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Maryann Yin

Anna Shinoda: ‘Time away from a manuscript always gives me a better perspective for editing.’

Anna ShinodaAnna Shinoda devoted several years to her debut young adult novel, Learning Not to Drown. The story was influenced by Shinoda’s personal experiences with having an incarcerated sibling. We spoke with Shinoda to learn her thoughts on research, crafting realistic characters, and more. Here are the highlights…

Q: How did you land your book deal?
A: During SCBWI’s annual summer conference, I had manuscripts nominated for their Sue Alexander Most Promising New Work Award in both 2004 and 2006. While those nominations did not directly get me a book deal, they did lead to a connection with Jennie Dunham of Dunham Literary, who became my agent in 2006. In late 2008, after several rejections, Jennie called with the news that Caitlyn Dlouhy at Atheneum was interested. I signed the contract and somewhere between my agent’s office and Caitlyn’s office, the contract got lost. Fortunately, when the mistake was caught a few months later, Caitlyn was still very much wanting to acquire the book.

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Marvel’s ‘AVENGERS: S.T.A.T.I.O.N.’ Exhibit Opens in New York City

Avengers StationMarvel’s AVENGERS: S.T.A.T.I.O.N. has opened in New York City. Comic book fans will be able to enjoy this interactive exhibition at Discovery Times Square until January 05, 2015.

Visitors go through an “Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” recruitment simulation; this allows them access to information files about the superheros that makes up The Avengers. Some of the items on display include Captain America’s Birth Pod, the Tesseract Portal Device, Loki’s Scepter, and a hermetically sealed Chitauri.

Here’s more from the press release: “NASA, the Science & Entertainment Exchange (a program of the National Academy of Sciences), Neuroverse, and Thwacke are all collaborating on the Marvel’s AVENGERS S.T.A.T.I.O.N. Exhibition visitors will get the chance to map out the stars to find Asgard, learn to operate Iron Man’s suit, witness the neurological effects of Bruce Banner’s transformation into the Hulk, and physically test themselves against Captain America.”

Dori Weintraub Named VP of Publicity at St. Martin’s Press

DoriDori Weintraub has been named vice president of publicity at St. Martin’s Press at Macmillan, Inc. She will oversee campaigns for both fiction and nonfiction titles.

Weintraub has devoted fourteen years of her career to this imprint. Prior to this appointment, she served as the vice president of marketing, communications, and audience development.

Writers Take On the Ice Bucket Challenge

Dan Santat, a children’s books author and illustrator, has completed the #IceBucketChallenge.

The video embedded above features Santat performing the activity in support of the ALS Association. Before dousing himself with the ice water, Santat requested two colleagues, Jarrett J. Krosoczka and Jennifer L. Holm, and Sesame Street star Elmo follow in his footsteps.

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A Manatee Picture Book is Featured On Kickstarter

Christopher Straub, a designer who has appeared on the sixth season of the Project Runway TV series, has hopes to raise $20,000 on Kickstarter. Straub hopes to self-publish a children’s book entitled Albert the Confused Manatee and produce a toy of the title character.

The funds will be used to cover the printing and manufacturing costs. We’ve embedded a video about the project above. Here’s more from the Kickstarter page:

Albert the Confused Manatee is a story about one animal’s quest to figure out what kind of animal he is. With the help of his 15 underwater friends Albert learns that, even though they have differences they also have a lot in common.”

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Cote de Pablo & Rachel Brosnahan to Star in ‘The Dovekeepers’ Miniseries

cvr9781451617481_9781451617481_lgTwo ladies have joined the cast for The Dovekeepers adaptation. Deadline reports that Cote de Pablo will portray Shirah and Rachel Brosnahan will portray Yael.

The filmmaking team still has to cast two actors to play the lead protagonists Revka and Aziza. The story takes place in ancient Israel.

Scribner, an imprint at Simon & Schuster, released Alice Hoffman’s novel back in October 2011. CBS plans to air this four-hour TV miniseries in 2015.

Amanda Palmer Reveals Cover For ‘The Art of Asking’

Amanda Palmer
Musician Amanda Palmer has revealed the jacket of her forthcoming book. What do you think?

Grand Central Publishing will release The Art of Asking on November 11, 2014. Over at her blog, Palmer has shared several (NSFW) behind-the-scenes photos from the cover shoot.

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Jarrett J. Krosoczka On Finding Inspiration in a School Cafeteria

Where do you find inspiration? For Jarrett J. Krosoczka, his imagination was sparked during a nostalgic trip back to his old school cafeteria and a chance meeting with his lunch lady Jeannie.

In a talk delivered at TED@NYC, Krosoczka shared the story of how he conceived the Lunch Lady graphic novel series and launched School Lunch Hero Day. We’ve embedded the full presentation in the video above.

Last year, Krosoczka gave a heartwarming talk at TEDx Hampshire College about how writing and art saved his life in grade school. According to the TED blog, Krosoczka prepared this particular talk in less than 4 hours.

Haruki Murakami, Lois Lowry, & Tom Angleberger Debut On the Indie Bestseller List

MurakamiWe’ve collected the books debuting on Indiebound’s Indie Bestseller List for the week ending August 10, 2014–a sneak peek at the books everybody will be talking about next month.

(Debuted at #1 in Hardcover Fiction) Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage by Haruki Murakami: “Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage is the long-awaited new novel—a book that sold more than a million copies the first week it went on sale in Japan—from the award-winning, internationally best-selling author Haruki Murakami. Here he gives us the remarkable story of Tsukuru Tazaki, a young man haunted by a great loss; of dreams and nightmares that have unintended consequences for the world around us; and of a journey into the past that is necessary to mend the present. It is a story of love, friendship, and heartbreak for the ages.” (August 2014)

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Maureen Johnson Posts Part 1 of a ‘Shades of London’ Prequel on Wattpad

Maureen JohnsonYoung adult writer Maureen Johnson has penned a short story, a prequel to the Shades of London series, called “The Boy in the Smoke.”

Readers will be able to access it for free on the social storytelling website, Wattpad. So far, a section of it has been posted online. Three more parts will be unleashed throughout the rest of the month.

Here’s more from the press release: “‘The Boy in The Smoke’ takes place before The Name of The Star, the first of the Shades of London series, and details the events that led to Stephen Dene developing the ‘sight’ that brought him to his unusual occupation as de facto leader of the Shades, London’s secret ghost-fighting police. A section of the short story will release every Monday for a month, beginning on August, 18th, till the story is published in its entirety.”

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