• OhMG! News


    July 11, 2014: Apply for a Thurber House residency!

    Thurber House has a Children’s Writer-in-Residence program for middle-grade authors each year and  guidelines and application form for the 2015 residency were just released.

    This unique residency has been in existence since 2001, offering  an opportunity for authors to have time to work on their writing in a fully furnished apartment, in the historic boyhood home of author and humorist, James Thurber. Deadline is October 31, 2014. For details, go to READ MORE

    July 10, 2014:

    Spread MG books in unexpected places 7/19
    Drop a copy of your own book or of another middle-grade favorite in a public place on July 19 -- and some lucky reader will stumble upon it.
    Ginger Lee Malacko is spearheading this Middle Grade Bookbomb (use the hashtag #mgbookbomb in social media) -- much in the spirit of Operation Teen Book Drop.  Read more ...

June 16, 2014:
Fizz, Boom, Read: Summer reading 2014

Hundreds of public libraries across the U.S. are celebrating reading this summer with  the theme Fizz, Boom, Read! Find out more about this year's collaborative summer reading program and check out suggested booklists and activities. Read more ...

April 30, 2014:
Join the #WeNeedDiverseBooks campaign and help change the world

The conversation on diversity in children's books has grown beyond book creators and gate keepers to readers and book buyers. What can you do? Take part in the #WeNeedDiverseBooks campaign May 1 though 3 on Tumblr and Twitter and in whatever creative ways you can help spread the word to take action. Read more ….

April 11, 2014:
Fall 2014 Children's Sneak Peek
A peek at forthcoming middle grade books (as well as picture books and YA books) in a round-up from Publisher's Weekly. First printed in the February 22 issue, but now available online. Time to add to your to-read list. Read more ...

April 9, 2014:
How many Newbery winners have you read?
You could make a traditional list of all the Newbery Medal Award-winning Children's Books you've read, but there's something so satisfying when you check them off and get a final tally on this BuzzFeed quiz. Read more ...

March 28, 2014:
Middle Grade fiction is hot at 2014 Bologna Children's Book Fair

For the second year in a row, publishers are clamoring for middle-grade, reporters Publishers Weekly. "I’ve been coming [to Bologna] for 12 to 15 years, and I’ve never had as many European publishers asking for middle-grade," said Steven Chudney of the Chudney Agency. Read more ...

February 14, 2014:
Cybils Awards announced
Ultra by David Carroll (Scholastic Canada) wins the Cybil for middle grade fiction; Lockwood & Co: The Screaming Staircase by Jonathan Stroud (Disney Hyperion) wins for Speculative Fiction. Read more.

January 27, 2014: And the Newbery Medal goes to ...
Kate DiCamillo won the Newbery Medal for "Flora & Ulysses"; Rita Williams-Garcia won the Coretta Scott King Author award for "P.S. Be Eleven." Newbery Honor awards to authors Vince Vawter, Amy Timberlake, Kevin Henkes and Holly Black. For all the exciting ALA Youth Media Award News ... READ MORE

November 12, 2013:
Vote in the GoodReads semifinal round

Readers' votes have narrowed the middle-grade semifinals down to 20 titles. Log in to your GoodReads account and vote for your favorite middle-grade (and in other categories, of course). Read more ...

November 9, 2013:
Publishers Weekly Top Children's Books of 2013

Middle-grade and young adult titles selected by the editors of Publishers Weekly as their top picks of the year. Let the season of "top ten books" begin! Read more ...

October 14, 2013:
Middle Shelf: Cool Reads for Kids debuts January 2014

Shelf Media Group, publisher of Shelf Unbound indie book review magazine, will launch a new free digital-only publication for middle-grade readers. The debut issue features interviews with such notable authors as Margaret Peterson Haddix and Chris Grabenstein as well as reviews, excerpts, and more. Middle Shelf will be published bi-monthly beginning in January 2014.
Read more ...

September 19, 2013: Writer-in-Residence program at Thurber House

Dream of time and space to focus on your own writing project? Applications now being accepted (11/1/2013 deadline) for The Thurber House Residency in Children's Literature, a month-long retreat in the furnished third-floor apartment of Thurber House in Columbus, Ohio. Read more ...

September 18, 2013: Vermont College of Fine Arts Scholarship opportunity

Barry Goldblatt Literary launches The Angela Johnson Scholarship, a talent-based grant for writers of color attending the MFA in Writing for Children & Young Adults program at VCFA. Up to two $5,000 grants will be awarded each year. Read more ....

September 16, 2013:
National Book Awards longlist for youth literature

For the first time, the NBA is presenting lists of 10 books/authors on the longlist in each category. The 2013 young adult literature list includes five middle grade novels and five YA. Read more ...

Sept. 13, 2013: Spring preview
Check out Publishers Weekly roundup of upcoming children's books to be published in spring 2014. Read more...

August 21, 2013:
Want to be a Cybils Award Judge?

Middle grade categories are fiction, speculative fiction, nonfiction. Applications due August 31! Read more ...

August 19, 2013:
S&S and BN reach a deal
Readers will soon be able to find books from Simon & Schuster at Barnes & Noble. The bookstore chain was locked in a disagreement with the publisher over how much it was willing to pay for books. Read more ...

August 6, 2013:
NPR's 100 Must-Reads for Kids
NPR's Backseat Book Club asked listeners to nominate their favorite books for readers ages 9 to 14. More than 2,000 people nominated titles, and a panel of Newbery authors brought the list to 100. Most are middle grade books. Read more ...

July 2, 2013:
Penguin & Random House Merger

The new company, Penguin Random House, will control more than 25 percent of the trade book market in the United States. On Monday, the newly formed company began to take shape, only hours after a middle-of-the-night announcement that the long-planned merger had been completed. Read more ...

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  • Stand Back! Here Comes The Skype Tour Bus

    Giveaways, Interviews

    Can you believe it? It’s August! The Summer Mixed-Up Middle-Grade Skype Tour has almost reached its destination… ready to load another troop of authors for the Fall contest. (More about that at the end of the post.) But before we pull into the school bus line we have one more featured author- Tom Angleberger!

    Tom’s popularity took off with his 2010 hit THE STRANGE CASE OF ORIGAMI YODA. But was Tom satisfied to rest on his laurels and fold tiny paper squares into funny shapes? Absolutely NOT! This year Tom is releasing not one but TWO hilarious books for kids who love to read– and some kids who might rather be doing something else if Tom’s books weren’t so much fun. There’s his wacky “gothic” mystery HORTON HALFPOTT: OR THE FIENDISH MYSTERY OF SMUGWICK MANOR; OR THE LOOSENING OF M’LADY LUGGERTUCK’S CORSET (Whoo! Try to say that without taking a breath) and in just a couple weeks we’ll be seeing DARTH PAPER STRIKES BACK in bookstores.

    Tom’s a busy guy but he found time not only to jump on the Skype tour bus but also to drop in on From The Mixed-Up Files to fill us in on his books and his school visits. Welcome Tom! Tell us about you and your books.

    I’m the author of “The Strange Case of Origami Yoda” and “Darth Paper Strikes Back,” books about Star Wars, origami and the kids that love them. My new book is “Horton Halfpott” a wacky castle mystery that glows in the dark!

    What do you like best about writing for middle grade readers?

    Well, I’m a mid-grade reader myself and I know that we like our books packed with cool stuff. So I try to put in everything I can think of – like instructions for folding Origami Yoda.

    What was your favorite book when you were 8-12?

    Lloyd Alexander’s Prydain series, beginning with The Book of Three.

    What makes your school visits special?

    I teach everyone to fold Origami Yoda, either in person or via Skype.

    I can vouch for Tom’s cool origami skills. We did a book signing together this spring and within a few minutes every kid in the room was walking around with a paper puppet on his or her finger, talking like Yoda!

    Thanks for coming by, Tom. We’re so happy you joined us on the Skype tour bus!

    So what’s next? A whole new group of authors will be climbing on board the Skype tour bus in September– with a whole new contest you and your classroom, book club, library group, or scout troop (or any group of kid readers) can win!

    Like who you ask…. How about Kathy Erskine, Uma Krishnaswami, Bruce Hale, Sarah Aronson, Erin Moulton, Tricia Springstubb, Jennifer A. Neilsen, and yours truly, Tami Lewis Brown!

    Before you know it leaves will be turning, school bells will be ringing and fall will be here. We’re all ready to hop on the bus… How about you?

    Tami Lewis Brown has been driving the Skype Tour Bus since last April and she’s not sick of it yet! She’ll be making a pit stop later this month to launch her new novel THE MAP OF ME.

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