ALA Part 2: Teens Attend the BFYA Committee (Best Fiction for Young Adults)

At 11:30, all of the teens and librarians met to head upstairs to one of the meeting rooms. When we arrived there was pizza, salad and cookies awaiting everyone for lunch. We want to send a big Shout Out and thank you to RasShahn Johnson-Baker at Penguin Publishers who made this all possible.

After we ate, two very popular authors entered the room: Jay Asher of Thirteen Resons Why and Carolyn Mackler of The Earth, my Butt, and Other Big Round Things. These two authors have a new book to be published in November, 2011 called The Future of Us. They worked on it as a team even though Carolyn lives in New York and Jay lives in California. They colloborated by phone and email. The premise sounds like a lot of fun. Two teens in 1996 load AOL onto a new computer and find something that they never heard of, Facebook. By seeing the future Facebook they find out about their future lives.

Authors, Jay Asher and Carolyn Mackler, speak about their new book, The Future of Us
When the authors finished speaking, it was time for the members of the Best Fiction for Young Adults (BFYA) Committee to listen to the teens. First, let me explain BFYA. The Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA), a division of ALA, sponsors several book awards and compiles several best of book lists. The BFYA list is selected yearly by committee. About 90-100 books are selected for this list. The committee also selects the 10 best of the best books. Books that appeal to librarians are not always the same that appeal to teens. The committee  always asks local teens to speak at their meetings during both the Mid-Winter and the Annual conferences of ALA. The committee members took copious notes as the teens spoke. It is important that the books on the final list have teen appeal.
Here is the BFYA committee listening to the teens

Students stand in line to make their case for their fav reads

Some students talked for multiple books, others just one, and some were too shy to speak  
After the BFYA meeting, we hightailed it back to the exhibit hall. We had a date at Abrams Publishers to meet author, Lauren Myracle. I want to give a Shout Out to Jason Wells at Abrams who made this happen. He made sure that all of the students received a signed copy of Shine, the author's newest work. 

Lauren Myracle is in the middle wearing the white tee,
and I am standing on the back row, second from the right

It has been a long day and the students went home with bags of goodies
and lots of great memories


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