Children's Book Ambassador

     Librarian of Congress James H. Billington announced today that children's book author Jon Scieszka has been named the inaugural National Ambassador for Young People's Literature. In accepting this post, Scieszka has chosen to advocate for and focus on reaching reluctant readers. During his two-year tenure as children's laureate, he will reach out to parents and educators helping them identify reluctant readers, those children who are capable of reading but are not interested in doing so. As part of his platform, Scieszka will offer suggestions on how to turn reluctant readers into avid readers. His suggestions include:

    1. Letting kids choose what they like and want to read.
    2. Expanding our definition of "reading" to include nonfiction, humor, graphic novels, magazines, action adventure and Web content.
    3. Being good "reading" models for our children.
    4. Avoiding demonizing TV, computer games and new technologies.

    Scieszka is the author of several bestselling children's titles, including The Stinky Cheese Man, which won a Caldecott Honor medal, The True Story of the Three Little Pigs and the Time Warp Trio, a chapter book series. He is the founder of Guys Read (, a nonprofit literacy organization.     
        Check out his Web site and pay attention to this issue of reluctant readers. You as a writer have the potential to break down that resistance for kids.