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Children’s Books

‘Dear Malala, We Stand With You’ Acquired By Crown Books for Young Readers

Malala YousafzaiCrown Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books, will publish a picture book entitled Dear Malala, We Stand With You.

The story is written as a letter addressed to education activist Malala Yousafzai (pictured, via). Executive editor Emily Easton managed the acquisitions process and licensed this property from a Canadian publishing house called Second Story Press. The book is set to come out on January 6, 2015.

Here’s more from the press release: “Written in the form of a photo-illustrated letter to Malala Yousafzai, two-time Nobel Peace Prize nominee, DEAR MALALA, WE STAND WITH YOU (by Rosemary McCarney and Plan Canada / Ages 4–8) is both a show of support and a call to action for girls around the world…In support of publication, Random House Children’s Books will make a donation to Plan International’s Because I am a Girl campaign, which aims to support millions of girls to get the education, skills, and support they need to transform their lives and the world around them.”

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Julia Strand Carves Up Old Books to Create Artwork

juliastrandJulia Strand uses old books to make art. The artist carves up the pages of old books and turns them into delicate scenes. The drawings and artwork from the books are framed within the book’s cover.

PBS.org has more: “A cognitive psychologist who teaches at Carleton College in Minnesota, Strand works on her carvings in her spare time. She carves into old cookbooks and science books, reference books, dictionaries and books of topographical maps, removing most of the pages “so you can just see the pictures.”

You can buy these cool creations on her Etsy page.

Robin Williams’ Daughter Remembers Her Father With a Quote From ‘The Little Prince’

Zelda Williams, the daughter of the late Robin Williams, shared a quote from Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s The Little Prince on Twitter and Instagram in remembrance of her father.

In her posts, Zelda wrote: “You – you alone will have the stars as no one else has them…In one of the stars I shall be living. In one of them I shall be laughing. And so it will be as if all the stars were laughing, when you look at the sky at night…You – only you – will have stars that laugh.”

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Madeline Exhibit Will Move to Amherst After NYC

madelineThe “Madeline at 75: The Art of Ludwig Bemelmans” exhibit will move from New York to Amherst in November. The show celebrates the artwork of Ludwig Bemelmans, the creator of the classic children’s book series, in honor of the series’ 75th anniversary.

The show boasts more than 90 original art pieces including illustrations from the Madeline series, paintings, archival photographs and the artist’s paintbox. It is currently on display at The New York Historical Society through October.

The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art is hosting the Massachusetts exhibit, which will be on display from November 15 throughFebruary 22, 2015 in Amherst.

Random House to Publish ‘Frozen’ Chapter Books

frozenRandom House Children’s Books has plans to release a new chapter book series based on the Disney phenomenon Frozen.

The stories will pick up where the movie left off and follow Anna and Elsa on further adventures. Christopher Angelilli, Vice President, Editor-in-Chief, Director of License Publishing, Random House Children’s Books, is heading up the new series.  Author Erica David will write the books. Random House Associate Editor Christy Webster will edit the titles. 

The first two books in the series Anna & Elsa #1: All Hail the Queen and Anna & Elsa #2: Memory and Magic are slated for publication in January. In total, the publisher has plans to do four books next year and three or four more books a year going forward.

The Legacy of Ursula Nordstrom

9780064462358You probably enjoyed Charlotte’s Web or Harriet the Spy at one point in your life. But do you know who edited those great kid’s books?

After covering the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) Summer Conference last weekend, I caught up with the New York Public Library’s Youth Materials Collections Specialist Betsy Bird and Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast blogger Julie Danielson, co-authors of the brand new book, Wild Things! Acts of Mischief in Children’s Literature (co-written with Peter Sieruta).

Q: Could you tell us more about the life and work of the great children’s book editor Ursula Nordstrom? What are some of the books you recommend from this great editor?

Betsy Bird: ”Ursula’s list begins to resemble nothing so much as a Who’s Who in children’s literature after a while. She had this crazy sense of humor that went well with her ability to spot potential children’s literature talent.

I mean, seriously, who would have looked at Shel Silverstein‘s rather explicit cartoons in Playboy and thought ‘There’s the man that children everywhere will love!?’”

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Editors Share Secrets for Aspiring Authors

scwbi304Hundreds of writers gathered at the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) Summer Conference in Los Angeles last weekend.

The annual “Editor’s Panel” featured a star-studded collection of editors, including Dutton Children’s Books publisher Julie Strauss-Gabel–she’s worked with Ally Condie, John Green and John Grisham, among many others. Strauss-Gabel snapped that photograph of her view from stage during the panel. GalleyCat was there, gathering advice for aspiring writers…

1. You need to send the manuscript to the right editor. Strauss-Gabel explained: “I’m very attentive to fit both the imprint and if it is a good manuscript for me. We mean it when we say ‘this is not the right manuscript for me.’ I know another editor could bring something to that manuscript that I couldn’t.” She advised writers to read an editor’s body of work and understand what kind of books they love.

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‘Frozen’ Screenwriter Jennifer Lee to Pen Script For ‘A Wrinkle in Time’ Movie

A Wrinkle in TimeJennifer Lee, the co-director and screenwriter of Disney’s hit film Frozen, has signed on to pen the script for a film adaptation of Madeleine L’Engle’s A Wrinkle in Time.

Longtime Hollywood veteran Jim Whitaker will serve as a producer. At the moment, no director has been hired to oversee this project.

Here’s more from Variety: “Published in 1962, Wrinkle in Time was one of Lee’s favorite novels as a child, and she impressed Disney executives with her take on the project, which emphasizes a strong female-driven narrative and creatively approaches the science fiction and world-building elements of the book.” Who would you cast as Meg Murry? (via Time)

Should You Quit Your Day Job?

Barretttracyrt-330

Many writers dream of quitting their day job to work full-time as an author. Author Tracy Barrett is one of the rare writers who managed to take this momentous step.

Barrett (pictured, via) taught Italian at Vanderbilt University for 28 years, but decided to leave her day job and write full time in 2012. At the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) Summer Conference in Los Angeles last weekend, she shared lessons for writers considering the same step.

“Leaving your job is like having a baby, you can’t wait for the perfect time,” she explained. “The time is never perfect.” She had tried to balance her busy writing life with teaching, but discovered “I only had a certain amount of creative juice, it burned up the spark.”

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Should Smoking be Banned in Children’s Books?

UnknownIn Julia Donaldson‘s latest children’s book The Scarecrow’s Wedding, the villain is a scarecrow named Reginald Rake and he smokes cigars.

The book is aimed at toddlers and a number of parents have complained about this story line in Amazon reviews. “Why on earth would a children’s book contain even the idea of smoking! Disgusting!,” complained one reviewer.

“Even though it makes the point that smoking is a bad idea, it makes me really uncomfortable to see any depiction of it in a children’s book,” wrote another.

“It feels like Julia is trying to get across an anti-smoking message (really? Do two year olds need this?!) but it just comes off as inappropriate and out of place,” said another. “Now my three year old is asking for cigars and a ‘smoke puffer’.”

Donaldson defended the story, pointing out the context of the behavior. “Reginald Rake is a villain who smokes a cigar and it is made clear that smoking is bad for you,” she told The Guardian.

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