We did a long overdue update of my website's homepage. You've already heard about most of what's posted there, except for the news that I am going to be writing reviews of children's books written by Connecticut authors for a local publication called The Connecticut Muse.
I have some anxiety about this endeavor and not just because it involves four deadlines a year. The Connecticut Muse is about promoting state authors rather than publishing traditional criticism, and it has a policy of publishing only positive reviews. Since I don't exactly love everything I read, this could be a problem.
But I understand the point of the publication. Also, the editor has assured me that I will never be handed a book with the expectation that I'll come up with selling points. That will be the end of my reviewing career and not just because I don't want to compromise my scruples. Let's face it, there are some things I'm just not capable of doing, and coming on all warm and fuzzy about a book I don't like is one of them.
I know my deadlines, and I've been told I can seek out books by Connecticut children's authors myself. I just have to turn in a review of any book I liked.
Surely I should be able to find one a quarter. Shouldn't I?
The benefit to me is that I may get a little more name recognition within my own state. The benefit to humanity is that each issue of The Connecticut Muse will include a review of a children's or YA book, which hasn't happened prior to this. So I'll be doing a little something to promote my field.
Actually, I'm wondering if this fall I'll be able to do a column on the finalists for the Connecticut Book Award. I would love to see that get some more attention.