Please visit my blog. Nitz
Bits is a place where I'll be sharing some informal opinions on reading,
writing, researching and revising.
Suspect, my young adult mystery, was nominated
Fiction for Young Adults list for 2011!
Reading Circle Catalog
State Library Association YA Top 40 for 2010
State Reading Association Young Adult Book Award Nominee 2011
Suspect received a great review from Kirkus:
Nitz intertwines and then untangles relationships among the teens
and guests, weaving a credible mystery for a wide adolescent audience.
With clues and red herrings neatly scattered throughout, the book scores
as a darned good little mystery. Intriguing, suspenseful fun.
The first page of Suspect can be read at the
Page Panda blog.
The Bank Street College of Education included Defending Irene
in its 1998-2008
list of Best of the Best for Ages 9 and Up in a recent update to their
Saving the Griffin is a nominee for the 2009/10
Georgia Children's Book Award and the 2010
Kentucky Bluegrass Award!
(Update: I didn't win either award, but I can tell you in all sincerity
that those actors and actresses who say, "It was an honor just to
be nominated," are really telling the truth.)
I'm taking part in Peachtree's virtual author visits in schools program.
If you'd like to see me in my office, click here.
the scenes with Saving the Griffin on my
blog. Read about the people and places that inspired the characters and
the action. Learn about how the people at Peachtree Publishers turn a
manuscript into a book.
I added an essay on cafe writing to my section
on writing advice. Natalie Goldberg wrote the definitive book on this
technique in Writing Down the Bones. I've probably
been using it for eight or nine years. I've never found a better way to
really connect with a new scene.
Saving the Griffin didn't make the final cut for the Mark
Twain Award list of nominees, but neither did books by Newbery Medalists
Avi and Zilpha Keatley Snyder. I feel like I'm still in very good company!
Here's a wave to the students of Kenowa Hills Intermediate School. They
were a wonderfully attentive audience last week. I wish them luck in their
upcoming Young Authors Program.
Extra Helping, a bimonthly electronic newsletter from
School Library Journal, included Defending Irene
in a list of soccer
novels where athletes make an impact on and off the field.
I'll be signing my books at the Barnes and Noble in Grandville, Michigan's
Rivertown Mall from 11:00 to 1:00. I'm lucky to be spending this time
with Sue Thoms, author of the charming picture book, Cesar
Takes a Break. (Update: Here's a picture
from the event.)
Wow! The Missouri School Library Association put Saving the Griffin
on their preliminary for the annual Mark Twain Readers' Choice Award.
The judges will cut this group of 24 books down to 12 nominees. I lived
in Missouri for seven years, so one of my writer's dreams has been for
one of my books to be nominated. I'm not sure when the final selections
will be announced.
I'm delighted to announce that Peachtree just bought my novel, Stand-in
for Murder! This is how it was described in Publisher's Lunch: a
YA mystery in which a teenage girl has a summer job at her grandmother's
B&B where her duties include stepping into the role of the victim
at the annual mystery weekend in a plot designed to unearth new clues
about her mother's disappearance.
The March, 2008 issue of Library Sparks recommended Defending
Irene as one of their 'insightful soccer selections.'
Profound thanks go out to my sister-in-law, Marje, who insisted that
it was time this site had a complete redesign and then proceeded to carry
one out. In a few hours, she pulled together something clean and simple
that I could maintain myself. She also produced the new banner. Lovely!
I enjoyed taking part in the Michigan Reading Association's 52nd Annual
Conference, Bound Together by Literacy . I gave two presentations
and had the chance to hang out with a bunch of wonderful Michigan teachers