THE BIG NEWS THIS WEEK
- Wednesday night's National Book Awards saw a sledgehammer of a speech by honoree Ursula K. Le Guin, a big win for the amazing Jacqueline Woodson... and a headdesk of a "joke" by host Daniel Handler. He later apologized for his idiotic racist comments, but they're just one more example of the publishing industry's problems with race and diversity. ETA: Friday morning, Handler apologized again, admitting his comments were racist, and donated $10K to the #WeNeedDiverseBooks fund, with an offer to match more donations up to $100K.
THIS WEEK IN WRITING
- Beautiful and inspiring post from Myra McEntire about fear, writing, and authenticity.
- It's okay to give up on a project, if you're doing it for the right reasons, says Kat Howard.
- Lish McBride looks at moral ambiguity, YA lit, and The Princess Bride.
- "You never kill off enough teenagers," says R. L. Stine.
- Rachel Toor examines the habits of productive writers, and Chuck Wendig offers advice on writerly motivation.
- "Once a book is in the hands of a reader, its genre ceases to be important, and attention can properly turn to the magic of text and ideas. Calling a book "young adult" is only important in that it can help get a book to the right reader. After that it's a useless abstraction and should be discarded," says NBA finalist Eliot Schrefer.
THIS WEEK IN READING
- "[S]omeone needs to inform General Prayuth that if his system of government is threatened by young people emulating a Hollywood movie, it is pretty sure sign that things needs to change." As fandom gears up for the release of Mockingjay, Thai students use the series's well-known salute to advocate for change, and Odds In Our Favor wants the spotlight to include the continued resistance in Ferguson. Rolling Stone says Katniss Everdeen and Arya Stark are the new female role models, and Wired says ruthless female leaders are the real heroes of recent dystopian flicks.
- Toni Morrison talks to Stephen Colbert about race, racism, and reading Beloved for the first time since she wrote it.
- Stacked rounds up some fabulous 2015 covers that feature diversity front and center.
- What's the best way to approach your library about acquiring diverse titles? Angie Manfredi has tips.
- Asti at Oh The Books put together an awesome periodic table of YA sci fi!
- Dahlia Adler lists 4 mistresses of dark contemporary YA.
- A. S. King, Carrie Mesrobian, and Christa Desir discuss sexual violence in YA lit, and Erin E. Moulton looks at bibliotheraphy for teens dealing with mental illness.
- The MarySue wants to know why Tamora Pierce's novels haven't hit the big screen.
- YOU GUYS. SCARY STORIES TO TELL IN THE DARK: THE MOVIE. (via Cleolinda Jones)
- Vote in the semi-finals of the Book Shimmy Awards and the finals of the Goodreads Choice Awards!
THIS WEEK IN PUBLISHING
- Janet Reid shares the most common mistakes made by newly agented authors.
- Writers, editors, and educators remember Walter Dean Myers at Hunger Mountain.
- How many clients is too many? Jennifer Laughran discusses.
THIS WEEK IN GIVEAWAYS
- Lisa Schroeder is giving away 8 awesome 2015 ARCs!
- Courtney Summers's upcoming All the Rage is getting all the blurbs, and she's sharing the riches with you!
THIS WEEK IN OTHER STUFF
- Rhapsody's CFO agrees with Taylor Swift and others who think free streaming is bad for music.
- Buzzfeed offers you six ways to celebrate Native American Heritage Month without being an asshole.
- The principal of a Missouri high school says there's "nothing racial" about the powderpuff football team playing in blackface. (Meanwhile a different Missouri teen performed CRP on a baby surrounded by useless adults.)
- Over 100K people have signed a Change dot org petition asking TLC to cancel "Nineteen Kids and Counting" because of the Duggar family's efforts to overturn local legislation protecting LGBTQ people from discrimination. (Full disclosure: this is happening in my hometown and I am having some not-so-secret rage issues about it.)
- John Cameron Mitchell will return as the star of "Hedwig and the Angry Inch."
- Marie Lodi at Rookie discusses the importance of online friendships.
- A study suggests kids who are cool at 13 are often unsuccessful at 23, and another shows that larger schools are more likely to develop cliques.
- Apparently we can thank Google for the poop emoji reaching America.
- "Text neck" is a real thing that could be a real... pain in the neck. (SORRY.)
- Killer pieces this week:
- "I Don't Feel Weak When I'm Angry" by Erin Zwiener
- "Emails Where Shit Got Real" by Michelle Dean
- Actress Diane Guerrero came home from school to find an empty house and her parents deported.
- "White People Love Me: Dispatches from the Token" by Morgan Parker (via Emily X. R. Pan)
- Ruby Tandoh at the BBC looks at the recent revolution of young women representing themselves in pop culture.
- Rolling Stone's profile of rape culture at UVA completely shredded me.
THIS WEEK IN THE RANDOM
Tumblr provides fixes for the the Barbie book I Can Be A Computer Engineer.
Three grandmothers smoke weed for the first time and then play Jenga.
Check out the trailer for THE DUFF!
And this is a giant panda playing in the snow. You're welcome.