How do you find out about new books to read? From friends? From book shops? From a librarian? From the internet? How about children’s books- for your own children, for friends and relatives, or for your classroom? The amazing writer SF Said, author of modern classic Varjak Paw and my favourite children’s SF novel Phoenix has started a campaign for newspapers to review more children’s books. The Guardian, for example, has an amazing children’s book section on their website– but it is not on the app, let alone in the print paper. Weekend editions of papers may review one or two books a week. So what? you might ask, but reviews lead to buzz lead to shops stocking books leads to readers buying them, or ordering them from the library. The big best selling authors are best selling because they already have buzz and publicity. Most children’s authors have no publicity beyond a kind local bookshop stocking some signed copies. So please tweet your support- #coverkidsbooks.
The other was this list from SF Signal of “cutting edge” science fiction, with no women writers. It is profoundly depressing to me that this list would be written, let alone publisher, when there is so much great queer, diverse and woman-centric SF being written and published (Ann Leckie, Nnedi Okorafor, Lois McMaster Bujold, off the top of my head) and unless it is acknowledged, praised, bought and read, it will go out of print. See this article on acclaimed writer Alice Thomas Ellis, who died 10 years ago and is now out of print, as an example.