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Field Trip Friday: September 23, 2011


- What's in a name? A lot, says agent Sarah LaPolla. (And if you can't think of the perfect one, you can always use this random title generator, via Michele Wells.)

- What authors can learn from the bestseller list, by Alan Rinzler.

- The NYT looks at children's authors who broke the rules.

- Also at the NYT, Dwight Garner talks trash about slow writers. Agent Jessica Papin at DGLM finds the piece fatuous.

- Author Amy K. Sorrells on how a professor she hated changed her writing for the better.

- Why are fifth graders better writers than college freshman? Jeff at Boys Don't Read solves the murder mystery.

- Author Jonathan Auxier is all for sarcastic characters, but not sarcastic authors.

- How to write fiction without the "right" ethnic credentials, from author Mitali Perkins.

- Writing is dangerous. Just ask Aaron Sorkin, who reportedly broke his nose while working on dialogue.

- Adventures in Children's Publishing has "Finding the Heart of Your Story: A Tip from Donald Maass."

- Author Ashley Perez discusses low-tech writing strategies.

- Writing, the "big idea," and anxiety disorder, from author Karen Healey.

- 20 most awe-inspiring writer's rooms (via libraryland).


alice in wonderland banned book poster - The 30th annual Banned Books Week starts tomorrow, and includes a "virtual read-out" with authors reading out loud online from various banned works. The HuffPo has a list of the 11 most surprising banned books, and Art From the Chasm has a great set of banned book posters. In the meantime, censorship is alive and well: Sarah Ockler reports on the #SpeakLoudly Missouri school district's newest plan for dealing with her and Vonnegut.

- Diversity in YA has a list of great books for National Hispanic Heritage month.

- The Olive Reader, Harper Perennial's blog, has some recommended book blogging practices.

- The Honey Badger gets a book deal.

- USA Today has the newest list of adult authors rushing to write YA.

- Kabi Hartman at The Millions looks at "the talking cure" in YA.

- For every retweet of the message here, Random House will donate $1 to literacy programs in Asia and Africa.


- "I love that ebooks exist. This doesn't change the part where, every time a discussion of ebooks turns, seemingly inevitably, to 'Print is dead,' ... what I hear, however unintentionally, is 'Poor people don't deserve to read.'" Seanan McGuire on poverty and the digital divide.

- Two posts about common agent misconceptions: Agent Jessica Faust at BookEnds says looking for an agent is not like applying for a job, and author Natalie Whipple says you are an investment, not the boss.

- Author Janice Hardy asks, "Should authors charge for school visits?"

- In the aftermath of last week's #YesGayYA discussion, Lydia Sharp has a partial list of agents open to LGBTQ stories and authors, and author Sarah Rees Brennan talks about Gay in YA and the Circle of Suck.

- PublishAmerica is at it again, this time targeting Christian authors.

- Caroline Tung Richmond has some encouragement for when your first book goes on sub and doesn't sell.

- Agent Meredith Barnes says, "Y'all finish your books before getting our hopes all up and stuff!"


- The "girl in pink" from Rebecca Black's "Friday" video is one of the coolest teenagers ever. (via Jessica Love)

 - Author Mitali Perkins will be editing "a compilation of funny short pieces written by some of today's best YA authors, people who grew up along the margins of race and culture in North America." She's considering submissions through January 15, 2012-- head over to her blog for more details!

- In an effort to capitalize on their connections to Harry Potter, Oxford University has put its name to a line of Oxford-inspired furniture.

- Making the rounds this week: Borders employees vent their frustrations with former customers.

- Amazon is being accused of maintaining an unsafe working environment in its warehouses.

- "The Big Sexy Problem with Superheroines and Their 'Liberated' Sexuality," from Laura Hudson at Comics Alliance-- good read even if you're not a comics fan.

- Nathan Bransford says social media is like a party-- it's great until your parents show up. (This analogy does not work for me, because my mother out-partied everyone else at my wedding and still commands the respect of the hardest partiers I know. If my mom shows up, y'all best put on your A game.)


- Three book bloggers have created "You Give, We Give." Donating books or money will provide angel tree donations this holiday season, and earns you entry points toward one of their fabulous prize packs-- they have several for US, UK, Australian, and international winners.


Draw a stickman. No really. It's awesome.

Misery Bear gets writer's block. (via Jennifer Laughran)

This is NSFW. But it's one of the funniest things I've ever seen. (this and stickman are via Kirsten)

Have a great weekend!
~ Kate Hart
Kate Hart

Kate is the author of After the Fall, coming January 24, 2017 from Farrar, Straus and Giroux. A former teacher and grant writer, she now owns a treehouse-building business in the Ozarks and hosts the Badass Ladies You Should Know interview series.

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Item Reviewed: Field Trip Friday: September 23, 2011 Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Kate Hart