Are you attending ALA 2013?

Wednesday, June 26th, 2013



Here’s an open invitation from author Alma Flor Ada, who would love to meet up with you at ALA, if you are attending.  She will be at a number of events so be sure to catch her:


Yes! We Are Latinos by Alma Flor Ada amd F. Isabel Campoy, illustrated by David Diaz (Charlesbridge, 2013)Saturday, June 29

10:00-11:30 am
~ Charlesbrige Booth #1908
Signing her new book Yes! We Are Latinos, co-authored with F. Isabel Campoy and illustrated by David Diaz.

2:00 -3:00 pm
~ Lee & Low Booth #2305
signing her book ¡Quiero Ayudar!/Let me Help!, illustrated by Angela Domínguez.
Sunday, June 30

1:00 -2:00 pm – Book Buzz Theater (see all the Book Buzz Theater events here)
~ Room S104A McCormick Place, Convention Center
“Roots and Wings: Books for the Spanish/Bilingual and Latino Interest Reader” – Isabel Campoy will also be on the panel.

Quiero Ayudar/Let Me Help, by Alma Flor Ada, illustrated by Angela Domínguez (Children's Book Press, 2012)Monday, July 1

10:00-11:30 am
Poetry Blast at the Top Stage, Exhibit Floor
Alma and Isabel will be sharing extracts from Yes! We Are Latinos, followed by a book-signing session.

For anyone interested in diversity in children’s books, as well as the Diversity and Outreach Fair, a “must” session will be this one led by Lee & Low and Cinco Puntos Press – no doubt it will build on the recent on-line discussion following Lee & Low’s blog post “Why Hasn’t the Number of Multicultural Books Increased In Eighteen Years?”  I wish I could be there!

This year’s ALA Conference is the 120th – and it also marks the 75th Anniversary of the Caldecott medal: so two great milestones!  And with their finger on the button, as ever, this year’s theme is “Transforming Our Libraries, Ourselves.”  No doubt there will be some lively and informative discussions.  You can see some suggested highlights here, or look through the whole, immense program here.

February 2013 Events

Sunday, February 3rd, 2013

Click on event name for more information

Exhibits of Winning Entries from the 2012 Growing Up Asian in America Contest~ ongoing until Feb 2013, USA

National Storytelling Week~ ongoing until Feb 2, United Kingdom

Taipei Book Fair~ ongoing until Feb 4, Taipei, Taiwan

Kolkata Book Fair~  ongoing until Feb 13, Kolkata, India

Nami Island International Illustration Concours for Picture Book Illustrations~ submissions accepted until Feb 15, Korea

Children’s Literature and Social Justice~ ongoing until Mar 19, Portland, OR, USA

Tall Tales & Huge Hearts: Raúl Colón~ ongoing until Mar 29, Abilene, TX, USA

AFCC’s Book Illustrators Gallery~ submissions accepted until Mar 31, Singapore

Skipping Stones Youth Honor Awards Celebrating Multicultural Awareness, International Understanding and Nature Appreciation~ submissions accepted until June 25, 2013, USA

Black History Month~ Canada

African American History Month~ USA

National African American Read-inUSA

14th Annual SCBWI Winter Conference~ Feb 1 – 3, New York, NY, USA

28 Days Later: A Black History Celebration of Children’s and YA Lit~ Feb 1 – 28, USA

Concordia University Workshop: Using Children’s Literature to Explore Diversity and Cultures~ Feb 2, Chicago, IL, USA

The Kala Ghoda Arts Festival: Presents The Kids Lit Fest 2013~ Feb 2 – 10, Mumbai, India

MA Children’s Book Illustration Exhibit~ Feb 4 – 9, London, United Kingdom

World Book Fair ~ Feb 4 – 10, New Delhi, India

Minsk Book Fair: Focus on Russian Children’s Books~ Feb 6 – 10, Minsk, Belarus

Sun Gallery’s  Annual Children’s Book Illustrator Exhibit~ Feb 6 – Apr 6,  Hayward, CA, USA

Pratham Books’ Events at the Kala Ghoda Kids Lit Fest~ Feb 7 and 9, Mumbai, India

21st Annual African American Children’s Book Fair~ Feb 9, Philadelphia, PA, USA

The Carle Museum Presents: Mac Barnett and Jon Klassen, Author and Illustrator of the 2013 Caldecott Honor Book Extra Yarn~ Feb 10, Amherst, MA, USA

First Nations Public Library Week: From Campfires to the Digital World: Storytelling Through Time~ Feb 11 – 16, Province of Ontario, Canada

Imagine Children’s Festival~ Feb 11 – 24, London, United Kingdom

Words Take Wing: Honoring Diversity in Children’s Literature Featuring Margarita Engle~ Feb 12, Davis, CA, USA

International Book Giving Day~ Feb 14

2012 Cybils (the Children’s and Young Adult Bloggers’ Literary Awards) Winners Announced~ Feb 14

ALSC Webinar: Expanding the Caldecott Experience: Programming with Caldecott Winning and Honor Books~ Feb 20

Chapter & Verse’s (A Book Club for Adults Discussing Children’s Lit) Discussion of ALA/ALSC Award Winners~ Feb 21, USA

International Mother Language Day~ Feb 21

21st Annual Hubbs Children’s Literature Conference~ Feb 23, St. Paul, MN, USA

LibraryPalooza 2013 – an Author Festival for Teens~ Feb 23, San Antonio, TX, USA

All In! Young Writers Media Festival~ Feb 23 – 24, Singapore

Freedom to Read Week~ Feb 24 – Mar 2, Canada

The Literature Centre (formerly Fremantle Children’s Literature Centre) Exhibits and Programs~ Fremantle, Australia

Dromkeen National Centre for Picture Book Art Exhibits~ Riddells Creek, Australia

Books Illustrated Events and Exhibitions~ Middle Park, Australia

International Youth Library Exhibits~ Munich, Germany

Tulika Book Events~ India

International Library of Children’s Literature Events~ Tokyo, Japan

Newcastle University Programme of Talks on Children’s Books for 2011-2012~ Newcastle, United Kingdom

Seven Stories (the National Home of Children’s Books in Britain) Events~ Newcastle Upon Tyne, United Kingdom

Discover Children’s Story Centre~ London, United Kingdom

Arne Nixon Center’s Children’s Literature Book Clubs for Adults Events~ USA

Events Sponsored by The Center for the Book in the Library of Congress~ USA

The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art~ Amherst, MA, USA

The National Center for Children’s Illustrated Literature Exhibits~ Abilene, TX, USA

Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators Events

The Diversity in YA Fiction Tour~ May 7 – 14, USA

Tuesday, May 3rd, 2011

The Diversity in YA Fiction website was founded by authors Malinda Lo and Cindy Pon, to celebrate diverse stories in YA fiction. An exciting spin-off from the website, the Diversity in YA Fiction Tour is set to take place May 7 – 14 across the USA and will feature 25 authors of middle-grade and young adult fiction who just happen to have written books featuring characters who are of color or LGBT.

The idea for the tour came about last summer when the children’s literature blogosphere erupted with discussions of whitewashing book covers. In her article written for School Library Journal Malinda says:

Cindy and I are both Asian Americans, and we have never been disinterested parties in this debate. Last summer, Cindy’s first novel, Silver Phoenix, was repackaged in a way that disappointed many readers because they thought it downplayed the book’s Asian elements. At the same time, I was seeing early cover concepts from my publisher for my second novel, Huntress, which is an Asian-inspired fantasy. Believe me, it was a stressful time for both of us.

From the beginning, we shared a vision for “Diversity in YA” that emphasized celebration. Yes, the number of books published about people of color is fewer than those about white people, but there is no reason to not celebrate the books that already exist. There are so many writers telling stories about unique communities and cultures, from Jacqueline Woodson, who has been writing wonderful books about African-American and queer teens for years, to newcomer Dia Reeves, who is turning YA paranormal on its head with her quirky, bloody escapades featuring multiracial teens in Texas.

Everyone is welcome to attend this celebration of diversity, where there will be the opportunity to hail favorite books and authors, as well as to discover new ones to love. Here’s the tour schedule:

San Francisco | May 7, 2011 at 3 p.m.
Focus on Asian American YA with Cindy Pon, Gene Luen Yang, and J.A. Yang at the  San Francisco Public Library (Main Library), Latino-Hispanic Room

Austin | May 9, 2011 at 7:30 p.m.
With Bethany Hegedus, Guadalupe Garcia McCall, Cindy Pon, Dia Reeves, and Jo Whittemore, and moderated by Varian Johnson at BookPeople

Chicago | May 10, 2011 from 5:30-6:45 p.m.
With Claudia Guadalupe Martinez, Nnedi Okorafor, and Cindy Pon at Barbara’s Books

Boston | May 12, 2011 at 7 p.m.
With Holly Black, Sarah Rees Brennan, Deva Fagan, Cindy Pon, and Francisco X. Stork, and moderated by Roger Sutton
at the Cambridge Public Library (Main Library)

New York | May 13, 2011 at 6:30 p.m.
Focus on LGBT YA with Cris Beam, David Levithan, and Jacqueline Woodson at The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Community Center

New York | May 14, 2011 at 1 p.m.
With Matt de la Peña, Kekla Magoon, Neesha Meminger, Cindy Pon, Olugbemisola Rhuday-Perkovich, Rita Williams-Garcia, and Jacqueline Woodson, and moderated by Cheryl Klein at Books of Wonder

CROCUS 2010: You’re invited!

Wednesday, October 20th, 2010

You’re invited to take part in CROCUS 2010, Saffron Tree‘s exciting annual book festival in celebration of their anniversary. They’re turning 4 this year and have planned a week-long romp in honor of culturally diverse and unique stories. Make sure to drop by at some point between Oct 23-30 to wish them a happy anniversary and to enjoy all the special book reviews, interviews, contests and giveaways planned for the occasion. As a matter of fact, you should plan on stopping by and joining in on the fun all seven days of it!

PaperTigers’ current issue, focusing on children’s literature from India and the Indian diaspora, features personal view pieces by Saffron Tree contributors’ UTBT (Anitha Rumkumar) and Choxbox (Namrata), about Anushka Ravishankar’s books and a young readers’ series on Indian history, respectively. Check them out, on PaperTigers and at their blog! We are big fans of Saffron Tree, and all their talented and passionate contributors, and highly recommend it as a source of excellent multicultural reading material.

Poster artwork by Lavanya Karthik

An article you can't afford to miss: The Elephant in the Room

Tuesday, June 15th, 2010

Boswell.elephant2Elizabeth Bluemle‘s article The Elephant in the Room, posted this week on ShelfTalker, a Publisher’s Weekly blog, offers a spot-on and constructive criticism of the publishing world’s shortcomings when it comes to publishing and promoting books that truly reflect our diverse world, pointing to the need on their part “to cast aside outdated assumptions of what people will or won’t read, will or won’t edit or publish or sell.”

The article offers suggestions of what those in the publishing field can do to start reverting the situation and doing right by our children, plus a list of blogs and websites (we were honored to see PaperTigers mentioned!) that promote diversity in children’s and young adult books. The elephant illustrations, by thirteen children’s book artists, combined with the words, give us much to reflect on.

image credit: © Addie Boswell