Toon Thursday, Plus Neil x 2!

And now for something completely different…

This is a historic moment. The reason is twofold (or should that be “the reasons ARE twofold”?). Firstly, though I’ve been writing like crazy this week, apparently the toon part of my brain was watching way too much CNN, so for the first time ever, here’s a political cartoon on Finding Wonderland. I hope it is an entertaining diversion. Secondly, this is a historic moment because this cartoon occupies the very last page in my sketchbook. Said sketchbook is mostly cartoons, too, which made me realize just how dang many of these I’ve posted. But now I’ll have to either start using the giant sketchbook, which is unwieldy but has many blank pages left; or buy a new one. Hmm…

I’ve been meaning to post a few of these links for almost three weeks now, which is very sad. Firstly, thanks to the GoodReads newsletter, I ran across interviews with two authors whom I really like–Neil Gaiman and Neal Stephenson. Definitely two iconoclastic people.

Okay, I guess I wasn’t done with politics for today. Back on a political note, visit ArtsVote2008, a program of Americans for the Arts, to find out both presidential candidates’ positions on arts policy.

Right. Back to lit stuff. I was informed by Gina R. that FW is featured on an aggregator site called Alltop – Top Children’s Literature News–above the fold, no less! Readers’ Rants is on there, too, along with a host of other familiar faces from the kidlitosphere. Lastly, speaking of the kidlitosphere, don’t forget to nominate your favorite books for the Cybils! Now you can also help spread the word–and the love–with a downloadable and printable flyer that includes a list of all 2007 shortlisted titles.

Reminds me I’ve gotta sit right down and come up with MY nominees…

Toon Thursday: The Truth Comes Out

Yes, much as I would like to have a personal assistant on hand to pour me champagne when I write my daily masterpieces, that’s not usually how it goes. However, if you DO find yourself with a few masterpieces burning a hole in your desk, there are a few contest deadlines coming up–Glimmer Train’s Short Story Award competition for this fall closes on Sept. 30, and the Writer’s Digest Popular Fiction Awards have a closing date of Nov. 1 (and some excellent prizes, including manuscript critiques). Go to it! I might go for Glimmer Train, though I had sworn never to enter another contest of theirs (only because I kept entering and getting discouraged). However, for the first time, I entered an audio contest recently, which was interesting. We’ll see how that goes. Writers, don’t be shy–get your work out there!

Toon Thursday: Now With Added Linkage!

Yup, Toon Thursday is back after a week’s hiatus for the Under Radar Recommendations. I like having an excuse to take a break now and then. Thinking of a funny joke every week is kinda hard. (Can’t believe I used to write a humor column every day…) Anyway, today’s Toon Thursday is in honor of the fact that I spent what seemed like eons yesterday writing my query letters for my YA novel…and finally sending out proposals to two agents! Yay!

Also, in blog news, Betsy at Fuse #8 has announced her first official podcast edition of A Fuse #8 Production. She wants your feedback, so go check it out! Also, Writer’s Digest presents a pretty amusing blog by Kevin Alexander called This Writer’s Life about the tribulations of a writer just starting out. I can relate. I particularly like his mock quiz entitled Are You Ever Really Going to Finish that Novel? (Notable quote: “3. Agents like a brief selling handle summing up the book’s main plot. Which answer most closely resembles the state of your pitch? … D. My book will have several chapters and a main character who’s probably going to be a woman. Or a man. Definitely one of the two.”) Lastly, the editor of Guide to Literary Agents keeps a blog here, with periodic updates and new listings of agents. There’s a category for posts related to children’s writing, too, though it doesn’t seem as lengthy as other categories.