penmage: (reading pigeon)
Basically all anyone in the office was talking about today was how to snag an ARC of Catching Fire, the sequel to The Hunger Games.

All the conversation was about when it would be available at BEA, and if it was ticketed, and who everyone knew who could get them a copy, and who was next to read it after that person. Whispered conversations all over the place. If you came across two people talking hurriedly in the hall, it was probably about Catching Fire.

One marketing person had already snagged one--and instead of staying up all night reading it so she could pass it on, like a sensible person would, she had only read about 20 pages. This fact made its way around the hallways, and she got some serious dirty looks.

Seriously, it's like Harry Potter 7 all over again. We all have to read it NOW. We have to have read it BY MONDAY or maybe we'll get spoiled omg.
penmage: (Default)
As usual, John Scalzi says it best:

Observers of the science fiction field will note the Nebula Award for Best Novel was won this year by a YA book, that the Tiptree Award is co-shared by a YA novel, and that in the Hugo Best Novel category, two and a half of the books nominated are also YA (the “half” in this case being Zoe’s Tale, written to be YA-friendly but shelved with the adult SF). This surge of recognition for YA has caused some consternation and grumbling in certain quarters. Here’s what I have to say about that:

Yes, how horrible it is that some of what’s being hailed as the best science fiction and fantasy written today is in a literary category designed to encourage millions of young people to read for the rest of their natural lives. Because God knows the last thing science fiction and fantasy publishing needs right now is whole generation of new and enthusiastic readers who might actually get hooked into the genre until they die. It’s a goddamn tragedy, it is.


YES. Yes, that.

It just so happens that we are living right now in the heyday of YA fiction. We are in the glorious golden age of the teen novel. There are some amazing talents writing YA--writers I adore turning out books that make me excited. This is a glorious time to be a children's book editor, or to be reading teen fiction, or just to care about the kidlit industry.

I spend so much time in the kidlitosphere these days that I forget sometimes that there are people out there who gripe about the attention that YA gets, or conversly, think that YA is not every bit as strong and smart and complex and fascinating and exciting and well-written as adult books (and sometimes even better.)

And then this happens. YA gets a swarm of recognition from the FSF world. As a children's book editor and a kidlit lover, I am thrilled beyond words. First of all, for the books that were chosen. The Knife of Never Letting Go was one of my standout books of the year, and I am so happy to see it get this kind of recognition. It's groundbreaking and brave and compulsively readable. And second, of course, because it's time our corner of the industry was acknowledged as sharing the playing field with the grownups.

If you are still grumbling about the fact that YA swept the FSF awards this year, do yourself a favor. Read some YA books. I'll be happy to give you a short list of recommended titles, but if you don't want to ask, the shortlists and award lists for the awards is definitely a good place to start. Read The Knife of Never Letting Go, and then come back and we can have a conversation.

YA is here and it's proud and it's good. And it's not going away.
penmage: (yay scrotums!)
It's the ALA awards! It will surprise no one that I am watching the Twitter feed and the webcast and also liveblogging.

Okay, first up, the Alex Award--adult books that also work for teens. Yay, Dragons of Babel!The Good Thief! Sharp Teeth!

I am pleased.

YAY! Waiting for Normal won the Shneider!

Okay, Coretta Scott King. Here we go.

We Are the Ship! Yes!

YES! Kadir! YES! I would rather it be for Change Has Come, of course, but still! Kadir! AWESOME. So well deserved.

Okay, the Odyssey Award for audiobooks. Awww, Elijah of Buxton. And I'm Dirty. And NATION, yeah! And of course, Sherman Alexie. :D

I didn't think I would be as excited for this one (as [livejournal.com profile] fox1013 knows) but I TOTALLY AM.

YES! LAURIE YES! Margaret A. Edwards! I'mr eading Wintergirls now and Chains is AMAZING, so YEAH!

Okay, William A. Morris. No one is surprised that I am crossing fingers for CURSE DARK AS GOLD. please please please.

YAAAAAAAAAAY! Cybils committee! You know I am jumping up and down right now! CURSE! YEAH, CURSE!

OKAY THE PRINTZ WE CAN DO THIS.

YEAH OCTAVIAN TWO PRINTZES!

Eh. Frankie.

YAY NATION NATION NATION NATION NATION!

Um. Now I need to read Tender Morsel, don't I.

I HAVE JELLICOE ROAD IN MY BAG RIGHT NOW! For reading after Wintergirls. YEAH!

Okay, the Belpre is taking a really long time.

Okay, the Sibert. We are the Ship is really cleaning up this year! Kadir, will you be able to carry all those medals? What do you think? Do you think there's going to be space for them on the jacket?

YAY! Ashley Bryan won the Wilder! There is not a sweeter, nicer and more talented man.

By the way, I just want to take a moment to be amazed at how on top of things ALA is this year. I recall prevous years when it was impossible to get in to the webcast. This year, the webcast was easy to get into, and the twitter feed is really on top of things. Rock on, ALA.

Okay, here comes the Giesel! I'm calling Mo Willems!

HA! I totally called it, you guys! Are You Ready to Play Outside FTW!

CALDECOT OKAY YOU GUYS HERE WE GO.

A Couple of Boys YAY! Marla Frazee!

A River of Words awesome yay!

...The House of the Night? Seriously, I have never heard of this one. It's this year's Higher Power of Lucky.

OKAY. THE CALDECOTT. WE CAN DO THIS YOU GUYS.

YAY KATHI! YAY UNDERNEATH!

Aww, Savvy!

Tupac and D Foster! Yay!

THE GRAVEYARD BOOK! YES YES YES YES YES!

I am so happy right now.

Whew. I'm shaking. Good show, ALA. Good choices.

I'm so happy I've read most of the winning novels. Otherwise I would never get copies in the mad dash.

Edit: The ALA website is apparently down, so full list of awards and honors here.

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