Author Archives: donalynm

how it went down February 28

Books That Make Us Cry (Part Two) Collected by Donalyn Miller

Grab a tissue. We pick up where we left off in yesterday’s post–sharing our sad book favorites. And We Stay by Jenny Hubbard I bought And We Stay last summer because it earned a starred review somewhere. Knowing that the book was a tear-jerker, I never seemed in the right mood to go into the […]

bridge to terabithia February 27

Books That Make Us Cry (Part One) Collected by Donalyn Miller

Last spring, one of my fifth-graders, Heavenly, spent all of recess sitting under a tree finishing the final chapters of Lynda Mullaly Hunt’s One for the Murphys. Strolling around the playground, I gave Heavenly a wide berth when I walked near her reading spot. I knew where Heavenly was in the story and I didn’t […]

sketch1419380456792 January 03

2014 Nerdy Awards for Young Adult Fiction Announced by Donalyn Miller and Nerdy Nation (Part Two)

This post takes up where yesterday’s post left off–celebrating this year’s Nerdy Award winners for Young Adult Fiction. Thanks to Teri Lesesne, Jillian Heise, Kevin English, Kathy M. Burnette, Katherine Sokolowski, Paul W. Hankins, Sarah Gross, Don Miller, Cindy Minnich, David Macginnis Gill, Jennifer Fountain, and Karin Perry for contributing reading responses and reviews for […]

sketch1419380456792 January 02

2014 Nerdy Awards for Young Adult Fiction Announced by Donalyn Miller and Nerdy Nation (Part One)

It seems like every second a new best books of 2014 list pops up online. Readers who enjoy keeping up with award-winning and well-reviewed current titles are frantically digging through to-read stacks in an attempt to catch every outstanding book they missed. Meanwhile, readers are looking over the fence at 2015 titles, which call to […]

sketch1419380456792 December 29

2014 Nerdy Awards for MG/YA Nonfiction Announced by Donalyn Miller

Nonfiction is the only genre defined by what it is not. Not fiction. Comparisons between fiction and nonfiction based on perceptions of what each offers readers elevate one over the other—depending on whom you talk to about it. Fiction entertains and inspires us. Nonfiction informs and persuades us. And never the twain shall meet. Arbitrary […]

sketch1419380456792 December 28

2014 Nerdy Awards for Early Readers and Chapter Books Announced by Alyson Beecher

Early Readers and Chapter Books may be one of the most overlooked age categories in books. Unless you have children in this age range or teach this age group, you may never really pick up an early reader or early chapter book. Picture Books appeal to and are read by all ages. The artwork in […]

hound dog true December 01

Nerdy Book Club Turns Three by Donalyn Miller

The first Nerdy Book Club post appeared on December 1, 2011. Today marks our third anniversary. When Colby and I started the blog, we didn’t have grand ambitions. We wanted a place to celebrate the books our students loved and share ideas about engaging young people with reading. We weren’t sure anyone would read the […]

revision decisions November 12

Revision Decisions by Jeff Anderson and Deborah Dean Reviewed by Donalyn Miller

The first time I presented at a big conference was in 2005 at the Texas Middle School Association Conference. My friend Beth Parton and I shared “50 Engaging Warm-Ups for the Language Arts Classroom.” Don’t laugh too hard. Consider it proof that evolution is real. I was a third-year teacher and had never attended a […]

the-great-gatsby_420 October 19

Mouths of Babes by Donalyn Miller

We read to Emma before she was born. Sarah would prop a picture book on Celeste’s belly and read. When Emma came into the world, we brought Aunt Sarah to the hospital to meet her new niece. They didn’t need an introduction. Sarah leaned over Emma’s bassinette—whispered—and Emma turned her face toward Sarah. Recognizing her […]

mutation September 30

Write What You Are Passionate About by Roland Smith

If you’re like me you have a love/hate relationship with series fiction. You love reading about your favorite characters in the newest book, but you hate waiting a year, or more, to find out what happens next. Having written several series I understand this from the both the reader’s and the author’s viewpoint. As a […]