Category Archives: Uncategorized

Make New Friends, but Keep the Old by Michelle Blanchard Ardillo

Over Christmas break, I gave my 7th and 8th grade students a one-sentence homework assignment: read a good book. I told them it didn’t matter if it was long or short, above or below grade level, fiction or non-fiction. Just read a good book.  Upon their return to school, I asked them to write on […]

Liberation Literature by Tricia Springstubb

Back in the day when I was still a fledgling, I was thrilled to get a letter (a real one) telling me I’d won the Ohioana Book Award, something I didn’t even know existed. I wrote my little speech and nervously practiced it, trying hard to eradicate “umm” from my vocabulary. When the day came, […]

March 18

When Our Reading Lives Help Us Understand Our Life Situations by Megan Overman

“Reading gives us someplace to go when we have to stay where we are.” –Mason Cooley   Everyone knows that books can provide us with fantastic worlds full of magic, characters with powers we can only dream of, and lives that we wished we lived.  Although books can provide us with a much-needed escape, what […]

March 11

Spontaneous Reading: 2016 and My Personal Literary Revolution by McKinsey Crozier

To say that I read constantly would be an understatement. Many of my childhood memories occurred while peering over the edges of a well-worn paperback (usually Harry Potter, let’s be honest). I love reading, so much so that my family has grown long-accustomed to and long-annoyed by the fact that I forget to engage in […]

March 02

On Doing the Thing You Shouldn’t Be Doing by Travis Jonker

For a long time whenever the urge to write a story hit, I did a pretty good job of stopping it. Why would I want to do the thing I shouldn’t be doing? It definitely felt like I shouldn’t be doing it. All the self-defeating stuff that comes with trying something new creatively (at least […]

January 11

Cover Reveal: wishtree by Katherine Applegate

Five years ago, I fell in love. The object of my affection was handsome in a weathered sort of way, if a bit beaten down by the vagaries of life. Folks, you haven’t really lived until you’ve loved a tree. It was in a too-small container in a too-dry climate in a too-shady courtyard. Abandoned […]

November 10

Please Listen To Alex Gino Talk About George

This past June, at the American Library Association’s Annual Conference, I had the opportunity to talk to Alex Gino about their book George. If you haven’t had a chance to listen to the episode, please check it out. I pray that the episode gives you hope. Colby Sharp is a third grade teacher in Parma, Michigan. […]

November 09

Something Old, Something New; Something Borrowed, Something True: Refreshing a Classic by Andrea Spooner

I’ve had the pleasure of working on many folktale and fairy tale retellings in my nearly twenty-five year career, and some of the most rewarding experiences have been working on Jerry Pinkney’s tales The Lion & The Mouse (the 2010 Randolph Caldecott Medal) and his upcoming The Three Billy Goats Gruff (coming May 2017), as […]

March 13

Okay For Everyone by Shelley Johannes

Most of my personal epiphanies have come while reading fiction—while I’m fully immersed in a book with my guard down. This past Sunday was a first for me though. In just ten minutes and sixteen seconds, before I was even fully awake, a podcast leveled me. I was in prime position to be unraveled by […]

March 12

Top Ten Short Novels to Snuggle Up With During a Blizzard by Stephanie House

“Whether the weather is cold, or whether the weather is hot, we’ll weather the weather whatever the weather, whether we like it or not.” Thus went the tongue twister we chanted in theatre camp. Recently, New York City, DC, and the surrounding areas got a crash course in just that. Most people snuggled up to […]