For the first time in its history, the National Book Foundation has announced the 2013 Young People’s Literature Longlist for the National Book Award. This is the first time the National Book Foundation has announced a “longlist” of ten titles for each National Book Awards category. The list includes fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. The Longlist for Poetry will be announced today, the Longlist for Nonfiction on Sept 18, and the Longlist for Fiction on September 19. The short list of five finalists in each category will be announced in mid-October.
The nominees for Young People’s Literature address important contemporary issues, including the immigrant experience, coming of age as an LGBT teen, and the impact of technology on civilization.
Personally, I’ve read some great books for young people and I’m excited this category is doing more to recognize the incredible talent in the field.
One example is Lisa Graff’s nominated book, A Tangle of Knots,which takes place in a slightly magical version of our world, where most everyone has a special talent—something he or she is uniquely gifted at, often to a supernatural degree. Read more
What do you carry in your purse or wallet? Do the contents include a piece of writing?
One of my writer friends carries a letter she received from a man and his wife who aren’t related to her by blood but treat her as if she is their daughter. The man wrote the heartfelt letter telling her how proud they were of her and how they read her writing and share it with their friends and coworkers. The man taped two dollar bills to the letter and told her to buy herself an ice cream cone. When I read it I wanted to cry, it was so sweet.
I’ve known others who carry love notes, a fortune from a cookie, and poetry that has meaning. Read more
On May 19, more than 100 members of the Vallès Symphony Orchestra and the choirs of Lieder and Friends of l’Opera and the Choral Belles Arts participated in this amazing “Flash Mob” in Sabadell, Spain. In celebration of the 130th anniversary of Banco Sabadell they performed Beethoven’s “Ode To Joy.”
Though it’s not really a flash mob, the clip is beautiful. I love how the musicians come together–a few at a time until the townsquare is overflowing with people. And I love how they’re all dressed in street clothes–as if, “oh, I just happened to be in the neighborhood…”
Music, like literature, lifts us out of ourselves and makes us want to be better. This five-minute video reminds me that we all have talents and gifts to offer others. What gifts are you currently sharing with the world? What gifts do you want to share?
I am queen of the list. Hear me roar. I make lists for everything. Maybe it’s my feeble attempt to make some kind of order out of my chaotic mind.
Lists are important—without my work lists, I’d never get anything done: shipping, phone calls, emails, appointments, ordering.
I also make lists for writing projects. Since I’m one of those neurotic artists who needs a variety of stimulation, I list action items under certain categories: Fantasy Novel, Memoir, Poetry, Blog Posts, and Continuing Education. I’ve even made a weekly writing log to check off action items as completed.
There’s something magical about checking off a completed task. I feel satisfied, successful, slightly euphoric. My friends threaten an intervention, but I tell them there are worse addictions. One success begets another and before long, I’m on an upward spiral.
But lists don’t have to be just for organization and keeping your goals on track.
List making can be an art form. Read more