Friday, August 19, 2011

(Almost) 24 Hours of Book Festival Programming!

OK, so it may not be a FULL 24 hours, but 18 hours of Book Festival programming sounds almost as good, right?

The Gaithersburg TV channel (Comcast Channel 13, RCN Channel 13, Verizon FiOS Channel 25) will be airing video from both the 2010 and 2011 festivals starting this Saturday, August 20, at 6 a.m.

Saturday, August 20
  • 6am: David Hoffman, "The Dead Hand: The Untold Story of the Cold War Arms Race and Its Dangerous Legacy"
  • 8am: Helen Simonson, "Major Pettigrew's Last Stand"
  • 9am: John Feinstein, "Moment of Glory: The Year Underdogs Ruled Golf"
  • 10am: Alice McDermott, "Charming Billy" and "After This"
  • 11am: Christina Asquith, "Sisters in War: A Story of Love, Family, and Survival in the New Iraq"
  • 2pm: Sarah Blake, "The Postmistress"
  • 3pm: Wes Moore, "The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates"
  • 4pm: Eleanor Brown, author of "The Weird Sisters," in a conversation with Washington Post book editor Ron Charles
  • 5pm: Elizabeth Berg, "Once Upon a Time, There Was You"
  • 6pm: James Swanson, "Bloody Crimes: The Chase for Jefferson Davis and the Death Pageant for Lincoln's Corpse"
  • 8pm: Paula McLain, "The Paris Wife"
  • 9pm: Alex Berenson, "The Secret Soldier"
  • 10pm: Stephen Hunter, "Dead Zero"
Sunday, August 21
  • 1am: Matt Latimer, "Speech-Less: Tales of a White House Survivor"
  • 2am: Matt Logelin, "Two Kisses for Maddy: A Memoir of Loss & Love"
  • 3:15am: Justin Fox, "The Myth of the Rational Market: A History of Risk, Reward, and Delusion on Wall Street"
  • 4am: Olga Grushin, "The Line"
  • 5am: Rachel Simmons, "Odd Girl Out: The Hidden Culture of Aggression in Girls"
More information about Gaithersburg television.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Bess Won a Nook Color

Yes, someone really did win a Nook Color just for telling us what she thought about our festival.

The winner was Montgomery County resident Bess, who said she and her granddaughters are really enjoying her prize. She also said she can't wait for next year's festival! (Yay! Bess, we can't wait to see you there, either! And that goes for the rest of you as well. Come back next year. Bring your friends.)

Oh, and just in case you're wondering, we're happy to see from all the evaluations that were turned in that you like us. You really like us!

Didn't get a chance to fill out an evaluation? Comment below on what you liked -- or didn't like -- about this year's festival.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

GBF Panels Helps Inspire a Look at Technology and the Publishing Industry

Our State of the Book panel discussion on the future of book publishing helped to inspire a blog post by festival attendee Robin Sullivan on "Scarcity vs Abundance in Book Publishing."

In the post, Sullivan examines how advances in technology (Print on Demand and ebooks) already are impacting -- and will continue to impact -- the publishing industry.

Read more.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Video: Matt Logelin at the 2011 Gaithersburg Book Festival

Here's the 2-part video of 2011 Keynote Speaker Matt Logelin's talk. He speaks about and reads from his bestselling memoir, "Two Kisses for Maddy."

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

What Did You Do?

Many of our dedicated volunteers spent Saturday, May 21, working, working, working to make the Gaithersburg Book Festival come off without a hitch. So we missed out on a lot of the fun, the great presentations and talks, the quotable moments. That's where you come in. Tell us the tales of the GBF so we won't feel like we totally missed out on all the fun!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Pictures from the 2011 Gaithersburg Book Festival

So what did the 2011 Gaithersburg Book Festival look like? Well, let's see...

Short Story Contest Winners Announced

The winners of our high school student short story contest were announced on Saturday as part of the Gaithersburg Book Festival festivities. Winners were:
  • First Place: Lundy Bowren of Germantown, a student at Northwest High School. Read Lundy's story.
  • Second Place: Meredith Chen of Rockville, a student at Richard Montgomery High School. Read Meredith's story.
  • Third Place: Alice Yanhong Lu of Gaithersburg, a student at Wootton High School. Read Alice's story.
Congrats to all three winners! We look forward to next year's contest!

More information about the contest.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Please take our Survey (and win a Nook Color!)

If you attended the Gaithersburg Book Festival on Saturday, we want your feedback. Help us continue to improve the event by letting us know about your experience.

And, to add a little incentive to it, by submitting a survey, you can be entered into a random drawing for a Nook Color!

What are you waiting for? Survey is here.

Friday, May 20, 2011

The Washington Times Publishes a Glowing Review for "The Paris Wife" by Paula McLain

The Washington Times today published a glowing review of "The Paris Wife" by Paula McLain, citing McLain's "willingness to grapple with emotional complexity."

The review also praises McLain's details as being "colorful," and the friendships of the story as being "intriguing," and ends by commending McLain for her ability to "turn pain and sadness and human failing into an elegant, satisfying and tidily complete story."

Read the full review.

A Baltimore Sun Interview with New Novelist Susi Wyss

The Baltimore Sun blog Read Street recently interviewed featured author Susi Wyss about her debut novel, "The Civilized World: A Novel in Stories."

Blogger Rosalia Scalia describes the novel as one that "follows a cast of middle class characters who are refreshing and vibrant with astonishing names such as Grief, Comfort and Why as they navigate much of the same terrain as their western counterparts: relationships, connections, loss, love, sorrow, and forgiveness."

In the post, Wyss talks about why she wrote the book, the origin of her characters' unusual names, and details surrounding individual stories.

Read the post.

Featured Author Tayari Jones on NPR

Featured author Tayari Jones ("Silver Sparrow") was on NPR's All Things Considered recently to talk about her new novel. In the interview, Jones talks about the novel's genesis, the meaning of its title, and about her career path.

Read -- or listen to -- the interview.

A Group Blog About Writing Strategies from Children's Authors and Illustrators -- Including 2 of Our Featured Authors

We just discovered a great group blog, "Pencil Tips: Writing Workshop Strategies from Children's Authors and Illustrators," whose list of bloggers include two of our featured authors: Mary Quattlebaum ("Pirate vs. Pirate") and Pam Smallcomb ("I'm Not.")

The blog describes itself as providing "practical tips and observations on the art of writing, particularly in the classroom. We also offer it as a forum for teachers, students, parents, and others who love children’s literature and writing as much as we do."

Go check it out!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

A Q&A with Featured Author Haley Tanner

Featured author Haley Tanner ("Vaclav & Lena") was recently interviewed by the blog, the sisterhood: where jewish women converse.

In the interview, Haley talks about her Jewish upbringing, writing while her husband was dealing with a terminal illness, and the importance of loving someone else truly and completely.

One of our favorite parts of the interview: "We’re all walking around with a terminal illness. We have to laugh all the time, or there’s just no point in being here at all. I like the tone of my life to be honest and light and dark and serious all at once."

Read the full, beautiful Q&A.

Some very cool book photography

Okay. So it has NOTHING to do with our festival per se... but we can't help but share a link to the Breathing Books blog, which has some really gorgeous book photography.

Check it out.

Featured Author and NPR Host Scott Simon Writes about the Space Shuttle Launch

NPR host and featured author Scott Simon ("Baby, We Were Meant for Each Other: In Praise of Adoption") wrote a column for the Wall Street Journal about watching Endeavour's last launch with his two daughters.

"After the last shuttle flies this year, U.S. astronauts will have to hitch rides on Russian rockets," he writes. "It's hard to see that as a step forward for the nation that sent the first men to walk on the moon—in fact, so far the only ones.

Read the full essay.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Featured Authors Give Each Other Some Love: Meg Waite Clayton Hosts Tayari Jones on Her Blog

Featured author Meg Waite Clayton ("The Four Ms. Bradwells" and "The Wednesday Sisters") hosted featured author Tayari Jones ("Silver Sparrow") on her blog, 1st Books: Stories of How Writers Get Started.

In response to early negative reactions from publisher to the first 100 pages of the novel, Jones writes:

For months, I wrote nothing at all. It seemed pointless. My characters which I thought were so loveable and complicated had been undressed and shamed. (Some of the rejections were so pointed that I cried. One even suggested that I didn’t “understand fiction yet.”) And this was to be my third novel.

Read the full essay.

Short Story Contest: Honorable Mention #10

Read about the contest.

“Until Hell freezes over” by Kathleen Xu
Richard Montgomery High School - Montgomery County, Maryland

"Don't open the box," my father always told me, and so I didn’t.

But my ex-best friend did, and I paid dearly for it.

Shortly after she stole the box, Fantina disappeared, only to reappear years later with a massive amount of wealth in a foreign country. On the other hand, I, who had spent countless nights studying to graduate at the top of my class, was working non-stop as a financial manager for a consulting company. Did I mention that the pay sucked and my clients were more ungrateful than teenage children?

Read the full story.

An Interview with Meg Waite Clayton

Featured author Meg Waite Clayton ("The Four Ms. Bradwells" and "The Wednesday Sisters") recently spoke about writing an "ensemble novel" with women's fiction writers blogger Amy Sue Nathan. (Note: An ensemble novel is one where there is more than one main character.)

Some highlights from the interview:
  • On why Meg likes writing ensemble novels: "It gives me a lot of freedom to explore things I’m interested in."
  • Meg had the title "The Wednesday Sisters" in mind before she wrote the book.
  • Meg likes that ensemble novels give the readers a number of people to connect with.
  • Meg is working on a novel that will follow three daughters of main characters from "The Wednesday Sisters"
Read the full interview.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Children's Village with Featured Author Pam Smallcomb: Make Your Own Alien

So we just heard from one of our Children's Village authors -- Pam Smallcomb, author of "Earth to Clunk" and "I'm Not." -- about some of the great, interactive activities she has planned during her appearance. Here's a taste...
  • Make Your Own Alien: Decorate, color, and build your own alien. (Alien "parts" will be pre-cut.)
  • A Conversation about Pen Pals: Pam will talk about her alien pen pal, Blurzelda, and then the kids can tell Pam what they would send to an alien pen pal. (Kids who answer will get alien tattoos.) Pam will also show the kids the cards and packages Blurzelda has sent her.
  • A Q&A form Blurzelda
  • Reading of "Earth to Clunk"
  • Book giveaway
Pam will be presenting in the Jim Henson Children's Pavilion from 11:40 a.m. – 12:20 p.m. See the full children's and young adult author presentation schedule.

"The Four Ms. Bradwells" Makes iTunes "Bestseller" List

"The Four Ms. Bradwells" by Meg Waite Clayton is now #12 on iTunes list of top-selling audio books. Congrats, Meg!

See the complete list.

Featured Author Elizabeth Berg on "When Daughters Become Mothers"

GBF Featured Author Elizabeth Berg ("Once Upon a Time, There Was You") wrote a post for WowOWow: The Women on the Web on "When Daughters Become Mothers."In the piece, Berg tells stories about her own relationship with her mother and her struggles watching her daughters treat her as she had her own mother. And, at the end, you can see her smiling ruefully as she thinks about what's ahead for her own daughters as they start the journey of motherhood.

Read the article.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Featured Author Anand Giridharadas Pens Article for NYT Magazine about "Kitchen-Table Industrialists"

Featured author Anand Giridharadas ("India Calling: An Intimate Portrait of a Nation's Remaking") recently wrote a piece for the New York Times Magazine about "kitchen-table industrialists," which examines the resurgence of the American romance with making actual things. In the article, Giridharadas profiles "a quixotic band of soldering, laser-cutting, software-programming types who, defying all economic logic, contend that they can reverse America’s manufacturing slump."

Read the article.

Short Story Contest: Honorable Mention #9

Read about the contest.

Untitled by Tara M. Wuchenich
Osbourn Park High School - Prince William County, Virginia

When I left my parents’ house for good, I took five things with me; the love in my heart, the courage in my veins, the thankfulness in my eyes, confusion in my mind and a painful memory. I took one last look at my parent’s house and got into my pick-up truck. I sat there for a moment in silence. I adjusted myself comfortably in my seat and closed my eyes. I began to relive that windy, spring day.

It was my little brother Chris’ birthday. Chris had decided that he wanted to go to Nags Head and celebrate.

Read the full story.

Keynote Matt Logelin in Los Angeles Magazine

Still curious about keynote Matt Logelin, author of "Two Kisses for Maddy: A Memoir of Loss and Love"?

Los Angeles Magazine
spoke to Matt recently about hitting the New York Times bestseller list and about Maddy's reaction when she sees the book -- with her picture on the cover -- in bookstores.

Read the interview.

GBF Author Q&A with... Wendy Shang

Name: Wendy Shang
Book: The Great Wall of Lucy Wu


Where do you find inspiration?
I often find that researching a small detail in my story will produce an interesting moment or subplot. For example, while writing "The Great Wall of Lucy Wu," I was inspired to research Chinese-American basketball players, and discovered Willy "Woo Woo" Wong. Wong was a great competitor during the 1940's, and has been inducted into the University of San Francisco Hall of Fame. He also has a park named after him in San Francisco's Chinatown!

What advice do you have for aspiring authors?
Write and then find someone to share your writing with, whether it's in a class, through a group of writers or just one other person. It's important to get feedback to grow and improve as a writer. I had a wonderful start at the Writer's Center in Bethesda, taught by fellow GBF featured author Mary Quattlebaum.

What are you reading right now?
I am reading "Mudville" by Kurtis Scaletta, which is a great middle-grade book to recommend to any baseball-loving kid. Speaking of baseball books, I also just finished "Cardboard Gods" by Josh Wilker. This is a memoir told through baseball cards - very enjoyable!

What's your favorite opening line from a book?
"Claudia knew that she could never pull off the old-fashioned kind of running away." It's from E.L. Konigsburg's classic, "From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler." That compact little sentence sets up so much of the book - what's going to happen and what kind of character you're dealing with. From the Mixed-Up Files is also the name of the middle-grade authors blog I belong to!

What book has inspired or affected you in some way?
"The Chinese in America" by Iris Chang was an inspirational book to me; it was a wonder to me to see my family's life as well as the lives of so many Chinese Americans put into historical context. I am so sad that this talented writer is no longer with us.

If you could sit down at dinner with three other authors, living or dead, which three authors would you choose?
Hmm! Well, I love to laugh, and I think a dinner with Judy Blume, Bill Bryson and David Sedaris would be completely hysterical.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Featured Author James Zogby on What the Arab World Wants from the U.S.

James Zogby ("Arab Voices: What They Are Saying to Us, and Why It Matters") penned a guest post for the Huffington Post yesterday about the upcoming speech by President Obama and what Zogby believes the Arab world wants from the U.S. -- leadership in resolving the Palestinian issue.

Read Zogby's article.

Featured Author Sarah Pekannen Goes from Writer to Reviewer for Washington Post

GBF featured author Sarah Pekannen ("Skipping a Beat" and "The Opposite of Me") reviewed "The Ninth Wife" by Washington resident Amy Stolls, calling it "a witty, satisfying novel with a clever structure."

Read the full review.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Former Redskins Ron McDole to join Historian Mike Richman at Festival

Former Redskins Ron McDole will join Redskins Historian Mike Richman ("The Redskins Encyclopedia" and "Washington Redskins Football Vault") at the festival on May 21.

McDole, a defensive end, was a charter member of the Redskins' famous "Over the Hill Gang" in the 1970s. He was selected as one of the "70 Greatest" Redskins in 2002. Known for his protruding belly, he was nicknamed "The Dancing Bear."

Sarah Pekkanen's "Skipping a Beat" Sangria

We like a good sangria as much as the next guy... so we're looking forward to trying out Sarah Pekkanen's "Skipping a Beat" Sangria featured in "Something to Read About: A Book Club Sampler from Simon & Schuster." (You'll find it on p. 120.)

Friday, May 13, 2011

Short Story Contest: Honorable Mention #8

Read about the contest.

Motherly Love by Dennis Ting
Richard Montgomery High School - Montgomery County, Maryland

In my entire life, I’ve fibbed dozens of times - usually to be polite or to get out of attending some mind-numbing social event - but I’ve only told one really big lie...

“So what do you think of my mother?” Candice smiled intriguingly at me while she watched me with her large blue eyes. She gave a small laugh at the blank expression on my face that was masking the horror that had shot into my mind.

“Um...well...” I stammered. “She’ know....”

Read the full story.

GBF Featured Author Eleanor Brown Calls in the (Published Author) Troops

GBF featured author Eleanor Brown ("The Weird Sisters") put a call out to her network of published writers asking for one-sentence (and sometimes more!) writing advice. Included on the list of advice givers are a handful of other GBF featured authors including
Read their advice, then come back here and let us know...

Are you a writer reading this? Then add your advice below in the comments. Aspiring writer? What's the best advice you've received?

Thursday, May 12, 2011

"The Four Ms Bradwells" Goes Aural... is now offering an audio version of "The Four Ms. Bradwells" by Meg Waite Clayton for $24.49.

Find out more.

Short Story Contest: Honorable Mention #7

Read about the contest.

How the Box Stole Christmas by Andrew Qian
Clarksburg High School - Montgomery County, Maryland

“Don’t open the box” my father always told me. Well it’s a bit late to go back now. It wasn’t even my fault the box was opened and now look where this has gotten me; sitting in front of my computer on a Saturday night attempting to quickly make up diligently compose a short story. I mean, Pandora wasn’t even punished when she opened the jar Zeus had given her. Sure, mankind became plagued with all the evils in the world but at least hope was eventually let out. (Now I hope I can get this finished in the next five minutes so I can get back downstairs to watch the Colts and Jets playoff game.)

Read the full story.

Featured Author Dominique Paul's Story in Bethesda Magazine

Bethesda Magazine profiled the dizzying story of Dominique Paul ("The Possibility of Fireflies") earlier this year in an article titled: My (So-Called) Success.

It's an amazing tale of her dizzying brush with fame, a crippling blow to what was her meteoric career, a bewildering illness... and her ultimate acceptance of life as it is... not as it could be.

Read on... and then make sure you come hear Dominique talk about her story at the festival on May 21!

GBF Author Q&A with... Alison Hart

Author: Alison Hart
More than 20, including A Spy on the Home Front: A Molly Mystery (American Girl Mysteries Series), Taking the Reins (American Girl Innerstar University Series), Whirlwind, Gabriel's Journey, Gabriel's Triumph, Gabriel's Horses and Shadow Horse

Alison's website

Where do you find inspiration?
For me, inspiration comes from a variety of places. Newspapers and true life provide fodder for mysteries. History sparks ideas for my historical fiction. For the American Girl Innerstar U series I am getting into sports such as skijoring and canicross that I never knew existed!

What advice do you have for aspiring authors?
I call them the four Ps. Polish your work, be incredibly persistent, remember that writing is a professional career (not just a creative outlet), and have abundant patience!

What are you reading right now?
Every book on snowboarding and dogsledding I can get my hands on (obviously this is for research).

What's your favorite opening line from a book?
There is no favorite opening line, but I love the beginning of "The Great Gilly Hopkins" by Katherine Patterson.

What book has inspired or affected you in some way?
Every book I read affects me. I love research because I read books on topics that I would never chose to read unless I was ‘forced.’ When I researched my Gabriel trilogy ("Gabriel’s Horses," "Gabriel’s Triumph" and "Gabriel’s Journey"), I read over two hundred books on the Civil War. The journals and diaries were especially fascinating.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Another Glowing Review for "The Four Ms. Bradwells" by featured author Meg Waite Clayton

The from my bookshelf blog reviewed Meg Waite Clayton's latest, "The Four Ms. Bradwells," praising Clayton for her "knack for making her characters completely believable and tangible, with all the quirks and imperfections that would make them real people." The reviewer also calls the novel "a refreshing read for early summer." Read the full review.

We've got ANOTHER Patch Whiz Kid

The Rockville Patch featured Agustina Rius, one of our short story contest finalists, as last week's Whiz Kid of the Week.

In the interview, Rius talks about the sources of her inspiration and guidance: her mother, the kids she babysits, teachers and her sister.

Read the interview.

Read Rius' story.

GBF Author Q&A with... Tayari Jones

Name: Tayari Jones
Books: Silver Sparrow, Leaving Atlanta, The Untelling,

Jones' Website

Where do you find inspiration?
I often find inspiration from fragments of overheard conversations. I love stumbling across stories from strangers because I don’t feel self conscious about filling in the gaps. I also can get sucked in by the tiniest story in the back of a newspaper. For me, the less information, the better. I just like to borrow a spark.

What advice do you have for aspiring authors?
Don’t be afraid to fail. Safe fiction is boring fiction. Try big and sometimes fail big. But you want to thrill yourself and that way you will thrill readers. Art should be reckless and fun. It should be painful sometimes. It is supposed to make you feel something. Creating art should be an experience that matters.

What are you reading right now?
Pictures of You by Caroline Leavitt. [Editor's note: Caroline Leavitt also will be at the Gaithersburg Book Festival.] It’s a beautiful, beautiful, book. She breaks your heart, and I mean that in a good way.

If you could sit down at dinner with three other authors, living or dead, which three authors would you choose?
Toni Morrison, Toni Morrison, Toni Morrison.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Short Story Contest: Honorable Mention #6

Read about the contest.

Pandora’s Box by Ruthie Prillaman
Richard Montgomery High School - Montgomery County, Maryland

"Don't open the box," my father always told me. And I had every intention of heeding his words. There was a certain steely look that crept into his great, grey eyes, a thick sheet of ice that hardened his face into a chiseled slab of marble, a look that spoke many more words than all those that boomed thunderously from between his lips. When he looked upon me with his face like stone and his eyes glistening like iron, I asked no questions. His words thickened into fat, black letters, tattooed on the backs of my eyelids where I’d never forget them.

Read the full story.

GBF Featured Author Aviva Goldfarb on the Good Housekeeping Website

GBF featured author and meal planning guru Aviva Goldfarb ("SOS! The Six O'Clock Scramble to the Rescue" and "Six O'Clock Scramble: Quick, Healthy, and Delicious Dinner Recipes for Busy Families") was included in an article about meal planning on the Good Housekeeping website.

The article, "Menu Planning: How 15 Minutes Can Save You Hours Each Week," provides menu planning advice and recommends Goldfarb's Six O'Clock Scramble service.

Read on...

Eleanor Brown on Placing Novels in Time

GBF featured author Eleanor Brown ("The Weird Sisters") recently wrote an interesting blog post about her approach to setting a novel in a specific time.

"I didn’t want to write a book with an expiration date," she writes. "Whenever I read a book that makes reference to a pseudo-celebrity (anyone on Jersey Shore, f’rinstance) or a passing scandal (Tiger Woods’ affairs, versus, say, Watergate), I wonder how it will read in two, or five, or ten years."

Read more.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Short Story Contest: Honorable Mention #5

Read about the contest.

The Hunger by Candice Murray
Osbourn Park High School - Prince William County, Virginia

“Don’t open the box,” my father always told me. I never understood his secrecy until a few years ago. It was November 12, a day that I will never forget. I came home from a rough day at school; I had failed my geometry test and I forgot my chemistry homework at home. For lunch, they offered my three least favorite choices: lasagna, spicy chicken, and some mystery meat clump that cannot be real food. I walked off the bus into my house but realized I left my key on my desk in my room, so I had to get the creepy old lady from next door, Mrs. Agnes, to use her key and let me in. As I went into the kitchen, I noticed my stomach growling surprisingly loud, so I shuffled to the pantry. I opened the door and nothing caught my eye. I called my dad to see if he’d pick something up from the store on his way home, and he said that he’d get me food once he got home. Why would he come home and go right back out to the store instead of picking something up on his way? I pushed it aside and waited 52 minutes for him to get home.

Read the full story.

Featured Author Alan Cheuse Goes from NPR Book Critic to NPR Guest

GBF featured author and NPR All Things Considered book critic Alan Cheuse went from commentator to guest over the weekend when ATC host Guy Raz interviewed Cheuse about his new novel, "Song of Slaves in the Desert."

During the interview, Cheuse talked about the unlikely inspiration for his novel: the black president of the Jewish fraternity that he joined at Lafayette College.

Listen to the interview and read an excerpt from Cheuse's novel.

Featured Author Meg Waite Clayton: She Wrote More than Just Great Merger Agreements

The Chicago Tribune published an excerpt from a recent conversation between GBF featured author Meg Waite Clayton ("The Four Ms. Bradwells") and one of the Tribune's reporters.

In the conversation, the two women explore Clayton's road from lawyer to full-time novelist. One of the funniest responses from Clayton when asked about liking the law despite leaving it behind: "Oh, yes. It was intellectually stimulating. It was an adrenalin rush. But when I died, I didn't want a tombstone that said, 'She wrote a great merger agreement.'"

Read the full conversation.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Tayari Jones and Haley Tanner Make ABA's Next Great Reads List for June

Novels by two GBF featured authors -- "Silver Sparrow" by Tayari Jones and "Vaclav and Lena" by Haley Tanner -- made the American Booksellers Association's Indie Next List Great Reads list for June.

About "Silver Sparrow," which garnered the top spot on the list, a bookseller said: "A complex family drama, a richly crafted coming-of-age story, and a meditation on the nature of love and forgiveness, this is a gripping story with characters you will not soon forget."

About "Vaclav & Lena: A Novel," a bookseller said: "Seldom have the variables in immigrant experiences been written about so beautifully, resulting in a book that is both a charming love story and a dramatic page-turner. ... A wonderful debut!"

See the full list and read the full reviews.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Short Story Contest: Honorable Mention #4

Read about the contest.

The Moment by Samantha Levinson
Richard Montgomery High School - Montgomery County, Maryland

In my entire life, I’ve fibbed dozens of times – usually to be polite or to get out of attending some mind-numbing social event – but I’ve only told one really big lie. I remember the day perfectly; there was sunshine, but it was cold, there was laughter, but I could not find my smile.

I had searched my soul for it, for that little light that was shown to the world as only the twinkle of an eye. I missed feeling alive, a feeling that is so much more than the knowledge that you are living. For living suggests the journey, while alive the moment. The moments are what I missed, the journey what I had too much of.

Read the full story.

Town Courier Reviews "The Paris Wife" by Paula McLain

The most recent issue of the Town Courier includes a review of "The Paris Wife" by Paula McLain. The reviewer calls McLain's writing "so beautiful and smart that she will have you eagerly follow this couple through the good times and bad."

Read the full review.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Short Story Contest: Honorable Mention #3

Read about the contest.

A New Beginning by Aden Lessiak
Linganore High School - Frederick County, Maryland

“Don’t open the box,” my father always told me. I was only seven when he gave it to me. It was the day after my mother had died, and I had been sitting on my bed musing over old photographs. He walked in as I was looking at a picture of my mother and me at a park, one which was probably long gone by now. These days, you hardly ever see a tree, let alone a vast grassy field. He gently placed the box on a shelf hanging across my bed, and then left. I was so consumed, I almost didn’t notice him. Only the creak of the wooden floor boards let me know he was there. Just as he was passing back through the doorway, I heard him whisper those words that I would suffer through time and time again: “Don’t open the box.”

Read the full story.

A Review of "Pictures of You" by Featured Author Caroline Leavitt

Book blogger @jennsbookshelf recently reviewed "Pictures of You" by GBF featured author Caroline Leavitt. Jenn called the novel "a beautiful and absorbing book of love, loss, and guilt."

Read the full review.

A Television Interview with GBF Keynote Matt Logelin

KARE11 in Minnesota recently interviewed GBF keynote Matt Logelin, author of "Two Kisses for Maddy: A Memoir of Loss and Love." Watch the interview.

KARE11 also interviewed Logelin in 2009.


MAY 21, 2011
10AM - 6PM



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