Tuesday, October 12, 2010

How I became a Texas literary scoundrel

Let me tell you how much of a pain-in-the-butt I can be when I want to. Recently I was invited to join forces with six Texas authors, to promote children's literature. The group calls themselves the Texas Sweethearts. You've probably heard of 'em already, cute little things they are — P.J. Hoover, Jessica Anderson, Jo Wittemore. Sweethearts through and through, no doubt. There was just one little problem: I ain't no Sweetheart and don't be calling me one.

I was honored to have been invited to join the group, they've made quite a name for themselves in the children's literature community. I immediately accepted their invitation. But the name, the name! What were we going to do about that?

I told my wife, "Honey, I'm joining a group of girls, we're calling ourselves the Texas Sweethearts."

And she asked, "So you're pledging a sorority?" That was enough for me, we had to change the name.

I made some suggestions: Texas Sweethearts And one Dude; Texas Sweethearts And a Somewhat Nice Guy; The Texas Sweethearts And Their Brotha From Anotha Motha. None of these names truck a chord with the ladies.

They made suggestions, too: Texas Sweethearts & Arts; Texas Sweethearts & A Sweet Hunk; Texas sweethearts and one Texas Ranger; Texas Sweethearts and one Cowboy. None of these names struck a chord with me. I don't see myself as a sweetheart or a cowboy either.

I sensed frustration. I didn't want to cause a headache with the ladies, but Sweetheart . . . come on, now. Seriously.

Finally, one of the new Sweethearts – Jeanette Larson — suggested a name that I absolutely loved: Texas Sweethearts & Scoundrels. I could do that!

So it was final. We are calling ourselves the Texas Sweethearts & Scoundrels: Seven Authors and Illustrators Who Write for Teens. The team: P.J. Hoover, Jessica Lee Anderson, Jo Whittemore, K.A. Holt, Emma J. Virj√°n, Jeanette Larson, and me, Don Tate aka, Devas the Scoundrel.

So, what do we do now? We'll visit schools. Do conferences. We'll highlight other authors on the blog. Support each other in our marketing efforts. Most of all, we'll have a lot of fun!


BookMoot said...

THAT is a brilliant name. You writers really are good with words.

Cynthia Leitich Smith said...

Is that "scoundrel" in the Han Solo sense of the word?

Anonymous said...

I didn't even do a dictionary check. But the word sounded so delicious.

If Han was a nice scoundrel, then yeah, that's me.


E. Kristin Anderson said...

I love it! And you're in such good company!

Jess said...

Great name, great group :)

Mary said...

Love it!!

Just read your book about Effa Manley. Fabulous illustrations!