Friday, October 5, 2012

M.T. Anderson is FINALLY HERE in Fresno, CA!

Award-winning young adult author 
M.T. Anderson will speak tonight, 
Friday October 5, 2012 at 6:00 p.m. at the 
Woodward Branch Library. The event is open 
to the public. Please RSVP at 559-278-8116 or at

Created by Simon & Schuster, a book trailer for Jasper Dash and the Flame-Pits of Delaware!  This video clip was extracted from M.T. Anderson's official website at:

Friday, September 28, 2012

M. T. Anderson to speak on October 5, 2012

The public is invited to a talk by award-winning author M. T. Anderson. Anderson will speak for the Arne Nixon Center Advocates (ANCA) annual meeting on Friday, October 5, at the Woodward Park Branch Library, 944 East Perrin Avenue, in northeast Fresno. A catered reception for the author will begin at 6:00 p.m. with the talk to follow at 7:00 p.m.

Anderson has written many books for young people, including picture books for children, series books for middle grade readers, and novels for teens and adults. His science fiction satire Feed was a finalist for the National Book Award and was the winner of the L.A. Times Book Prize.  Set in a futuristic dystopian society where consumers receive internet advertising and entertainment programming wired directly into their brains, Feed provides a thought-provoking look at a consumer society where addled minds and inarticulate tongues are the norm.  

Anderson received additional accolades for his two-part historical fiction series “The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing, Traitor to the Nation.”  Volume one, The Pox Party, won the National Book Award and The Boston Globe—Horn Book Prize. That volume and the second, The Kingdom on the Waves, were Printz Honor Books.

ANCA supports the work of the Center, including its many projects, events, and exhibits through its fund raising efforts. ANCA President Denise Sciandra will preside over a brief business meeting before the talk. If you would like to become an ANCA member, please see our electronic membership form at or email the Center at

Anderson’s books will be available for purchase and signing at the meeting. Parking for the event is free. There is no charge for admission, but reservations are required by calling 559.278.8116 or by emailing by October 1.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

2012 Wild About Books Winners Announced!

This summer the Arne Nixon Center came together with local television station Channel 47, A Book Barn Bookstore in Clovis, All Signs Printing, and Petunia’s Place Bookstore for Children to present a writing and illustration contest for young people. The contest, Wild About Books, encouraged students from third to twelfth grades to creatively express themselves through writing and illustration. Channel 47’s Zara Arboleda and Jenny Toste drove home the message by hosting local authors on their early morning show, several of which had begun their own writing careers inspired by such contests.  Doug Hansen, Bonnie Hearn Hill, Michael Elsohn Ross, Dorina Lazo Gilmore, and Joan Schoettler were some of the children’s authors that appeared every Thursday morning throughout May and June. President Welty also lent his support by taping a public service announcement with Arboleda which aired until the contest’s entry deadline on July 1st.

The contest consisted of four categories: fiction, non-fiction, poetry, and illustration, with all submissions required to contain a reference to books. Cash prizes will be awarded to the winning entrants at a celebration to be held in early December.  In addition to the prizes, Linden Publishing has generously offered to publish an anthology of the winning pieces which will be given to each winner. Additional anthologies will be for sale, with the proceeds going towards next year’s contest prizes. Listed below are the winners in all divisions and categories. Grand prize winners will be announced.

Division A: Grades 3-5
1st Prize                              “Stegy Goes to the Fresno State Library”, by Sammy Iliff
Honorable Mention             "’Secret’" Reading in my Dollhouse”,  by Katie Boyles
Honorable Mention             “Duke the Very Special Dog”, by Elyse Brewer      
1st Prize         “Why I Love the Baseball Card Adventure Series”, by Quaid Copher
1st Prize                                      “Caught”, by Zeke Fuller
1st Prize                                      The Floating Castles, by Malcolm Church
 Honorable Mention      The Sea Monster of the Ocean of Flying Fishes, by Hazel Koh
 Honorable Mention              Adventure Time, by Kaden Johnson 
Division B: Grades 6-8 
1st Prize                                      “Codexia”, by Maya Vannin
 Honorable Mention               “The Wolves Before Time”, by Tessa Nelson
Honorable Mention              “Ella's Adventures in Wonderland”, by Ragon Nichols 
1st Prize                        “That's What Best Friends Are For”, by Gwyneth Phagnasay Le
Honorable Mention              “Revolutionary National Holiday”’, by Simon Cao 
1st Prize                                     “Wild About Books”, by J. J. Sutton
Honorable Mention                           “In Time”, by Bret Moran
Honorable Mention                  “The Hidden Beast”, by Serena Tang 
1st Prize                                      Fireworks at Dusk, by Tyra Holly
Honorable Mention                    Smaug, by Ezekiel J. Benavides
Honorable Mention              The Wolves Before Time, by Tessa Nelson

Division C: Grades 9-12
1st Prize                                      “Charlie's Portal”’  by Valerie Campos         
Honorable Mention              “The Hypocritical Antics of Mr. Smothers”, by Graeme Merrow
Honorable Mention              “The Book Jumper”, by Jessica Rinehart
1st Prize                              “My Journey to the River Sea”, by Madelyn Knutson
Honorable Mention                “Manifesting Destiny”, by Natasha Velaquez
Honorable Mention                     “Swift's Proposal”, by William Tang
1st Prize                               “Book Lover  An Acrostic Poem”, by Claire Copher
Honorable Mention                    “The Reality”, by Andrew W. Hollender
Honorable Mention                     “My Strange Dreams”, by William Tang
1st Prize                                            Hungry Dog, by Treshon Holly

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

The World of Costume Dolls and Wooden Toys

On behalf of the Arne Nixon Center, we thank Karin and Robert Larka for their generous donation of Russian costume dolls and wood carved toys.

Invitational visits to the Soviet Union offered Arne Nixon the opportunity to enrich lives of those around the world. He shared stories to children and made presentations to university groups, Soviet Publishers, editors, and others who worked with children’s literature. These items were purchased by the Larka family while traveling with Arne Nixon and Karin Sabul. Ms. Sabul, from Tallinn, Estonia, was their tour guide during a trip to Russia in 1987.

Included in this donation are 21 Bogorodskoe Wood Carved Toys.

Bogorodskoe Wood Carving is a folk craft of carved toys and sculpture from soft wood—linden, alder, and aspen. It has existed in the village of Bogorodskoe (presently located in Zagorsk Raion, Moscow Oblast, Russian Federation) probably since the 16th or 17th century. In the beginning of the 20th century the master craftsmen united into an artel known as the Bogorodskoe Engraver from 1923; in 1960 it was transformed into the Bogorodskoe Factory of Artistic Wood Carving. There is a professional technical school. Until the end of the 19th century Bogorodskoe wood carving preserved the traditional technique of shallow cuts, which revealed only the necessary details for the characterization of personages in the figurines of people and animals and moving toys (“bobbers,” “blacksmiths,” and so on). These details were often emphasized with bright painting. At the turn of the 20th century, the technique of cutting was replaced by more detailed working of the figures, which are then assembled into compositions and daily scenes on themes from fables, fairy tales, popular prints, poems, and, in Soviet times, from contemporary events and history as well.

Masters of Bogorodskoe wood carving include F. S. Balaev, A. G. Chushkin, V. S. Zinin, I. K. Stulov, M. A. Pronin, and M. F. Barinov.
Vasilenko, V. M. Russkaia narodnaia rez’ba i ros’pis po derevu XVIII-XX vv. Moscow, 1960.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserve