Classics and Children’s Literature #kidbkgrp

Last night at 9pm, the very new and very amazing #kidbkgrp over on Twitter got going. It’s an online chat group for people who love children’s literature – and I’d love to see you there next time (end of August ish). Keep an eye on the hashtag! (And feel free to suggest topics – I have one in mind, but I’d love to hear your thoughts 🙂 )

Inspired by this article, we discussed classics in children’s literature. What makes them, what breaks them, why we have them, what they are, and how they are. There’s a LOT there to talk about, right?

Here’s the storify and here’s the link to the hashtag on Twitter.

See you at the next chat!

My two year and a bit anniversary

It’s a landmark day. Kind of. Well, I’ve been meaning to do this for a while and only just worked out the dates so don’t judge me 🙂  I’ve been on Twitter for two years and a bit now and thought I’d take a moment to look back on what Twitter has done for me. And, to be frank, I can’t reccomend it enough.

Here are my Twitter highlights:

  • It’s helped me sell articles to magazines (following a RT and an initial post by the magazine editor). An e-mail address of the editor and an active solicitation for articles? Plus being paid? There’s something you don’t see on the milkround of e-mailing / writing in on the hope that the right person sees your pitch at the right time.
  • It’s got my novel to some amazing literary agents who all posted initial wishlists or used the invaluable hashtag #pubtip
  • It sparked an interest in what web 2.0 can do for my professional context (library ninja). I now manage two professional library Twitters, and lead my team on web 2.o initiatives. Twitter also empowered my colleagues (and in particular those who were nervy about using “new” technology) to engage in a worldwide discussion with their fellow  librarians and pool knowledge (many of the team now have their own Twitters which they use in their own way, some posting, some just following). It also gave our small specialist library a particularly distinct and exciting brand identity both in the organisation (don’t come in our door? Fine, look at the amazing stuff we post on Twitter) and worldwide (why, hello there prospective student, have a look at what we’re doing).
  • Doing an MA in Children’s Literature via distance learning can feel as if you’re miles away from anybody and working out there in the black. Wrong. Get yourself on Twitter. You may not be able to talk to people, but the knowledge and the hints and the tips I’ve got from fellow #kidlit enthusiasts has been invaluable (and, quite splendidly, after just doing that search for #kidlit I’ve found somebody new to follow).
  • It’s helped me enhance my library ninja powers. From seeing Librarians do Gaga to seeing the staff of Bloomsbury doing “Don’t Stop Believing” through to finding the brilliant Wikiman or to looking at what some universities are doing on Foursquare, Twitter has helped me push the boundaries and think that sometimes that my more unique ideas might just work (because, quite often, somebody else is already doing it). Doesn’t mean my version won’t be better though . 😉
  • I follow a ton of children’s literature specialists including many YA authors. What I love between these groupings is, as we’re all on the same page (boom boom), the sharing of information is generous and open. People pass on things because they’re interesting and relevant and may be of use to you too. It’s not just you researching a topic you love …. it’s several hundred … several thousand people researching a topic you love. Just think of that wo/manpower for a second. It’s amazing.
As the Wikiman says in this, Twitter is a conversation. And it’s free. Takes up no time if you just subscribe to a bunch of people and listen. Really, there’s nothing to lose 😉


On the 8th December the hashtag #whyiread swept Twitter. For the uninitiated a hashtag is kind of like a classification system for posts that people put on Twitter. It allows a disparate group of people to post together under one heading.

And #whyiread blew my mind a little bit. The story of the hashtag is available here.

My contributions were …

#whyiread To live a thousand lives at once.

#whyiread Loo, Melaka, Jacynth Hardy crying in the garden, Ms Marvel, Gert, Veronica Weston + her arabesque in the wilds of Northumberland

Below are a few of my favourites …

@wholewidewords – Reading is an act of revolution. Whenever a group of people aren’t allowed to read, it’s because another group feels threatened. #WhyIRead

@A_Tusken_Raider – #WhyIRead, because telling a story wrong to the tribe, could result in death. #starwars #Fact


@revistaenie – #WhyIRead because sometimes when I read, I read something that changes the way I imagine the world (and I can never go back)


@amylibrarian – “Outside of a dog, a book is man’s best friend. Inside of a dog, it’s too dark to read.” -Groucho Marx #whyIread


@erintgrace – Because the two dimensions of the page give life a third #whyIread


And also this:
@NewtWittier – Oprah suggested it #whyiread