February 22, 2008

Something Quick

In theory, a good hostess would be turning down sheets and plumping pillows for her tired guests. I, however, am on the computer, and via Ali and Anastasia @ Ypulse, I've found these interesting nuggets:

There's a Phillip Pullman comic strip, to be included in a new Random House magazine, which looks SOcool -- "Only completely original material will be published in the DFC. No advertising, just 100% storytelling delight. Joy in an envelope," David Fickling comments. A story magazine for kids? With a weekly strip by Phillip Pullman!? BLISS!

Nancy Yi Fan, together with her family emigrated to the U.S., just before the attacks in New York in 2001. What an awful time of confusion it was. Nancy had a strange dream about birds -- one she turned into a story. Hoping to receive writing tips, she sent it to publishing houses. HarperCollins gave her more than writing tips -- they gave her a contract. "Nancy's first book, Swordbird, is a fantasy about warring birds. Nancy Yi Fan was 12 years old when Swordbird was published last year. Within weeks, it reached the top of the New York Times list of best-selling Children's Chapter Books." Visit VOA News for the rest of the story. Has anyone of you read Nancy's book? They're calling her a prodigy, and talking about her next one!

PW has a heartfelt piece on everybody's favorite girl-next-door author, Sarah Dessen. Why do we (and teen readers) all love her? 'Cause her heart is still in high school. Go, Sarah!

Do you swear as a conversational filler? How about the characters in your stories? Do they? Some interesting thoughts on YA's and profanity. Should parents, as is suggested in this article in the Sacramento Bee teach their kids swearing 'etiquette?' What would you consider etiquette? I am honestly asking this question 'cause I think of weird stuff like this when I'm writing. When do your characters swear? Or do they?

All righty. Off to pretend I'm a good hostess.


Jennifer R. Hubbard said...

Years ago, I worked at a fast-food restaurant. Once, on my break, I overheard a booth full of teenage boys behind me. One of them used the F word in every single sentence. As in, "I was walking down the F-ing street. I ran into Joe, and we went to the F-ing movies. Then we went for F-ing pizza." I played a little game with myself: Could he get through just one sentence without it? Not while I was listening, he didn't.

So that's the extreme--there are people who talk that way, and occasionally they're going to show up in books. I tend not to make my characters quite that extreme, though.

A Paperback Writer said...

I used to be offended by swearing -- then I moved to Scotland for a year. NOBODY can swear like a really mad Scot can. Especially if that Scot is Glaswegian. And a construction worker.
Everything seems so tame now in comparison.
I still don't allow swearing in my classroom, though, as it offends so many people. If a kid curses by accident and apologizes, we acknowledge the mistake and thank him/her for the correction. If a kid intentionally is vulgar or curses and won't stop or apologize, then they are sent for a time out. And it is school policy that telling a teacher to f-off or calling the teacher a B---- is an automatic suspension (3 days).
Generally, it works. Most kids at our school are aware that swearing is not acceptable in public places because it may offend people. Sure, there are plenty of kids who cuss in the halls to try to sound grown up (and fail miserably), but most of the kids are pretty decent about it.

Sarah Stevenson said...

GLASWEGIAN CONSTRUCTION WORKER! I'm sure there's a story behind that. Oddly enough, I also have a story about a Glaswegian construction worker. Really. And yes, he cursed and drank a lot. But he had such nice green eyes...

Little Willow said...

My characters don't swear because I don't swear.

tanita✿davis said...

On the other hand, I know a Glaswegian construction worker/student... who says "Sugar!" when he's ticked off.

So much for the stereotype. I know he normally doesn't say that, but people try to be courteous to me... I think they notice what I don't say.

It was really shocking when I got here. But, unfortunately, funny... because it was mostly unintelligible with the Glaswegian brogue... people would be angry and spouting, and I would be rolling.