Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Celebrating and Promoting Diversity in Children's Literature

Lee & Low Books: 25 Years of Diversity

It's times like this when I am so proud that my first picture book is published by Lee & Low Books, the largest publisher of multicultural children's books in the United States. Lee & Low has dedicated itself to creating mirrors and windows for children to see themselves and learn about others since they started 25 years ago.

Everything goes back to education and what a young child learns. Do they learn empathy, compassion and understanding? Or distrust and fear of the other? We Need Diverse Books has pushed for more diversity of views and cultures in all aspects of children's publishing, from the publishers to the creators to the consumers and gatekeepers.

The kid lit resource website I help run, Kidlit411, has a page dedicated to websites, blogs, and articles about diversity. I'm reproducing some of those links here to help spread the word. So dive on in and help be the change you want to see in the world.

Good Blogs and Websites

American Indians in Children's Literature - provides critical perspectives and analysis of indigenous peoples in children's and young adult books


CBC Diversity committee of the Children's Book Council devoted to encouraging diversity in children's and YA literature


Deaf Characters in Adolescent Literature

Disability in Kidlit - reviews, guest posts, and discussions about the portrayal of disabilities in MG & YA

Diverse Pages promotes and discovers main characters of color in mainstream and indie publishing

DiversifYA site with tools for authors to include and promote diversity in their YA work

DiversityinYA - celebrating diversity in YA

I'm Here, I'm Queer, What the Hell do I Read? (Lee Wind's blog)

Latin@s in Kidlit - exploring the world of Latino/a YA, MG, and children's literature

The Latino Author - tips and tools for authors and emerging Latino authors

Multicultural Children's Book Day - a day to celebrate multicultural books. 1/27/17

Open Book - blog of Lee & Low, publisher of multicultural children's books

Rich in Color - dedicated to reading, reviewing, and promoting YA with main characters of color or written by people of color

We Need Diverse Books - home of the campaign

Oyate - a Native American organization that evaluates books and curricula with Indian themes to ensure accuracy
  


Writing Diverse Books


Is My Character 'Black Enough'? Advice on Writing Cross-Culturally by Stacy Whitman, Editorial Director & Publisher of Tu Books

The Secrets of Writing a Multicultural Children's Book interview with Tessa Strickland, founder and co-editor of Barefoot Books

"You Can't do That! Stories Have to Be About White People"


Children's Books: A Middle-Class Ghetto

Diversity within Diversity: Moving Beyond Oppression

The Uncomfortable Truth about Children's Books



Diversity in Publishing



Diversity 101: The Multiracial Experience

Agents Discuss Diversity Gap in Publishing 

Reviewing Race

We Need Diverse Books: Can Children's Authors End Publishing Industry Prejudice -- and Change the Way America Reads?


Perceptions of Diversity in Book Reviews


The 2015 Youth Media Awards: A Crossover Year for Diversity

The Diversity Gap in Children's Publishing, 2015


Selection is Privilege (a Librarian's View)


Dear Publishing Industry: Fix Your Own Racism Before You Beg for Diverse Books

The Diversity Baseline Survey

Diversity is Magic: A Roundtable on Children's Literature and Speculative Fiction


Diversity in Reviews: Behind the Scenes with SLJ's "Gatekeeper"



"I Just Don't Connect with the Character"

How to Support the Diverse Books Movement

When Publishing and Reviewing Diverse Books, is Expertise Overrated?



Gender & LGBTQ

Do Boys Get All the Fun? 


LGBT & You: How to Support Your Students


Gender Matters? Swedish Picture Books and Gender Ambiguity


The 22 Best Feminist Picture Books, Because You're Never Too Old To Be Saved By A Princess

Where were the Funny Women Writers?

LGBTQ Publishing: An LGBTQ Publishing Wish List

The Gender Police: A Diary


Fifteen LGBTQ-Themed Books for Readers of Every Age


Why Are There So Few Girls in Childrens' Books?




Reading List

The Best LGBT Children's Books: A Sweet and Assuring Celebration of Diversity and Difference


Best Books by or About American Indians




6 New Picture Books For and About Kids with Special Needs


Monday, October 24, 2016

Mid-Atlantic SCBWI Meeting

© Sylvia Liu
Just got back from a great weekend in northern Virginia for the annual Mid-Atlantic SCBWI conference. A quick recap:

Friday Illustrator Intensives

1. Workshop with Viking Children's Books Art Director Nancy Brennan 

Before we arrived, Nancy Brennan gave us an assignment to illustrate the opening spread of SURPRISE SOUP, by Mary Ann Rodman, illustrated by Brian Collier (Viking Children's Books 2009). She gave us a working manuscript so the text is not the same as the published text. I came up with this piece:

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Summer Roundup: ALA Conference, Classes, More




The summer has gone by in a flash, but here's a recap of the American Library Association (ALA) convention in Orlando and other kid lit activities that kept me busy.

ALA Convention


The ALA Convention was a dream come true as a debut author. Lee & Low Books invited me to join their line up of authors signing books, so I headed to Orlando for a weekend in late June with my older daughter. Not only was it thrilling to sign my book, but I got to meet so many kidlit friends and idols walking around the convention center. Some memories:

Thursday, June 23, 2016

More Book Events: DC & Orlando



DC Events


Fun with A MORNING WITH GRANDPA continues. I went to DC last week and had a book signing party at my friend's house as well as one of my first school visits with 100 first graders at Thomas Stone Elementary School at Mt. Rainer, MD:

Friday, May 20, 2016

A Whirlwind Month: Book Release, Blog Tour, Big Sur at Cape Cod



May has been a whirlwind of book events, a blog tour, and an amazing writing conference. Although I knew it was coming for a couple of years, nothing quite prepared me for the blur of events. A recap:

Monday, April 11, 2016

Happy Spring: A Morning with Grandpa Release & Norfolk Academy Art Show 2016



Although it still feels like Winter, Spring is coming in with a bang for me.

1. A MORNING WITH GRANDPA IS BEING RELEASED


The official release date for A MORNING WITH GRANDPA, written by me and illustrated by Christina Forshay (Lee & Low Books) is May 1, but books have already arrived at my local indie store, Prince Books, and Amazon is fulfilling orders.

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Cats on My Mind: A 5-Day #artchallenge


This week I was tagged to do an #artchallenge on Facebook, which was to post five pieces of my art per day. It didn't have to be newly made art, but I decided to doodle my cute new kitty, Apollo:

© Sylvia Liu