If you’re in Austin (or close enough), don’t forget about the Texas Book Festival.

Here’s what I’m hoping to hit tomorrow:

A 25th Anniversary Celebration of Hank the Cowdog
Date: Saturday, November 1, 2008
Time: 12:30 – 1:15
Location: Family Life Center (1300 Lavaca)

Join us as we celebrate the 25th anniversary of Hank the Cowdog! In John R. Erickson’s latest book, Hank the Cowdog #52: The Quest for the Great White Quail, Hank is thrilled when Beulah – the long-eared lady dog of his dreams – shows up at the ranch. At last, he thinks, she’s finally given up her infatuation with Plato the Bird Dog! But it turns out that Plato is missing, and Beulah wants Hank to help find him. Can he put his doggie dreams aside and do the right thing? It’s all in a day’s work for everyone’s favorite Head of Ranch Security!

Introducer Mary Jo Humphreys is a veteran educator in her 35th year of service to public schools. She has worked as a foreign language teacher, an elementary librarian, and a technology facilitator. She is currently the Director of Instructional Technology for Round Rock ISD and the Past Chair of the Texas Association of School Librarians.

Author: John R. Erickson
Introduction By: Mary Jo Humphreys

How Not to Be Popular
Date: Saturday, November 1, 2008
Time: 2:00 – 3:00
Location: Family Life Center (1300 Lavaca)

It’s hard being a girl. And being a girl in high school? Like, omigod! This panel of young adult authors will lead you through the minefield of life as a teenage girl. Whether it’s the hunt for popularity (and some girls will do the darndest things to get it) or an existential journey of self discovery, these writers cover teenage girl angst in poignant, hilarious, and horrific ways.

With more than 20 years’ experience in the field of children’s books, moderator Jennifer Brown started her career at what was then Harper & Row (now HarperCollins). During her nine years there she worked in both marketing and editorial, before moving to Madison, Wisconsin, to become editorial director at Pleasant Company (known for their American Girls imprint). Homesick for New York, she returned for a position at Scholastic, and then moved to Publishers Weekly, where she worked as children’s reviews editor for 10 years. She now reviews children’s books and writes about the publishing industry for an e-newsletter called Shelf Awareness.

Jennifer Ziegler
Paula Yoo
Lauren Myracle
Melissa de la Cruz

Moderated By: Jennifer Brown

I Haven’t Been Myself Lately: My Life as a Writer
Date: Saturday, November 1, 2008
Time: 3:30 – 4:30
Location: Capitol Extension Room E1.016

This intriguing panel features three authors who have masterfully crafted first-person narratives of protagonists entirely different from themselves. From a man writing a teenage girl’s experience with an unplanned pregnancy to a white author writing as a black girl growing up in the Deep South during the Civil Rights Movement, these authors have immersed themselves in worlds that they can only imagine. They will talk about their writing process and the challenges of getting into someone else’s head.

Moderator Don Tate is an award-winning illustrator and author. He’s illustrated more than 25 trade and educational books for children, including Summer Sun Risin’; Sure As Sunrise: Stories of Bruh Rabbit, a Texas Bluebonnet Masterlist honoree; and more recently, I Am My Grandpa’s Enkelin. As a first time author, Don is the recipient of Lee & Low Books New Voices Honor award, for the book It Jes’ Happened: When Bill Traylor Taught Himself to Draw, to publish in 2010. Don lives in Austin with his wife and son, and is a graphics reporter for the Austin American-Statesman.

Shelia P. Moses
Varian Johnson
Shana Burg