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    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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  • CIRCLE OF SECRETS Book Launch or – Book Armageddon Survival Tips!

    Learning Differences

    SCHOLASTIC PRESS
    ISBN: 978-0545165617
    Hardcover: $17.99
    Kindle: $9.99
    Fall Scholastic Book Fairs

    “The summer I turned eleven, I found out that ghosts were real . . . ”

    Secret notes in a blue bottle tree, a mysterious charm bracelet, a mother who magically heals people and owns a pet owl, and a dangerous, broken pier that leads to a deserted island. Critically acclaimed author Kimberley Griffiths Little weaves a haunting story of friendship and family and the power of faith, once again set against the lush backdrop of the Louisiana bayou.

    Goodreads Review: “Hauntingly beautiful. Terrifying, yet compelling. One of the best Middle Grade novels I’ve read in years. Kimberly Griffiths Little is a master at bringing readers the perfect story with the exotic flavor of the Bayou mixed in.” LuAnn Staheli, Middle School teacher and book reviewer.

    Kirkus Reviews: A steamy Louisiana bayou is the atmospheric backdrop to a tale about a daughter’s estrangement from her mom, the mother’s long-held guilty secret and a restless ghost’s long-sought closure . . . A very dramatic climax leads to a sweet, satisfying ending with some surprising twists. For readers who like their ghost stories more friendly than terrifying. (Suspense. 9 -12)

    Mixed-Up Files Question: What is all this talk about “Book Armageddon Survival Tips?!”

    I had a wild ride getting a viable book written 15 months ago, the book that is now Circle of Secrets: Take one completed manuscript, written over nearly a year’s time, including a major research trip, university research and multiple on location interviews. THEN throw away the manuscript because you accidentally wrote a teen book instead of a middle-grade book that was under contract. (Tip: Verify and Define your Synopsis when you sell a book based on one.)

    MUF Question: Please Define “Throwing Away a Completed Manuscript”! We’ve got the heebie-jeebies picturing someone writing a whole book and burning it!

    “Throwing away” means “With brimming tears and wringing hands, gently place Manuscript in a sealed envelope and store in a locked safe for later rewriting”.)

    MUF Question: So you had a manuscript for a new book due to your publisher and suddenly no more book? What did you do?

    I . . . paced the floors in shock. Cried a bit. Turned into a Zombie. Laughed hysterically. Put on ten pounds. Watched as my family giddily rubbed their hands together and discussed admitting me to the local psych ward. Then I realized that if I wanted a book published in 2011 I needed to buckle down and start writing like a mad woman. My deadline was about six weeks.

    MUF Question: Six weeks—Impossible!

    Yeah . . . I talked to my agent. I talked to my editor. And I crazily said, “Yeah, okay, I’ll get a book to you by end of August.” Inside, my mind was screaming, “You’re INSANE!!!” This was July 1 – the same day I was packing and getting the car repaired to leave at dawn for two weeks of book launching for The Healing Spell during the summer of 2010. Over the next two months I had 11 book events, a blog tour, and mailed out a thousand postcards to schools.

    So I Dug Out . . . My Smart and Savvy Personal Survival Strategy:

    1. Pull out hair in bits and pieces. Chew on a lot of pencils.
    2. Eat Frozen pizzas and a LOT of chocolate chip cookies.
    3. Cross fingers and toes (and eyes) a lot.
    4. Get editor’s love a lot.
    5. Tell myself I can sleep next year.
    6. Write a lotta words. Every single day. Don’t think. Just write. Anything. Everything. Pages of it. You can edit later. (Which I did. In my second draft, begun immediately upon completing the first draft, I added about 15,000 more words).
    Mission Accomplished. I’m proud to say I am now a member of the Book Armageddon SURVIVOR Club!

    Leave a comment to win an Autographed Copy of CIRCLE OF SECRETS!!! Winner announced this Saturday, October 15th.

    Kimberley Griffiths Little has been taking lots of recovery bubble baths since sending off her third manuscript to Scholastic for publication in January, 2013 called When the Butterflies Came. Teacher’s Guide for Circle of Secrets & Mother/Daughter Book Club Guide

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