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Everything must change

CuriousI was in New York last week to catch up with publishers, Rockefeller Center, and theater. We saw two musicals, Side Show and On the Town (thumbs up for both) and the stage adaptation of Mark Haddon’s The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time (possibly the least rememberable title since Rebecca Stead’s If You Get Here. My point exactly.). Although tricked out with a stupid “we are actors playing characters who know they are actors” conceit, the adaptation was immensely watchable (that’s Richard’s photo of the set) and remarkably faithful to Haddon’s novel.

It reminded me of two upcoming projects we’re working on. On February 10th, Children’s Books Boston is hosting a panel discussion about adapting books for young people to screens large and small. Moderated by Walden Media exec Debbie Kovacs, the panel will examine how such a transformation works:

Moving a great story from one medium to another is both complex and delicate. What types of projects are best suited to this migration? How does the adapter know which elements of the story to highlight? What role, if any, does the author have in the process? What should fans of a book hope for and look for in an adaptation? Join this panel of experienced industry insiders to hear their insights and perspectives.

Details and registration here.

And in May, the Horn Book Magazine‘s annual special issue will devote itself to to theme of “transformation,” looking at how children’s books change, both in the source materials they spring from and in themselves as they make their ways into new forms and eras. I promise this will make sense by the time we’re done.


Roger Sutton About Roger Sutton

Roger Sutton has been the editor in chief of The Horn Book, Inc, since 1996. He was previously editor of The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books and a children's and young adult librarian. He received his M.A. in library science from the University of Chicago in 1982 and a B.A. from Pitzer College in 1978. Follow him on Twitter: @RogerReads.

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