Love, Aubrey: Suzanne LaFleur
Children's Literacy Round-Up: October 12

Sunday Afternoon Visits: October 11: FTC, JOMB, and Book Awards

I hope that you're all having a peaceful weekend. Here are the recent links that have caught my eye:

The FTC Disclosure Guidelines continue to evoke strong responses from around the literary blogosphere. Here are a few new posts worthy of your attention:

  • Ron Hogan at GalleyCat offers another open letter to the FTC, saying "I object to the FTC's disclosure requirements as defined by your new guidelines. I want to be clear on those last six words—I don't object to legitimate disclosure requirements for genuine commercially subsidized content." Ron also shares the results of an interview that PRNewser did with Richard Cleland of the FTC, suggesting that publishers may be the ones who really have to start worrying about all of this. If you review books on your blog, you really should be following Ron's posts on this.
  • Melissa Fox at Book Nut also has an open letter to the FTC. Melissa argues that reviews of books are inherently "biased", because reviewers being their personal reactions to each book, and discusses why this is actually a good thing. 
  • Liz Burns pointed to two additional links in the comments of my previous post. I'm adding them here, to make sure that people don't miss them. See this and this, from Dear Author.
  • Liz has also written up her policies on accepting and processing review copies here. Her views on this are very similar to my own. I especially liked this part: "Publishers who donate copies for review have no expectation of anything when they submit books; as a matter of fact, if a publisher raises that expectation, even for something like when a review will be posted, I refuse the copy."
  • MotherReader pointed to a helpful post from a lawyer's perspective at Boston Bibliophile.
  • Susan at Color Online also weighs in. I liked this part: "I am a literacy advocate not a book reviewer. You will find book reviews on Color Online but book reviews are not our focus; they are an integral part of promoting a love of reading, celebrating multiculturalism and increasing literacy."
  • Colleen Mondor shares some publisher responses to a letter that she's been sending out here. I like the response that Flux has sent to PW on this issue.

On a lighter note, there's a party going on at 7 Impossible Things Before Breakfast, where Jules and Eisha, together with Adrienne from What Adrienne Thinks About That chat with blogging authors Sara Lewis Holmes and Tanita Davis. I also learned from Tanita's blogging partner Sarah that Tanita's "latest novel Mare's War is under consideration for the ALA Best Books for Young Adults 2010 list." Nice to see good news, isn't it?

At Angieville, Angie takes on the frequent absence of parents in young adult fiction. She says: "since I read a lot of young adult literature, I thought I'd highlight a few of my favorite YA novels that possess that rare commodity--two involved, complex parents. This is not to say they are perfect by any stretch of the imagination! But they are there. They are trying. And, most importantly of all, their presence in the novel strengthens the narrative rather than weakening it."

Terry_readingtubfinal_1 At The Reading Tub, Terry has launched a monthly new resources feature. She explains: "As you may remember, when Jen and I talked about the revamped Children’s Literacy and Reading News Roundup, we decided to pull the New Resources section from the weekly posts. The links are helpful – and often really cool – but they felt like an add-on that didn’t quite fit with the rest of the stuff.  Now, we’ve created a more fully developed post that I will publish the first full week of each month." This month, she shares a bunch of new blogs, as well as other resources.

Terry also created a new widget (with permission, of course) to show support for Andrea and Mark from Just One More Book! while Andrea fights breast cancer. You can see it in my right-hand sidebar. You're welcome and encouraged to download and add it to your own blog, if you are interested.

Liz B. at Tea Cozy and Melissa at Book Nut are talking about blog comments (as are many readers, in the comments). Liz has a pretty laid-back approach to the whole thing: "Whether or not I keep reading your blogs have nothing to do with whether you comment on mine; it's whether or not I like what you write." Melissa, on the other hand, advocates more commenting, especially one smaller, less-read blogs. Me, I think that if you want to be part of the community, you need to do some combination of commenting, engaging with people on Twitter and Facebook, emailing people directly, and linking to other people's posts. But if someone wants to just read my blog, and not engage directly, that's fine with me, too.

Quick hits:

  • Amy from Literacy Launchpad shares some lessons that she's learned from and about reading aloud to preschoolers.
  • Terry Doherty continues her series on "the people behind the passion" (for reading and literacy) at The Reading Tub, profiling Susan Stephenson from The Book Chook.
  • Jason Boog at GalleyCat reports on Barack Obama's win of the Nobel Peace Prize, emphasizing President Obama's role as an author.
  • Natasha Maw reports on the winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature at Maw Books.
  • Karen from Teenage Fiction for All Ages shares the winner of the Guardian Children's FIction Prize (Exposure by Mal Peet). It's due out in the US on Tuesday.
  • Speaking of book awards, Lee Wind has an interesting post about a change in the rules for the Lambda Awards. He explains: "See, The Lamdba Literary Awards (the Lammies) used to be for BOOKS that were GLBTQ in content. Now, they're saying that the AUTHORS have to self-identify as part of the Gay Community for their GLBTQ books to qualify." I agree with Lee that this change to an established award is the wrong way to go about things. And, for the record, as Lee mentions, the Cybils awards are about the BOOKS, not about any attributes of the authors.
  • Mary Pearson would like to know whether or not bloggers want to be thanked for their reviews. I think this is a very subjective question, but I did share a few of my personal thoughts on this in the comments at Mary's.
  • Monica Edinger has an interesting post about the use of retrospective voice (an adult narrator looking back on a story from childhood) at Educating Alice. Specifically, an in the context of the Newbery awards, she wants to know whether novels written in a retrospective voice appeal to kids.
  • Anastasia Suen hosts Poetry Friday this week at Picture Book of the Day.  
  • Episode 2 of The Exquisite Corpse Adventure (this episode written by Katherine Paterson) is now available.
  • At The Places You Will Go, Daphne Lee has a post in defense of some oft-challenged books "that educate and inform children and teens about their bodies." She also has a nice post about the rights of readers to read and to not read (quoting from  Daniel Pennac’s The Rights of the Reader).
  • And see more end of the week links from Abby (the) Librarian, Book Dads, and My Friend Amy.

© 2009 by Jennifer Robinson of Jen Robinson's Book Page. All rights reserved. All Amazon links in this post are affiliate links, and may result in my receiving a small commission (with no additional cost to you).