ALA Annual 2011

Penguin Young Readers Cocktail Party

Saturday night was a busy night at #ala11. At the third event I attended I met Tomie DePaola, Sarah Dessen, Ingrid Law, Paul Volponi, Brenna Yovanoff, Franny Billingsley and Richard Peck. And I picked up some new books that you might want to know about: The Future of Us by Jay Asher & Carolyn Mackler (November 2011) This is the one I am reading first. It is about a couple of teens in 1996 who find themselves on Facebook 15 years in the future – interesting, huh? Secrets of the Sea by Richard Peck (October 2011) Includes: action, adventure and stow-away mice. All of the good stuff. The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson (October 2011) Historical fiction set in London of 1888 – the time of Jack the Ripper – it is giving me chills already. The Space Between by Brenna Yovanoff (November 2011) Set in a city…

ALA Annual 2011

Have you ever met one of your heroes?

One of the things I will always remember about this ALA conference is that it was the time I met Tomie dePaola, this year’s recipient of the Laura Ingalls Wilder Lifetime Achievement Award for his “substantial and lasting contribution to literature for children.” He, of course, was kind, funny, gracious and full of stories. I was starstruck, tongue-tied, and filled with awe. Want to know more about Tomie dePaola? Check out his website.

ALA Annual 2011

Amelia Bloomer Project: conceived in an elevator, born in a bar

This morning’s #ALA11 celebration of the 10th anniversary of the Amelia Bloomer Project annual list of feminist books for young readers was an inspiring, joyful affair. I found particularly inspiring the introduction written by Nel Ward, co-founder of the project, describing the roots and inspiration for this wonderful list, and shared by this year’s co-chair Beth Olshewsky. Ten and a half years ago, four ALA members started talking in an elevator about how a book selection committee “might help young people become better adults,” as Nel described it. Jenny Baltes, Debbie Carton, Peter Holland and Nel Ward were all fresh off of major book award committees, and over lunch that day they developed the idea for the Amelia Bloomer Project annual list of books for youth that embody feminist ideals, principles and stories. That year, they brought together nine members for the selection committee and started reviewing books with these…

ALA Annual 2011

Time for business

Sunday morning was time to get down to business – ALSC business, to be precise. This morning, members of each ALSC Committee got an early start. With the help of our ALA/ALSC staffers and committee chairs, we settled in at the Marriot on Canal Street for a morning of work to ensure that our organization has focus, meets goals, and addresses the needs of our members. It takes many people to make the organization run well. Next time the call comes, think about volunteering. It was so nice to meet many of you in person!

ALA Annual 2011

#BFYA at #ALA11

“It rattles you as a reader.” “Y’know, guys change everything.” “How lucky we are, we’re allowed to love.” Those are quotes from the teens that spoke at the Best Fiction for Young Adults teen input session. This was one of my favorite sessions at Midwinter, so I made SURE to attend it again this time around. Teens speak so eloquently about the books they loved and hated. Four pages of nominated books were open for discussion and the committee went through page by page, inviting teens to come up to the front and speak about any of the books they wanted. There was a clear call for more contemporary realistic reads and it seemed like these teens were getting frustrated with series books. Most interesting to me were the books that the teens didn’t talk about, including What Happened to Goodbye by Sarah Dessen, The Last Little Blue Envelope by…

ALA Annual 2011

Button, Button, Who’s Got the Button?

Walking through the massive Exhibit Halls at #ala11 can be a treasure hunt. Some people are searching for ARCs to bring home, some are searching for authors to sign books, some are searching for particular vendors to talk with, some are just looking for what’s new and exciting in the profession. I do all of these things, but I’m always keeping my eye open for buttons. I love the variety and the styles of this type of advertising. I am particularly drawn to the ones that make you go “hmmmm” such as these buttons I found at the Milliken booth. Aren’t they fun? Buttons that ask questions or start conversations are always great, too! Or shaped buttons like this one from Playaway. One of the most unique buttons I saw at this conference was for Text a Librarian which had a working QR Code — how great is that? And…

ALA Annual 2011

@ your library #ALA11

ALA has a new promotion that you need to know about: Connect With Your Kids @ your library. I spoke with Megan Humphrey, Manager of Campaign for America’s Libraries about it this afternoon. She provided me with gorgeous bookmarks and pamphlets to hand out to parents in my community. All of the information that you need to promote this campaign is downloadable from the website. The idea behind the promotion: let parents know that the library is the perfect place to bring their kids. How awesome is that? Check out the website and provide a link to it from your library’s page. The content is going to continue to grow, so check back often.