I have a few quick Kidlitosphere news items to share with you tonight.
First up, the talented Sarah Stevenson has updated the Cybils flyer to highlight the winners in each category. She explains: "In convenient, compact form, this document lists all of our 2008 shortlisted titles (without blurbs), and includes the winners in boldface type at the top of each category list. As before, the front page of the flyer includes a description of what the Cybils are all about, nomination instructions, important dates, and contact information." You can find the updated version here.
Terry Doherty shares a lovely story about sportsmanship at Scrub-a-Dub-Tub. Really. Click through. It will bring a little tear to your eye. I agree with her that it would make a nice children's book.
At the Spectacle (a new blog "about writing speculative fiction for teens and pre-teens"), Parker Peevyhouse asks about portals in children's literature. "Do portals show up so often in manuscripts because writers are inspired by classic fantasy stories, or is it because it’s an easy device to fall back on? And can a portal story still do well in the marketplace, or are portals dead?" There's a discussion going on in the comments.
Cheryl Rainfield has a new installment in her Gifts for Book Lovers and Writers series. I covet the book coasters (click through to see. They are gorgeous). And I'm pleased to report that I actually own the Aquala Bath Caddy (a tray/book stand for reading in the tub). Mheir got that for me for Christmas.
My Friend Amy has a fun post about her theory on why James Patterson's books are such bestsellers. For example: "If reading is difficult for you, nothing is more inviting than short chapters. Instead of feeling like you have a lot to accomplish through the read, the sense of accomplishment is achieved much quicker when the chapters are just a few pages long. It's rewarding right away."
The Readergirlz Divas are sponsoring the second edition of their Operation Teen Book Drop. Shelf Elf has the details, explaining: "Operation Teen Book Drop is an awesome initiative that brings donations of thousands of fantastic YA titles to hospitalized teens all over the States (and Canada too… I think…)."
And speaking of awesome YA authors like the Readergirlz, Laini Taylor shares the cover of her upcoming book, Silksinger, at Grow Wings. Silksinger is the sequel to Blackbringer, which I loved. I'm not including the cover here, since it's not on Amazon yet, and wasn't sent to me directly, but it is beautiful.
And last, but definitely not least, I'll be hosting a stop later this week in Laurie R. King's 15 Weeks of Bees blog tour. The tour is in celebration of upcoming launch of the latest book in Laurie's Russell/Holmes series: The Language of Bees. I've been a big fan of this series (historical fiction / mystery - the premise is that Sherlock Holmes in his retirement partners up with a bright teenage girl, and they solve cases together) since the first book. You can find the complete schedule for the tour here, and some other details at Angieville. More information to follow later this week!