Frame of Reference


Annette Goldsmith

It's been a long time coming, but here, at last, is the April 2/August 2 double issue. The busy folks (all volunteers, remember!) who contribute to The Looking Glass have worked especially hard to produce this issue, so we'd love to know what you think of it: do send us your comments and suggestions. An e-mail note is wonderful, of course, but read Alice's Academy, the scholarly section, to consider other methods of communication: Elizabeth Pandolfo Briggs examines how technology is currently being used to teach children's literature, and proposes a way to enhance your electronic connection with The Looking Glass.

You may have noticed that books starring Cheerios, M & M's and other snack foods are nestling on bookstore and library shelves next to books with the more traditional non-edible characters. To find out what's really going on, see Dan Hade's cogent primer on children's books in the global economy in Illuminating Texts. And for insight into how illustrators find their way, join Kathryn E. Shoemaker in her Picture Window studio.

On a lighter note, we continue our occasional series of In the Twinkling of an Eye "mean streets" pieces with Sherry Severson's "Dragnet, Pinocchio-style". (Column editor Sarah Ellis inaugurated the series with "The Big Nap", subsequently reprinted in The Horn Book.) Here at The Looking Glass, we have a soft spot for the inspired nonsense of the Alice books, which is why ykcowrebbaJ still features Jeff Garrett's delightful review of Emer O'Sullivan's book on German Alice translations. Don't miss Spyglass for the hAtTeR's whirlwind tour of international children's literature theme parks! Once you've caught your breath, visit My Own Invention to discover Jackie Winter's extraordinary children's library in Puerto Rico.

In LG Lore, Jeffrey Canton eulogizes Mordecai Richler, the late Canadian writer who should have been as famous for his award-winning children's books as for his adult work. But alas, children's literature is seldom accorded the same status as the books written for big people. Console yourself with some fresh goat's milk and Heidi's favourite comfort food, toasted bread and cheese, lovingly presented by The Cook in Pig and Pepper.

About the next (2 December) issue: if you've missed getting a new Acrostic, take heart, because Joanne Schott is now working on two. In the meantime, you can go Down the Rabbit Hole (Archives) to find earlier ones. The December issue will be our first theme issue. We will explore the many faces of children's poetry, meaning poetry by and for children. If you would like to contribute, the copy deadline is 1 October. On a personal note, it will be my last issue. I will doubtless need lots of toasted bread and cheese as I wrench myself away from the editorship of TLG to concentrate on other things, including a children's literature course I'll be teaching this fall at Barry University in Miami. If you would like to be considered for the job of editor ("fun, but no funds", as Gregory Maguire recently described it) please let me know. We are also looking for a new editor for My Own Invention, the innovative children's literature projects column, since Mary Nix's busy schedule now includes writing as well as teaching.

Have a wonderful fall full of children's books!

Editorially yours,

Annette Goldsmith

Volume 5, Issue 1, The Looking Glass, 2001

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"Frame of Reference - Introduction" © Annette Goldsmith, 2001
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