Friday, July 2, 2010

In the News This Week

Fridays on the SCBWI blog, I share snippets of and links to some of the publishing/media-related news I've read during the last week that I found interesting, helpful, and/or fun. Click title to get to the full articles.

This week you'll find a piece on Christan YA; news of Neil Gaiman's historic win; marketers reaching out to teens (via a redesign), kids (via an e-reader for kids), and readers (via book bloggers); tips on being as successful as Stephenie Meyer (I'm sure they'll work); e-reader price wars; and more.

And although it's ECLIPSE movie week, you may all remember a certain beloved boy wizard who made it from book to big screen. Click through to EW for a peek at the recently released trailer for "Deathly Hallows."

Are You There, God? How Christian YA novels are offering a surprisingly empowering guide to adolescence.
The new popular source of girl power isn't a hyper-sexed Miley Cyrus video or Candace Bushnell's recently published Sex and the City prequel about Carrie Bradshaw's teen years. If you look past the Bible-study scenes, young-adult novels from evangelical authors and publishers are offering their young Christian readers a surprisingly empowering guide to adolescence.

Neil Gaiman Awarded Carnegie Medal in Historic Win (GalleyCat)
Yesterday novelist Neil Gaiman won the UK's CILIP Carnegie Medal, capping off an excellent awards season for the book--it also won the prestigious Newbery Medal in January.

Twilight Saga: how to write a children's best-seller (Telegraph)
When I started to write children’s books, most people would nod sagely and opine, "they’re the hardest audience to write for--very picky, children". This is a cliché which is almost monstrously wrong. The vast majority of children (and by "children", I mean anybody in those prepubescent years who has yet to make the leap to Jane Eyre and Great Expectations) have the literary sensibility of a dead snail and will read any old rubbish. Just look at the success of Stephenie Meyer and J.K Rowling. The Twilight series is cack-handed in execution, bereft of originality, ludicrous in its plots and yet lapped up by hordes and made into box-office-breaking films.

Book bloggers catch on with publishers (LA Times)
When Trish Collins gets done with her job working as an administrative assistant for Santa Rosa County, she might have dinner with her husband or take her poodle for a walk--but most other times she'll have her nose in a book. A soft-spoken redhead with a sweet smile, the 31-year-old Collins' love of reading led her to start blogging about books. And online, Collins has quietly emerged as one of the de facto leaders of the book blogging community, a community publishers are beginning to see as vital.
Graphic Novels Find a Place at ALA Annual Meeting (PW)
"Graphic Novels Come of Age" was the title of the Booklist forum on the first evening of the American Library Association's annual meeting, held this past weekend June 24-29 in Washington DC, and graphic novels were on the agenda for many of the librarians in attendance. Some were looking for basic information about how to start a graphic novel collection and where to shelve it in their library, while others attended panels on more sophisticated topics like the psychology of superheroes and spent time talking to creators and publishers about their work.

New 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows' trailer debuts. Goosebumple overdose in progress. (EW)
I’m finding it difficult to type, Popwatchers, because I’ve just watched the first full trailer for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, and my entire body is currently riddled with goosebumples. Before I apparate you over the jump so y’all can watch the trailer and discover for yourself the sensation of a goosebumple overdose, a word of warning: The opening of this trailer includes an iconic and surprising moment between Harry and Voldemort in the Forbidden Forest. Relaunches With a Social Networking Push
Following the recent boom and bust of teen magazines like TEEN PEOPLE and ELLE GIRL, the remainder has less competition on newsstands. But they also face new rivals for readers who have come of age amid social networks and other digital diversions. To that end, Hearst’s SEVENTEEN has relaunched its Web site with a massive social networking push aimed at pulling girls away from online networks like Facebook, instant messaging, games and the like. "It’s absolutely about having girls spend more time on Seventeen," said Ann Shoket, editor in chief of SEVENTEEN.

VTech Releases eReader For Kids (eBookNewswer)
There are a lot of new eReaders coming out these days, but VTech has a new one designed especially for kids. This week the company released the VReader, a $60 eReader device aimed at kids aged 3 to 7. The toy has an animated screen with a QWERY keyboard and is interactive to help phonics and vocabulary lessons. The book comes preloaded with one title and each additional title is $20.

Amazon Unveils New Kindle DX at Lower Price; Web Widgets Continuing to aggressively update its Kindle e-reading device, unveiled an updated model of its large-format Kindle DX reader with sharper image quality and a graphite covering for $379, a much lower price than the previous version of the Kindle DX. Amazon is also releasing a set of Kindle Web Widgets, a new embeddable web application for previewing Kindle titles in a web browser.

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