Cybils and Challenges

Two very big things that are happening this week that every blogger should know.

Cybils is a blogger organized and run judging cycle that gives out awards for the year’s best children’s and young adult titles. There are a whopping TEN categories/genres this year, ranging from poetry to science fiction/fantasy to nonfiction and even book apps! The judging happens in two rounds, and your truly has been chosen as a second round judge for Middle Grade Science Fiction/Fantasy!! I’ve been sitting on this information for a while now (even though it was publicly announced earlier this month) because I wanted to wait until nominations were open. Well, the nominations time starts TOMORROW and runs till Oct. 15th. Here are the rules:

Yes, anyone may nominate one book per genre during the public nomination period. […] Any English or bilingual books published in the U.S. or Canada between the end of one contest and start of another. For 2012, that means books released between Oct. 16, 2011 and Oct. 15, 2012. Books must be specifically published for the children’s or young adult market.

They’ve posted the rules on how to nominate, so take a look at make sure your nomination counts. Spend the evening looking back at what you’ve read, and give us some good stuff. If you have any other questions on how this works, check out the FAQs page. The Cybils website is also a great resource, including every finalist for the six years that the award has been given (ok, not close to the 90 year lifespan of the Newbery, but still very impressive for an Internet-based award).

The other thing going on this week is the American Library Association’s 30th Anniversary of Banned Book Week. I’m not sure if celebrating is the word they are using, considering it recognizes the more than 30 years of challenges towards collection development and material access in libraries of all shapes and sizes all over the world. All this week, this blog will feature reviews of books that have been included on the list. If you want to participate too, check out one of many lists available online, such as the top 100 books banned from 2000-2009. Also, I’ve included this display that we put together at my library. A local bookstore donated two gift cards, and all last week we had patrons guessing why certain books got banned. We’ll be drawing winners today, and I can’t wait to see how many entries we received from this very last-minute contest.