Tuesday, December 15, 2015


(This is from the publication I edit in Colorado, so you won't be able to make yours look exactly like this. But the five steps are still the same, and we certainly do love recipes!)

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Photo Credits and Wikimedia

The best photos to go with your articles are ones you take yourself, but, if they didn't come out well or you couldn't get any at all, you can look for pictures on Wikimedia.

Other photos you find on the Web are probably copyrighted, which means someone owns them and other people aren't allowed to use them. We could get in trouble if you used a photo that belongs to someone else.

Wikimedia makes photos available for people to use, though you have to be a little bit careful, because some of the pictures say "noncommercial use" or "not for commercial use," which means we can't use them because YVNY is a business. (You can use them for your personal blog or for a paper at school.)
If it says "public domain" or "Creative Commons" it's okay for us. But you still have to give the photographer credit.

Here's where you find that information:

Then, when you add the photo to the YVNY Image Library, you'll see in the right hand rail, a place to put the photographer's name. Don't just add the name -- add the word "photo" and a colon, like this:
(The other boxes above that one are filled in automatically)

If you or a parent or a sibling or someone else took the photo, you'd put their name in the same way.

One more thing: When you do a book review, you can take a book cover from the Internet and you don't have to add a photo credit. Same with posters for a move review. Just make sure it's an actual book cover or poster, not something someone else drew or a photo of the book.

You can also use logos, the images businesses use. For instance, if you went to the American Museum of Natural History, you could use their logo, though that place is so full of great things to photograph that I hope the logo wouldn't be the only picture you had!

Every story should have photos. Otherwise, people probably won't read it!

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Can I review this book or movie?

A very important step before you do a movie or book review is to find out if someone else is already doing it. It would be foolish to put all that time and effort in and then put it up on the site and have me say, "Um, sorry, that one has already been taken."

The other thing you should do is decide before you see the movie or read the book that you are going to review it. That way, you can keep track of the things you'll want to mention and also make sure you know the names of characters and other details.

Trying to remember it later doesn't work very well.

But before you get to that point, of course, you have to choose a book or a movie.

The basic rules are these:

1. It has to be appropriate for kids under 14.

It's okay if it's kind of PG-13, but you have to say so in the review.

"This movie has a lot of action and violence that isn't appropriate for kids under 11," or maybe "... for kids who get upset by that sort of thing."
"This novel is best for kids 12 and over, because the plot is very complicated."

2. It has to be new, and by "new," we mean "within the last six months."

How can you tell? Here are two easy ways:

For a book:

Go to Amazon.com and look it up.

On the page where the possible choices are, you'll find your book and its publication date:

Or you can go to the actual page for the book and find it there:
Then do the math. Don't worry too much about exact dates.

In this case, it was published very early in October, so figure the book is good until April, 2015. If it were October 27, you could "round it off" and use November to start, and say it was good until May.

If it's in the middle, like the 12th or 17th, just figure "the middle." (See the next example!

With movies, but now you're going to imdb.com, and you'll find the release date here:

So "Monkey Kingdom" would be good until about the middle of October.

If the expiration date is close, of course, it means you can't waste a lot of time, particularly with films.

In fact, if it's a movie that has a lot of action and special effects, you should do it very, very soon after it is released so that it's still in theaters.

One more thing

Watch out for older books and movies that are being re-released. If they just bring out a new paperback of "Little House in the Big Woods," that's a wonderful book but it's not new and we wouldn't do a review of it.