Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Taking Stock (and Happy New Year!)

I always like to do a personal year-in-review, looking to see what's going right and wrong, what's on and off track, what I should do going forward, and what I definitely shouldn't do going forward based on looking backward!

The review a personal thang, not really the stuff of blog posts for me, but this year something really stood out in sharp relief: I am happy when I'm writing, and when I don't have time to write... well, jeez, it's frustrating in a way I don't think I ever understood.

So, I'll use that as motivation next year, stealing minutes when days don't offer hours, and taking hours when they come. It's a rare moment of clarity... so feel free to remind me of it sometime in the middle of next year :-)

I wish you and all of yours a very happy and healthy 2011!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Thoughts During the Downpour - a rainy day poem

Thoughts During the Downpour
Gregory K.

I always wished the rain away
And said “come back some other day.”
It worked real well, but now I fear
“Some other day”?
It's here.

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Friday, December 17, 2010

Oddaptation Redux: How the Grinch Stole Christmas

It's been a while since I've posted an Oddaptation here at GottaBook. If you've never seen one, I think of them as picture book Cliff's Notes, though with attitude and almost always in verse (hence my thinking of one for Poetry Friday).

You can see a selection of Oddaptations here if you'd like to get up to speed.

My Grinch Oddaptation is a little bit different than others, but since it is the season....

by Dr. Seuss
Oddaptation by Gregory K.

Don’t worry. He didn’t.

You can check out the Poetry Friday roundup over at The Poem Farm, where Amy is not only also throwing a surprise party but posts fabulous poetry all year round. Go on and check it out!

And hey, if you want to get all my new poems (and only the poems) emailed to you for freeee as they hit the blog, enter your email address in the box below then click subscribe!

Thursday, December 16, 2010


What, you may ask, is the significance of 26,522? Well, thanks to an article brought to my attention by the wonderful author Erica Silverman, I can tell you that that's the number of children's and YA books published in 2009 (at least per the Library and Book Trade Almanac).

What's not clear is how many of them are traditionally published vs. self-published (and Harold Underdown said on Twitter that he believes these stats include the self-pubbed titles). No matter what, though... that's a lotta books!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Oh, You Think Nothing's Happening Here?

Sure, I've been quiet. But that doesn't mean it's been quiet here at GottaBook.


How about 60 spam comments left last night? Hmmm? How about that. But these were special, as the author of them attempted to be on topic, occasionally even writing poetry.

Oh, sure, it was poetry with a hyperlink to generic pharmaceuticals thrown in randomly, but it was poetry!

I also liked this comment, finding it quite in keeping with current events:
I was really impressed with the way you redact the blog. I thought "this guy must be a professional poet."

It is nice to have fans. And if any of you are searching for generics as gifts for the holiday season, I think I have a link for you....

Saturday, December 04, 2010

Twitter Tags of Interest for Children's Literature (from Picture Book to YA)

Here is an attempt to create a list of the various tags used on Twitter that relate to the field of children's literature. This will be a "living" document, changing as Twitter changes and as new tags pop up.

#kidlit - used all the time. used for news of interest in children's literature. (To be honest, this tag isn't used as often as it could be!)

#kidlitchat - used on Tuesdays at 9 PM Eastern/6 PM Pacific for a weekly chat about all things kidlit, but used sporadically through the week, too.

#YALitChat - used on Wednesday at 9 PM Eastern/6 PM Pacific for a chat about YA, but also used all week long for YA Lit type topics.

- used on Thursday at 9 PM Eastern/6 PM Pacific for a weekly chat about the art of picture books. Used some during the week, too.

#yalit - used all week long for items related to YA Lit.

#PBlitchat - another picture book chat tag, writing based. The chat has moved off Twitter, but the tag still used for picture book stuff during the week, too.

#scbwi - used to tag news and information related to or of interest to SCBWI members (local, national, and international)

#titletalk - a Sunday chat, but the tag is used during the week, too, highlighting specific titles

#amwriting - a cross-genres and cross-age groups tag for those who are writing

#speakloudly - this tag deals with a situation involving Laurie Halse Anderson's Speak, and is still heavily involved in issues involving challenges to children's books.

#nfmon - used to tag posts related to non-fiction Monday.

#NFforKids - used all week long for links related to non-fiction for kids.

- used to tag posts related to Poetry Friday.

There are many more tags that cross into children's literature from time to time:

#askagent, #publishing, #books, #poetry, #amediting, #literacy, and no doubt dozens more I'm forgetting.

There are also tags like #kidlitcon that relate to individual events and others that relate to one-time chats. I am trying to list only tags that work year round.

Have any to add to this list? Please let me know so we can keep this list up to date. Leave a comment here, email me, or even tweet me!

Friday, December 03, 2010

Poetry Friday! A Carnival! A Biiiiiig Book Giveaway!

Lots to pass on today, starting off with the biiiiig giveaway (like 125,000 books big) being done by Readergirlz and FirstBook. I mention this here not just to shine the spotlight on this great thing... but also because they're looking for organizations which reach out to teens to help in the distribution. Do you know any such org? If so, please check out the giveaway announcement for more info.

Also worth a peek and shoutout... the November Carnival of Children's Literature is up, kindly hosted by Wendy Wax. Lots to see there, so head on over and check it out.

And it's Friday, so that means there's a new Poetry Friday roundup! This week it's hosted over at the Miss Rumphius Effect. And like all weeks, it's well worth a peek.

That should keep us all plenty busy, as if this time of year isn't busy enough already. But hey, this is cyber busy. It's different, I tell ya!

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

This is my type of research!

Not that I'm turning GottaBook into a hub of science info or anything, but this is the type of research that I can fully get behind. In fact, most writers I know can, too:

Coffee and a Sweet Treat to Think Better? Caffeine and Glucose Combined Improves the Efficiency of Brain Activity

As my friends on Facebook and Twitter have agreed, this is not really "news" to those of us who partake of the combination already. Still, this is a great excuse... errr, I mean... this is a great reason to commit ourselves to the cause of fully exploring this important topic and experimenting frequently in the true tradition of scientific inquiry.

Are you with me? Excellent! I knew I could count on y'all. Now who's brewing?