Elizabeth Wein continued her slow climb to greatness by delivering the keynote speech at the SCBWI Winter Conference in New York. There's a summary of her keynote on the official conference blog, and Elizabeth herself contributes a charming post in which she celebrates friendship, family and a secret addiction to My Little Pony.
After what seems like a very long wait, Ellen Renner is back with Tribute, her first YA fantasy novel for Hot Key Books. She blogs about it at the Hot Key site and shares a short story called My Enemy's Eyes, that introduces the world of her book. And boy, does this story go dark!
It's World Book Day this week, news that will fill parents with horror if they haven't sorted out book character costumes for their kids yet. But Julie Fulton is looking at the positive side of this yearly tradition and also highlighting the work of Book Aid International, a charity supporting literacy, education and development in sub-Saharan Africa.
Sally Poyton feels like a one-horned unicorn, but longs to be a phoenix-multi-horned-unicorn-bride hatching from a golden egg. No idea what I'm talking about? Along with some outrageous metaphors, Sally's blog post Always the Bridesmaid contains an honest examination of what it's like to keep getting recognised for your work, but not quite enough.
Finally, there was much goggling (and Googling) in disbelief at Lynne Shepherd's bizarre attack on J.K. Rowling last week, and Addy Farmer provides a great commentary at Notes from the Slushpile. It turns out that criticising the taste of millions of Harry Potter fans can lead to an unexpected, career-limiting disaster. Who knew?
Nick Cross is a children's writer, blogger and all-round techno-ninja. In 2010 he was a winner of Undiscovered Voices with his zombie comedy Back from the Dead and currently writes short fiction for Stew Magazine, an event that was recently celebrated on this site.