Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Let me get this straight... you're dissing the Wild and Crazy Guy?

For reasons that should be obvious, I get a bit twitchy whenever someone suggests banning a book or play or tries to impede others from access to artistic materials. For instance, a school superintendent in Oregon shut down a high school's impending production of Steve Martin's play, PICASSO AT THE LAPINE AGILE, after 137 community members signed a petition stating their "concern" about the show's adult content. Similarly, across the country, other high schools have faced similar opposition to their proposed stagings of the musical, RENT.

In the case of the Oregon school, Steve Martin himself has stepped up to the plate and offered to fund a non-profit production of the show to be produced off-campus in an effort "to prevent the play from acquiring a reputation it does not deserve."

I'm always happy to see parents taking an active interest in their children's activities and I firmly believe it is every parent's right to steer their children away from anything they feel might be harmful (based on personal values, of course). That stops making sense to me, though, when this "protective" nature expands to the children of other parents. Isn't it just easier (and more responsible) to tell your kid "I don't want you to have anything to do with that show" than it is to attempt to block other people's children from having the experience? Or am I missing something?

Anyway. Yay on Steve Martin. I hope the director of the show takes him up on this offer.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Congratulations to Robin Friedman!

Robin's Flux book, NOTHING was recently shortlisted for Foreword Magazine's Book of the Year Award for Best Young Adult novel.

Winners will be announced at the end of May. Robin's book had previously won the 2009 Sydney Taylor Notable Books for Teens Award. Go Robin!

Monday, March 9, 2009

Noah's got nothing on these ARCs

Liz Burns, bloggoddess at A Chair, A Fireplace, and a Tea Cozy has a well-researched piece on the nature of ARCs (that's Advance Reader/ing Copies) over at ForeWord Magazine.

Check out the first article here.

And the second one here.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Thou Shalt

Agent Nathan Bransford has a fantastic post offering 10 Commandments for Writers.

My favorite?

6. Keep up with publishing industry news. It may seem counterintuitive to follow the news of a business in which layoffs currently constitute the bulk of headlines. But it behooves you to keep yourself informed. You'll be happier (and more successful) if you know what you're doing.

Actually, they're all my favorite. Good stuff.