Have I mentioned lately how happy I am to be on the 2019 Newbery committee?!
I was telling a new co-worker my story last week, including my difficult divorce – but I was able to lead into “And now I’m on the Newbery committee!” That would have never happened if I hadn’t gotten divorced – I was happy to work part-time without an MLS as long as I could afford to do that.
So now my story has such an exciting outcome, it’s just really hard to be angry about it.
And our Youth Services Selector says she has some 2018 Advance Reader Copies to send my way… so I can get started reading! Woo-hoo! I’m so excited about this…
I’ve gotten out of the habit of posting these and am trying to start up again. It always makes it hard to restart, because I feel like the next blessing has to be something momentous. So I will just take the small blessing that just happened.
Because of a couple different conversations (both bad and good), I was reminded of Patricia Evans’ book, Victory Over Verbal Abuse. I took it out and was reviewing the concepts. I’d completely forgotten about the affirmations in the back. But tonight I started in on them again — and they are healing!
I’ve come a long way, I feel very healed, very transformed. But the affirmations are still such nice reminders! The first one is, “I am self-defining.” No one else has the right to tell me who I am. How lovely that I’m now in a place where few even try. And I get to define myself and listen to what God says about me, His loved child.
I think I already listed this as a blessing, but now that we’ve finished our work, I want to say again just how much fun it was to be a first round panelist for the 2016 Cybils Awards in the category of Young Adult Speculative Fiction. I’d almost forgotten how much I love reading young adult speculative fiction, and for the last three months, I took extra chunks of time aside to do just that. What a treat!
I know well that the group of people who are passionate about discussing new children’s books make up a tiny percentage of the population. I’ve found them in other book bloggers. I’ve found them in people who comment on the Heavy Medal mock-Newbery blog and other School Library Journal blogs. I’ve found them among other ALSC members.
But how lucky am I to live where I can meet and talk with such people in person! Capitol Choices is a DC-area based group that chooses 100 of the best children’s and young adult books of the year each year. We meet monthly to discuss the books. Participants are mostly librarians and other children’s book professionals. The discussion uses the same rules (mention strengths of the books first, then observations, then concerns) as ALSC committees.
It’s kind of wild to be around a roomful of like-minded people and get to talk about great books with people who know what they’re talking about and care as much as I do. Lovely!
On Monday, I was holding a kick-off for the 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten program, and our local station, Channel 16, wanted to do a feature, since it’s a new initiative for the library system.
I was nervous about it. I was making up the program. I thought I’d read a couple books, then sign the parents up while the others read to their kids or the kids played with toys. But I wasn’t absolutely sure that was going to work.
On Sunday, I was reading in Champagne for the Soul, by Mike Mason, and I read the sentence, “What are you allowing to get between you and your joy?” I immediately thought how I was stressed out about the program the next day.
And then I thought, Why not just enjoy it? Why should I be stressed? I know it won’t go perfectly smoothly, and I know I will stumble over my words in spots or think of better things I could have said. And I am truly excited about this program, encouraging parents to read with their kids. So it’s not a stretch at all to enjoy it.
What I didn’t realize — I’d have a professional editor preparing the clip. Yes, I stumbled over my words. Yes, it took several times of them asking me questions. But in the finished version, all that’s taken out, and it sounds like I know what I’m talking about! Best of all, they did a great job filming the kids and parents in the program more than filming me.
I’m very happy with how this turned out, and so happy to be a spokesperson for such a great program!
I’m a judge for the Cybils this year in YA Speculative Fiction. At first, I was a bit daunted — I need to do a lot of reading. But I’ve been having a wonderful time doing it. And the books are so good! Granted, I have only read 16 books so far. But I had almost forgotten how much I enjoy YA Speculative Fiction. This stuff is good!
And I am blessed that I really need to read this great stuff!