Awards, Announcements, and News

Awards, Announcements, and News

HarperCollinsCanada announced that Sandy Nichols from Calgary, AB, was the winner of the Illustrate “Alligator Pie “Competition that launched in October 2013. Nichols’ proposal was the unanimous choice of the competition judges, who selected it from more than 60 entries. Nichols has officially signed on with HarperCollinsCanada to illustrate the special anniversary board book edition of Dennis Lee’s famous poem “Alligator Pie.”

You may wish to follow Amy’s Marathon (and if so moved, contribute to her fund raiser as well). Amy Mathers’ goal is to raise money for the Canadian Children’s Book Centre (CCBC) to endow a Canadian teen book award to be presented at the yearly Canadian Children’s Literature Awards gala. Amy will collect fundraising pledges for which donors will receive a charitable tax receipt. As stated on her website: 
  "Inspired by Terry Fox’s and Rick Hansen’s Canadian journeys, Amy Mathers decided to honour her passion for reading and Canadian teen literature while working around her physical limitations through a Marathon of Books. Realising that Terry Fox could run a kilometre in six minutes during his Marathon of Hope, she figured out that she could read ten pages in the same amount of time. Thus, on her journey, ten pages will represent one kilometre travelled across Canada. Amy will be reading teen fiction books from every province and territory, exploring Canada and promoting Canadian teen authors and books by finishing a book a day for each day of 2014. She will write a review for each book she reads, and invites people to share their thoughts on the books she reads too."

Consider attending the upcoming Serendipity conference in Vancouver: Children’s 
Literature in a Digital Age ( Saturday, March 8 2014 at UBC). Presenters include illustrator Paul Zelinsky, Canadian authors Arthur Slade and Hadley Dyer, two high profile teacher-librarian bloggers John Schumacher (Library Journal) and Travis Jonker (School Library Journal) and author Tim Federle. “From practical advice on using literature-based apps with children to learning how authors and illustrators are using social media and electronic publishing, Serendipity 2014 is a must-attend event for educators, librarians, researchers and literature lovers looking to the future of books for young people.”

Saturday, May 3, 2014 is another day to mark on the calendar; the University of British Columbia will host “I Will Be Myself”: Identity in Children’s and Young Adult Literature, Media and Culture. This is a one-day conference showcasing graduate student research that explores, questions, and analyzes the issues surrounding identity in various elements of children’s and young adult literature. Keynote speaker is Dr. Phillip Serrato. The conference fee is very reasonable and includes refreshments and a catered lunch.

For those of you in the Calgary area, plan on attending "When Worlds Collide 2014" from August 8-10, 2014 at the Carriage House Inn. This is a festival for readers, writers, artists and publishers of commercial and literary fiction, including genre, YA, Children’s books, and Poetry. Guests of honor include Diana Gabaldon, Jacqueline Guest, Mark Leslie, D.J. McIntosh and Brandon Sanderson.

The 2014 Alberta Readers’ Choice Award (ARCA) has now received 45 titles from a variety of Alberta authors, all vying for a $10,000 prize provided by the Edmonton Public Library (EPL). With this submission list finalized, EPL is now turning to its colleagues across the province for help in shaping a ten-item longlist that will be provided to our jury in February. If you are a staff member in an Alberta library—whether public, academic, government, law, school system or other—we want to hear from you. We’ve set up a poll at the following site: Please note that we are only counting ballots that have institutional e-mail addresses listed, so please make sure that you’re listing your work e-mail. This vote will remain open until end-of-day, February 5th and results will be made public on Thursday, February

The ALAN Review posted the following Calls for Papers and Proposals which may be of interest for those of you working with young adult materials. 

Fall 2014: Stand Your Ground: Fostering Independent Thought and Action. We believe that, as educators, we sometimes need to be our own best allies as we fight to teach in ways we know to be good and right and true-and increasingly uncommon in an age of commonality. We need to know how to defend our selection of materials and our practices as we stand our ground in the face of scripts and censors, standards and accompanying tests. In this issue, we invite educators to band together and unite around our shared commitment to kids and stories, to offer our own evidence-based support for the innovative work we do in our classrooms and libraries, to celebrate the ways in which we encourage our own students to think independently and act in good conscience, even when the odds feel daunting. Please send manuscripts to: . General submissions are also welcome by the deadline of March 31, 2014.

The ALAN Review also notes that "Stories from the Field" invites readers to share a story about young adult literature. This section features brief vignettes (approximately 300 words) from practicing teachers and librarians who would like to share their interactions with students, parents, colleagues, and administrators around young adult literature. Please send your stories

That is it for this time around. Last word (reminder/suggestion): Become actively involved with the National Reading Campaign, celebrating the joy of reading in all kinds of ways. “Tell us why reading matters to you, and learn what you can do for reading! Because when Canada reads, Canada grows.”

Gail de Vos

Gail de Vos, an adjunct instructor, teaches courses on Canadian children's literature, Young Adult Literature and Comic Books and Graphic Novels at the School of Library and Information Studies for the University of Alberta and is the author of nine books on storytelling and folklore. She is a professional storyteller and has taught the storytelling course at SLIS for over two decades.