readergirlz is a literacy and social media project for teens, awarded the National Book Foundation's Innovations in Reading Prize. The rgz blog serves as a depot for news and YA reviews from industry professionals and teens. As volunteers return full force to their own YA writing, the organization continues to hold one initiative a year to impact teen literacy. All are welcome to "like" us on Facebook!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Press Release: End of the Year Celebrations!

For more information contact:

Sara Easterly, Publicist for readergirlz

Sara Easterly & Friends,sara@saraeasterly.com



Thousands of teens influenced by the organization in its mission to promote teen literacy

Dec. 18, 2008 (Seattle, Wash.)As 2008 draws to a close, readergirlz (rgz) reflects on a year of successes in its quest to promote teen literacy and leadership in girls. Wrapping up its second year, the organization has many successes to celebrate:

  • Receiving a distinguished 2007 James Patterson PageTurner Grant.
  • Partnering with 20 book publishers to give 10,000 books to teens patients in hospitals across the United States and Canada as part of rgz Operation TBD.
  • Launching rgz TV (www.youtube.com/readergirlz), a series of candid interviews with award-winning authors the likes of Sonya Sones, Paula Yoo, John Green and Sarah Dessen.
  • Hosting more than a dozen celebrated authors in nightly themed chats as part of rgz Night Bites—a celebration of Young Adult Library Services Association's (YALSA's) Teen Read Week™. The accompanying book trailer was viewed more than 6,600 times.
  • Expanding with a new franchise named readertotz, a unique board book blog that aims to raise awareness of the infant toddler book as a significant format of children's literature.
  • Bringing new divas into the mix: Melissa Walker, author of the popular and award-winning Violet series (Violet on the Runway, Violet by Design, and Violet in Private); and Holly Cupala, debut novelist of the tentatively titled A Light That Never Goes Out (HarperCollins, 2010).
  • Creating the rgz salon, a book-reviewing collective of several esteemed names in young-adult literature: Nancy Pearl, NPR Book Lust Reviewer/librarian; Rene Kirkpatrick, Book Buyer/Seller at Third Place Books in Seattle; Sharon Levin, librarian; and Judy Nelson, librarian and past president of YALSA.
  • Receiving a "Best Web Site Award" by the American Library Association's Association for Library Services to Children, (ALSC).
  • Speaking at the Washington and Oregon Library Media Association Convention, the YPulse Conference, the Kidlit Blogging Conference, and on a panel with Colleen Mondor from GuysLitWire to YALSA librarians about engaging teens to read through social networks.
  • Being featured in a READ poster with nationwide distribution.
  • Garnering coverage in GalleyCat, Publishers Weekly Children's Bookshelf, Fuse #8, School Library Journal and Christian Science Monitor.

Most notable, rgz has touched the lives of thousands of teen readers. The organization has more than 8,500 friends on its MySpace profile (www.myspace.com/readergirlz), with more than 50,000 views, along with over 3,000 views on its new blog (http://readergirlz.blogspot.com). The rgz website (www.readergirlz.com) attracts more than 400 unique visitors per week and 1,800 unique visitors each month.

"I love being a part of readergirlz," said one forum regular. "I feel so special! I feel like I finally belong somewhere, finally!"

"I love reading even more now since you girls have inspired me!!!" said another readergirl.

Looking ahead to 2009, rgz isn't planning on slowing down:

  • Operation TBD will be back by popular demand—the organization is currently accepting book and audiobook donations from publishers to distribute in April to thousands of teens in hospitals as part of Operation TBD '09.
  • Several of the rgz divas will speak at the Texas Library Association Annual Conference in April.
  • Blogging teen dynamo Miss Erin (http://misserinmarie.blogspot.com) will head up a rgz Street Team dedicated to contributing young adult book reviews.
  • Renowned blogger Shelf Elf (http://shelfelf.wordpress.com) will join the postergirlz.
  • rgz will be announcing an exciting partnership with GuysLitWire (guyslitwire.blogspot.com).
  • Mitali Perkins will transition to rgz Talent Scout to keep tabs on the latest industry buzz.
  • readertotz founders Lorie Ann Grover and Joan Holub will contribute weekly blog posts that feature the best contributions in the board-book arena and recommend monthly community service projects appropriate for families with young children to enjoy.

About readergirlz

readergirlz is the foremost online book community for teen girls, led by five critically acclaimed YA authors—Dia Calhoun (Avielle of Rhia), Holly Cupala (A Light That Never Goes Out) Lorie Ann Grover (On Pointe), Justina Chen Headley (Girl Overboard), and Melissa Walker (the Violet series). readergirlz is the recipient of a 2007 James Patterson PageTurner Award.

To promote teen literacy and leadership in girls, readergirlz features a different YA novel and corresponding community service project every month. For more information about readergirlz, please visit www.readergirlz.com and www.myspace.com/readergirlz, or contact divas@readergirlz.com.

Ó2008 readergirlz



Lorie Ann Grover said...

Thanks to Sara, our rgz PR person of awesome, for this release! It makes me remember to be thankful for so much and each rgz member!

Justina Chen said...

I would never have dreamed that readergirlz would accomplish so much... From that initial idea when I stood inside the massive auditorium in an inner city high school in Chicago...and thought: connect the best YA authors to teens. Do it!

And now this. It is pure bliss. That is what this is. Reader bliss.

Little Willow said...

Simply put: Congratulations! I'm SO honored to be a part of it.

Vivian Mahoney said...

This is so tremendous. Congratulations! Thank you for letting me be a part of this.

sweetmelissa818 said...

Congratulations! You guys are great and I look forward to much more in the future!

Sarah Woodard said...

That is so awesome. I am excited for what you guys have up your sleeves for next year.

Shelf Elf said...

Thanks for introducing me to everyone! I'm so happy to be a part of this inspiring community.


Melissa Walker said...

I am totally honored to be a part of the rgz world, too! Hooray!

PL Anne Anderson said...

That is amazing! Way to go Readergirlz! I'm very impressed and inspired!

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