Archive for May, 2010

Is the real-time web helpful for books?

Monday, May 31st, 2010

Business Insider reported last week that the half-life of YouTube videos is now hovering around six days. For those who aren’t scientists or web developers, what this means is that 50% of the average YouTube clip’s viewers see the clip within the first six days that it is put up on the internet. This number […]

Beyond the literature of steampunk

Monday, May 31st, 2010

It seems that steampunk has grown beyond simply being a literary sub-genre. It has made its way out into the real world like no other genre, with the possible exception of gothic fiction. It has become a style, not just for cosplay, but for day-to-day accessories and decorating. Cosplay, the art of making and wearing […]

THE ALEX RIDER PHENOMENON – GADGETS AND VILLAINS

Monday, May 31st, 2010

Today we continue our series of posts about Alex Rider, the superspy who has enthralled millions of readers worldwide. Alex’s creator, Anthony Horowitz chose to write about a teen supe spy because: “I genuinely think that 14-year-olds are the coolest people on the planet. It’s this wonderful, golden age, just on the cusp of manhood […]

Angels in YA Literature (Part 1)

Saturday, May 29th, 2010

In continuing with my angel and devil-themed posts, I wanted to take a closer look at Young Adult literature, which has recently heralded a host of books on dark or “fallen” angels, in particular. These are no mere cherubs – they’re winged beings with a dangerous edge. The male lead in current YA angel novels […]

The Book Burglar’s Time Machine

Saturday, May 29th, 2010

Fittingly given my earlier blog post about prioritising reading over such important things as, oh, study and deadlines, I found myself quite seriously discussing the merits of time machines today. Specifically, how I’d make use of one. Admittedly, time machines don’t yet exist outside of science fiction, but one can never be too prepared for […]

Prime Procrastination Tools

Saturday, May 29th, 2010

It’s a truth universally acknowledged that the less time to read, the more good books you find. You know how it goes. Work is incredibly busy or uni exams are swiftly approaching and you are suddenly—or slightly more than usual—overcome with the overwhelming urge to retreat, curl up, and get lost within the pages of […]

FRIDAY BOOK FEATURE – JAGUAR WARRIOR

Friday, May 28th, 2010

In our house, reading is a big thing. I love that my boys love books and I love that family discussions take place at our dinner table about what is the latest ‘must read’. I love that even though he is eleven, my son and I can snuggle up on the couch together before bed, […]

The Mongoliad: The Future of Reading?

Thursday, May 27th, 2010

Neal Stephenson, Greg Bear and ‘friends’ this week launched a new media project called The Mongoliad. Part novel, part fan-fiction and part game, The Mongoliad is a new media experiment designed to explore the future of the written medium. There’s not all that much to The Mongoliad at present, but it raises a bunch of […]

More Steampunk… with Michael Pryor

Thursday, May 27th, 2010

The Laws of Magic is a series of YA steampunk novels by Michael Pryor. They follow the adventures of a young magical genius named Aubrey Fitzwilliam. They include Blaze of Glory, Heart of Gold, Word of Honour and Time of Trial. Today, Michael has stopped in at Literary Clutter to give up his views on […]

’tis the season of the cookbook

Thursday, May 27th, 2010

First off, I’d like to congratulate the winners of our Facebook fan page Julie Goodwin competition. Their prize, a copy of Our Family Table, is something to be treasured – a really beautiful cooking compendium designed for building wonderful meals and memories, and signed by the first Australian Masterchef herself. Julie also took time out […]

The Utter Insanity of Book Guilt

Wednesday, May 26th, 2010

Sigh. Being part of the blogging community, particularly being part of the book blogging community, is a fun, informative, and – if you want it to be – a largely collaborative experience. If you’re a social internet creature with a book fetish, there is a whole plethora of groups you can join to help hone […]

TOM TALKS ABOUT ALEX RIDER

Wednesday, May 26th, 2010

Today, we are pleased to welcome 12-year-old Tom to Kids’ Book Capers to tell us why he is such a big fan of the Alex Rider books. Tom, what did you like about these books? They were interesting and hard to put down. There was so much action and there were all these different bits […]

Racey Reading – did you bring enough to share?

Tuesday, May 25th, 2010

Birds do it. Bees do it. Even educated fleas do it. But Australian Customs are reserving the right to search you if you read about it on the plane. The first question on Australian custom’s Incoming Passenger Cards has been changed recently and those of us with a taste for the racier literature may be […]

Evolution or revolution?

Monday, May 24th, 2010

Covering the Sydney Writers’ Festival for this blog exposed me to many of the buzzwords that publishers and ebook proselytisers use to talk about the digitisation of the publishing industry. Among their favourites is the ‘digital revolution’. At last Thursday’s ‘Are Australian Publishers E-Ready?‘ panel, Sara Lloyd, Pan Macmillan UK’s digital maven, said that this […]

A personal mini-essay on: Getting personal

Monday, May 24th, 2010

Creative writing is, by nature, a very personal profession. Writers write words, and these words, ideally, trigger emotional responses in readers. Writers draw on their own experiences and feelings, in the hope that in representing these, the reader will  feel a story just as much as read it. I thought I’d write this post on ‘personal’ writing as an author, more than a […]

Steampunk

Monday, May 24th, 2010

Today, ladies and gentlemen, we enter a world of manners, polite society and dark secrets; a world of amazing steam-driven contraptions; a world in which Victoria sits on the throne and we all daily sing along to God Save the Queen; a world in which class divisions are nearing breaking-point and but we all pretend […]

ANTHONY HOROWITZ – THE STORY BEHIND THE ALEX RIDER STORIES

Monday, May 24th, 2010

In the ten years since the first Alex Rider book appeared on our bookshelves, there have been over 12 million sales around the world. To celebrate 10 years of the Alex Rider phenomenon, Kids’ Book Capers is having a three week celebration where we’ll be looking in depth at the books and the man behind […]

If Anne Rice Says It, It’s Gospel

Sunday, May 23rd, 2010

Firstly, guys, apologies for deserting the blog for over a week…put it down to an incredibly hectic College of Law schedule. In case you’re wondering, I’m pretty sure I passed everything so I guess the sleepless nights, lack of socialisation and the mountainloads of chewed-up printer paper must have somehow been worth it (won’t someone […]

ALEX RIDER PROMOTION STARTS TODAY!

Sunday, May 23rd, 2010

Today at Kids’ Book Capers we start three weeks of celebrations for super spy Alex Rider’s ten years in print. Thanks to our friends at Walker Books we have some fabulous prizes to give away. From now until 11th June, we’ve got some great posts happening here. Learn about Alex Rider’s life saving gadgets, and […]

The Book Burglars’ Pin-Up Boy

Saturday, May 22nd, 2010

Sometimes truth is stranger than fiction, and never more so than this week’s news that former American president and all-round good guy George Washington was also—yes, indeedy—a book burglar. I’m referring, of course, to the fact that a library book he borrowed in 1789 was returned this week, a tardy 221 years after he’d signed […]

ALEX RIDER PROMOTION STARTS TOMORROW!

Saturday, May 22nd, 2010

Marching Powder

Friday, May 21st, 2010

I’m seven years and a bunch of print runs behind the times (seriously, this consistently popular book has been reprinted two and three times each year since its 2003 release), but I finally got to read Rusty Young’s cult non-fiction book Marching Powder. And it didn’t disappoint. Based on interviews Young conducted with its protagonist, […]

The Gap

Friday, May 21st, 2010

I came to a realisation yesterday while attending the Interrogating Twitter session at yesterday’s Sydney Writers’ Festival: there is a significant gap between those who get Twitter and those who don’t. And that gap may never be bridged. How can it? Those who despair of social media genuinely believe that it will destroy our language […]

FRIDAY BOOK FEATURE – A DAY IN THE GARDEN

Friday, May 21st, 2010

When I was in Brisbane recently I was wandering through the Roma Street Parklands with a friend and her five-year-old daughter. As Sophie stopped to sniff every second flower and gazed around in wonder, I remembered what it felt like with my own children to watch them explore the sights, sounds and smells of a […]

Beyond the book trailer — author vids

Thursday, May 20th, 2010

My last three posts have been about book trailers. But there is more to video promotion than book trailers. Authors and publishers are also creating videos in which the authors talk about their books. The most basic of these is a straight-to-camera chat, relying on the ability of the author to say something interesting in […]

Troubles by J.G. Farrell wins Lost Man Booker

Thursday, May 20th, 2010

Forty years after it was first published, Troubles, by J G Farrell, is today (Wednesday 19 May), announced as the winner of the Lost Man Booker Prize – a one-off prize to honour the books published in 1970, but not considered for the prize when its rules were changed. It won by a clear majority, […]

Unfulfilled fantasy – Tyra Banks and writing what you (want to) know

Thursday, May 20th, 2010

Tyra Banks has signed up to write – or at the very least, review the CV of a ghostwriter or two for – a set novels based on the modelling world. She will write three books, Delacorte Press said, the first to be called Modelland and published in 2011. The story revolves around a teen […]

FLAME STANDS WAITING

Wednesday, May 19th, 2010

Flame Stands Waiting is a beautiful new picture book written by Corinne Fenton and illustrated by Sebastian Ciaffaglione. This moving story is for four-year-olds and upwards. It’s about Flame, a golden carousel horse with a sad heart. Unlike the other horses, who are designed to move up and down, Flame was built to stand still. […]

HUGE ALEX RIDER PROMOTION STARTS THIS SUNDAY – WIN GREAT PRIZES!

Tuesday, May 18th, 2010

This Sunday, we start three weeks of celebrations for the Alex Rider 10 years on the bookshelves celebrations. Keep watching Kid’s Book Capers for the chance to win some great prizes.

A Life in Words – Susan Maushart on writing about your family without being disowned

Tuesday, May 18th, 2010

Ever texted your teen to get them to the dinner table, or had to resort to a Facebook post to get a message across to your family? How about being locked off the family computer by someone intent on playing games, or needing a TV for everyone in your household to stop the rows over […]

Review: iBooks on the iPad

Monday, May 17th, 2010

Click on any of the pictures for a closer look So, I’ve had my iPad for a couple of weeks now, and it’s high time to review Apple’s answer to the ebook question. I’m not going to review the entire iPad – unlike the Kindle, the it’s not a dedicated reading device, and there are […]

Dee Watching

Monday, May 17th, 2010

Those who have been keeping themselves up to date with our new blogs will already know the fabulous Dee White, she commands the good ship Kids’ Book Capers. Well, she’s going to be busy Festival-hopping in the coming few weeks, so new fans, it’s time to get better acquainted with Dee White, and here’s how: On […]

Even more book trailers — pushing the envelope

Monday, May 17th, 2010

Okay… one final post about book trailers (well, for the moment, at least). Last time around, I suggested that book trailers are perhaps becoming an art-form in their own right — a form of short film making. Take a look at this selection and see what you think. Let’s start off with a big-budget, major […]

THE BOOK CUPBOARD

Monday, May 17th, 2010

A few weeks back I finished a May Gibbs Fellowship*, a creative time residency organized by the May Gibbs’ Literature Trust. It’s for children’s authors and illustrators, and during the Fellowship you get to spend ONE WHOLE MONTH away from home writing (or illustrating). One whole month without school lunches, sport’s training, dentists, vets, committee meetings, […]

More book trailers — are they worth the effort?

Friday, May 14th, 2010

Last time around I introduced you to a few of my favourite book trailers. I’ve got some more for you to look at this time. Plus, I also pose the question: Are book trailers worth the effort? But first, let’s take a look at the awesome trailer for Scott Westerfeld’s Leviathan: It’s a complex, beautifully […]

A tale of two Guidebooks

Friday, May 14th, 2010

In just under two months my partner and I will be winging my way off on a round the world trip. I’m excited and a little nervous as, in addition of my home county of Ireland, the trip takes in a lot of terra incognita or lands unknown. Well, unknown to me. Most people would […]

FRIDAY BOOK FEATURE – THE GREAT BEAR by Libby Gleeson & Armin Greder

Friday, May 14th, 2010

In our second Friday Book Feature we are looking at a new edition of an old favourite – The Great Bear, written by Libby Gleeson and illustrated by Armin Greder. The circus bear spends her days in her cage and her nights performing for a crowd. The crowd taunts her as she dances – poking […]

The agency model: hot or not?

Thursday, May 13th, 2010

The Agency Model: A lot more boring than     this picture. I’ve implied in the past that ebooks are likely to change the way we buy, sell, read and perhaps even write books in the future. One of the ways things are already changing is the way that publishers supply ebooks to booksellers. This […]

Interview with the angelic Nalini Singh (Part 2)

Thursday, May 13th, 2010

Today, Nalini Singh, author of the new Guild Hunter series, will be chatting about reading, and writing her books. As I said in Part 1 of the interview, Nalini will be heading down under later this month…but if you miss her this time, never fear! She will be back in Sydney for a book signing, […]

Good Girls Don’t Make Pocket Gems Of History

Thursday, May 13th, 2010

Sometimes books sneak onto the scene that you: a)      wonder how you didn’t know about sooner; b)     didn’t know you needed until you saw them and now absolutely must have; c)     marvel at the simplicity and effectiveness of the idea behind; d)     wish with every fibre of your being that you had come up with […]