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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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  • Win Win Win Erica Perl!

    Learning Differences

    Wake Up Readers!

    The Mixed-Up Middle-Grade Skype Tour bus is in the driveway…

    Open up those peepers. Did you win a Skype visit with Rosanne Perry??? Take a big drink of orange juice… but keep holding your breath… because before we announce the winner we’re meeting author extraordinaire Erica Perl.

    Erica does it all – picture books, YA, and now with her latest novel MIDDLE-GRADE!

    Erica, welcome to the Mixed-Up Files Middle-Grade Skype tour!  We love your middle-grade novel WHEN LIFE GIVES YOU OJ

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

    I love how smart, funny and opinionated middle grade readers are.  The things they love, they LOVE and the things they think are stupid they think are COMPLETELY AND TOTALLY STUPID.  I can relate to that, since I have pretty intense opinions myself but I became really reasonable at some point.  Writing allows me to tap into my unreasonable side.
    What was your favorite book when you were 8-12?
    CHARLOTTE’S WEB.  It was the best book I had ever read, and actually it still is. (Yes! I agree. Readers, if you really love Charlotte’s Web you’ll love love love E. B. White and Peter Neumeyer’s Annotated Charlotte’s Web. It’s not just a book lover’s dream. It’s a teacher’s and writer’s master class!)
    Another of my favorite books at that time was Constance Greene’s A GIRL CALLED AL, which I recently reread and I highly recommend.  I also went through reading phases, like reading all the Little House books, or reading everything by Judy Blume or Lois Duncan.  Books were like potato chips for me – who could stop at one?
    YUM! What makes your school visits special?

    I talk and show a powerpoint presentation that includes a lot of my reference points for my books, including family members (like the grandfather who inspired the character “Ace” in WHEN LIVE GIVES YOU O.J.).  I also talk about my process, from idea through lots of revisions to finished book and I often use examples from my picture books as well as novels.  But what really sets my visits apart?  It has to be the fact that I am probably the only author on the planet that presents her work wearing a genuine, hand-knitted chicken butt hat.

    I’ve seen that hat! 

    (But this is not Erica’s hat.)

    Her hat is absolutely NOT TO BE MISSED! And I bet she’ll wears it on a Skype visit too! Readers would you like Erica to visit your classroom, book club or any other group of enthusiastic middle-grade readers? You came to the right place. Leave a comment here for your chance to win. Pass it along on Facebook or Twitter for more chances– just be sure to come back and leave a comment telling us how you’ve spread the word. We’ll draw the lucky winner next Tuesday when we’ll present the next Mixed-Up Middle-Grade author for your Skyping pleasure! For all the scoop and frequently asked questions about the contest look HERE!

     But wait!!!! We have a winner to announce!
     The lucky winner who’ll be welcoming Rosanne Perry to visit her readers is…………………

    Portia Pennington!

    Please email the please email the Mixed-Up Files at msfishby (at) fromthemixedupfiles (dot) com with your contact information! You’ll be hearing from Rosanne shortly! And huge congratulations!!!!!  And Pragmatic Mom we’re waiting to hear from you about your visit with Sheela Chari! Please send us your contact info too.

    Readers— keep those entries coming and you might welcome Erica to your group… and come back next week for our next pit stop on the Mixed-Up Middle-Grade Skype Tour!

    Tami Lewis Brown writes middle-grade books when she’s not battling computer viruses or driving the Mixed-Up Middle-Grade Skype tour bus.
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