• 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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  • Fall Into A Book Festival!

    Activities, For Kids

    Newly sharpened pencils, tart apples and falling leaves — Fall is more than the start of a new school year. In many communities it’s also book festival season! Take a break from the fall rush, meet your favorite authors and illustrators face to face, and hear first hand about the best and brightest new books.

    (The gorgeous poster for this year’s National Book Festival was created by Rafael López)

     The king of the festivals is in my hometown, Washington DC. Distinguished authors from every state gather to present their books to tens of thousands of readers, young and old. This year you can climb into Mary Pope Osborne’s Magic Treehouse books or shiver your Goosebumps away with R. L. Stine, and that’s just the beginning. Dozens of children’s and YA authors will be headlining this year’s program. And like most fall book festivals it’s all FREE.

    After looking all over the internet I couldn’t track down a list of Fall book festivals with great kids’ events so I’ve made one of my own. Here it is!


    Sept 17-23 Brooklyn , NY Brooklyn Book Festival www.brooklynbookfestival.org  (Did you read and love WONDER? Author R. J. Pallacio will be here!)

    Sept 22-23 Kirkland, Washington Northwest Bookfest http://nwbookfest.com/  (Smart and funky festival, just like the Pacific Northwest. I’ve loved Peg Kehret’s middle grade novels for years-wish I could see her here!)

    Sept 22-23 Washington DC   National Book Festival http://www.loc.gov/bookfest/ (The king of the festivals. This is a who’s who of the book world- children’s, young adult and everything else from poetry to world lit to mystery!)

    Sept 26-30 Fairfax, Virginia    Fall For The Book http://www.fallforthebook.org/  (Smart, cool festival on the heals of the big one in DC)

    Sept 28-30 Baltimore, Maryland    Baltimore Book Festival http://www.baltimorebookfestival.com  (Big time authors and Baltimore natives flock to this festival. I’m looking forward to Newbery winner Laura Amy Schlitz and her new book Splendors and Glooms)

    Sept 28-30 Deadwood, South Dakota South Dakota Festival of Books http://www.sdbookfestival.com/  (How can you miss with a festival in Deadwood?)

    September 30 West Hollywood, California West Hollywood Book Fair www.westhollywoodbookfair.org  (Hollywood Chic! More YA than middle grade but it’s still fun for kids)


    October 1-6 San Diego California San Diego City College International Book Fair http://www.sdcitybookfair.com/  (appears there’s not a lot of programming for kids although Matt de la Pena will be speaking)

    October 12-14 Brattleboro, Vermont  Brattleboro Book Festival http://brattleboroliteraryfestival.org/  (Many of my favorite authors and illustrators come to this intimate and exciting festival. This year I’m looking forward to Tony DiTerlizzi, Jane Yolen and Karen Hesse)

    October 13-14 Charleston, WV West Virginia Book Festival http://wvbookfestival.org/ (great fun  Robert Sabuda will show off his pop up books this year!)

    October 14-16 Nashville, Tennessee Southern Festival of Books http://www.humanitiestennessee.org/programs/southern-festival-books/events-children-and-young-adults  (I’ll be at this one! Hope to see you there!)

    October 20 Cincinnati, Ohio Books By The Banks  http://booksbythebanks.org/topics/2012/childrens-2012/ (I’ll be here, too!  If you don’t catch up with me in Nashville meet me here!)

    October 27-28 Austin, Texas Texas Book Festival http://www.texasbookfestival.org/  (This book festival is renowned! The events are always amazing!)

    October 27 Dallas Texas International Book Festival http://dallasinternationalbookfair.com/  (A smaller festival but great events)


    Nov 9-10 Frankfort, Kentucky Kentucky Book Fair http://kybookfair.blogspot.com/ (A mix of children’s and adult authors, many with Kentucky connections)

    Nov 11 Miami, Florida  Miami Book Fair www.miamibookfair.com (Fun in the sun! Each year a different country is featured, incorporating fabulous children’s events)

    I know I’ve missed some. If there’s a fun festival or fair in your community leave a comment and I’ll add it to the list!


    Tami Lewis Brown will be dusting off her presentation skills this fall for book festivals in Cincinnati and Nashville!




    1. Jen Swanson  •  Aug 29, 2012 @8:06 am

      Thanks for a great list, Tami! Looks like a lot of fun. I’m going to have to try to check some of them out. Enjoy Cincinnati and Nashville!

    2. Heather  •  Aug 29, 2012 @8:19 am

      I visit the Cincinnati one each year!

      tami lewis brown Reply:

      @Heather, See you there!!!!

    3. tricia  •  Aug 29, 2012 @11:59 am

      Waaa–this is the first year I’ll be missing Cincinnati! It’s a great one. Have fun, you all, and Tami, our paths need to cross soon!

      tami lewis brown Reply:

      @tricia, That makes me sad! We need to get together!!

    4. Ali B  •  Aug 29, 2012 @2:35 pm

      How gorgeous is that poster by Rafael Lopez? I’m proud to call him my friend and so lucky to see his gorgeous murals at our kids’ school on a daily basis. What a talent!

      tami lewis brown Reply:

      @Ali B, Your school is so lucky to have a Rafael Lopez mural! The kids must love it!! You can download a hi rez copy of his National Book Fest poster on their website- http://www.loc.gov/bookfest/

    5. Dianna Winget  •  Aug 30, 2012 @9:08 am

      Thanks for the post, Tami. Book festivals sound like such fun! Now that my own MG debut will be out soon, I’m curious as to how effective authors feel these festivals are. It seems that you’d have a ready supply of readers and buyers if you’ve established a name, but I wonder how some of the newer writers fare?

    6. Kellie  •  Aug 30, 2012 @9:20 am

      Thanks for this awesome post! It’s so good to see so many book festivals across the country!

      Two more that might be of interest: The Boston Book Festival on 10/27 – always lots of great kid/teen events and authors, and Wordstock, the Portland Book Festival, from 10/11 to 10/14 – lots of great writing events and opportunities for kids at this festival.

    7. Sheela Chari  •  Aug 30, 2012 @3:50 pm

      Wendy Mass, RJ Polacio, and I will doing a MG panel at the Brooklyn Book Festival on Sep 23, for anyone interested. :)

      Thanks for compiling this list, Tami. I love book festivals.

    8. Janet Smart  •  Aug 31, 2012 @6:53 am

      Great list. Wish I could visit them all. The Charleston one is right next door to me, though, I’ll have to go to it.