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Thursday, September 25, 2008

Book Banning, Censorship, And Elections….Watch Out, I’m Getting Political!

Readers of my blog should know that I have an odd fascination with elections. During the primaries, I was completely obsessed with CNN’s fancy touch-screen map and all those convoluted delegates. But since the primaries ended, Wolf and I haven’t hung out much. That’s not to say that I don’t care about the outcome of the race, I’m just waiting for the “playoff” rounds to begin.

So when I heard about this awesome new website put together by Maureen Johnson (author of Suite Scarlett) called YA for Obama, I thought “Fabulous! Sign me up!”

I mean, check out the site. It’s incredibly well done—this cool social networking tool that allows you to have “friends,” post blogs, create your own “page,” and more. And the network of people on it, especially the YA authors, is downright impressive. Judy Blume (author of Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret; Forever; Superfudge, etc.) posted a blog! So did John Green (author of Looking for Alaska and An Abundance of Katherines). And there are tons of other best selling authors, like Cecily von Ziegesar (Gossip Girl), Megan McCafferty (Sloppy Firsts), Sarah Dessen (Someone Like You and That Summer, which became the movie How to Deal), Melissa Walker (Violet in Private), Laurie Halse Anderson (Speak) and many, many more.

So I joined to show my support for Obama as well as the other authors supporting this initiative. To be honest, I didn’t think much of it. Anyone who knows me, knows I’m going to vote for Barack. It’s not like it’s some deep hidden secret.

And then I asked my husband to post the link on my homepage. His reaction? “Are you sure you want to get political? I don’t think it’s a good idea.” After a few moments of my face scrunching up in confusion, I actually had to argue for him to post the link. Truly, I didn’t get it.

So, finally, he posted it.

View my page on YA for Obama

And within 24 hours, an acquaintance of ours (one of the few McCain supporters we know) emails and says, “Do you really think Diana should be posting her political affiliations on her homepage? That could turn off potential readers.”

Are you kidding me? Are there seriously teens—or people in general—who won’t buy a book because the author happens to support a different political candidate? It’s not like I’m writing nonfiction political tomes, folks. I write fun YA stories.

And regardless, why should I have to censor myself on my own blog or website? I don’t know how many of you follow author Alisa Valdez Rodriguez’s blog, but she gets into a lot of controversial—and personal—topics. And just this week, she blogged about her father asking her to stop posting information about her love life and finances. You know what she did? She posted a blog about how the current economy is forcing her to consider foreclosure.

Because at the end of the day, I don’t think any of us would be very good writers if we censored our books, blogs, websites to only contain generic information that would be good for “marketing” purposes. People want to read the truth, and the more truth you give them, the more interesting the work is.

So, my point is, I’m now a member of YA for Obama if you’d like to join me, please do so. If you support the other guy—hey, that’s what we have elections for!

That said, I wanted to also take a moment and let everyone know that I will be a panelist at this weekend's Baltimore Book Festival. I will be participating in Book Diva’s Young Adult Panel along with fellow YA authors Brad Barkley, Suzanne Supplee, and Robin Wasserman. The festival is FREE and I'll even be signing copies of Amor and Summer Secrets afterwards. So if you're in the area, come out and see me!

Baltimore Book Festival
Mount Vernon Place, 600 Block North Charles Street, Baltimore
Book Divas YA Panel (featuring me): Saturday, 12 pm, Festival Stage

In other news, I wanted to announce the first winner of PART TWO of the Amor and Summer Secrets Back-To-School Giveaway!

Congratulations…Janice Evans!

You have just won a complete Amor and Summer Secrets Prize Pack, which includes a copy of Amor, and ARC of Amigas and School Scandals, two signed bookplates, and two exclusive Amor and Summer Secrets bookmarks!

Janice won, via a random drawing, for posting the following five-star review on Amazon:

“Takes me back to my teen years. Makes me wish and feel like I was there with Mariana! Couldn't put it down! Read it in 2 days and wished i had the next one to keep going! Awesome read Diana, keep it up and keep 'em coming!”

It’s not too late to enter!
I will be giving away another Amor and Summer Secrets Prize Packs next week, so be sure to send me the links to your online reviews for a chance to win! ENTER NOW!

POP-CULTURE RANT: The President Pre-empting “Criminal Minds”

Since I’ve already gone political, I might as well add that I didn’t very much appreciate turning on my DRV to discover that the season premiere of “Criminal Minds,” which I had thought I’d recorded, was actually cut short to hear to Bush talk. Now I’m not going to get into the importance of discussing our economic crisis, but I will say that I hope the networks replay some of those pre-empted programs or I might never know if that ambulance in the hospital parking lot exploded.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I totally agree! (Well, except about the criminal minds part. That show lost me when it lost mandy p.) Looking forward to meeting you!

September 26, 2008 at 7:48 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've already told Robin this, but I totally wish I could be going to the Baltimore Book Festival and meet both of you! Hope you have a good time, and take lots of pictures and write all about it. I want to hear all the details!

September 26, 2008 at 2:46 PM  

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