Tuesday, April 6, 2010


Last week, I wrote about finding Kim Norman's blog (her interview should be up next week). Today, I'll share another journey. First, I want to recommend three key sites for those in search of a good weekly short-course on the state of the children's book publishing industry (versus sites about writing, agents, book reviews, submissions, etc.). If you haven't signed up already, take advantage of free online subscriptions to:

Publishers Weekly (esp. for their weekly newsletters and blogs, including Shelf Talker)

Publishers Lunch (there's a fee for premium subscriptions but here's the sign-up page for the free newsletter)

School Library Journal (you can select your "Extra Helping" specialty updates based on your interests)

So what's my web-travel story of the week?

While visiting Peter D. Sieruta's blog, Collecting Children's Books, I found a hilarious August 2008 post, "OFF WITH THEIR HEADS," noting the numerous headless kids featured on recent book covers. While visiting PLA, I mentioned this to a few sales reps who (after rueful laughter) pointed out a problem with the many headless covers: It makes it very hard to tell these books apart--there's a certain sameness to the aesthetic. Then, at Shelf Talker, a PW blog (link, above), I discovered a couple of posts by Elizabeth Bluemle (co-owner of The Flying Pig bookstore, author of three children's books and incoming president of the Association of Booksellers for Children), which pointed out some interesting thoughts booksellers, authors, and publishing folks had about the aesthetic of book SPINES. If your book is in the production at this time and you're involved in the cover conversation, this cyber-journey would certainly be worth taking.

I'll close today by suggesting that you keep a log of interesting website and blog postings (and, by the way, has anybody invented a feature that can record/recount your web travels for you?).  Then, later on, you can connect-the-dots to research topics that may help as you work to publish and promote your own books. And, definitely check out the three sites above for some great starting points.


Molly Hall said...

Oh gosh. I need to get with the program. Thanks for all the good ideas! I tend to fly by the seat of my pants too much and just check out a few blogs and web-sites. Looking forward to hearing your talk at the conference! : )

Stasia said...

Thanks, Molly! I'll look out for you at the conference.