Friday, October 8, 2010

Event: Library of the Early Mind 10/19

There's an event at the Grad School of Education about children's literature!

Premiere of Library of the Early Mind
Tuesday, October 19, 2010, 5:30 – 8pm
13 Appian Way
Cambridge, MA 02138
Type of EventDiscussion, Film, Forum, Question & Answer Session, Reception
Building/RoomAskwith Hall
Contact NameAmber Haskins
Contact Phone617-384-9968
Sponsoring Organization/DepartmentHarvard Graduate School of Education
Registration RequiredNo

Premiere of Library of the Early Mind

Moderator: Lolly Robinson, adjunct lecturer, HGSE

Panelists: Filmmakers Edward Delaney and Steven Withrow; Roger Sutton, editor in chief of Horn Book Magazine; and children’s authors Lois Lowry, Lesléa Newman, Jerry Pinkney and Padma Venkatraman.

Library of the Early Mind is a documentary exploring the impact of children’s literature. A Q&A session, book signing and reception will follow the screening.

Read more about it here:

Discuss: Which children's writer or book has had the most impact on your life?

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Children's Books and Absent Parents

Earlier this summer, NPR interviewed YA author Lesley M. Blume, who shared her list of must-read children's books and, appropriately, her thoughts on children's stories that don't mention parents -- just like ours.

NPR writes, "Her book list includes a fair number of books about orphans, because, as Blume says, kids seem naturally drawn to stories in which the parents are absent: "Any child can relate to the fantasy of creating a kids-only utopia from scratch in the woods... This is something you see over and over again in classic literature and films. No rules, no baths, no schoolwork."

Find the list at and see if some of your favorites made the cut!

Discuss: What would you have put on the list?

Summer in China

Summertime meant a vacation from school for most, but not a vacation from helping orphans in foreign countries.

Isabella Wechsler spent her summer volunteering in a special-needs orphanage in Jiaozuo, China.

She writes, "Working with the children there was probably one of the most humbling experiences of my life. Almost all of them have physical or mental disabilities of some form. Yet they handle difficult situations, and even the somewhat depressing conditions of their daily life, with such grace. They act genuinely excited when their friends "go to America", even though some of the older ones have slowly watched their friends leave them behind for years. I can't imagine having even half of their mental fortitude, and I am constantly amazed at their appreciation for the littlest things, like a page of stickers. In terms of the orphanage itself, it was pretty nice...since it's brand new and was built to represent the new "model" orphanage that...others [follow]."

Isabella blogged about her experience. Follow these links to read more:

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Opportunity: Book Drive

From an email:

Harvard College Alliance for Africa is building a medical clinic in Madagascar over the summer.

Being a part of this project is simple: donate your old textbooks and books so that we can raise funds for the project. Fill out THIS FORM to participate.

We'll send out an email to let you know the date for pick-up. You can just leave the books outside your door and someone will come by take them off your hands!

Send any questions to


Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Event: Reading & Conversation -- 4/30

The Harvard Advocate Presents...

Henri Cole: A Reading and Conversation
Harold Bloom says: "a central poet of his generation."

Friday, April 30th, 1:30 pm
Location: 21 South Street

Refreshments will be served

Cole's awards and honors include the Berlin Prize of the American Academy in Berlin, the Rome Prize in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and the Amy Lowell Poetry Traveling Scholarship. He is the recipient of fellowships from the Camargo Foundation in Cassis, France, the Ingram Merrill Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

From 1982 until 1988 Cole was executive director of The Academy of American Poets. Since then he has held many teaching positions and been the artist-in-residence at various institutions, including Smith College, Reed College, Brandeis, Columbia, Harvard, and Yale Universities. He lives in Boston, Massachusetts.

Illustrators, win a scholarship to a NYC art school!

Utrecht Art Supplies 2nd Annual Art Competition
(GRAND PRIZE WINNER) – (Best Overall) 6-Week Full Scholarship to
The Grand Central Academy of Art, New York City (a value of $4,000),
and up to $3,500 to cover travel expenses & accommodations
No Entry Fee!!

Get national recognition for your art! Beginning April 19, Utrecht Art Supplies invites you to submit your drawing, painting, or sculpture work.

The top three winners in each category will be awarded Utrecht ArtSmart™ gift cards ranging from $500—$1500. There will be an overall Grand Prize winner who will receive a 6-week Full Scholarship to attend the Grand Central Academy of Art in New York City, and up to $3,500 to cover travel expenses and accommodations. Runners-up will receive Certificates of Merit from Utrecht and American Artist magazine.

Submit up to three pieces of original art. (one per category) All winners and finalists will be selected based on quality and originality of work in each category. The competition will be juried by American Artist, Utrecht Art Supplies' Resident Artist, and the Grand Central Academy of Art.

Enter today!

Entry deadline: September 1, 2010.
Winners will be notified November 1, 2010.

ONE OVERALL GRAND PRIZE WINNER: Full 6-week scholarship to Grand Central Academy of Art (a value of $4,000) and up to $3500 to cover travel expenses and accommodations.

FIRST PLACE DRAWING: $1500 ArtSmart™ gift card from Utrecht Art Supplies
FIRST PLACE PAINTING: $1500 ArtSmart™ gift card from Utrecht Art Supplies
FIRST PLACE SCULPTURE: $1500 ArtSmart™ gift card from Utrecht Art Supplies

SECOND PLACE DRAWING: $750 ArtSmart™ gift card from Utrecht Art Supplies
SECOND PLACE PAINTING: $750 ArtSmart™ gift card from Utrecht Art Supplies
SECOND PLACE SCULPTURE: $750 ArtSmart™ gift card from Utrecht Art Supplies

THIRD PLACE DRAWING: $500 ArtSmart™ gift card from Utrecht Art Supplies
THIRD PLACE PAINTING: $500 ArtSmart™ gift card from Utrecht Art Supplies
THIRD PLACE SCULPTURE: $500 ArtSmart™ gift card from Utrecht Art Supplies

For more information see:

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Event: Publishing/Children's Literature 4/30

From Elise...

Want To Be A Writer?
Interested in Publishing?

History and Literature presents a conversation with

Elise Broach (author of MASTERPIECE) and Marie Rutkoski (author of THE CELESTIAL GLOBE)

Elise and Marie will discuss and answer questions about children's literature, the intersection of history and literature, creative writing, and publishing.

Time: 2-3pm, Friday, April 30, 2010
Location: Barker Center 110 (Thompson Room)


ELISE BROACH is the author of many picture books and three novels. Both When Dinosaurs Came with Everything and Masterpiece (currently a NY Times Bestseller) won the E. B. White Read Aloud Award of the Association of Booksellers for Children, and Shakespeare's Secret was an Edgar Award Nominee for Best Juvenile Mystery. Elise holds undergraduate and graduate degrees in history from Yale University, and lives with her family in Connecticut, where she writes and serves in town government.

Marie_Rutkoski 2008 by Stephen Scott Gross.JPGMARIE RUTKOSKI grew up in Bolingbrook, Illinois (a suburb of Chicago), as the oldest of four children. In high school, she was a member of the Young Adult Advisory Board at the Fountaindale Public Library in Bolingbrook. She later attended the University of Iowa, where she took Writers’ Workshop classes and also studied with Pulitzer Prize–winner James Alan McPherson. After graduating, she lived in Moscow and Prague. Upon receiving her Ph.D. from Harvard University, she held dual appointments as a lecturer there in both English and American Literature and Language, and History and Literature. Ms. Rutkoski is currently a professor at Brooklyn College. She lives in New York City.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Event: Literature As Recycleable Material 4/30

I'm a little biased about this event, but it sounds really cool:

Literature as Recyclable Material (Part of ARTS 2010)

Time: Friday 4/30 02:00 PM
Location: CGIS, 1730 Cambridge St., Room S010

No Tickets Required. Free and Open to the Public.

A workshop with the Paper Picker Press that explores artistic interventions into challenging texts. Rewrite, reinterpret and rediscover literature as a recyclable material.

Tylor Brandon '12, facilitator.

Thursday, April 22, 2010


Young woman writing on a sheet of paper and thinking

Can't think of the right phrase? Reaching for cliches?

Other writers share your problem too. This week, PaperCuts has an article on cliches. There have been quite a few articles about them recently--both on their negative and their "positive" qualities (some reportedly humorous).

Read more about them here.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Event: Working in Non-Profits Panel -- Friday, 4/23

Meet CEOs in the Non-Profit World: Explore the Pathways to Leadership

This Friday (April 23) 4:30 pm

Interested in meeting CEOs from four of the largest non-profit organizations in the country? Want to learn more about what it takes to become a leader in the non-profit sector? Come hear from members of Leadership 18, a coalition of not-for-profit CEOs whose organizations serve over 87 million people annually and work with over 5.5 million volunteers. The panel will be moderated by David Ellwood, Dean of the Harvard Kennedy School of Government and is open to all University students. Speakers include:

Stephen Bennett, CEO, United Cerebral Palsy;

James Firman, CEO, National Council on Aging;

Peter Goldberg, CEO, Alliance for Children & Families; and

Roxanne Spillett, CEO, Boys & Girls Club of the USA.

DATE: Friday, April 23, 2010

TIME: 4:30 p.m.

LOCATION: Harvard Graduate School of Education, Larson 106

RSVP: Include your name and Harvard affiliation in your response. Space is limited.

Leadership 18 Member Organizations

Alliance for Children and Families, AARP, American Cancer Society, American Red Cross, Big Brothers Big Sisters of America, Boy Scouts of America, Boys & Girls Clubs of America, Camp Fire USA, Catholic Charities USA, Girl Scouts of the USA, Girls Incorporated, Goodwill Industries International, Inc., Lutheran Services in America, Mental Health America, National Council of La Raza, National Urban League, Inc., The Salvation Army, United Cerebral Palsy, United Way of America, Visiting Nurse Associations of America, Volunteers of America, YMCA of the USA, and YWCA USA.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Obituary for An Illustrator

From The New York Times:

Remember "Julie of the Wolves"? Too young to remember "Owl Moon?" John Schoenherr illustrated it.

As described by The New York Times, Schoenherr had a fascinating life. He illustrated children's books and designed the jackets of science-fiction books. He explored a variety of media to create what the NYT described as "evocative" drawings. Schoenherr also painted.

Learn more about him here.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Event at Harvard

From The Living Magazine:

An International Literary Event!

: Arthur Sackler Museum Auditorium on 485 Broadway
Time: 4:00-6:00 pm on Wednesday, April 14

The second installment of the Visiting Writers Series will be a performed literary magazine featuring, among others, Chinese poets Bei Ling (co-editor of the banned Chinese literary magazine TENDENCY) and Meng Lang (co-editor of TENDENCY and editor-in-chief of the banned Chinese online literary magazine FREEDOM TO WRITE); Burmese poet and surgeon Ma Thida (editor of Burmese TEEN Magazine); and Iranian novelist Shahriar Mandanipour (editor of the banned Iranian literary magazine THURSDAY EVENING).

This event is free and open to the public; students are encouraged to attend.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

A Stories for Orphans blog?

We had an official site and a Facebook page, but no convenient way of communicating with you, our writers and illustrators, about the local events and news related to literature and orphans. Until now.

We decided to create this blog in order to raise your awareness about children's orphanages worldwide, inspire your literary creativity, help you learn more about writing and illustrating children's books, and encourage you attend literature and orphanage-related events in the Harvard and Cambridge area.

We invite to click on the links to the right of this post (from which several of our posts will come) and subscribe to or bookmark this blog so that you can be more aware, informed, and inspired. We welcome you to comment on our posts. Perhaps this will also be the beginning of a discussion.


Alina and Ruirui
Co-presidents 2010