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2019 Children’s Literature Legacy Award Acceptance by Christopher Myers on behalf of Walter Dean Myers

Hey Pop, It’s been a minute since I’ve written you a proper letter, mostly because I don’t know your address or even if they have email wherever you are. When you were around, we’d write each other lots of letters, even if we knew we’d be meeting up for breakfast the next day. It’s still […]

Lift Every Voice: Seeing Stars

I’ve been marinating in childhood memories this past year as I worked to complete my upcoming memoir, Ordinary Hazards. Among the memories there were, as you might imagine, many moments that marked my path as a writer: my first poetry reading at Countee Cullen Library in Harlem, receiving my first autographed book by a Black […]

All-of-a-Kind Family Hanukkah near Santa Monica*: 2019 AJL annual conference recap

This year’s Association of Jewish Libraries annual conference was held June 17th through 19th in Woodland Hills, CA. That’s in the Los Angeles area, near Topanga Canyon, lots of beaches, and plenty of other beautiful scenery. As a member of the Sydney Taylor Book Award committee, I was forced to attend. It’s a tough job. After […]

#ALAAC19 Booth 725

Roger, Martha, and Elissa will be at ALA Annual #ALAAC19 in Washington, DC, this weekend. The Horn Book’s booth is 725 — please stop by. The swag is good. We’ll have posters of 2019 Caldecott Medalist Sophie Blackall’s July/August Horn Book Magazine cover (at right; hello, lighthouse!). On Monday morning — post Newbery-Caldecott-Legacy Banquet — […]

Lift Every Voice: On My Fire Escape

The path leading to Ray Charles began on the fire escape of a rent-controlled apartment in Bedford-Stuyvesant. It was here that I discovered Paul Laurence Dunbar’s Little Brown Baby, Shakespeare’s “Et tu, Brute?” and Willard Motley’s Knock on Any Door; scurried down a rabbit hole; and walked on Gwendolyn Brooks’s A Street in Bronzeville. I […]

Think lovely thoughts

I’m off tomorrow for ALA in D.C. and am wondering if 20,000 librarians could accomplish what 1200 hippies could not. Otherwise you will find me mainly in the exhibit hall with Al while Martha and Elissa stalk the sessions. Our booth number is 725, and we will be giving away posters and Horn Books–stick it […]

Lift Every Voice: “You Are the Author!”

I can’t remember a time when I have not been drawing and painting! As a child I loved picture books and memorized Mother Goose poems. I attended public elementary school in the Bronx, New York. In kindergarten, the teacher taught us the alphabet. She asked the students to draw a picture for each letter. When we reached Z, […]

Undercover Reading

My daughter and her husband caught their six-year-old reading in bed after lights out and celebrated. Quietly, of course. They didn’t want her to know they’d seen her taking advantage of the fading daylight coming through her bedside window. Still, they managed to take a picture of her, surrounded by stuffed animals, holding George & […]

Fresh Ginger and Garlic: A Conversation with Nikki Giovanni

Over the past twenty years, I’ve been a vegan, a vegetarian, and a pescatarian. There have been only three periods in my adult life when I’ve indulged in the pleasures of meat. One was right after winning the Newbery, when I found myself craving cheeseburgers. The second was at Jackie Woodson’s table, where I consumed […]

Upcoming CSK gala — ridiculous shoes

I am so excited to attend the CSK Gala at the Library of Congress on Friday night during ALA, honoring the fiftieth anniversary of the Coretta Scott King Book Awards. See the EMIERT website for more on “Coretta Scott King Book Awards: 50 Years Strong,” and of course check out our May/June Horn Book Magazine: […]