Crockett Johnson and Ruth Krauss Biography: Final Cuts, Part 1. What’s in a name?

I know. You thought that me posting omitted portions of the biography was over months ago. So did I. Thing is, the copyeditor for Crockett Johnson and Ruth Krauss: How An Unlikely Couple Found Love, Dodged the FBI, and Transformed Children’s Literature (coming September 2012) was also charged with getting the manuscript shorter still.  And…

Sunday Color Barnaby: O’Malley in Winter

As has been noted twice before on this blog (see here and here), a color Sunday version of Crockett Johnson‘s Barnaby ran from 1946 to 1948.  Courtesy of Colin Myers, here’s a full-page one from the winter of 1948.  Though it’s undated, “winter” would have to be January or February because the color Barnaby concluded…

Radical Children’s Literature Now! (article)

Since people have asked to be kept informed, “Radical Children’s Literature Now!” — Julia Mickenberg‘s and my article — is out in the latest issue of the Children’s Literature Association Quarterly.  Here are the first two paragraphs and their respective footnotes:           Focusing on literature for younger children published in the last decade—as well as on…

The People’s Library

“Nazis destroyed books to ‘purify’ German culture. Bigots do it in the name of God, or Allah. What’s Bloomberg’s excuse? ‘Hygiene’?” — Salman Rushdie, via his Twitter account, 16 Nov. 2011 “If corporations are people, tents are definitely speech.” — Ben Chappell, prof. of American Studies, University of Kansas (via Eric Michael Johnson [@ericmjohnson on Twitter],…

Senseless Violence: The NYPD Destroys Library. UPDATE #3

Occupy Wall Street Library (before) Occupy Wall Street Library (after) “I cannot live without books; but fewer will suffice where amusement, and not use, is the only future object.” — Thomas Jefferson to John Adams, 10 June 1815 “Knowledge is power.” — Thomas Jefferson to to Joseph Cabell, 22 January 1820 “Let me conclude by thanking the…

Advice from the Least Likely to Succeed

When I was a graduate student, I would have voted myself Least Likely to Succeed in Academe. I published nothing while in graduate school. I worked hard on my seminar papers, but none would work as an article — so, I didn’t send them out. I didn’t figure out how to write publishable literary criticism…

Anxiety, Absent-Mindedness, and Lost Data

My flash drive is missing, and I find myself unable to focus.  (I know some people call this device a “thumb drive” or a “memory stick.”  Please insert the term you prefer.  Thank you.)  In an effort to clear my head, I am writing this. I put everything on that drive — class notes, quizzes, exams, manuscripts…

A brief chat with Andy Rooney

One of the great things about working on the biography of Crockett Johnson and Ruth Krauss (due out in the fall of 2012) is getting to talk to interesting people.  One of the sad things is that many of them pass away.  I just learned that Andy Rooney died last night, at the age of…

Accidental Experts: Strategy, Serendipity, and the Places You’ll Go! Free public lecture. Friday, Nov. 11, 2:10 pm

If you’ll be in (or near) Nashville on Friday 11th, Karin Westman and I are giving a free lecture: “Accidental Experts: Strategy, Serendipity, and the Places You’ll Go.”  We’ll talk about children’s literature (me on Dr. Seuss, Karin on Harry Potter), and about navigating academia. When: 2:10 pm, Friday, November 11, 2011 Where: Vanderbilt University’s…