Thursday, October 19, 2006

The Wash Rag, Fall 2006

Reading Tub Newsletter, Issue 13, Fall 2006

Don't you love the new logo? We can't thank our team at Logoworks enough for their enthusiasm, professionalism, and quick response. They have made it easier for everyone to recognize who we are and help us to achieve our goal:become the go-to resource for family reading and literacy.

I'm happy to report that we are back on track with our publication schedule for The Wash Rag. The Reading Tub has a bumper-crop of Featured Authors this quarter, each with very unique journeys en route to becoming published. Each of these authors have stories that embody a universal truth of reading with a child: it is a priceless opportunity to create a shared experience that everyone can enjoy.

Daryl Burkhard. When Daryl was just a young girl with big dreams, she had plans to be the first woman on Mars, maybe be a cowgirl or a forest ranger, and maybe even a violinist. Writing a novel wasn't something that came to her mind. So her route to becoming a published author is a circuitous one … a path whose experiences are artfully woven into the plot of her first novel, Riddle in the Mountain. Click here to meet Daryl Burkhard.

Stacey Kannenberg. Stacey came to being an author as a mom looking for just-the-right book to prepare her children for preschool and kindergarten. When the many trips to the bookstore left her still searching, she decided to write her own book. She joined forces with another mom to create Cedar Valley Publishing; and today, her award-winning Let's Get Ready book series is being used not only by parents, but several school systems nation-wide. Stacey Kannenberg.

Hope Marston. If you know Hope as a prolific writer (she has published twenty-eight books), then you probably know that throws herself into reading the exact same way. [Want to venture a guess on how many historical novels she's read?] It is her favorite hobby. "Most of my ideas have come from what I read. My three works-in-progress are about people whose intriguing lives have been parading through my mind for decades just waiting for me to bring their stories to light for young readers." Click here to read more about Hope Marston.

Sidebar: To make sure you've had time to meet this past summer's Featured Authors, we will continue to showcase them through this quarter.

In the Winter Edition of the Wash Rag we'll have interviews with these three authors: W. Royce Adams, author of The Rairarubia Tales, a five-book fantasy series for 8- to 12-year-olds; Deb Capone, author of Families are Forever, Dumplings Are Delicious, and Tooth Fairy Tales, picture books for 5- to 8-year-olds that celebrate cultural diversity; and Faiz Kermani, author of My Alien Penfriend, a sci-fi fantasy about intergalactic pen pals for 8- to 12- year-olds.

Want to be part of the Author Showcase for Spring 2007? Sign up before November 30th and get 2006 rates. Remember, all donations for the Author Showcase are tax deductible. Click here to learn more.

We are very excited about the launch of our Reading Tub Alerts program. This is a NEW subscription service available to Registered Readers.

This is a real-time wish list that lets you know when we've reviewed a book that's of interest to you. Here's how it works:

You decide what type of books you want to know about … let's say animal stories for 4- to 8-year olds. Whenever we post a book that matches those criteria, we'll send you a Tub Alert Email. We can also send alerts if you are looking for reviews of books specifically designed for remedial readers or to meet homeschooling objectives.

We know the service will be particularly appealing to families, teachers, and librarians; but publishers and authors, listen up. We can't tell you how much promotional material we get that says "our" book is on the front end of the "new, popular theme/character/etc." What faster way to know what people are saying about your competition?

Sign up before Christmas you'll receive discounted prices on annual and two-year subscriptions. Click here to learn more. Speaking of new books, here are some recent arrivals that have caught our eye.

An Ornament's Tale by Chet Spiewak. (CWS Studios, Inc., 2006)
Exploratopia by The Exploratorium. (Little, Brown and Company, 2006)
Toad Catcher's Creek (Children's Empowerment Series) by Brian Weiner (The Illusion Factory, 2006)
We Can Make It Happen by Jane Taubenfeld Cohen (Kidpoetz Publishing, 2006)

When you go to these pages, you'll see something new. The Reading Tub, Inc. has entered an affiliate relationship with Now, when you can rest your mouse on a bookcover image and learn more about the book's price and availability.

By the time I post the next edition of the Wash Rag, The Reading Tub, Inc. will have celebrated its third birthday. I know it is cliché, but we've come a long way, baby. What started out as a hobby of writing reviews from books we bought our kids and some library books has now become an enterprise where we learn about new books almost every day. Our shelves are bowing from the collection of books just waiting to be shared with a child. More importantly, the 620 books we've already profiled have been given to children who don't have a 'personal library' and who love great stories, too.

So with a very gracious (not to mention impassioned) heart, I thank each of you for your continued support. So as we turn the page to a new year, here are my thanks:

To the authors and publishers who have penned and published some incredible stories that will help get and keep kids reading (not to mention offer inspiration to some of us adults) … keep creating.

To all of our Registered Readers, I'm so glad you've continued to grow with us. Keep spreading the word!

To all of you who have pushed, prodded and encouraged me to continue to grow The Reading Tub as a unique, valuable asset to literacy. Sharing your ideas, nixing mine, and collaborating on some really cool stuff … I couldn't do this without you.

And last but not least, to my friends and family who have shared this journey … you leave me speechless.

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ADVERTISEMENT: The Junior League of Charlotesville (VA) is sponsoring its Third Annual Literary Feast and Silent Auction on March 1, 2007. This year's speaker is Jeannette Walls (The Glass Castle). Trained volunteers with the JLC have been working in the Community for nearly 75 years. Over the last decade, the League has raised more than $130,000 to support more than 50 area organizations, including The Boys and Girls Club, Interfaith Alliance for Homeless Children, Ronald McDonald House, and others.

The Junior League of Charlottesville is soliciting donations of autographed books that would be sold to the highest bidder during the Silent Auction. If you are interested in making this tax deductible donation, please contact Terry.

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