Thursday, August 23, 2007

Newly published books

It's always interesting to learn about new releases. To make this easier, we've recently added a page to JacketFlap that contains a constantly updated list of the most recently published Children's & YA books.

To get to the Newly Published page, click the new Books tab at the very top of any page on JacketFlap. Then, click the Newly Published tab in the lower navigation bar.

You can change the time period using the "Books Published Since" menu, e.g. select "Yesterday" to see books published since yesterday. And, you can filter the list by Age levels, e.g. see newly published books for Ages 4 - 8 readers.

I've bookmarked this page, and it's one of the first places I check each day to keep up on newly published books. I hope you find it useful too!


Wednesday, August 8, 2007

What are your JacketFlap Friends up to?

Hi everyone!

I had a fantastic time meeting so many of you this weekend at the SCBWI conference. I'll write up a separate post about that shortly. Right now, I want to tell you about a new feature that I absolutely love - My JacketFlap Updates. There's so much going on in the Kitlitosphere, and I always feel like it's impossible to keep on top of everything. With a single click, you can now see everything that your JacketFlap Friends have been up to lately. This includes:
  • Updates to your Friends' JacketFlap Profile pages
  • Your Friends' new blog posts
  • Blogs your Friends have subscribed to in the Blog Reader
  • People your Friends have Friended
  • Comments your Friends have left on other people's Profile pages
  • Pictures your Friends have added to their Picture galleries
  • Books your Friends have added to their Bookshelf
  • Book Discussions your Friends are participating in (more on that in another post)
Below is a screenshot of a few of the recent updates on my own My Updates page:
In each line, there is a description of the update followed by short summaries for things like blog posts and comments, and you can click the links in each summary to view the entire post, comments, and other changes.

You can see how many updates are waiting for you by looking at the new "My JacketFlap Updates" indicator in the toolbar at the top of every page on JacketFlap:

Clicking on My JacketFlap Updates will take you to your own My Updates page. The number in the parenthesis indicates the number of new updates since you last visited JacketFlap, and the number changes in real time, so you can see instantly if there are new updates while you are browsing JacketFlap.

When you are on your My Updates page, you can change the time period of the updates displayed by using the "Since" pull-down menu in the top of your My Updates section. I like looking at updates in the Past week to be sure I haven't missed anything.

In addition to letting you see the updates from all your Friends, there is now a version of the Updates page as part of every member's Profile page. This version lets you see all of the updates for just that member, and you can get there by clicking the Updates tab at the top of any member's Profile:
Finally, we have also added a Blog Reader Updates box in the right column of your My Updates page. You can see a screenshot showing the Blog Reader Updates box on my own My Updates page to the right.

I love this, because it shows me a quick summary of Updates to my own blog, the blogs I have subscribed to in My JacketFlap, as well as all of the blogs in our public Blog Reader list (492 at the moment!).

You can click on any of the links in the box to see just those posts or comments. This is really nice, because you can also use the "Since" pull-down menu at the top of the box to change the time period. This can help ensure you haven't missed any important posts. You can also keep up with posts that have new comments.

If you have a blog in our Blog Reader, you will see the statistics for your blog at the top of the Blog Reader Updates box.

I know this has been a long post, and you probably have lots of questions and ideas. Please don't be shy! Post your thoughts here in our comments section.

I hope this helps you keep up with all of the great things happening in the Kitlitosphere as much as it's helped me!


Wednesday, August 1, 2007

First annual kidlitosphere drink night at the SCBWI Summer Conference

As you may have already heard via Greg Pincus at GottaBook, we're planning a get-together in LA this Friday night during the SCBWI Conference. It's even got a catchy name - the first annual kidlitosphere drink night at the SCBWI Summer Conference (FAKDN@SSC). Greg says that there are other groups meeting Friday night, but all we've heard of are meeting earlier. Come by anyways, as we'll be there for a while!

We're planning to meet on the patio outside the lobby bar area at 9PM. I'll be there along with a number of other KidLit Bloggers like Greg, the Disco Mermaids, Lisa Yee, Kelly Herold, and more. I'll be the one giving out JacketFlap hats (I'm bringing 200 of them, so first come first serve). I hope to see you there!