booksmarks for these books either.

Has anyone ever consider an action that would create more A-List authors of color? If an author is good enough to have a book published, their work should merit the attention it takes to get it sold. While I’m speaking of creating a more level playing field for authors of color, surely you can see there is a greater problem in the way publishing continues to do business. As technology continues to change the way we maneuver the world around us, no industry can continue to do business as usual. Taxi cabs, satellite TV providers, realtors and even travel agents have realized this.

IMG_4153Self publishing is becoming more and more legit. Libraries that once shunned self pubs are now working with their community members to create, print and catalog them! They will slowly and surely eat into profit margins if they’re the ones publishing what people want to read bet can’t find elsewhere.

Recently, I was sharing information about the classroom I adopted and I prefaced the idea by saying something like ‘I’m just a blogger and felt like I wasn’t doing anything’ and in that statement, I completely forgot the power of words, the strength of the story. There are reasons why others want to tell our stories. Go back to the CCBC numbers and look at the increasing rate of our stories being told by others. Words are the ultimate power.

Saturday Trailers: Dove Arising

What better day for a book trailer than a Saturday? Dove Arising by Karen Boa releases 24 Feb. “Be there or be a regular quadrilateral”.

Phaet Theta has lived her whole life in a colony on the Moon. She’s barely spoken since her father died in an accident nine years ago. She cultivates the plants in Greenhouse 22, lets her best friend talk for her, and stays off the government’s radar.

Then her mother is arrested.

The only way to save her younger siblings from the degrading Shelter is by enlisting in the Militia, the faceless army that polices the Lunar bases and protects them from attacks by desperate Earth-dwellers. Training is brutal, but it’s where Phaet forms an uneasy but meaningful alliance with the preternaturally accomplished Wes, a fellow outsider.

Rank high, save her siblings, free her mom: that’s the plan. Until Phaet’s logically ordered world begins to crumble…

Suspenseful, intelligent, and hauntingly prescient, Dove Arising stands on the shoulders of our greatest tales of the future to tell a story that is all too relevant today.

I didn’t realize that Christopher Paolini maintains a blog where among other things, he posts interviews with authors. What great networking! Here, the two authors discuss artistic choices Bao made in writing what is the first book in her trilogy, how Bao, a full-time student, manages to find time to write and why they’ve both decided to stop using italics in their writing. I’m so glad they did!

CCBC Multicultural Stats 2014

The Children’s Cooperative Book Council recently released figures on the number of multicultural books released in 2014. In releasing the numbers, K. T. Horning stating an optimism about things to come.

“Even though the data we collect indicates children’s literature in this country continues to represent a mostly white world, we see signs that things are changing,” she says. “In 2014, for example, we saw a marked increase in the number of novels for children and teens by African-American authors.”
One of them, “Brown Girl Dreaming,” by Jacqueline Woodson won the National Book Award last fall and another, “The Crossover” by Kwame Alexander, won the Newbery Medal earlier this month. Horning also noted that an Asian-American author, Dan Santat, won this year’s Caldecott Medal.
“That’s huge because these awards have an impact on sales,” says Horning.
At the end of the day, Horning says the key to having more diverse books for children is in the hands of consumers.



Multicultural_Stats_Bar_ Graph_2014




Multicultural Stats Graphic 2002-2014

Full article

Comparative Data 2002-2014

A huge thanks to K. T. Horning for her dedication to supplying this information.


It’s been cold here for the past few days. Once I remembered that it’s the end of February, I tied my scarf a little tighter and continued to doIMG_4136 (1) what I needed to do. I’ve been carrying around a post in my head for much of the day and thought I finally had time to put it to paper. . . just as the 40th anniversary of SNL begins.

“Hamburger, hamburger, no cheeseburger”.
Closed captioned news for the dead.
Fake commercials.
Too many stars to even remember.

I remember the very first time I caught the show. I’d gone back to my dorm room after a dance on campus and someone was drooling while reporting the news. It was hysterical! I didn’t stick with the show over the years as there were some years that the show just wasn’t that funny and there were even more years when I fell asleep too soon to see it. Looks like I’ll do a little catching up now.

IMG_4139I was able to pick up books for my classroom at ALA Midwinter and I dropped them off last week. I expecting a short email from the teacher letting me know she received the books so imagine my surprise when I received an envelope full of hand written letters from the students! Not only had the teacher created such a wonderful teachable moment for her students, but the letters were filled with the students interests and hobbies and gave me a the variety of reading levels in the class. I can’t wait to send them books again next month.

I’m working from home this week, hoping to get an article as close to written as possible. Even with the possible distractions of television, music and cell phones, it’s so much easier to get work done from home.

Upcoming conference:
The Arne Nixon Center for the Study of Children’s Literature in the Madden Library at Fresno State will conduct a conference on censorship April 10 -12, 2015. “Outlawed: The Naked Truth About Censored Literature for Young People” seeks to explore the many ways in which censorship affects reading choices for young people.

Learn how censorship presents itself in a variety of manners. While the most blatant banning garners the greatest attention, pre- and self-censorship occurs quietly and unnoticed at the selection level.

Discover how authors’ writings are influenced by censorship. Whether it is to highlight themes that oppose it or to restrict controversy in order to avoid becoming targeted, authors must heavily weigh what is included or omitted in the creation of their work. Banning can either create a skyrocketing effect in sales or doom a work to anonymity.

Become enlightened about intellectual freedom as practiced in the United States and in other countries.

Cart, Matt de la Peña, Margarita Engle, Leonard Marcus, Lesléa Newman, and Jacqueline Woodson.

We hope you will come and join us as we navigate the varied issues of censorship in children’s and young adult literature.

For more information: http://www.outlawed2015.com/