Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Wednesday Whittleings - Banned Children's Books 2018



Welcome to the very first installment of my brand new Wednesday Whittleings! Every Wednesday, I'm going to randomly babble about something children book, writer, author, reading or 'whatever else strikes my mind' related.

This week is the official Banned Books Week! Which means that especially book orientated people are taking this week to reflect, discuss, mention and showcase banned books.

So, are books still banned in the US today? And what about children's books? Surely, nobody would do that anymore. We love freedom, right?

Interestingly enough, books are still being challenged even in the USA. After a little research...which may or may not always be correct (yep, I make mistakes too. Tons of them)...here are several books for audience under 18 which were challenged by school districts recently in the United States. (Photos taken from Goodreads).

Whether or not I personally find the content of these books okay and would happily hand them to my own children isn't the point of this list. I just found it interesting that school districts and parents still try to ban books.

Side note:
Interestingly enough (or probably as most of us already know), banning hasn't stopped these books from being circulated. All of them have enjoyed sales I as an author personally dream of.

Which children books (audiences 18 and under) do you know about which have been banned in recent years?



I'm betting some of you already knew this first one....


Because of the way the theme suicide was handled, this one was banned in several school districts last year. (Young Adult)




School districts claimed this one had to be banned because of the profanity and sexually explicit scenes every year since its release in 2007 (Young Adult)



Who didn't have to read this one in school back in the day? I believe this is one which has been challenged many times since its release in 1960. Last year, due to the 'N' word and violence. (I'm putting this one as Middle Grade since it was given to us in the 6-7 grade)



I've seen this one...and it's sequel... everywhere lately! Who knew that it was challenged last year due to hitting upon themes like drug use, profanity, and was considered simply vulgar. (Young Adult)



This one is for Middle Graders and that topic we all hated...aehm...respected during those classroom discussions. Anyway, this one was said to invite kids to be too open about the topic. (I haven't read it, so I can't say anything more to that). But it reminds me of a similar upset surrounding Are You There, God? It's Me, Margaret by Judy Blume which came out when I was maybe in the 5th grade. I never read that one either, but I remember the whispers going around...and giggles. (Middle Grade)



This picture book, published in 2006, was banned repeatedly thanks to depictions of families with two moms or two dads. (Picture Book)



Has been constantly under ban attempts in school districts since its release in 2013 and is still being banned by districts this year (2018) thanks to it's profanity and 'pronography'. (Young Adult)

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

IWSG - A Writer's Fork in the Road of Publishing


It's IWSG time!

Every month on the first Wednesday of the month, us writers come together to offer support, advice, encouragement or simply to shed our frustrations and woes with each other. Writing is a tough journey, and we don't have to go it alone.

Thanks goes to the brain behind this group, Alex J. Cavanaugh! If you want to join in or find out more (because there is so much more to this group) then head on over here.

Special thanks goes to this month's co-hosts:  Toi Thomas, T. Powell Coltrin, M.J. Fifield, and Tara Tyler!  Thanks guys!


This month's question is...

What publishing path are you considering/did you take, and why?


I'm more of a traditional type of girl, and that's the path I decided to take. At least, that's the easy answer, but when in life are things that easy? This was a path that didn't happen overnight either.

Many of my author friends are self-published, and this is a path I will probably also embark on someday. Just not quite yet. Even then, I'm thinking I'd rather be a mixed author and continue with both (if possible). 

But here are the reasons I chose the other path for now (ready for the list?):

1) Middle Grade literature is a tough cookie in self-publishing. (This is by far the most important point in my decision). While YA and adult literature can run well or at least somewhat decently in the self-publishing world, children's literature isn't quite as marketable. There are various reasons for this, which I'm not going into right now. Seven or eight years ago, authors insisted that children's literature just needed to gain footing, but it never happened. Not really. I do know some self-publishers who have done all right...very few...but it's still a battle for them, and I've seen many of them give up and switch over to YA instead. 

2) Not alone. Honestly, publishing and marketing are new adventures I didn't want to have to learn on my own yet. My life is pretty busy as it is, and I'm constantly having to learn things from scratch. Let's just say it's nice to have some assistance in at least one area of life rather than tackle that alone too.

3) Verification.  It was important to me to bring my writing to the point where others would stand behind it too. What can I say? Even I have personal dreams and goals.


But, as said, this doesn't mean I wouldn't switch paths or use both in the future. I'm always ready to go with the flow.


What about you? Which route do you want to take or have you taken?

*****


And on the happy news end of things...

One of my super-duper writing buddies has her cover reveal today! YAY!!!!






This is a paranormal retelling of Hansel and Gretel....and what a read it is! I was lucky enough to receive an ARC copy from Krystal, and....
WOW...
I'm loving every page.
She has a slightly dark twists on things and it definitely draws in.
Anyway, click the cover to head on over and see it on my blog, Bookworm for Kids.

******

I almost forgot!!!!

Today is the first day of open submissions for the latest IWSG Anthology!



Genre: Young Adult Romance
Word Count: 3500-5000
Theme: Masquerade
A masquerade can be a false show or pretense, someone pretending to be someone they aren't. It can be a ball, a fancy dress party, it can be a mask. Open to interpretation.

Submissions accepted: September 5 - November 4, 2018

How to enter: Send your polished, formatted (Double spaced, no page numbers), previously unpublished story to admin @ insecurewriterssupportgroup.com before the deadline passes. Please include your contact details, your social links, and if you are part of the Blogging, Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter IWSG group.

Judging: The IWSG admins will create a shortlist of the best stories. The shortlist will then be sent to our official judges who will be announced.

Prizes: The winning stories will be edited and published by Freedom Fox Press next year in the IWSG anthology. Authors will receive royalties on books sold, both print and eBook. The top story will have the honor of giving the anthology its title.



Are you joining in?