Thursday, February 25, 2010

Katie Davis is heroic - and a true friend to GLBTQ Teens!

So one of the really cool things about going to the SCBWI conferences is that you get to meet people doing amazing things!

At the recent SCBWI New York conference, one author I met was Katie Davis, who has a gig talking about Children's books on the Good Morning Connecticut TV show.

Here she's sharing three books about friendship with the TV show's viewers. One of the books is Parrotfish by Ellen Wittlinger.

What's awesome about Katie isn't only that she's including a Teen novel about a transgender teen, she defends the book from the knee-jerk discomfort of the show's host, who calls the book's handling of the subject matter "extreme." When Katie counters that it isn't extreme AT ALL, it's actually handled very well, the host admits he hasn't read it. She urges him to, and it's a great moment: check it out!

Thank you Katie, for getting word out there that all of us need books about GLBTQ Teen lives, too. You're making our world a better place!


p.s. you can check out Katie's blog here, too!


Sherrie Petersen said...

Great interview!

Katie handled herself well. I wonder if the newscaster will actually read the book? My regional RA got a shout out too -- go Alexis!

Anonymous said...

I've already read Parrotfish--wonderful book--and I watched the clip just to understand what the host meant by "extreme." How would one handle the subject of gender identity in an extreme manner? Apparently he didn't know himself, since he hadn't read the book. What came across was, "I'm so uncomfortable with this subject that I can't even stand still." I hope he does read it, because ironically enough, it's quite "un-extreme," with Grady deciding he is, while identifying primarily as a boy, near the middle of the gender-identity spectrum.

Daniel Teeter said...

Of course it's extreme! Once we endeavor to understand things outside ourselves and face the fact that knowledge may require changing our conjecture hardened opinions, who knows where that'll lead! It could be the end of the world as we know it!

Jennie Englund said...

That's classic!

Katie is super classy. And poor Mr. Connecticut keeps interrupting, and scratching himself, and looks like he could use a really strong cup of coffee...

Anonymous said...

Way to go, Katie. What I heard Conn. Man say was that the METHODS of the book were extreme....which to me sounds like a criticism of style, not content...and how could you speak to that if you hadn't read the book. I'm impressed that the TV station ran this, and wonder if they got complaints.

Kathy McCullough said...

This was great. Thank you. I like the point she made that there aren't many books for transgender kids -- which makes this a very important book!

kittens not kids said...

the methods of the book?? like - what, it somehow reaches out AND FORCES YOU TO TURN INTO A BOY OR GIRL? IT MAKES YOU GAY? AGAINST YOUR WILL????

the methods?

jeez. what a yutz.

Great job Ms Davis. I love that she presents Parrotfish in precisely the same way she presents the other two books, as if it's just another book, not one dealing with a Hot Button Controversial Topic! (you know: as if transgender is - gasp! - normal).

That host guy is creepy. Ms Davis is awesome.