The Diverse Books Reading Challenge 2017: The Devil Is In The Details

Image Description: a title page with the words Diverse Books Reading Challenge 2017: The Devil Is In The Details in rainbow coloured word-art with four red roses in each corner Image Description: a title page with the words Diverse Books Reading Challenge 2017: The Devil Is In The Details in rainbow coloured word-art with four red roses in each corner

One of my biggest struggles with academia was that my essays were perfectly clear to me, the reasoning and structure of the article was obvious. It turns out, this is usually never the case, it usually always turns out to be that that my essays only make sense to me. So, my apologies if my previous instructions seemed confusing and difficult to follow.

I have a great love for the movie Nightmare Before Christmas and I also have a strong emotional connection to Jack Skellington: a being with the enthusiasm of a thousand passionate actors but the common sense of a wet cabbage. I’m so eager to begin a project, I forget the finer details required. This post will hopefully flesh out the Terms and Conditions in greater detail, however, please contact me if there is any need for further clarification.

How To Review

In order to meet the Minimum Standard of Review, participants need to include the following:
-A star rating from DNF (did not finish), 1 star, 2 stars, 3 stars, 4 stars and 5 stars.
-One aspect of the book the reader liked
-One aspect of the book the reader didn’t like or thought could be improved
-Answer the question of “Would you recommend this book to others?”

In order to meet the Maximum Standard of Review
-A star rating from DNF (did not finish), 1 star, 2 stars, 3 stars, 4 stars and 5 stars.
-Three aspects of the book the reader liked
-Three aspects of the book the reader didn’t like or thought could be improved
– Answer the question of “Would you recommend this book to others?”

Pictures and gifs can be used in place of words in a review. Participants can also make video reviews and just talk about the book (maximum video length 10 minutes or under), participants will have to provide a hyperlink to the video. Participants can also make audio recordings of their review (maximum audio track length of 10 minutes or under), participants will have to provide a hyperlink to the audio-recording. If participants have an alternative method of reviewing that I have not mentioned, please feel free to contact me and discuss this alternative method with me. My email is brkyle(dot)author(at)gmail(dot)com

The participant then publishes the review either on their social media platform of choice or goodreads.com, they will then click on the little blue-frog icon below

The blue frog will lead to a separate page where participants will be able to add their link to their review.

Books

Any physical format is acceptable, any format of electronic books (for example: epub, pdf, mobi) is acceptable, the main objective here is to connect the potential reader with the author, so if the review is positive and you want to recommend the book to others, you need to leave a hyperlink that allows people to access the book.

When it comes to purchasing physical books, I tend to recommend purchasing via through Book Depository because they offer free delivery to Australia, but I understand that this might not work for everyone, especially for Indie Authors. Kim raised valid points about accessibility and as along as the potential reader can access the book, that’s what counts.

Due to the complexity surrounding Fanfiction, I will have to exclude Fanfiction as reading material for this giveaway (perhaps I will reconsider this for the next giveaway, but not for this one).

What kind of Disability theme/structure am I looking for in a book?

My personal approach to reading Diverse Books is to look at the genre of the book first, then I consider the Diversity element. I don’t want to read books just for the sake of Diversity, if I do that, I’m going to struggle and argue with myself (“I must finish this book, it has diverse characters in it!” “But it’s so boring!”). I like Diversity Books that have the main characters doing things other protagonists do. Disabled people are just like everyone else and the narrative should reflect that.

Kim also offered some good advice:
“I’d actually look at determining what is and isn’t disability fiction via protagonist: if it features a narrating protagonist disabled in some way, it counts. If if doesn’t and is therefore about The Abled Person’s experience, no. Of course, you’ll get stuff that isn’t written by folk with disabilities and is written awfully – *cough*Garth Nix*cough* but the job of a reviewer is to read that and mark it so others don’t, not to read only great representation.”

So, how I verify that I’m reading a book about Disability that meets that criteria?

Well I’m not sure if I can answer that in a definitive way. Unfortunately it’s difficult to determine what type of disability a book is about (Side Note To Authors: Mention the disability you’re writing about directly in the blurb, I’ve had to spend a considerable amount of time reading through reviews to determine which disability a book is about, I shouldn’t have to do that) let alone make sure a disabled person is the main protagonist.

To be honest, I think that the most I can do is make a list of books, list what type of Disability is featured and let people decide if they’re interested or not. I’ve done some researching and I found out that Corinne Duyvis (one of the founders of Disability in Kidlit) has a Goodreads account and a Bookshelf dedicated to books with Disabled Main Characters:

~Corinne Duyvis’s Bookshelf: Disabled Main Characters

So, I used this bookshelf, as well as some recommendations from other book blogs, to make these two Goodreads Bookshelves:

~B.R. Kyle’s Bookshelf: Disability

~B.R. Kyle’s Bookshelf: Mental Health

Now, unfortunately, I haven’t been able to verify all of the books on the Bookshelves via Disability in Kidlit’s reviews and honor roll and I also haven’t read a lot of them myself. There is also a lot of the books on the bookshelf that are classified as belonging to the Young Adult genre, which might not suit everyone, so I’ve tried to balance out the Young Adult novels with Adult Memoirs, but there’s not much else I can do.

Please check out the links and see if those books work for you, but it’s okay if they don’t or you already have your own book list organised. I’ve spent the majority of today and yesterday working a list of books about disability that have been given the Disability in Kidlit Seal of Approval (if people would like to make suggestions, please do so in the comments section below):

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo
Category: Disability and Own voices
Disability in Kidlit Review

A Time to Dance by Padma Venkatraman
Category: Disability (amputee) and POC main character
Disability in Kidlit Review

Otherbound by Corinne Duyvis
Category: Disability and Own voices
Disability in Kidlit Review

On The Edge of Gone by Corinne Duyvis
Category: Disability and Own voices
Disability in Kidlit Review

Far From You by Tess Sharpe
Category: Disability (Chronic pain and mobility issues) and GSM
Disability in Kidlit Review

Me and Earl and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews
Category: Disability (cancer) and mental illness
Disability in Kidlit Review

What I Couldn’t Tell You by Faye Bird
Category: Disability (selective mutism)
Disability in Kidlit Review

Reaching for Sun by Tracie Vaughn Zimmer
Category: Disability (cerebral palsy),
Disability in Kidlit Review

The Elementals by Saundra Mitchell
Category: Disability (One MC is recovering from Polio)
Disability in Kidlit

When Reason Breaks by Cindy L. Rodriguez
Category: Mental Health (Depression and Suicide)
Disability in Kidlit Review

Two Girls Staring at the Ceiling by Lucy Frank
Category: Disability and Mental health
Disability in Kidlit Review

Evidence of Things Not Seen by Lindsey Lane
Category: Disability (Autistic MC)
Disability in Kidlit Review

Don’t Touch by Rachel M. Wilson
Category: Disability and Mental health (OCD)
Disability in Kidlit Review

Five Flavors of Dumb by Anthony John
Category: Disability (Deaf MC)
Disability in Kidlit Review

Blind Spot by Laura Ellen
Category: Disability (Blindness) and Own Voices
Finding Yourself in a Book: Why I Wrote Blind Spot by Laura Ellen

You Look Different in Real Life by Jennifer Castle
Category: Disability (Autistic MC)
Disability in Kidlit Review

The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness
Category: Disability and mental health (OCD and Social Anxiety)
Disability in Kidlit Review

When We Collided by Emery Lord
Category: Disability and Mental health (Bi-polar)
Disability in Kidlit Review

Autism Goes to School by Sharon A. Mitchell
Category: Disability (Autistic characters)
L.C. Reviews: Autism Goes to School (YouTube video)

Diverse Books Reading Challenge 2017 – Disability Booklist (PDF)

Diverse Books Reading Challenge 2017 – Disability Booklist (Word Document)

I know that’s probably considered a short list, but I figured it was a good starting point, these are meant to be guidelines and I don’t want to overwhelm people. I also don’t want to start going into “English teacher territory” of telling people what they should and shouldn’t read, however, these are reviews written by disabled people, with disabled people talking about books written about their specific disability, and I think their judgement of what constitutes as acceptable representation is the standard the publishing industry needs to aiming for.

The Diverse Books Reading Challenge 2017: Prizes

Image Description: a title photo with the words Diverse Books Reading Challenge 2017: Prizes displayed in rainbow-coloured text with four red roses in each corner of the picture

Image Description: a title photo with the words Diverse Books Reading Challenge 2017: Prizes displayed in rainbow-coloured text with four red roses in each corner of the picture

List of Possible Prizes:

Image Description: from left to right, a Blue bubble-wand, a Green bubble-wand and a Pink bubble-wand

Image Description: from left to right, a Blue bubble-wand, a Green bubble-wand and a Pink bubble-wand

1 x Bubble Wand (1 x Pink, 1 x Green and 1 x Blue)

Unfortunately due to the to the nature of Australia Post, I’m going to have to bubble-wrap the ever-loving fuck out of these items (Yay! An Excuse to buy excessive amounts of Bubble Wrap), but its better than the alternative.

Image Description: from left to right, a blue and red zip-lanyard and a yellow and red zip-lanyard

Image Description: from left to right, a blue and red zip-lanyard and a yellow and red zip-lanyard

1 x Zip Lanyard with large beaded-circle (1 x Blue and Red, 1 x Red and Yellow, 1 x Pink and Green)

I bought these from Daiso and I have yet to obtain the pink and green one, however, this can be easily fixed. The end result will hopefully look something like this. I’m not sure if I’ll use wooden beads, I’ll probably just use the ones I’ve already got, but I do have some large star beads with a metallic sheen to them (I got them from Lincraft), but I’ll see how I go.

Image Description: from left to right, a green-purple-red-yellow transparent Tangle Jr and a various-shades-of-purple Tangle Jr

Image Description: from left to right, a green-purple-red-yellow transparent Tangle Jr and a various-shades-of-purple Tangle Jr

1 x Tangles Jr each (1 x Red/Pink tangle, 1 x Blue Tangle, 1 x Green Tangle)

Kim went above and beyond the call of duty and was able to travel to both of their local Toyworld Stores and obtain more Tangles on my behalf (here’s a link to their post). Tangle Jr (or any type of Tangles really) are super difficult to obtain in Australia, so I figured from the very beginning I had to involve a Tangle Jr in my giveaway.

Image Description: three black and white snake puzzles from K-Mart

Image Description: three black and white snake puzzles from K-Mart

1 x Black and White Snake Puzzle

I was hoping to get my hands on the Stationery Gift-Bags at K-Mart, which contain bigger snake puzzles, but unfortunately my local K-Mart sold out of them. It also means I’ll have to put all the Stim Toys in a Daiso Shoe Bag instead (picture below).

Image Description: from left to right, a small pale-pink bag with flowers and bunnies printed on it. Next to the pale-pink bag is a dark-pink with multicoloured hearts printed on it

Image Description: from left to right, a small pale-pink bag with flowers and bunnies printed on it. Next to the pale-pink bag is a dark-pink with multicoloured hearts printed on it

Image Description: three large Kids &Co. multi-coloured large bouncy balls

Image Description: three large Kids & Co. multi-coloured large bouncy balls

1 x Kids & Co. multi-coloured large bouncy ball

Kim bought me one of these for Christmas and I love it, it’s roughly the size of my palm, which makes it easier to catch and bounce in comparison to my smaller bouncy-balls. It’s bright colours makes it easier to focus on and it turns out problems with fine motor skills are a Neurodivergent thing, so I figured it should be included.

Image Description: A pale white hand holding a pale-pink squishable strawberry. Around the wrist are three telephone-cord hair-ties, a pink one, an orange one and a yellow one.

Image Description: A pale white hand holding a pale-pink squishable strawberry. Around the wrist are three telephone-cord hair-ties, a pink one, an orange one and a yellow one.

1 x Squishy Strawberry each

For some reason, this Squishable Strawberry has kind of become my thing, I even have a strawberry mascot for my blog.

Image Description: A cushion in the shape of a pale-pink strawberry with a cute smiley face and gold-coloured seeds

Image Description: A cushion in the shape of a pale-pink strawberry with a cute smiley face and gold-coloured seeds.

I’ve done a review of these as Stim Toys and, just like the Tangles, I felt as though these Strawberries should be included in the giveaway (you can purchase these items from Ebay and Banggood). To my knowledge, the colour selection is random, so I won’t know what colour they will be until they arrive, however, knowing my luck it’s most likely that all the Strawberries will be dark pink.

Image Description: a long beaded-lanyard made with dark-blue rat-tail cord with a chrome key-ring/split-ring and lobster-claw clasp connected at the end. The beads are a rainbow spectrum of colours with three different types of beads per colour (acrylic-pearl-glitter). The colour spectrum is pink, orange, yellow, green, blue and purple with an orange bead at the end as a stopper

Image Description: a long beaded-lanyard made with dark-blue rat-tail cord with a chrome key-ring/split-ring and lobster-claw clasp connected at the end. The beads are a rainbow spectrum of colours with three different types of beads per colour (acrylic-pearl-glitter). The colour spectrum is pink, orange, yellow, green, blue and purple with an orange bead at the end as a stopper.

Image Description: a short beaded-lanyard make of pink rat-tail cord with a bronze-coloured key-ring/split ring and lobster-claw clasp at the end. The beads are a rainbow spectrum of acrylic beads with a pale-pink heart-shaped bead as a stopper. The colour spectrum is hot-pink, pale-pink, red, orange, yellow, green, dark-blue, light-blue, purple

Image Description: a short beaded-lanyard make of pink rat-tail cord with a bronze-coloured key-ring/split ring and lobster-claw clasp at the end. The beads are a rainbow spectrum of acrylic beads with a pale-pink heart-shaped bead as a stopper. The colour spectrum is hot-pink, pale-pink, red, orange, yellow, green, dark-blue, light-blue, purple

2 x Beaded lanyards (one long, one short)

Now, the beaded lanyards pictured above are ones that Kim has made for me, so mine probably won’t be as good as I’m just starting out, however, I have ordered the various required items from Ebay, so hopefully by the end of March, all the prizes will be completed and ready to ship out. I’m planning on the long beaded lanyard being rainbow themed, like this:

Image Description: a long beaded lanyard mad of black elastic with a rainbow spectrum of beads. The beads are a pattern of three different types of beads. The first one is acrylic, the second one pearlized and the third is transparent. The colour sequence is white, pale-pink, hot-pink, orange, yellow, green, light-blue, dark-blue and purple.

Image Description: a long beaded lanyard made of black elastic with a rainbow spectrum of beads. The beads are a pattern of three different types of beads. The first one is acrylic, the second one pearlized and the third is transparent. The colour sequence is white, pale-pink, hot-pink, orange, yellow, green, light-blue, dark-blue and purple.

I would also like add that if a winner of the giveaway would prefer a pride-themed long beaded lanyard instead, that can be accomplished. The winner would have to tell me which pride style they would like and it also might take a little longer for the package to be shipped out, but that’s a small detail. At this point in time, I almost have a full rainbow in terms of colour and type, but the two gaps I have will soon be remedied.

Image Description: two necklaces with white cord, four chrome-coloured small loops and a key ring with beads on them, from left to right, the first necklace has green-yellow-pink-blue-pink-yellow-green coloured beads. The second necklace has white-orange-yellow-orange-white coloured beads

Image Description: two necklaces with white cord, four chrome-coloured small loops and a key ring with beads on them, from left to right, the first necklace has green-yellow-pink-blue-pink-yellow-green coloured beads. The second necklace has white-orange-yellow-orange-white coloured beads

2 x Bead Ring Necklaces (one long necklace made with black rat-tail cord, one short bead ring necklace made with rainbow string)

Now, Kim made these ones for me as a Christmas Present, so my ones won’t be the exact same colours, but hopefully it’ll be the same sort of style. I’ll go into more details about this in another post (I’ve also included a link on how to make these in the links section below), but I found out that while I couldn’t use the rainbow string to make beaded lanyard, however, it might be possible to use the rainbow string as short Bead ring necklaces, I’ll make a separate post dedicated to making stuff with beads, although I would like to point out I’m a complete noob at these things.

Image Description: three gel ice packs, one orange pack and two blue-green packs

Image Description: three gel ice packs, one orange pack and two blue-green packs

1 x Gel Ice Package each

This one was a bit of a last minute addition, perhaps to make up for the fact that I ordered a couple of pencil-cases off Ebay and it turns out they’re scented items.

Image Description: there are two pencil-cases in the picture, from left to right, the first one is a pink Smencil Buddies - Rainbow Sherbet Pencil Case and the other is a green Smencil Buddies - Watermelon Pencil Case

Image Description: there are two pencil-cases in the picture, from left to right, the first one is a pink Smencil Buddies – Rainbow Sherbet Pencil Case and the other is a green Smencil Buddies – Watermelon Pencil Case

While I don’t have a problem with the way the pencil-cases smell, in fact I think they smell delicious, however, I’m trying to avoid scented items and slime for this giveaway (there are far too many variables involved in scented-items and slime).

So Yeah… Those are my potential prizes on offer for my Disability Give-away, pretty cool eh? Tell me what you think in the comments section below, also feel free to tell me what your favourite type of stim toy is :).

Links:
Stim Toy Box: Gel Ice Package

Stim Toy Box: An Ambiguous Quest For Tangles

Practically Safe: Beaded Lanyard Tutorial

Stim Toy Box: Chain Tassel Bag Charms

Stim Toy Box: Snake Puzzles

Stim Toy Box: Blue Gift Set Stationery Set

Stim Toy Box: Squishy Strawberry

Abstruse Arcana ~ Turtorial: Bead Ring Necklace

The Diverse Books Reading Challenge 2017: Disability Read and Review Give-away

Image Description: A title picture with the text 'Diverse Books Reading Challenge: Disability R&R Giveaway' in large rainbow text with clip-art pictures of strawberries and roses in the corners of the picture
Image Description: A title picture with the text ‘Diverse Books Reading Challenge: Disability R&R Giveaway’ in large rainbow test with clip-art pictures of strawberries and roses in the corners of the picture
Image Description: A pink and purple coloured button with the text 'Read Diverse Books 2017' in white text with the word 'Diverse' written in rainbow coloured text. there is also the white outline of a clip-art picture of a laid open book
Image Description: A pink and purple coloured button with the text ‘Read Diverse Books 2017’ in white text with the word ‘Diverse’ written in rainbow coloured text. there is also the white outline of a clip-art picture of a laid open book

What’s This All About?
Read Diverse Books is running a Diverse Books Reading Challenge. Chasing Faerytails and Read.Sleep.Repeat decided to embrace the Reading Diverse Books challenge but also create a monthly theme. The theme for March is Disability and I wanted to host a give-away and award a prize to the top three people who manage to Read AND Review the most books that come under the Disability category

Who is eligible to participate in the give-away?
Unfortunately, due to the absurd shipping and handling fees, only those who live in Australia and New Zealand will be eligible for this competition (sorry about that).

Are there Prizes?
Well yes; it wouldn’t be much of a give-away without them. There will be a first, second and third prize for the top three people who manage to Read and Review as many books as possible within the month of March (so midnight 1st of March until 23:55 pm on the 31st of March)

What kind of prize will you be offering?
The prize will be a package of assorted Stim Toys (I’ll make a separate more detailed post about this later). The prizes will be theme orientated, for example: there will be a package of red stim toys, blue stim toys and green stim toys. At the end of March, I’ll contact the winners and notify them and get them to pick which colour-theme they’d prefer.

How or Where can I find Books about Disability?
Disability In Kidlit have put together a list of recommended reading, here’s the link for it:
Disability In Kidlit – Honor Roll
Chasing Faerytails and Read.Sleep.Repeat have put together an awesome book list as well, here’s the link for it:
Chasing Faerytails & Read.Sleep.Repeat: Diverse Reads 2017 Reading List

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon: Disability In Kidlit has published a review on The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon (here’s the link to the book review) and due to the problematic nature of the book, I will be excluding this book from the competition. Should anyone ignore/defy this and post a link to their review on my give-away page, the link will be removed and they will be disqualified from the competition.

Shout-Out:
Kim is busy doing their own thing, but they were a big inspiration and assistance for this project, so I just wanted to send out a big thank you, readers should check out their links

Let The Reading Begin 😀

Links:
Disability In Kidlit
Read Diverse 2017 – A Reading And Book Review Challenge For Bloggers!
Chasing Faerytails – Announcing the 2017 Diverse Books Reading Challenge!