The buzz in the children’s literature blogging world this week has been all about the American Library Association Awards. And the Today Show. The Today Show has always featured the winners of the Newbery and Caldecott awards on the day after the big announcement. I have enjoyed the segments as I must admit that seeing an author or illustrator gets me more excited than seeing a famous movie star. I frequently go to book signings and imagine what it would be like to be on the other side of the table in the same way that movie goers imagine themselves on the screen.
Therefore, when I heard that the Today Show chose not to air this segment because of lack of interest, Iwas so disheartened. I believe that an organization as big as the Today Show can risk low ratings for one segment of their day to help send a message. I recently finished the book Devotion by Dani Shapiro (a great adult read, by the way!), in which she quotes Ayurvedic philosophy.
“Be careful what you surround yourself with because you become what you surround yourself with.”
Not eloquently written words for sure, but sometimes stating the obvious doesn’t hurt. If we surround ourselves with books, we will become book lovers. It is as simple as that. Maybe, The Today Show will appropriately respond to the hundreds of e-mails they are receiving from the children’s lit crowd and decide to surround America with excellent children’s literature for just a few minutes. Let us hope…