Monday, January 26, 2009

So, I Had a Nice Day Today.

The kidlit readers here will know this already, but: Today was a very good day for me, as two of my dearly beloved books won ALA awards in Denver this morning.

A Curse Dark as Gold by Elizabeth C. Bunce won the first-ever William C. Morris Award, which honors “a book written for young adults by a first-time, previously unpublished author.” This was the first novel I ever acquired and edited wholly on my own -- not a translation, without Arthur's co-editing, the whole bit. I met Elizabeth in the course of a critique at the Arizona SCBWI conference in 2004, pestered her until she sent me the manuscript a year later, and bought the book in early 2006. She worked incredibly hard on revisions for it, resulting in a stronger and better manuscript at every stage, and I’m delighted that her gifts for “masterly writing and vivid characterization and setting,” which shone through in even the two chapters of our very first critique, were recognized by the committee. Congratulations, Elizabeth!

And then Moribito: Guardian of the Spirit won the Mildred L. Batchelder Award for outstanding translation. Originally published in Japanese in 1996 as Seirei no Moribito, the book was written by Nahoko Uehashi and translated by Cathy Hirano. The excellent Janna Morishima acquired the book for Scholastic and hired Cathy to translate it; when she left the company, I took over editorial responsibilities -- with great pleasure, as Cathy and Nahoko are both incredibly talented and wonderful to work with. And the book is just awesome -- I once pitched it as "Linda Hamilton in Terminator 2 stars in an Ursula K. LeGuin fantasy in Japan." The Batchelder Committee Chair Sandra Imdieke said of it, “This sophisticated and complex Japanese epic is filled with political intrigue, mystery and danger,” but it also has marvelous character development and fascinating relationships and mythologies. . . . I'm so pleased its quality was rewarded. The sequel, Moribito II: Guardian of the Darkness, will be out in May.

Hooray!

31 comments:

  1. Congratulations! I absolutely *loved* Curse... and have had long conversations with friends who also loved it, even though they rarely read YA lit. I was so happy it won, but totally forgot you were involved in it!

    Actually, I think that it won was my favorite announcement today.

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  2. Double congrats, then! I checked out Moribito on my last library trip, so I'm looking forward to that one as well.

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  3. Congratulations on your great news, Cheryl!!
    Best,
    Jean

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  4. Congrats. I thought of you the minute they were announced as I watched the telecast (?) on my library computer. The page shelving books nearby couldn't figure out why I was bouncing out of my seat.

    I love it when someone I "know" online has a reason to celebrate. -wendie old

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  5. Congratulations, Cheryl! And it's certainly well deserved. They were both wonderful books.

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  6. After reading the FIRST PAGE of Moribito last year, I thought: This should win the Batchelder.

    I prayed Moribito would win the Batchelder and was relieved, grateful, and joyous when it did.

    I can't wait to read the sequel in May! Congratulations, Cheryl. :D

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  7. Congratulations! Curse is a terrific book and Elizabeth really deserves this. So do you.

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  8. Super congrats! I was glad to see this morning that both your books won! Haven't read Moribito, but will have to get it. Loved Elizabeth Bunce's beautifully written book. Glad you had such a wonderful day!

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  9. Congratulations to all of you! What a wonderful day:)

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  10. So glad Moribito won! It's a beautiful book and a great read!

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  11. Congratulations! *blows trumpet* :)

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  12. Congrats! You make some lovely books.

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  13. I've been talking so much about how you had to pry Curse out of Elizabeth's fingers, and then the editorial letters and edits that you guys worked so tirelessly on, so I was a pretty happy duck when I heard at work that she'd won. Good job!

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  14. Congratulations to you, Cheryl, and to Elizabeth, very well deserved!!!

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  15. This must be a very nice day for you, indeed. Congratulations! I've heard great things about A Curse Dark as Gold, and it's on my list to read.

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  16. I'm delighted for you and for Elizabeth -- and this reminds me once again of how I really want to read MORIBITO. Congratulations!

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  17. That's awesome, congratulations! "Curse" looks amazing and I definitely want to pick that one up.

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  18. YEAH! CK, I'm just THRILLED for you and for the authors, translators and the books. It's great, great stuff, and I love seeing you continue to get the professional recognition you deserve. I'm cheering from the sidelines. - Rach

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  19. Oh, I am so late to this party....

    Congratulations, Cheryl!! To you and your talented authors. I absolutely adored Moribito. It was such a delightfully crisp, textured read. And I am still looking forward to A Curse....

    Congratulations, again. You certainly deserved it. And I cannot wait to read more of the delightful work that comes out of AAL.

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  20. Congratulations! I grew up speaking Japanese, so reading MORIBITO, I could "hear" the Japanese words behind the English. That's a sign of a great translation of a great story. Yaaay!

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  21. Congratulations on
    'A Curse Dark as Gold'
    I'm married to an editor
    and I know how hard they work at making writing sing.
    Together you and Elizabeth
    create great harmony

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  22. Congratulations! Curse was fabulous! I've just put Moribito on my reading list.

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  23. i wish to have this course one day congratulation to you

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  24. I would like to appreciate the great work done by you Cheap Propecia

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  25. So as we all know bad days f'ing suck. Well ive had one today n its just time to sit back n relax n look back. But first i will take the slow long time that it will take to type this story for the ones who read this. Ok today started off really dead, as in i was too high last night and had a dead feeling of high when i woke up this morning.

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