|Great infographic on which creatures are most detrimental to your health.
Credit beneath image.
This edition of the biweekly link round up has a little bit of everything: the serious, the less serious, and just some fun stuff that caught my eye. It’s packed with stuff, so grab your favorite beverage and take your time to enjoy!
- I love Calvin and Hobbes. What I love almost as much as Calvin and Hobbes is Calvin and Hobbes being photoshopped into realistic images. It changes the dynamics a little bit in an awesome way.
- Does social media sell books? Here’s an interesting piece from Gillian Flynn’s agent. As you probably know, Gone Girl has done pretty darn well and Flynn’s not really all that active on social media. Neither is Suzanne Collins, who has had no problem selling her books. I think there’s something particularly fascinating in the notion of the fact Flynn’s not doing the social media selling herself but that her books have garnered a ton of social media attention anyway. Likewise, maybe it’s worth noting that the authors cited as examples in this piece are ones who likely had huge publicity and marketing bucks behind their titles and they didn’t need to do a whole lot of the work themselves.
- This piece over at YALSA’s blog about how awards and selection lists are valuable for collection development and reader’s advisory is pretty great. Here’s a nice look at the insider aspects of being on a committee for YALSA’s awards and selection lists, too.
- Probably not news to anyone who reads this, but in the event you somehow missed it, the 15th anniversary editions of Harry Potter are getting new covers. I love this art.
- It was really neat seeing my post included in this roundup of posts about introversion over at Library Journal/School Library Journal’s The Digital Shift. I also wanted to include this blog post written by Lahey herself about the sort of blowback she received after her piece went up. This topic continues to inspire blog posts everywhere I look (including a couple of interesting posts at Lifehacker — one which talks about how to use your introversion for your power and another ill-informed piece about how to “overcome” your introversion to succeed. I’m not linking them since you can find them easily enough if you want to).
- The 50th anniversary of Sylvia Plath’s death came and went on February 11. Here’s a piece with some current writers reflecting on Plath’s life and legacy in memory.
- A couple of weeks ago I linked to a post from Maggie Stiefvater about rape and the problems she had with it being used in the last number of books she’d read. I mentioned having some issues with how she presented this post. I was willing to overlook some of the points because she raised some worthwhile questions. Then she posted this piece about writing and the thinking writer (with applications to the thinking reader, too). Which, I have to say actually made me dislike the rape post even more. Why? Because of the implication that the writers who employed a rape scene didn’t think about the issues surrounding it. Again — we have no context in her post for this issue. We’re supposed to just accept it without knowing whether these rape scenes and the discussion of rape culture more broadly is supposed to be illuminating some real, honest issues going on in our world right now. I link to these posts I don’t agree with because I think they’re worth reading and because I think the points she raises are ones worth thinking about and having thoughts about, even if they aren’t in line with hers.
- This is one of the most charming things I’ve seen/read in a long time. And make sure you check out the rest of her Tumblr. I kind of love this teenager!
- Sort-of related to the piece above about Gillian Flynn and social media is this really thought-provoking piece about book discoverability. Is it even an issue? Do people care? Or is this something that marketing is concerned about but that the average reader (and non-reader) even care about? I agree with the notion that choosing what to read isn’t necessarily linear (maybe there is for some people, but from what I’ve heard, most people are mood readers). Best line in the piece is this one: “Nothing will ever replace building authentic, two-way relationships with customers and readers.” Same with librarians. That’s the game of reader’s advisory, isn’t it?
- I feel like I’ve linked to some manifestation of this same thing multiple times, but I still like it when I read it. Your brain on books — ten ways reading changes how our minds work.
- Can you do something sweet for Bridget Zinn? If you’re a blogger or a librarian or a teacher or a reader….consider doing something for Zinn’s little book, Poison. Even if you can’t do something big, consider purchasing and reading a copy of her book when it comes out and then talk about it with other readers who would want to know about it.
- Do you like minimalist art as much as I do? Check out the amazing fan-created posters for many YA books (and classics) by Risa Rodil. She’s 19! This stuff is fantastic and impressive.
- This piece about the rising trend of sex in YA, the conflation with “new adult” and the awful terminology of “steamies” (which aren’t even a thing) is why it is we cannot have nice things in the book world. Knock this off. I believe I’ve written in depth about the problem of new adult and the issues of sex and erotica and, well, this piece kind of proves my point.
- Speaking of sex and YA, one of the better discussions I’ve seen of teen sex and female sexuality in YA books over at YA Highway.
- A worthwhile read from Victoria Schwab on the publication and development of fanfiction. She’s not against it — in fact she thinks it’s valuable in many ways — but she has some issues with the glorification of their origin stories. This actually gets me thinking a lot about that One Direction fanfiction which is based on real people, rather than an origin story.
- This is one of my favorite reader’s advisory posts in a while, and it’s something that doesn’t need to be limited to just this specific example. Heather, over at TLT, talks about using candy hearts to recommend books. Think of the possibilities to expand this — what about mood ring book recommendations? Or color book recommendations? Or sound-related book recommendations? Or recommendations based on favorite food? Or drinks? Or candy? Think beyond just the easy appeal factors. Reader’s advisory can be off the wall like this and in some ways, it makes it even more enjoyable.
- Before you criticize the book industry, maybe understand something about it. I want to pass this one along to many librarians who think the solution to everything is to become the community publisher. Or who thinks that books are too expensive. Or that publishers have no idea what readers want.
- What authors get big paychecks for speaking? Here’s a guide. In the event you either have that kind of cash lying around OR you want to make sure you don’t approach the wrong people with your tiny budget.
- I’m the furthest thing from a fashion person. I just don’t care. If it fits, it’s not uncomfortable, and it looks good enough, then I am satisfied. That said, I kind of am in love with this blog of fashion inspired by fiction.
- Guys. Snoop Dog, errr, Snoop Lion is reading something that might surprise you. In the best possible way.
- Even though these aren’t book related, I’m sharing a couple of other links that have really got me thinking lately. I should note that I binge watched all of season one of Girls last weekend after deciding I can’t get enough out of reading about Lena Dunham. I know a lot of people have been turned off from watching the show because of her, but I think it’s a really smart show and I love the things she’s making people talk about (even if they don’t want to). There’s this great post about how seeing Lena Dunham made this comedian better like her own body. Further, this piece about how a “non-hot” girl managed to still have a relationship with a supposed “hot dude,” even though she shouldn’t have, if society’s beliefs were the right ones. Also, how not to be a dick to your fat friends. Speaking of fat, how about this great post about how to exercise out of self love and not for fat shaming? I do get down on myself a LOT and have recently because my workouts have been…fewer and farther between. It’s easy to get mad about it, rather than to look at it as a positive thing to do because I like and enjoy doing it. Sometimes it means waiting till my head is entirely in the game.
And then there was the time that the Canadian House of Commons talked about the zombie apocalypse:
Kelly Jensen is a former librarian turned editor for Book Riot. She's the author of IT HAPPENS: A Guide to Contemporary Realistic Fiction for the YA Reader and the forthcoming Feminism For The Real World (Algonquin Young Readers, Spring 2017).