Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Literacy Evangalist

Cybils nominations open tomorrow, October 1st. How can you participate?

Jen Robinson, Literacy Evangalist for the 2008 Cybils award, has several ideas.
This year, awards will be given in nine categories (Easy Readers, Fantasy & Science Fiction, Fiction Picture Books, Graphic Novels, Middle Grade Novels, Non-Fiction Middle Grade/Young Adult Books, Non-Fiction Picture Books, Poetry, Young Adult Novels). Anyone can nominate books in these categories (one nomination per person per category). Nominated titles must be published between January 1st and October 15th of this year, and the books must be in English (or bilingual, where one of the languages is English). To nominate titles, visit the Cybils blog between October 1st and 15th. A separate post will be available for each category - simply nominate by commenting on those individual posts. If you are not sure which category to choose for a particular book, a questions thread will also be available.
The Cybils were founded by Anne Boles Levy and Kelly Herold. This year's winners will be announced on February 14th, 2009.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

First Book

Since my role as Marketing Manager requires that I know what's going on in the on line world, I have been following many moms, writers, authors and marketing gurus through Facebook and Twitter.

The following video was included in a tweet by an author who was touched by the First Book's impact on literacy, as was I:

Terms of Endearment

From time to time, I like to indulge in online quizzes. You know, take advantage of the opportunity to see how smart I truly am, because what other way is there to really test my knowledge than with an online quiz?

This morning, I came across a quiz that caught my attention. It's universal in appeal and even though I am only fluent in my native tongue, I still earned a whopping 70% on this one. Included in the quiz are words in German, Estonian, Hindi, Urdu, Hawaiian, Flemish, Italian, Croatian, Welsh, and Basque.

Go ahead and test your knowledge by taking the Mother or Father Terms of Endearment Quiz.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Best of La Jolla Award

WASHINGTON D.C., September 22, 2008 -- Kane/Miller Book Publishers has been selected for the 2008 Best of La Jolla Award in the Publishers category by the U.S. Local Business Association (USLBA).

The USLBA "Best of Local Business" Award Program recognizes outstanding local businesses throughout the country. Each year, the USLBA identifies companies that they believe have achieved exceptional marketing success in their local community and business category. These are local companies that enhance the positive image of small business through service to their customers and community.

Various sources of information were gathered and analyzed to choose the winners in each category. The 2008 USLBA Award Program focused on quality, not quantity. Winners are determined based on the information gathered both internally by the USLBA and data provided by third parties.

About U.S. Local Business Association (USLBA):

U.S. Local Business Association (USLBA) is a Washington D.C. based organization funded by local businesses operating in towns, large and small, across America. The purpose of USLBA is to promote local business through public relations, marketing and advertising.

The USLBA was established to recognize the best of local businesses in their community. Our organization works exclusively with local business owners, trade groups, professional associations, chambers of commerce and other business advertising and marketing groups. Our mission is to be an advocate for small and medium size businesses and business entrepreneurs across America.

SOURCE: U.S. Local Business Association

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Bicycle Happiness

GreenLAgirl wrote a post about bicycle happiness, over at the BlogHer site. Since we have two books featuring bicycle-riding creatures, I thought this would make a great way to remind readers about them.

Check out the 9 Steps for Bicycle Happiness after reading Marta and the Bicycle and A Bicycle for Rosaura.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Great Books Recommended by Great Dad

I met the founder of Great Dad at ABC Kids Expo a few weeks back. Paul Banas, a fellow Minnesotan (there's many of us), formed the network of articles, blogs and forums found on Great Dad because he realized that there was a missing gap in the online world for dads.

I enjoy his humor, insight and of course, book recommendations, which actually overlaps with many books I have upon my personal bookshelf at home.

So, for those dads, grandparents and women looking for great sites to recommend to the dads in their lives, please stop by and meet Paul and the great site he created, if you haven't already. Oh, and please tell him I sent you!

Reading is Sexy!

Apparently, the Reading is Sexy! messenger bags caused quite a stir at the recent MPIBA regional trade show.

I bought a Reading is Sexy! t-shirt from Bas Bleu a few years back but unfortunately, it doesn't fit me anymore. I'm always looking for more great ways to promote reading so any links or suggestions on where to buy great gear like these items is always appreciated!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Coleen Sally - A National Treasure

This week, we mourn the loss of Ms. Coleen Sally. On Monday, we received an update of her condition from a fellow colleague.

After her recent diagnosis of the Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease (CJD), a terminal illness, her son David shared his thoughts with thousands of his mother's fans:

To say Mom has had a full life would be a monumental understatement. She has made more friends than most people can ever imagine, and touched and inspired thousands more.

Obviously Mom did not deserve this fate (no one does) and it is sad that it has happened to her. It is a little ironic that a disease that literally strikes only one in 1,000,000 struck someone who is one in 1,000,000, actually 10,000,000. I am sorry that I have to bring everyone this news.

However, I know each and every one of you have fond and fun filled memories of your times with Mom and I know you will recall those as you think of her at this time.

Hail to the Queen!!!
Update: If you've posted on the late Coleen Sally, please include the URL to the blog post in a comment below. I've already started by including the few I know of already.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Book Blogger Appreciation Week

I think it's only fitting that the one year blogoversary of Kane/Miller Kidlit falls during Book Blogger Appreciation Week.

If it weren't for the many great bloggers who inspired me, I wouldn't be here writing this post today.

Every time I blink there seems to be a new book blogger that I'm introduced to. I wish I had the time - and the room - to include them all here.

Many kidlit bloggers are listed on the sidebar under What We Read. Many more can be found on the JacketFlap site or on Blog Central, a list of Children's/YA lit bloggers that Anastasia Suen put together.

Who are your favorite book bloggers? Show them some appreciation today by giving them a virtual high five or a virtual hug, depending on how loyal you are to their blog!

I'm sending the book bloggers that I know of comment love which is always appreciated.

Monday, September 15, 2008

I Have a Pill Bug

My son is an animal lover as most children tend to be. He adores our neighbor's cats and likes petting dogs as they walk by us - as long as their owner is in agreement.

We had a tadpole at our house about a year ago, which sadly died. He and his father have a beta fish which they look after at their house but I wasn't so sure I needed a replacement pet, especially since I travel fairly often and am not able to commit to the daily care that having a pet requires.

My son mentioned that their school guinea pig, Sneakers, is able to go home with a different friend each weekend. I assumed he would want to sign up to bring it home during the school year so most likely Sneakers will make an appearan
ce at our place in the next few months.

At the playground over the weekend, my son picked up a pill bug and immediately created a blanket and sleeping place for her (he claims it's a female) and spoke to her in a loving and - dare I say - motherly manner.

Illustration by Kiyoshi Takahashi
from I'm a Pill Bug,
written by Yukihisa Tokuda

So, when he asked me if we could bring her home, I could not resist. Of course, I had to search his overflowing bookshelves for the copy of I'm a Pill Bug that we had read many times after first bringing it home.

In the book, the pill bug narrates the story and explains the science and nature behind these roly-polys, which some people refer to them as. I used the last few pages to emphasize what was needed in order to care for our new pet: soil, cement and water.

So far, so good. The pill bug (a.k.a. Moochi Moochie) is doing well. We spritzed her with water a few times during the day and provided plenty of moist dirt and small leaves from outside. Of course, the book does explain how important it is to bring the pill bug back outside near the fall since they like to stay close to their family.

I have a feeling my son will be ready to let go at that time. He's not quite ready for the real responsibilities of having a pet but this experiment is a good one for us both.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

I Will Make a Difference

booda brand, a clothing line founded by Ruchika Sahai and including Tinna Petursson as the Director of Retail Enlightenment (love that title), produces organic clothing with proud statements that are simple and direct (DREAM, IMAGINE, COURAGE, LOVE, PEACE, etc).

Ruchika states that, "as a new parent, my deepest desire is to share the values and spirit of diverse cultures with my children in the most unique ways. Most importantly, I want to be an example of one who follows my bliss while affecting positive change in the world."

And Tinna's role behind-the-scenes is "about being a part of something that will change a child's world."

Staying true to that promise, for every purchase, Booda brand will gift ONE book to a child in need through the organization Room to Read.

View their line of organic "conversational clothing" which include:

IMAGINE a Wild Kingdom tee – Inspired by the effort to protect wildlife in Africa

Way of the Samurai COURAGE tee – Inspired by the courage of the Samurai to live by the moral principles of the Bushido Code

Joie de Vivre LOVE tee – Inspired by the French motto “joie de vivre” which expresses the cheerful joy of life

DREAM tee – Inspired by the less fortunate children of India who dream of a more abundant life

Under One Sky PEACE tee – Inspired by the hope that one day the Middle East will see a lasting peace

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

For Cryin' Out Loud

I couldn't have said it better myself:

Confessions of a Community College Dean shares his understanding of why bilingual education is so important in our culture.

If you've ever met anyone from a country outside of the U.S., you might be intimidated, like I am, when you discover how many languages they speak, fluently. There are many cultures who encourage their students to learn not two, but many different languages from an early age. Why should our country be any different?

Read on for more from Dean Dad:
"In the last few weeks, two of the biggest, most respected and sought after employers in our service area told me, independently and without prompting, that they desperately want bilingual employees.

Given two similarly qualified candidates, one bilingual and the other not, both employers made it abundantly clear to me that they’d hire the bilingual one in a heartbeat. The ability to communicate with Spanish-speaking clients (or, more importantly, potential clients) is a major business advantage, and one for which they’re willing to pay."
Each of the sixteen Kane/Miller Spanish language titles, from our Libros del Mundo series, are also available in English. These are great resources for young readers, or adults with little knowledge of Spanish, for an introduction to reading, writing, and speaking another language.

What are your thoughts on bilingual education in the U.S.?

Monday, September 8, 2008

Getting Lucky in Vegas

I never win anything. Ever. Which is why I was so shocked when I sat down at one of the penny slot machines here in Vegas last night and won $177.00 on my first - and last - spin at that particular machine.

At first, I assumed I won 177 pennies so I was thinking to myself - as the machine added up the winnings with the sound of coins dropping - big deal, I won a lousy $1.77. As I watched the dollar amount increase on the screen in front of me, I realized that it was actually dollars that were adding up.

I immediately cashed out and excitedly sent a text message to everyone, who I thought would care, about my winnings. Of course, several people had to remind me that if I had only bet more than one penny per line (a whopping total of $0.21 was what I bet) I would've won a heckuva lot more money. Figures.

I was thrilled that I won something - since this has never happened to me before. My luck is beginning to change. At least that's what I've been telling myself ever since!

When I arrived at the Kane/Miller booth this morning at the ABC Kids Expo, I immediately wished I had the I Got Lucky stickers that we created a few years back when our picture book, Lucky, was first published.

The stickers said, "I Got Lucky in..." followed by a blank line. We had used these stickers at the promotional book fairs and trade shows we had attended, using the blank space on each sticker to write in the name of the city we were visiting.

Las Vegas would've been the perfect place for them (I Got Lucky in Vegas!), despite the fact that Lucky is not a new title.

Next year, remind me to bring more stickers! Or buttons! Or...well, you get the idea.