“A collective of women and non-binary (identifying on the female spectrum) Latinx Picture Book, Middle Grade and Young Adult debut authors. Our mission is to spotlight the new contributions of Las Musas in the evolving canon of children's literature and celebrate the diversity of voice, experience, and power in our communities.”
With this text heading our website, Las Musas wanted to take a moment to clarify our language and our intentions regarding gender in this group. We arrived at this wording after a thoughtful group questioned the ambiguity of our original terminology of “women and nonbinary authors.” Our current wording still feels imperfect, so we thought it would be best to explain in more detail.
Las Musas was always meant to be a space for Latina authors (cis or trans), who face specific though varied roadblocks and responses from a largely cisgender white patriarchal publishing industry. (While we seek alliance with binary Latinos in publishing, we exist as a unique and separate entity. This in no way disregards the difficulties faced by the Latinx community of all genders, nor the intricate prejudices within the community.)
In our ever growing evolution of understanding, we quickly realized that limiting our collective to binary genders would deny community to Latinx authors who faced similar and in some cases more severe roadblocks. At the same time, we don’t want anyone to be hurt or caught off guard when the group uses language or focuses on experience that center womanhood.
What this all means is that we do not want to police or gatekeep anyone’s entrance into Las Musas.
If you want to be a Musa, we want you here.
If you feel that your writing career is impacted by your proximity to femininity, we want to uplift your voice.
If you have any questions about this, have a suggestion for how we can word this all more clearly in ten words or less at the top of our website, or want to point out a flaw in our thinking, please reach out so that we can make sure we are achieving our goal of creating a unified and inclusive community.
Las Musas wishes Kim Baker the happiest of book birthdays for her release of the middle-grade novel, The Water Bears.
Las Musas wishes a happy book birthday to Zara González Hoang on the release of her picture book A New Kind of Wild!
What does it feel like to move to a new city, leaving behind what you knew and loved? Can you find “a new kind of wild” in a strange new place? Zara González Hoang explores these questions in her magical and colorful author-illustrator debut, A New Kind of Wild, which “is an imaginative exploration of the true meaning of ‘home.’”
Alexandra Alessandri interviews Zara about her inspiration and process, but first, here’s a description of this stunning book:
This sweet author-illustrator debut celebrates imagination, the magic of friendship, and all the different ways we make a new place feel like home.
For Ren, home is his grandmother's little house, and the lush forest that surrounds it. Home is a place of magic and wonder, filled with all the fantastical friends that Ren dreams up. Home is where his imagination can run wild.
For Ava, home is a brick and cement city, where there's always something to do or see or hear. Home is a place bursting with life, where people bustle in and out like a big parade. Home is where Ava is never lonely because there's always someone to share in her adventures.
When Ren moves to Ava's city, he feels lost without his wild. How will he ever feel at home in a place with no green and no magic, where everything is exactly what it seems? Of course, not everything in the city is what meets the eye, and as Ren discovers, nothing makes you feel at home quite like a friend.
We couldn’t be more thrilled to share Raquel Vasquez Gilliland’s interview with Loriel Ryon, author of INTO THE TALL, TALL GRASS.
But first, here’s a description of this magical, middle grade novel:
A girl journeys across her family’s land to save her grandmother’s life.
Yolanda Rodríguez-O’Connell has a secret. All the members of her family have a magical gift—all, that is, except for Yolanda. Still, it’s something she can never talk about, or the townsfolk will call her family brujas—witches. When her grandmother, Wela, falls into an unexplained sleep, Yolanda is scared. Her father is off fighting in a faraway war, her mother died long ago, and Yolanda has isolated herself from her best friend and twin sister. If she loses her grandmother, who will she have left?
When a strange grass emerges in the desert behind their house, Wela miraculously wakes, begging Yolanda to take her to the lone pecan tree left on their land. Determined not to lose her, Yolanda sets out on this journey with her sister, her ex-best friend, and a boy who has a crush on her. But what is the mysterious box that her grandmother needs to find? And how will going to the pecan tree make everything all right?
Las Musas is thrilled to share Karla Valenti's interview with Claribel Orgeta about her upcoming novel Ghost Squad (Scholastic, 4/7/20), which Kirkus called a “warmly-spooky middle grade debut.”
Before we dig in, here’s a teaser of this phantasmagoric adventure: For Lucely Luna, ghosts are more than just the family business. Shortly before Halloween, Lucely and her best friend, Syd, cast a spell that accidentally awakens malicious spirits, wreaking havoc throughout St. Augustine. Together, they must join forces with Syd's witch grandmother, Babette, and her tubby tabby, Chunk, to fight the haunting head-on and reverse the curse to save the town and Lucely's firefly spirits before it's too late.
Las Musas is pleased to wish a happy book birthday to Karla Valenti, author of Marie Curie and the Power of Persistence!
Marie Curie is widely known for her achievements in physics and chemistry. But is she also a superhero?
Karla Valenti answers that question by presenting a twist on the typical biography of Marie Curie, highlighting the perseverance and tenacity required for her to achieve success. Much to the delight of young readers, the story of Marie Curie’s life is juxtaposed with the tale of Super Evil Nemesis, a creature determined to stop Curie and the spread of knowledge. He sends his most devious minions on a mission to discourage Curie, who must use her brains and determination to fight against all the obstacles thrown in her way.
Adrianna Cuevas interviewed Karla, the author of this engaging, informative, and inspiring biography.
Like many in our community we've watched the last few weeks in a whirlwind of anxiety, worry, and confusion.
As members of our communities we applaud the decisions to cancel events, festivals, and more for the safety of those around us. As authors it made us wonder, how can we connect with our readers during this time of "social distancing"?
In response, Las Musas has launched an exciting webinar series to connect our authors with readers, writers, and educators around the globe.
Every month, we will offer a series of free webinars including:
Want to know what it takes to become a published author? Las Musas take you on a unique behind-the-scenes book journey! They will describe in detail how they took their books from idea to publication. They will also answer all your questions about the process of becoming an author.
Book Club & Author Q & As...
A book club where the authors answer all your questions! ALL YOUR QUESTIONS... OK, within reason.
Writing Craft and Publishing Insights...
Need help figuring out what is the best method to plot? How to write a query letter? Get a literary agent to represent you? Las Musas share everything they have learned along their journey to publication, from surviving your first draft to signing that first book deal!
ANNNND our first event is NEXT WEEK!!
(Click Read More to find out when!)
Hermanas is a selection-based mentorship program for traditionally unpublished Latinx kidlit writers. It will connect unpublished writers with current Musas and Madrinas. Our first round of Hermanas had an incredible experience working on their projects. Our second round closed earlier in February and we are incredibly honored and grateful for every single applicant.
It was very (very) hard to pick among all the magnificent projects.
Our hope is that the Hermanas program will continue to grow, uplift a community where there is space for everyone to share their stories. Please join us in welcoming our new Hermanas!
We are so happy to welcome our newest YA novel to Las Musas bookshelves! Salty, Bitter, Sweet by Mayra Cuevas is now available.
All about this delicious YA contemporary romance...
Aspiring chef Isa’s family life has fallen apart after the death of her Cuban abuela and the divorce of her parents. She moves in with her dad and her new stepmom, Margo, in Lyon, France, where Isa feels like an outsider in her father’s new life. Isa balances her time between avoiding the awkward, “why-did-you-cheat-on-Mom” conversation with figuring out how a perpetually single woman can at least be a perpetually single chef.
The upside of Isa’s world being turned upside-down? Her father’s house is located only 30 minutes away from the restaurant of world-famous Chef Pascal Grattard, who runs a prestigiously competitive international kitchen apprenticeship. The prize job at Chef Grattard’s renowned restaurant also represents a transformative opportunity for Isa who is desperate to get her life back in order—and desperate to prove she has what it takes to work in an haute kitchen. But Isa’s stress and repressed grief begin to unravel when the attractive, enigmatic Diego shows up unannounced with his albino dog.
How can Isa expect to hold it together when she’s at the bottom of her class at the apprenticeship, her new stepmom is pregnant, she misses her abuela dearly, and things with the mysterious Diego reach a boiling point?
Today Alexandra Villasante is talking with the lovely and multi-talented Ismée Williams. In addition to being a pediatric cardiologist, Ismée finds time to write swoony, sweet, timely books, like her newest YA novel, THIS TRAIN IS BEING HELD.
About THIS TRAIN IS BEING HELD...
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