Around the Horn

* Want to know the secret of how to write for boys? I refer you to this post.

* If you write a book about bullying, sometimes a guy will give you an eye-rolling response like, “Oh please, you big wuss.” Then there’s stories like this one, and we’re reminded of what’s at stake.

* Loyal readers know that I’m loathe to bring the snark, heaven forfend, but this “Battle of the Kids’ Books” hype does nothing for me. I mean, okay, I get it, it’s a familiar format used everywhere — featuring rock bands or supermodels or favorite cereal brands — all done in good fun to promote great books. But what can I say? The competition angle, with winners and losers, turns me off. It all feels like a rehash of the endless awards season we just experienced. Besides, I’d prefer an old-fashioned Battle Royale. That said: I’m sure the authors are happy for the added publicity.

* I was so, so, so excited for this . . . then I remembered I don’t get HBO.

* The first internet sighting of Justin Fisher Declares War! — on a somewhat dubious “Top 10 Books for Boys” list. Not that I’m complaining!

* Here’s Youtube’s 50 Best Videos over the past five years. According to somebody. Coming in at #1: “Charlie Bit My Finger!”

* Sometimes we forget to spread the awkwardness. And I’m here to remind you.

The caption for this one: “This family just wants

to know what the hell you’re looking at.”

* My 2010 New York Mets prediction: 82 wins. Not optimistic about the pitching. Worse: I’ve lost faith in management. Sorry, Doret.

* Betsy Bird’s countdown for “The Top 100 Children’s Novels” is winding down to single digits. Don’t miss out. As always, she does a spectacular job.

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