Writers, Writers!

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We have lots of people participating in writing groups at our library this November. While the Camp NaNoWriMo version of National Novel Writing Month was popular in April, we weren’t sure if everyone was ready to go again this month. But…..we have LOTS of participants! Not only do we have several people who wrote books in April working on new projects now, we also have many new members…some who started their projects as recently as last week. Will everyone finish? Maybe not, but our library group is all about supporting each other and trying to encourage the act of creativity.

But I must add, our lone 12-year-old participant is kicking butt!  She is not only meeting her daily word counts, but surpassing them! Way to go, Beky!

The added fun this month comes from our Young Writers Group which meets each Sunday. The numbers have been expanding each week, so much so, we had to add another table this past Sunday to our Tween group! These kids take their writing seriously, let me tell you. We usually begin with a fun writing exercise, something to get them thinking creatively, and then we move on to reading some of our writing. The best thing? These young writers are always eager to take home a few new books, so they’re always being inspired! (All right, I’m sure some of the draw is about snacks, but you can’t write without snacks, can you?)

It’s nice to know our community has such a great interest in writing. Will one of these authors publish a book that will end up on our shelves one day? Who knows? It’s so exciting!

Published in: on November 21, 2014 at 3:42 am  Leave a Comment  
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Choose

When I was a kid, the “Choose Your Own Adventure” series was one of the most popular set of books in our school library. If they didn’t have one of the books, I either went to our public library, or convinced someone to get me to a bookstore so I could buy the one I was looking for. It wasn’t just “one” book; each one could be read over and over, each time with a different path and a different ending. These were popular with everyone I knew, and it’s not surprising that they’ve kept up their popularity with young readers even today.

choose

The creator of the series, R. A. Montgomery, recently passed away at the age of 78 at his home in Vermont. He was a vital part of the series, including the website, and even went forth to create a series of video games that became popular in the 1980’s. I’m sure that the newer books have been written by a number of authors, but Montgomery will always be a vital part of the series, and readers will miss him.

We often get asked for these in the library, or something similar, even today. The outdated book covers aren’t even a deterrent for kids, which is unusual in this day of modern covers. It’s the idea of the this type of reading….being able to move back and forth through a book, making choices like they are a part of the outcome, that draws young readers in and keeps them coming back.  I think an adult version of this would be fun.

Did you read these when you were younger? Or are your children fans of the series?  We’d love to hear what you think!

Published in: on November 19, 2014 at 3:41 am  Comments (2)  
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One Book, One Community!

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Next year, we’ll be participating in the “One Book, One Community” project with all of the libraries in Lanark County. It’s an exciting endeavor that hopes to get people from all five communities reading the same book. We’ll be hosting events around the book, prompting discussion, and encouraging our communities to interact in various ways.

This week, we’re beginning the book selection. You can drop into any one of the local libraries (Carleton Place Public Library, Perth & District Union Public Library, Smiths Falls Public Library, Mississippi Mills Library, and Lanark Highlands Public Library) and fill out a quick ballot for your selection. The theme for 2015 will be AGING, so keep that in mind when selecting a book you’d like to suggest. It doesn’t have to be a Canadian book, and it can be from any genre, as long as it deals with aging in some way. We’re looking forward to seeing what books you suggest, and hope we’ll be able to announce the winning book in the near future. Then, we’ll be getting many copies of the book to make available to the public to read. Keep watching here or at the library for more information as time moves on.

What would your suggestion be for the One Book, One Community project this year?

The Book Olympics!

If you’ve ever wondered how those books you read are bought and sold right from the start, this could be for you. Each year, there are large book fairs held throughout the United States, as well as in Germany and other places overseas. At these book fairs, agents, publishers, authors and editors meet over the course of a few days to wheel and deal. Popular books are sold to foreign publishers, agents bring their latest and greatest finds and try to sell them off to potential publishing houses, and yes, there are even some great author readings and signings. If you’re lucky enough to be in one of these cities during a book fair, you might take in a workshop or get in a long line to have that best-seller signed by a favourite author. It’s an exciting time, for both authors, publishers and readers.

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PBS has decided they’ll try something fun this year and stream live coverage of the Miami Book Fair on their station November 21st – 23rd.  Producers are promising it to be Olympic-style coverage, with popular hosts dropping into various venues and events throughout the course of the fair. While it’s never really been done before, PBS knows their audience base has a high percentage of readers, and they felt this would appeal to viewers, even though book fairs generally are not the source of wild publicity.

You can read more about the event on PBS here.

 

Published in: on November 13, 2014 at 3:27 am  Leave a Comment  
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Best Books!

If you’re an avid reader, you’ll know that the end of any year is the best time for lists. Amazon.ca has announced their list of best books of the year….so far. Who knows? Maybe there will be a few coming out this month and next that will be added to the list.

 

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Overwhelmed by Brigid Schulte (HarperCollins)
Boy, Snow, Bird by Helen Oyeyemi (Hamish Hamilton)
All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr (Scribner)
A Savage Harvest by Carl Hoffman (William Morrow)
The Empathy Exams: Essays by Leslie Jamison (Graywolf Press)
The Martian by Andy Weir (Crown)
The Quick by Lauren Owen (McClelland and Stewart)
The Bees by Laline Paull (Ecco)
Console Wars by Blake J. Harris (Dey Street Boys)
Ping-Pong Diplomacy by Nicholas Griffin (Scribner)
Climate Changed by Philippe Squarzoni (Harry N. Abrams)
The Truth About the Harry Quebert Affair by Joel Dicker (HarperCollins)
Proof: The Science of Booze by Adam Rogers (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)
Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty (Belknap Press)
The Secret World of Oil by Ken Silverstein (Verso)
Uncharted: Big Data as a Lens on Human Culture by Erez Aiden (Riverhead)
Young Money by Kevin Roose (Grand Central Publishing)
The Enchanted by Rene Denfeld (Harper)
Euphoria by Lily King (HarperCollins)
An Untamed State by Roxane Gay (Grove Press)
Andrew’s Brain by E.L. Doctorow (Random House)
All My Puny Sorrows by Miriam Toews (Knopf Canada)
The Troop by Nick Cutter (Gallery Books)
The Noble Hustle by Colson Whitehead (Doubleday)
My Salinger Year by Joanna Rakoff (Knopf)
I must admit, I’ve only read two from this list, but I think I’ll pick up a few more before the year is out to see what I think. How many have you read? Do you think there are any great books missing?
Published in: on November 6, 2014 at 3:27 am  Leave a Comment  
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Ghomeshi Book Cancelled

In wake of allegations of abuse towards women by former CBC Radio host Jian Ghomeshi, Penguin Canada has decided to terminate its contract with him and will not publish his next book. It seems that each day, new details arise about Ghomeshi and the women he dated or had contact with while at work on his popular radio program, Q. The CBC chose to terminate his position with the company, and now there are lawsuits being filed and more women coming forward, so it makes sense that Penguin would want to distance themselves from the announcer.

19821982 by Jian Ghomeshi

However, in light of many scandals over the years, I wonder if this is premature. Canadians are a non-confrontational bunch and might not see that a tell-all book after the conclusion of this mess as something they’d want to be associated with, but let’s face it….scandal sells. And in light of how much the publishing business is changing, it might not be a bad thing for Penguin to keep him on their roster, at least for now. We need these money-making traditionally published books to build funds and presence for publishing houses so that smaller books can be bought and sold without the company facing losses.

If Penguin doesn’t reconsider, or can’t change the contract, I’m sure someone will snatch Ghomeshi up soon enough to write his own side of the story–whether he’s telling it from the comfort of his living room or from behind bars.

What do you think? Would you read a tell-all by Ghomeshi? Or are you tired of his story already? Leave us a comment……..

Published in: on November 4, 2014 at 3:58 am  Leave a Comment  
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