Channel 5 has commissioned the first children’s TV series from Random House Children’s Screen Entertainment (RHCSE), the UK production house created by Random House Children’s Publishing and Komixx Entertainment.
"Wanda and the Alien" is based on the series of books by writer and illustrator Sue Hendra in which a little girl rabbit befriends an alien. It is set to air in 2014 as a series of 52 10-minute programmes using flash animation. The series is already in pre-production at Mackinnon & Saunders digital studios in Manchester.
RCHSE has appointed kids’ content distributor CAKE to handle global distribution of the series.
Smashwords Launches Series Manager
The ebook distribution platform Smashwords has announced a new feature, Series Manager, aimed at helping authors lump their series titles together for easier search capabilities….
“It’s not uncommon for the books in some series to make no reference to their series in the book title, book cover or book description,” stated Smashwords’ CEO Mark Coker in a blog post about the new offering. “This makes it difficult for readers to identify all the books in a series, or books in related series, and makes it difficult for retailers to properly merchandise them. Series Manager helps solve this problem.
“Smashwords will provide the new series metadata, as input by the author or publisher, to our retailers. Each retailer will handle the metadata differently. Some will make use of all the data, and others might cherry pick. Either way, the improved metadata will make it easier for retailers to enhance the discoverability of Smashwords books today while having the capability to develop improved discoverability features in the future.”
The Screaming Staircase is the first in a new series – Lockwood & Co – by Jonathan Stroud, publishing at the end of this month…
This video [in the full post] is five years old. But it’s an impressive continuous-movingshot monologue by Joe Craig, author of the Jimmy Coates action series, once described as The Bourne Identity for kids.
The latest title is Blackout, which has a fine book trailer of its own.
After 28 years and 28 novels, Phyllis Reynolds Naylor is wrapping up her series starring Alice McKinley with Now I’ll Tell You Everything, due from Atheneum on October 15. The author, whose 135-book oeuvre includes the 1992 Newbery Medal-winning Shiloh, introduced Alice in 1985 as an easily embarrassed adolescent growing up without a mother in The Agony of Alice. The series, which has 2.5 million copies in print, subsequently followed Alice through the years, a few months at a time, until the summer after high school graduation. The grand finale brings her to college graduation and well beyond – to the age of 60.
Naylor, who sold The Agony of Alice to the late Jean Karl at Atheneum (who had previously edited Naylor’s Witch series), didn’t initially envision the novel as the first in a series. “That was not in my head at all at the start,” she told PW. “I began thinking about embarrassing things that happened to me during my life – tell me a year and I can tell you something embarrassing that happened – and I thought that might make a funny story. And then when the book was published, reviewers began mentioning that Alice’s fans will await her further adventures, and that’s when we decided on making a series.”
The adventures of a twin boy and girl that have sold 21 million children’s books over the past 53 years are to be turned into a TV series.
But BBC producers have had to plump for two unrelated lookalikes to play Topsy and Tim after failing to find a suitable set of siblings.
Jocelyn Macnab and Joshua Lester, both seven, will fill the roles of the five-year-olds in the 60-part show.
It will be the first live drama to air on CBeebies.
Author Jean Adamson said she was, “tickled pink that Topsy and Tim are still relevant to today’s audiences”.
Publication of Shahana launches ‘Through My Eyes, a new Australian fiction series set in contemporary warzones:
Through My Eyes invites young readers to enter the fragile worlds of children living in contemporary war zones. Every day in an increasing number of countries, children are desperately trying to survive as their families and their whole way of life is destroyed by war. This new series is a tribute to such children and the themes of courage, determination, triumph and perseverance will inspire, challenge and engage young readers, creating greater cross cultural understanding and informed empathy.
Several stories set in the World Wars have been written for younger readers but very little has been published about more contemporary conflicts and those within Asian settings. War affects the old and the young, the rich and the poor, the boy or girl and these stories will appeal to all readers.
The idea for the series was principally inspired by the success of the Parvana series by Deborah Ellis and by my own extensive experience as a primary school teacher-librarian and English as a Second Language teacher. Having had the privilege of listening to the incredible experiences of children and war, I believe these life-changing situations are best told through stories that are character-driven but based on meticulous research and understanding of the issues each war-torn region raises. The continuing controversy surrounding Australia’s role in providing asylum for displaced peoples from the world’s war-zones, and the request by students for more books of this genre provided further context for the decision to create this series.
This is not a non-fiction series, but through the strong, character-driven story lines the readers will be aware of the specific time, place and military conflict. Individual stories on this theme have been written, but this will be the first time a series has been created that deals with a range of children’s experiences in war-torn countries.
—Lyn White, series editor
Faber and Profile Books are delighted to announce the acquisition of a third novel in Francesca Simon’s Mortal Gods series. The deal for world rights was arranged by Rosemary Sandberg at Rosemary Sandberg Agents Ltd.
The new book will continue the adventures of the Carnegie-longlisted The Sleeping Army (published October 2011), which has sold nearly 50,000 copies across all editions to date. The Lost Gods, the eagerly awaited follow-up in the series for 8+ readers, will publish in hardback in September 2013 and the newly acquired third book will publish in autumn 2015.
‘Publishing is never a chore but rarely quite as much of a pleasure as when doing business with an author as fondly regarded and successful as Francesca Simon. That regard is true not only for her readers young and old, but for me personally: it’s been 36 years since we met. If only all longstanding friendships turned into books as original, exciting and full of thrills as Francesca’s Norse adventures. Long live her Gods!’ Andrew Franklin, Profile Books
‘Extremely funny, beautifully plotted, expertly crafted, Francesca Simon’s Mortal Gods series is a joy to publish. We could not be more thrilled!’ Leah Thaxton, Publisher, Faber Children’s Books