countdown and revolution (and playlists and computers and phones)

I haven't shown you the paperback cover of COUNTDOWN that made its appearance in April! Ta-da!

I've heard from some that it's an acquired taste, but I loved it immediately. It tells a story. It asks questions. It's got a lot of orange in it. ahem. There's Franny and Chris Cavas, and that checkerboard floor, that chalkboard title. I've loved signing these paperback copies... and soon there will be a NEW BOOK to sign:

REVOLUTION is the title of book two of the Sixties Trilogy. It takes place in 1964 Mississippi during Freedom Summer. Sunny Fairchild is 12 years old. I can't wait for you to meet her, and her step-brother, Gillette, his little sister, Audrey, and the town of Greenwood, Mississippi, which was the headquarters of SNCC in 1964.

Lots went down in Greenwood during the civil rights movement years, and Sunny lives through the  summer of 1964 with a whole lot of grit and even a little bit of grace. Or maybe it's the other way 'round.

You'll meet Jo Ellen again, in REVOLUTION. She's one of the one-thousand souls who came south to Mississippi for Freedom Summer, to register black voters and open community centers and Freedom Schools. Jo Ellen and Sunny meet and sparks fly.

There's also a mysterious boy named Raymond who lives on the other side (literally) of the railroad tracks, in Baptist Town. I fell in love with Ray, and I hope you do, too.

And now, here's some housekeeping:

I've had quite a bit of mail lately about the playlist for COUNTDOWN. It's so great to see y'all using the novel in classrooms. I'm having trouble bringing up the playlist on iTunes, just as you are. I'll see if I can fix that. In the meantime --

The playlist is expensive to buy (there are 46 official tunes/speech snippets in the playlist), but you can find it here, on my Pinterest page.

These pins all link to YouTube, where you can watch Little Eva singing "Locomotion" or Brian Hyland singing "Itsy Bitsy Teeny Weenie..." or see the Duck and Cover public service announcement Franny sees in school, hear JFK's speech during the Cuban Missile Crisis... etc. The pins are in the order they appear in COUNTDOWN.

Sometimes a link breaks, when a video is removed from YouTube, but you can usually find another easily, if you search a bit. I update broken links on this board when I can.

There is a REVOLUTION playlist as well, right here. It is in no particular order right now, and it's *huge*. I'll put it in order, move some of these pins to the resources page, and make it all tidy, soon. You can also find links to "book two resources" and "book two bibliography" (in progress), and boards that contain all the photo resources for book two, here. You can see photos of Greenwood, Mississippi, too, at the board "hey, Sunny."

Eventually, I'll have COUNTDOWN boards that are just as complete. I'm slowly working on it, now that I've finished REVOLUTION.

I'm liking Pinterest (link is to my Pinterest landing page) as a resource tool. It feels just-right for me as a social networking tool as well. I think I'm going to feel the same way about Instagram, once I bridge over to a smart phone. I really need a new phone. Mine is almost 5 years old and keeps turning off at the most inopportune times.

I need a new computer, too. Who loves her laptop and can tell me about it? I am so bad at these things (phones, too). I've been online and to Best Buy (and to Verizon) half-a-dozen times, and I just leave feeling more confused. I use my laptop for everything (no iPad or other devices), so it needs to handle lots of photos, videos, music, and books. It needs to hold novels I'm writing. When I research, I often have a couple dozen windows open at a time, on Firefox, not to mention the book(s) I'm working on and iTunes and email and my beloved mahjong. hee.

My camera is broken, too -- my Nikon D-40 -- and I'll get it fixed, but I miss taking photos and often don't take the D-40 with me when I travel by plane, so I want to purchase a hand-held point-and-shoot. I want good photos but don't need a fancy hand-held. Any suggestions? I loved my Canon Powershot 130 and miss it...

Whew. Lots of housekeeping today. Jim has made lunch -- baked potatoes, broccoli, and an enormous salad. The house is being treated for termites (it's the 10-year renewal for the house; we don't have the critters). It's drizzling. I want a nap in the worst way, but there's an awful lot of drilling going on outside. Drill, Ye Tarriers, Drill.

I obviously need to stop here. xo


  1. So glad to see this about Revolution (and so I blogged about it, making others happy too:). But the pinterest youtube stuff is awesome too!

  2. Thank you, Monica! I'm off to read your blog entry. xoxo

  3. Yay! I cannot wait, Deborah! :)

    1. Well, it came and went, didn't it, Mr. Schu? :> Just rescuing blog comments from blogger's hostage place, where I finally found them. Thanks for all the REVOLUTION love last year. xoxo

  4. Orange. All over Paris fashion week according to Bill Cunningham. :)

    1. ha! Thanks, Bonnie. I am just rescuing all the comments that were held hostage by blogger.

  5. Just got here via Monica's blog (which obviously, I am way behind on), but my fifth graders will be thrilled when I break the news tomorrow morning. And out before the end of the school year, too!

  6. Love the paperback cover for Countdown. Orange is my favorite color:)

    I know MacBooks are expensive, but I made the plunge a few years ago. I love, love, love it. It was worth the investment. I have had it for almost three years and don't plan to buy a new one anytime soon. There is a learning curve at the beginning, but it is just so easy, fast, list could go on and on. I have an iPhone and everything just flows so easily for pictures. I have definitely become an Apple girl.


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