Kids and Teen Blog
Tag: Notes From A Childrens Book Publicist
Argh Me Mateys! It's me! Bloody Bonnie Flint! It's Monday, September 19th 2011! And do ye be knowin' what that means? Shiver me timbers! It's Talk Like A Pirate Day!
Oh the response that I got when I answered me phone 'tis mornin' with a "Ahoy ye yellow bellied sap sucker! What be wanting you?" It was my boss. He was less then thrilled, then I told him what holiday it was and he got right into it! Aye, aye he did!
Step one of talk like a pirate day. Figure out your pirate name! I be Bloody Bonnie Flint, I be.
Step two. Find yer vessel's name. Me ship's moniker be The Fall of Atlantis.
Step three. Study up fer Talk Like a Pirate Day so you'll be talking more like Blackbear than the land lubber you be by reading these here books.
Step 4. Get a lesson from th' scurvy pirate master himself, Pat Croce.
Step 5. Have a few jolly pirate insults up ye sleeve.
1. Dance with Jack Ketch, ye pox-faced swab... Prepare for yer doom!!
2. Ye'll not get our treasure, ye grog-snarfing kraken... To the poop deck!
3. We'll rip and burn yer Jolly Roger, ye mutinous swabbie... Land ho!
4. Yer doom be at hand, ye parrot-loving kraken... Belay that talk!
5. Argh, walk the plank, ye lice-infested swab... Blimy!
Step 6. If all goes wrong have this handy English to Pirate Translator bookmarked and at the ready.
Wishin' ye a grog-filled Talk Like Pirate Day me buckos!
One of the weirdest things about the publishing world is how far in advance you work on books. Our national accounts manager and sales manager were at Chronicle Books a month ago learning about books being published Spring 2012 already, books that I am sure have been in the works for awhile.
Here in Publicity Land we are right in the thick of fall and getting ready for winter. Every day more and more of the fall books are arriving in our warehouse (see below) and landing on our publicity mailout tables.
The person who delivers our books tells us how bad he feels for us, saying that it feels like we can never make a dent in the books piling up on our table. Other collegues just make comments, saying things like "We have guests coming into the building this week, you really should clean your tables off." Oh, little do they know the life of a publicist. LOL. Our work tables are a constant rotation of new, fascinating titles. So I thought I would give you a little tour of what is down their right now.
Down The Mysterly River. Not only is there a copy of this on my mailout table, there is also a copy on my nightstand. Yes, this is the book that I am currently reading. Just a few chapters in and I know this book will be one that I talk about for months to come. It is about a boyscout who wakes up in the woods with no inkling of where he is or how he got there. He sets out on a journey to try to solve the mystery and soon finds that he can understand what the animals in the forest are saying. Is he dreaming? Is he dead? Heck if I know. Hopefully I'll have time to really delve into this book this weekend. The book in this photo is the last sample I have here at work. I did a huge mailout earlier this week. I always try to keep one around in case there is someone who I missed. This is also the first book that I have worked on with the folks from Tor (who are really fantastic.)
The Worst-Case Scenario Ultimate Adventure Mars and The Worst-Case Scenario Survive-o-pedia. One of my favorite series of books as a kid were the Choose Your Own Adventure series. I read them over and over trying to get new storylines each time I read. Worst-Case Scenario has taken that concept and created their Ultimate Adventure Series (which started out with Ultimate Adventure Everest this summer). Worst-Case Scenario is always pushing the boundries and creating new concepts. They also have their new Survive-o-pedia format coming out this fall, it is so much fun and you will learn new things every time you read (and re-read) it.
It's A Little Book. I am prone to squealing, and there was definitely some squealing happening this afternoon when I went downstairs and saw that the fabulous Lane Smith's new book, It's A Little Book, had arrived. So cute and the perfect companion to Lane's previous picture book It's A Book. Make sure you check out the trailer's for Lane's two Fall 2011 books that I posted on the blog a few weeks ago.
Darker Still and Cinder. These were the last two novels that I read (I'm on a bit of a YA kick right now). Both are the first books in new fiction series for teens. Darker Still is about a mute teenager living in New York in 1882. Her father works for the museum and one day she discovers that their is life within one of the paintings. Cinder is a futuristic Cinderella story in which Cinderella is a cyborg living in New Beijing. I have a feeling that this series will be the next "big thing". Both were so good and impossible to put down. I can't wait for the next books in the series.
One Love. Last but not least. Last week I told you all about Cedella Marley's fabulous book One Love and now the finished books have arrived! Such a feel good story based on an equally feel good song. Make sure to check out the trailer in last week's blog post.
That's it for now! What have you all been reading this summer?
Growing up my Dad had an incredible collection of vinyl records. My memories of childhood include waking up Sunday mornings to the smell of blueberry pancakes cooking and the sounds of Bob Marley, Crosby Still and Nash, Paul Simon, Bill Withers, Van Morrison and other great artists playing on the record player.
I was one of the lucky few to attend the Fall 2011 Launch at Chronicle Books in January. My buddy Pete who attended with me can attest that I squealed a little bit when One Love by Cedella Marley was announced.
The presenters played a video that Cedella had created for us telling her story of growing up with Bob Marley as a father. She said as a child she and her brother's and sisters didn't realize that their father was famous. They thought that their dad wrote the music for them and they each had their own songs that their dad sang to them. One of Cedella's songs was One Love. It wasn't until she got a bit older that she realized that her father was a famous musician.
One Love is Cedella's adaptation of her father's song of love. Here is a sneek peak. I hope that you are excited about it as I am!
For today's blog post, please allow me for just a moment to switch from my Children's Book Publicist hat to my Mom Minute hat and say
"Does everyone have as hard of a time getting their 2 year old to eat a well balanced diet as I do?"
Seriously. Some days it's impossible. What my daughter likes changes on a day to day basis. One day she will inhale a plate of salmon, the next week she will push it away. One meal she will delight in pretending she is a giant who is eating a forest of broccoli trees, the next meal we serve them to her she will wrinkle her nose.
The one thing that we can consistently get her to eat? Dessert.
Last spring when we went to Toronto to meet with editors the creators of Zoku Popsicle Makers had just sent out a bunch of their machines to editors and bloggers for them to test out. Everywhere we went our contacts were raving about this amazing little machine that lets you make popsicles on your counter in just 7 minutes.
Ever since I have been dying to have one. Then last week as I was eyeballing them on the Williams Sonoma website I thought "My birthday is in July, I should ask for one!" Ask I did and fingers crossed I will be getting a Zoku for my birthday.
So today, imagine my delight, when I found the beautiful new Chronicle cookbook Perfect Pops: The 50 Best Classic & Cool Treats on my desk. It is a beautiful sunny day outside, the perfect day for a popsicle and when I started flipping through the book I found a recipe for this gorgeous popsicle! The Striped Juice Bar Pop. And guess what? It's jam packed with healthy ingredients like beet and carrot juice but is sweet and so yummy looking that my kiddo will have absolutely no idea what she is eating except for that it is a popsicle and it is cold and delicious.
So hoping that there are other parents out there, reading this blog, struggling to get their little ones to eat what's good for them I give you this gift. The recipe for the Striped Juice Bar Pop from Perfect Pops: The 50 Best Classic & Cool Treats.
Striped Juice Bar Pops
This pop will remind you of a drink from your neighborhood juice bar. I came up with this combination for a party celebrating the birthday of a friend's daughter. My friend likes to give her kids healthful sweets, and this pop was a natural. (It is also her daughter's favorite color scheme.)
2 1/2 cups seeded watermelon cubes (from 1 1/2 pound piece)
2 tablespoons beet juice
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
2 teaspoons agave sweetener
1 cup carrot juice
1/2 cup apple juice
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
2 teaspoons agave sweetener
1. To make the watermelon-beet juice: Place the watermelon in a blender and process until liquefied. Pour through a fine-mesh strainer into a small bowl, pressing the pulp with a flexible spatula to extract as much juice as possible. Discard the solids. You should have about 1 cup watermelon juice. Stir in the beet juice, lime juice and agave sweetener.
2. To make the carrot-apple juice: In another small bowl, stir together the carrot juice, apple juice, lime juice and agave sweetener.
3. Using a small measuring cup with a pour spout, fill each ice
pop mold about 1/4 full with the watermelon juice mixture. Freeze until set, about 30 minutes. Fill each mold another quarter of the way full with the carrot juice mixture. Return molds to the freezer and freeze until set, 30-45 minutes. Insert sticks and repeat once more with each juice mixture to make four layers total. Freeze until firm, at least 6 hours or up to 1 week.
4. To unmold the pops, run hot water over the outsides of the molds for a few seconds, then gently pull the sticks.
That's it! What is your favorite treat to eat on a hot summer day?
Happy Reading (and popsicle making)!
There are oh so many reasons that I love my job. Please. Who wouldn't love being surrounded by fun kids books all day? Here are my top 5 reasons I love my job:
1. The people I work with. They really are super fab! These are just a few of them.
2. The insanely talented editors that I get to work with and the fun mail that they send me. For example check out the summer issue of The Magazine below, visit them online and pick up an issue on newstands now. Their are reviews of Cinderella Ninja Warrior, I'm Not Her, The Big Book of Spy Stuff, The Worst-Case Scenario Ultimate Adventure Everest and Real Mermaids Don't Wear Toe Rings.
4. The authors, publishers and incredible publicity departments at those publishers. What other girl get's to say that she works with Chronicle, Gibbs Smith, Lonely Planet, Moleskine, New Harbinger, Silver Dolphin, Simply Read and Sourcebooks every day?
5. The books. Because really, at the end of the day, that is why I do what I do. Because of the mountains of beautiful, moving, funny, clever, magical books that transport me and anyone else who is a kid at heart to other worlds.
And that is why I do what I do!
Danielle and I just got back from a whirlwind trip to Toronto to meet with media. We met with loads of wonderful editors and bloggers.
I'll be back next week with a sneak peek of some of the books that everyone was really excited about but in the meantime (while I catch up on a week's worth of work) here are videos for two of my favorite picture books from the Spring List.
First up is Press Here by Herve Tullet- In the days where everything is an app, has it's own website, or has some kind of online component it is so refreshing to see an interactive book that is, well, just a book. Take it from a mama of a two year old who is addicted to puzzles on the iphone. Give them this book to play with and help reintroduce them to the magic that can be held between the pages of a book. Check out the video and you will understand why.
Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site by Sherri Duskey Rinker, illustrated by Tom Lichtenheld- Whenever I mention the name Tom Lichtenheld to editors I almost always get squeals of delight and "Oh my goodness, he is the guy that illustrated Duck! Rabbit! I LOVE him!!!" Yes he is. And if you have a little one that is obsessed with trucks and diggers then Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site should find a home right next to Duck! Rabbit! on their bookshelf. Let's face it, what little one, male or female, isn't intrigued with trucks and diggers?
Back next week! Until then- Happy Reading!
This Children's Book Publicist is busy, busy, busy getting ready for a trip to Toronto next week to meet with editors. It is always so fun to catch up with all of the editors and bloggers who I now consider friends and to finally put faces to the people that I have been emailing with.
Yesterday Danielle and I sent out catalogues to everyone that we have appointments booked with. Here is a set of catalogues going to the lovely Melissa Carter who I met when she was an editor at Canadian Family Magazine and who is now an editor writing about Baby, Parenting and Food at iVillage.ca.
It's hard to believe that as publicist we are already working on books for Fall 2011. It feels more like fall here in Vancouver. Here is the view from the window at my desk today. Pretty gloomy and drizzly out there.
It's very interesting working 4 or more months ahead in time. The last of our Spring 2011 books are currently arriving in the warehouse and it is time to switch our focus and start looking forward. Right now I am printing out manuscripts from some of our Fall Canadian Authors to send to the Quill and Quire.
This afternoon I am using our new e-catalogue system and making themed book lists for presenting to editors next week. I will make Board Book, Picture Book, Teen Book, Parenting, Cooking, Health and Travel lists to present to the appropriate editors and bloggers. Danielle and I are really excited to be presenting the catalogue using iPads for the first time. Our e-catalogue system is great because it has internal images from the books. Being able to show editors pages from different titles on the screen of the iPad is a very effective pitching tool.
I'll report back in two weeks with how the trip went. Perhaps I'll even blog from the road next week. Now to pick out what to read on the plane! So many wonderful books to chose from. Anyone read anything really terrific lately?
Hi! I'm Crystal! Your friendly, neighborhood, Raincoast Children's Book Publicist. Recently my dad said to me
"Crystal, What does a Children's Book Publicist do? What is a day in your life like?"
I realized that a lot of people probably have no clue what a book publicist does. I am currently reading What The Dog Saw: And Other Adventures by Malcom Gladwell and am finding it fascinating reading about what different professions do in their day to day life. What The Dog Saw and my Dear Old Dad have inspired me to start this weekly blog column to fill readers in on my crazy, fun, never enough hours in the day, work life.
What does a Children's Book Publicist Do? A book publicists job is to earn free media. We do this by sending our books to editors of newspapers and magazines, bloggers, television and radio producers and websites. We also try to meet with these people as often as possible to "pitch" (aka talk about) our favorite books from our list each season that we feel would be a good fit for their readers, listeners or viewers.
Here are a few of my recent mailings.
This mailout was being sent to the winners of The Liar Society Contest that was on MyJellybean.com. We do a ton of contests with MyJellybean so if you love teen fiction make sure to check out their website and enter to win some great upcoming teen fiction reads.
Meeting with media is one of the most fun parts (in my opinion) of the job.Later on this month my
cohort co-publicist, Danielle and I are heading to Toronto to meet with media. I will make sure to report back on all of our adventures from TO.
We also work quite closely with the publicists from the different publishers that we represent and we get to work with a bunch of really wonderful authors and organize media appearances and events for them. Recently I have worked with Kristi Yamaguchi for her book Dream Big Little Pig. She appeared on Canada AM and did some great interviews including this one with MySweetBaby.
I have also been working with Janet Gurtler who will be doing a ton of events in Alberta to promote her new book I'm Not Her and who did this fantastic interview with the Indigo Teen Blog. I just read I'm Not Her a few weeks ago, if you are a fan of Jodi Picoult or Sarah Dessen you should definitely check it out!
So that's it in a nutshelf. Life as a Children's Book Publicist. Check back each week for my latest adventures. If you have any questions I would love to hear them.