• 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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  • An Interview With Author Lisa Greenwald

    Authors, Interviews, New Releases

    In Lisa Greenwald’s 2009 debut middle grade novel, My Life in Pink & Green, 12-year old Lucy Desberg saves her family’s pharmacy by winning a grant to create an eco-spa. Now Lucy’s back in a sequel, My Summer of Pink & Green, which came out on March 1. The book already has been named to the spring 2013 Kids’ Indie Next List.

    A bit about the story: Work has already begun on the eco-spa but things are anything but calm in Lucy’s life. Her older sister is home from college — with a boyfriend — and their investor’s irritating daughter and a bossy spa coordinator are complicating Lucy’s plans. This time, will a good makeover save the day…or not?

    Lisa is also the author of Sweet Treats & Secret Crushes, and Reel Life Starring Us. We’re thrilled to have Lisa visiting with us today!

    MUF: Hi Lisa, and welcome to the Mixed-Up Files!

    LG: Hello! I am so happy to be here!

    lisa_greenwald[1]MUF: Did you always plan to write a sequel to My Life in Pink & Green? Tell us how it came about.

    LG: I didn’t always plan on it. I had it in the back of my head and sort of always hoped that I’d write a sequel. I love the characters and feel so close to them, and it felt great to reunite with everyone.

    MUF: Was it a challenge to get back into Lucy’s voice and continue the story from where it left off?

    LG: It wasn’t really a challenge. To be honest, I had so much fun writing this book. It takes place in the summer, which is my favorite season! I loved writing about beach trips and flip-flops and ice cream. I was also thrilled to be back in Lucy’s world.

    MUF: Lucy is such an earnest, positive, optimistic girl. We have to ask, is she anything like yourself?

    LG: Hmmm. :) Well, I guess I can say that I aspire to be more like Lucy. I try to be optimistic and positive, but I can’t say that I’m always that way. I guess Lucy is the kind of friend I wished I had when I was in middle school.

    MUF: You work as a school librarian in addition to being an author and the mother of a preschooler. How do you balance everything? When do you find time to write?

    LG: It’s not easy! I write during my daughter’s naps during the school year and then I have two writing days a week during the summer. I have to be very strategic about my writing time and I can’t waste it on Facebook or Twitter. It’s hard, but I manage to get it done.

    9781419704130[1]MUF: Can you tell us what your writing process is like?

    LG: When I’m in the process of writing a first draft, I try to write ten pages every writing day. I always write a fast first draft. I know as I’m writing it that it will need a great deal of revision, but I power through until I get to the end. I rarely re-read it as I’m going. Then when I’m finished, I share it with my fabulous agent Alyssa Eisner Henkin. She’ll give me notes and I’ll fix it up before I send a draft to my wonderful editor Maggie Lehrman.

    MUF: What has been one of your best author moments?

    LG: Every time I get an email or a letter from a reader, I am thrilled. I love to know that I’m making a small difference in these kids’ lives.

    MUF: What are you working on now?

    LG: I don’t want to give too much away, but I’m working on another book that takes place in the summer! And it involves dogs!

    MUF: Can you share any advice to aspiring writers? What’s the most important advice you ever received?

    LG: You must have a thick skin. It’s the only way to survive. You will receive so much criticism and some of it will be useful and some won’t. Just stay positive and focus on your writing.

    Thank you Lisa, for visiting the Mixed-Up Files! Find out more about Lisa and her books at www.lisagreenwald.com. To order My Summer of Pink & Green, click here.


    Michele Weber Hurwitz is the author of Calli Be Gold (Wendy Lamb Books 2011), which is a 2014 Bluestem Book Award nominee (the Illinois Children’s Choice Award). Visit her at www.micheleweberhurwitz.com.




    1. Wendy S  •  Mar 6, 2013 @2:26 pm

      10 pages a day?! Holy smokes!

    2. Rosanne Parry  •  Mar 7, 2013 @8:55 am

      Congratulations Lisa! Nice to see a new story about Lucy. So true about the discipline of getting words on the page and having a thick skin. Good for you!