Now Accepting Entries: January 21-March 4!
The Ann Arbor District Library is excited to host its 26th annual “It’s All Write!” Teen Writing Contest in Spring 2018! Young Adult authors take part as judges each year, who then read and select the winning stories. Stories are judged in three different categories: Grades 6-8, Grades 9 & 10, and Grades 11 & 12. The top three writers in each age group receive fabulous prizes. This is an ever-growing, international contest.
How to Enter the Contest:
1. Take a look at the Flash Fiction Guidelines and the Short Story Guidelines
2. Write your story! Need some help? Check out this Writing Resource Guide.
3. Send us your work using either the Short Story Submission Form and/or the Flash Fiction Submission Form! Questions about the contest may be directed to email@example.com.
Special Writing Sessions!:
February 1, 2018 from 5:00-6:30pm at the Neutral Zone (Upstairs Conference Room). For help crafting your contest entry, stop by the Neutral Zone for a special session of drop-in writing help for participants in the "It's All Write!" contest! The Neutral Zone is located at 310 E. Washington St. in Downtown Ann Arbor. *Note: If you are in grades 6-8, it is helpful to bring a note with an adult's permission.
Wed, 11/15/2017 - 11:42am
Homework giving you a headache? You may want to log on to Brainfuse. Their Live Homework Help is available from 2:00 PM-11:00 PM everyday (except Federal Holidays) & the interactive Study Suite is accessible anytime with your aadl account log in information. For more information about all the amazing facets of Brainfuse read these FAQs. Using Brainfuse can make learning fun for parents & kids! College students and adult learners can benefit from it, too! Give it a try!
Mon, 11/06/2017 - 12:38pm
In a literary world full of “5 under 35 lists” and authors publishing first novels in their 20s, Leah Weiss is something of an anomaly. Her debut novel, If The Creek Don’t Rise was written after her retirement from a 24 year career as the executive assistant to the headmaster at Virginia Episcopal School. In it she introduces us to the harsh and difficult life in a small town in Appalachia in the 1970s. This can be a dangerous place, a world of violence and cruelty, especially for women. Weiss presents this community through a profuse range of voices, voices with their own dialect, particular to these mountain ranges.
The chapters in Weiss’ book, each narrated by a different individual, read like a collection of connected stories, offering a unique and varied glimpse of Baines Creek, a remote haven in an unspecified state. As a newcomer to Baines Creek, teacher Kate Shaw, one of Weiss’ strongest characters, describes it as “barely a crossroad, a dot on a map. It’s remote, embraced by natural beauty, and riddled with hardships,” with “poverty the likes of which I’ve never imagined except in the books of Dickens and Brontë sisters.”
The cast of players in this secluded town represents all facets of personality and morality, and an internal view of even the most vile characters unveils some vulnerability. We are able to see why Prudence Perkins, the reverend’s spiteful, spinster sister, is so mean spirited, and to learn from where intense cruelty is born in the heart of an abusive bully, Roy Tupkin.
If there is a main character in If The Creek Don’t Rise, she is Sadie Blue, the wife of Roy. Her voice provides bookends, she starts the first and last chapters with the same sentence, within which she demonstrates one woman’s path to a better place in a town that so often resists change. Ultimately this is Sadie Blue’s story, provided to us by a chorus of voices from those who know her, but we get to experience so many other memorable folks from Baines Creek along the way.
Mon, 10/23/2017 - 12:15pm
The Dawn Farms Education Series, "Teens Using Drugs: What To Know and What To Do" meets again. This is a free, two-part series that will be presented from 7:30-9:00 pm Tuesday, November 7th (part one, "What to Know"), and Tuesday, November 14th, (part two, "What to Do"). The programs will be held in the "Exhibition Room" on the first floor of St. Joseph Mercy Hospital Education Center at 5305 Elliott Drive, Ypsilanti. The sessions are presented by the Dawn Farm Youth & Family Services team. This program is targeted primarily to parents/caretakers of teens & young adults but is inclusive of other family members, teens, professionals, students, people who sponsor or support teens, and others interested. Please contact 734-485-8725 or firstname.lastname@example.org or see the link to Dawn Farm for further information.
Sat, 10/07/2017 - 4:25pm
But then, lo and behold, there was ANOTHER time at the library...with that book you saw on a shelf, with a GREEN cover, that drew you in - but, of course, you had to pass it by in that moment for some unbeknownst reason. Now, if you should find yourself green with envy for that grassy-colored cover, I may have the book for you! I've recently created a list of books that have, or have had, green covers - whether or not their most recent editions have that gorgeous emerald hue, they did at some point! Plus, this list is welcome to all kinds of green covered books...
Whether it be a marshy green of the novel The Marsh King's Daughter, a gawky bright green like The Awkward Age, or perhaps the olive green of Behind the Mask, all green covers are welcome on this compilation list. But this list isn't just for the adults! There's also a wide age range available for the younger reader greedy for the green...
Whether it's from the teen section like Fablehaven, maybe Gary Paulsen's The River, or even Insurgent from Veronica Roth's best-selling Divergent series, this list has a generous collection of green covered pages that you might have left on the shelf. Even the youth may have glazed over a glorious green book resting on it's display, such as The Secret Garden or Evermore Dragon. This list also gives a gateway to the many genres that glisten with glittering green covers at the library...
Maybe you were gleefully grasping through science fiction and found The Best of Ian McDonald or David Hutchinson's Acadie? Could you have gone gallivanting through the Express Shelf and seen My Absolute Darling or found The Essex Serpent? What about the non-fiction readers, who may have glanced through the graceful stacks, gazing at gripping covers glorifying goodly grub for the growing kids or great grammatical rhymes?
This list has ALL THE THINGS (or would like to have) and is growing each day! Please feel free to take a gander, and graciously grumble or gab about other green-covered books you think others may be searching for, so the list gets gargantuan. Just think: someone out there could be looking for a leafy-green book jacket that you've read before - maybe you've got the answer they've been grieving for as they search the grand volumes we have here at AADL. Or perhaps you yourself have getting grumpy in the search, and the book is in this list already!!! Only one way to find out...
Wed, 10/04/2017 - 1:00pm
On July 4, 2017 I saw a bald eagle flying over the Huron River! It was the first time I had ever seen a bald eagle in the wild. During the past several decades bald eagles were a very rare sight in the Ann Arbor area. After reductions in the use of dangerous pesticides such as DDT and 40 years on the endangered species list, bald eagle populations have significantly recovered in southeastern Michigan and around the United States.
”Bald Eagle Numbers Soaring in SE Michigan” is a short article in The Daily Telegraph (published in Adrian, MI). It has information on the recovery of bald eagles in southeast Michigan.
You can find out more about both Bald Eagles and Golden Eagles on the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service website.
The Cornell Lab of Ornithology Birds of North America Online database is a very informative resource. You can find it by subject under “Science & Technology”, or you can find it alphabetically by name. For each bird species there are sections covering a variety of interesting topics including “Demography and Populations” and “Conservation and Management”.
12 Birds Back From the Brink by Nancy Furstinger highlights 12 different bird species that have made a comeback after being close to extinction. This book discusses both the reasons why species numbers declined to dangerous levels, and the actions that were taken to save them from extinction. It emphasizes the dramatic differences that human behavior can make in the survival or extinction of a species. Although intended for kids, the information in this book may be interesting to readers of all ages.
Here are some more kids’ books on endangered birds that both kids and adults may enjoy:
Kakapo Rescue: Saving the World’s Strangest Parrot by Sy Montgomery tells the story of how scientists and volunteers are trying to save the unique and fascinating kakapo parrot of New Zealand. Like a number of other bird species in New Zealand, the kakapo parrot cannot fly.
Olivia’s Birds: Saving the Gulf by Olivia Bouler features Olivia’s colorful illustrations of many types of birds. As an 11 year old, Olivia used her artistic talent to raise money for the vast numbers of birds devastated by the catastrophic 2010 Gulf oil spill. This book shows that even young people can make a difference by taking action!
Parrots Over Puerto Rico by Susan L. Roth and Cindy Trumbore has information on how scientists are trying to save Puerto Rican parrots from extinction. Puerto Rican parrots are the only parrots native to the United States. This book includes fantastic collage artwork and information on the history of Puerto Rico.
If you’d like to try drawing some birds, Draw 50 Birds by Lee J. Ames includes all types of birds: common, rare, recovering, and extinct. There are no written instructions in this book, just drawings.
Fri, 09/22/2017 - 10:13am
Join us Monday, September 25, 2017: 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm in the Malletts Creek Branch: Program Room
The American Friends Service Committee staff leads a panel discussion on restorative justice and mass incarceration which will include a videoed vignette of successful outcomes of advocacy & prison reform.
AFSC's Michigan Criminal Justice Program advocates for over 1,500 Michigan prisoners and their families each year, building an advocacy network throughout the state. The program encourages dialogue among prisoners and the general public, and works for humane reform of the criminal justice system, and for the rights of prisoners.
Tue, 09/19/2017 - 3:12pm
School is back in session and the worksheets, projects, and papers return. As students settle back in to their routines it's good to brush up on some of the resources AADL has to help make after school work educational and, dare we say, fun.
In addition to online databases, reading lists, and access to online tutoring, AADL partners with students from Circle K at the University of Michigan to provide in-person Homework Help. On most Mondays (4 - 8pm), Wednesdays (4 - 8 pm), and Sundays (3 - 5 pm) students can meet in the Downtown Branch's Youth Story Corner to study alongside their peers and receive help from Circle K volunteers.
NEW this term, Homework Help is also available at Traverwood! Starting this week, Circle K tutors will be available most Thursdays from 4 - 6 pm in the Traverwood Branch program room.
Participants are always encouraged to check the schedule to confirm when Homework Help is being offered.
Best of luck to everyone with your studies this year!
Thu, 09/14/2017 - 1:05pm
And then, there was ANOTHER time at the library...there was that book you saw on a shelf, with a YELLOW cover, that caught your eye - but, for whatever reason, you had to pass it by. Now, if you should find yourself sour-faced like a lemon for that long lost spark of interest, I may have the book for you! I've recently created a list of books that have, or have had, yellow covers - whether or not their most recent editions have that bright lemon hue, they did at some point! Plus, this list is welcome to all kinds of yellow covered books...
Whether it be a musty yellow of the novel My Italian Bulldozer, a golden yellow like the published script of Harry Potter and The Cursed Child, or perhaps the traffic-sign yellow of Chemistry, all yellow covers are welcome on this compilation list. But this list isn't just for the adults! There's also a wide age range available for the younger reader yelping for the yellow...
If it's from the Teen section like Kill All the Happies or maybe Fever Code from the Maze Runner series, this list has many canary-yellow covered pages that you might have left on the shelf for a later date. Even the youth may have left a book resting on it's display, such as Sam and Eva or Daddy Long Legs. This list also provides you with options from every genre in the library...
Maybe you were browsing through historical fiction and found Homegoing or The Secret Chord by Geraldine Brooks? Could you have been possibly perusing the Express Shelf and seen We Are Never Meeting in Real Life or found How to Raise an Adult on the parent shelf? What about the non-fiction readers, who may have browsed through the stacks seeing covers that advertised oversized animals or a search for peace of mind?
This list has ALL THE THINGS (or would like to have) and is growing each day! Please feel free to take a look, and make comments of other yellow-covered books you think others may be searching for, so the list can continue to grow. Just think: someone out there could be looking for a yellow book jacket that you've read before - maybe you have the answer they've been looking for as they search the numerous volumes we have here at AADL. Or perhaps you yourself have been searching, and the book is in this list already!!! Only one way to find out...
Tue, 09/12/2017 - 4:39pm
The following memoirs are all unflinchingly honest and personal accounts of those grappling with anxiety and panic disorders.
In My Age of Anxiety : Fear, Hope, Dread, and the Search for Peace of Mind, Scott Stossel reports with candor on his constant and continued battles with severe anxiety in many forms. Accessible, readable, funny, forthright and extremely well researched, Stossel’s book offers alternating personal accounts with examinations of anxiety as seen in past and present science and philosophy. Daniel Smith also looks at how writers, scientists and other thinkers have considered anxiety while delving deeply into his own in Monkey Mind: A Memoir of Anxiety. Like Stossel, Smith allows readers a very close look at his daily fears, and like Stossel bravely tackles the subject with much humor.
Andrea Petersen was a student at the University of Michigan when she suffered her first panic attack. In On Edge: A Journey Through Anxiety, she recalls how she went from doctor to doctor, one misdiagnosis after another to realize that her physical pain was caused by debilitating anxiety. She was eventually diagnosed with several different anxiety disorders.
Petersen chronicles her anxiety on a very personal level, but also takes us through myriad treatments, both past and present, as well as the physiology and genetics of anxiety disorders.
These accounts of crippling anxiety mixed with studies of this common and misunderstood mental illness have the potential to offer considerable help to anyone suffering from anxiety or close to someone who is.