September 15, 2006

Weekend Wrap-up

Happy Constitution Day! Somehow Constitution Day goes through to the 19th, but it's a fun jump-off for Banned Books Week the week after. Today's Constitutional Quote:
"you don't have to burn books to destroy a culture. Just get people to stop reading them." - Ray Bradbury

This almost happened to the last volume of Potter-isms, that is, we almost didn't get to read it. The Guardian reports that airport security is so tight in New York that JK Rowling was asked to pack her manuscript and not have it as a carry-on. Paper ...has now become dangerous? Or was it was the heft of the paper? Please tell me the seventh novel in the series is not the longest yet? What else could have made airport security suspicious of a woman with a few reams of paper?! Was she swinging it at people? Who can tell... Also, via the Guardian Culture Vulture Blog, adults post the sulk-buster books that lifted them out of the blues during their childhood years. We all know that Roald Dahl cheered us up quite a bit. Take the Quiz and find out how much you know about him.

A head-start for the holidays, Publishers' Weekly interviews a UC Berkeley student who has taken five years to produce a guide to kids' giving. Written by then 14-year-old Fredi Zeiler, this book takes philanthropy down to kid-sized bites, and may help kids start positive lifetime habits.

Via A Fuse #8: It's not enough that Bilbo's house was overrun by orcs and ruffians. Now it's got real estate agents. It's the American version of the cute-little-English-cottage. Terrifying.

Wands & Worlds reminds us that today is the deadline for contributions to the Blog Carnival of Children's Lit, which takes place the 23rd. Now, carnivals are just blog round-ups, I'm told, so sorry, no carousels unless you bring your own. Either way, they make good reading, and I always find a blog or two I've missed.

Children's Book Council Magazine has posted a nifty piece on book promotion during Children's Book Week in November, and they also have a very sweet, very hope-provoking series of letters between author Rita-Williams Garcia and her editor, Rosemary Brosnan of HarperCollins, that shows that 20-year friendships and growth are possible between writers and their editors, and that there's hope for all of us! And you only thought it was possible to be friends with your writing group!

I have to admit that I struggle with her books. EVERYBODY loves Meg Cabot... but I am the one holdout who hates happy endings. Bah! For good or for ill, the Philly Inquirer has a short piece on how the Great MC writes. She's prolific, and sets herself targets... and completely blows them off and fools around until she's down to the wire. Sound familiar?

I mentioned awhile back that Ursula LeGuin's Earthsea novels were being animated under the name Gedo Senki by Studio Ghibli. Sigh. Poor LeGuin's novel has been made incoherent all over again. She has posted briefly to her blog about her response to the film, and says we must never blame the novelist for these things. So, I vote we find the screenwriter! I would ask questions about a possible cultural disconnect in misinterpreting the scope and sequence of the plot, except that we have the less-than-stellar American interpretation with which to grapple - and no excuses there. Anyway, the anime won't be released in the U.S. until 2009, so there's lots of time to pick up the original books and enjoy them all over again.

Listening gives you an advantage in writing dialogue. I spend time listening to my siblings and my niece and her friends, as well as watching The N, Disney Channel, and indulging all of my other juvenile preferences with a perfectly clear conscience in the name of my Art. (Ahem.) Today, NPR has some really great listener response to Nelly Furtado's Promiscuous... Now, granted, I had to look up the song and all, but once I read the lyrics (!), I was intrigued by what some of the teens interviewed thought. Take a listen: "Chivalry is dead!" one girl argues. "Nobody's going to have sex just from this song, that's too corny," insists a boy. The debate continues: are you what you listen to at that age? Does it warp your mind as some studies and adults seem to think? Intriguing conversations and some knowledge into the minds of potential characters!

Via e. lockhart, I'm excited to find Living Writers, a very cool public radio thing from Ann Arbor, MI, with super cool YA author interviews. This week it's E. Lockhart, and she worries she sounds like a weenie. She so does not. This month's radio interview gives some heads up about The Boy Book, and lets us know that Noel will be back! Yay! Be prepared for a long listen - but it's well worth it to hear authors in a relaxed and thoughtful frame of mind. Look through the archives for other of your favorite authors.

Enjoy the weekend before you!


Jen Robinson said...

I have to admit to a slightly guilty enjoyment of Meg Cabot's books. I just listened to "How to Be Popular" on MP3, and even though the ending was completely predicatable, I still loved it.

As for JK Rowling's manuscript being suspicous, that's just bizarre! I sometimes travel with three or more books in my carry-on bag. Does that make me suspicous??

a. fortis said...

That's terrible to hear about the Earthsea animation. Like LeGuin, I'm a fan of Miyazaki the elder, and it's disappointing to hear how Studio Ghibli mishandled this, considering how they've produced so many winners in the recent past.

TadMack said...

The weirdest thing about JKR is that they made her bind the manuscript up in rubber bands before she could take it as a carry-on... I don't get it. Having her dangerous single pages bound up as a force-wielding whole was somehow better?!

I'm disappointed in Studio Ghibli, too... but ever since I saw their animation of Howl's Moving Castle, I've realized that when they say "based" on such-and-such novel, you should just add the phrase "verrrrry loosely" before those words...

DaviMack said...

Any time The Demon Mouse is involved, you're going to get garbage for sure, but Ghibli ... well, Ghibli is uniquely Ghibli, and anything which runs through the cogs and machinations of Miyazaki's mind will end up having a distinct feel. Recall the Marathon of Miyazaki we went through a couple of months ago? After a while, everything blended into one long commentary on modern-day Japan, and a reaction to Nuclear War.

If someone's silly enough to have sex because of a song ... well, I've long maintained that the idea of a Marriage license was silly, when Procreation isn't licensed whatsoever!