Short doco with ‘f2m: the boy within’ authors on Youtube

Ryan Kennedy co-wrote his debut novel ‘f2m: the boy within’ (Ford Street Publishing) with well known Australian author Hazel Edwards. The subject of transitioning gender in a Young Adult novel, co-written by an actual ftm (female to male) author was a first.

This Kailash Studios documentary is about reactions to this controversial novel. Psychologist Meredith Fuller interviews the co-authors and director Brian Walsh who is also a psychologist, produced the documentary.

Watch 14 minute version:

For a full version and enquiries on the documentary and to obtain a full version (25 minutes), contact Kailash Studios:
http://www.kailashstudios.com/

f2m: the boy within
http://f2mtheboywithin.com

Published by Ford Street Publishing
http://fordstreetpublishing.com

Hazel Edwards
http://hazeledwards.com

The thoughtful tourist’s guide to intellectual property via reading

Ever wanted to visit a place mentioned in a book?

We’ve put together a map of settings and locations for Hazel Edwards’ books, including ‘f2m: the boy within’. The setting could really be anywhere in Australia or New Zealand, so we chose to feature Melbourne and Wellington as the locations where we co-authored the book, communicating via Skype and email.


View The thoughtful tourist’s guide to intellectual property via reading in a larger map

I love the Antarctic locations on the map – zoom in to those to see how tiny the research bases are, then zoom out and you’ll see the sheer scope of the continent and masses of ice:


View The thoughtful tourist’s guide to intellectual property via reading in a larger map

How to browse the map

Skype web chat with rural youth

Rural youth chatting with Hazel Edwards on video screen. My co-author Hazel Edwards and I participated in a web chat with a group of rural youth in 2011, discussing our book ‘f2m: the boy within’.

The geographic constraints were obvious: Hazel in Melbourne, myself in Wellington, New Zealand, and the youth  in Wellington Shire, Gippsland, Australia – a detail we didn’t notice until the day of the chat.

The group’s questions were wide-ranging, including how to co-write and get published, the benefits of e-books., gender topics including finding support in rural areas, my personal experiences transitioning and media and librarian reactions to ‘f2m: the boy within’.

The first few moments of the chat revealed Phong Truong, Branch Support Librarian and organiser of the chat, to be female and not male as I had assumed. We all make assumptions about gender!

As a new author it’s exciting to have opportunities to talk to young people who have questions about gender, and especially rewarding to chat to your own readers. New technologies give authors these opportunities. Websites such as Skype an author network make it easy to find and get in touch with authors willing to brave the technical world to reach out to their readers.

Technical note: It’s not possible to have two videos appear on Skype simultaneously, though you can have as many audio channels as your bandwidth can handle.

Links

Web chat with rural youth – article by Hazel Edwards on Get Ahead Kids website

Ryan Kennedy’s profile on Skype an Author Network

 

‘f2m: the boy within’ selected for The White Ravens 2011

White Ravens

The White Ravens 2011

Hazel Edwards and I are thrilled that our novel ‘f2m: the boy within‘ has been selected for The White Ravens in 2011.

Every year 250 outstanding international books for children and young adults are selected for The White Ravens list from nearly 10,000 books sent to the International Youth Library at Schloss Blutenberg in Munich.

The books are presented at this year at the Bologna Children’s Book Fair and become travelling exhibitions sometimes sponsored by cultural groups such as the Goethe Institute.

See the full list

The International Youth Library at Schloss Blutenburg

Hazel outside the Schloss Blutenburg in Munich, 2006

Hazel outside the Schloss Blutenburg in Munich

As well as research facilities for internationals interested in children’s literature, the Schloss Blutenberg, a former Bavarian hunting lodge, houses the biggest International Youth Library of 540,000 books in 15 major languages. The castle is a short train and bus ride from central Munich.

The library was founded by Jella Lepman, the the US advisor on Children and Women, who started the post war first travelling exhibition with 4000 donated books. Many use animal parables as Lepman believed that by using animals to champion the cause of peace for children’s sake, the books would be more widely read.

Jella Lepman’s post-WWII concept was to collect children’s books to promote tolerance for strangers outside borders, as well as tolerance for those with whom we live daily.

The historical collection of 90,000 books are those up until 1950, and many rare Eastern European copies are no longer available elsewhere. Scholars come to research books no longer available in their own countries due to Communist censorship or wartime destruction. The Geneva Collection of 30,000 books from the League of Nations which was given to the Schloss archives in the 1960s is also carefully housed in the cellar stacks  in temperature controlled areas.

The castle itself was built in 1432 also contains an historic chapel and a grassed courtyard, in addition to a picturesque lake with hundreds of ducks.

Read first 2 chapters of ‘f2m’ free online – new ebook version

f2m Readings coverLast year Hazel and I we were very pleased to announce the Kindle version of ‘f2m: they boy within’. We’re now equally chuffed to present the Booki.sh version, available from Readings online for AUD$14.95.

A great feature of the Readings site is the ability to browse the first few pages of a book. You can read  2 chapters (or 18 pages, but a ‘page’ is a relative concept in ebooks) of ‘f2m: the boy within’ before you buy. I’ve spent some quality time browsing other Ford Street books this afternoon and can see my wishlist quickly expanding.

I hadn’t heard of this particular type of ebook format so I did some digging on which devices are compatible. The Booki.sh Compatibility Chart list compatible web browsers and smart devices, including most surprisingly the Kindle 3. The ones marked ‘Yes’ allow you to download the book and read when you’re offline.

So once again we’re celebrating having made ‘f2m: the boy within’ more accessible than ever!

Read the first two chapters of ‘f2m: the boy within’ online

New Zealand launch a great success

What a night! A great crowd gathered at Unity Books in Wellington for the New Zealand launch of f2m: the boy within.

Watch the video:

After a brief introduction, Kevin Hague, Green MP and Rainbow spokesperson launched the book. Also speaking were Mani Mitchell, myself and Hazel Edwards, co-author.

A diverse crowd gathered in Unity Books on a wintry evening in July to celebrate the launch of our novel, ‘f2m: the boy within’.

The evening featured an appearance by Hazel Edwards appeared via Skype from Melbourne, which was reminiscent of the collaboration process we used to write the book itself.

Kevin Hague, Green MP launched the book and spoke about his experiences in bookselling and the health sector.  He reminded us of the power of books, speaking of the support he found in the gay book section of his public library as a young gay man, and quoted Eleanor Roosevelt on universal human rights.

Mani Mitchell then brought her perspective as counsellor and intersex advisor.

Co-author Hazel Edwards joined us via Skype, in an amazing feat of technological mastery, possibly involving the wind blowing in the right direction.

Thanks to everyone who was involved and the great crew at Unity Books, Ford Street Publishing for all their support, and to everyone who reads ‘f2m: the boy within’.

Crowd at Wellington launch of 'f2m: the boy within'

A crowd gathers

Marion Castree from Unity Books

Marion Castree from Unity Books

Kevin Hague MP

Kevin Hague MP speaks

Mani Mitchell speaks

Mani Mitchell speaks

Hazel Edwards on Skype from Melbourne, Australia

Hazel Edwards on Skype from Melbourne, Australia

Ryan Kennedy speaking

Ryan Kennedy speaking

An avid reader dives in!

An avid reader dives in!

We’ve gone digital! ‘f2m’ e-book now available

f2m e-book version‘f2m: the boy within’ is now available worldwide at $14.99 US via the wonders of digital technology and the internet.

Buy ‘f2m: the boy within’ as a Kindle e-book

Converting a whole book to Kindle format was a new experience for me. It was a challenge to navigate forums, helpful blogs and Amazon’s own Digital Text Platform (DTP) help pages to get the instructions I needed. I actually converted it from Word to HTML (Amazon converts it to Kindle format) with a sprinkling of Kindle-only snippets that I’m sure are only included to liven up the conversion process.

One of the main reasons for writing ‘f2m: the boy within’ was to share information with as many people as possible about what it’s like to transition gender. The e-book version gives us the opportunity to make the book more accessible to those people who want that information in an easy-to-read format.

I’m glad we did this, and I look forward to working on the audio book!

Wellington launch at Unity Books: 21 July

New Zealand launch of ‘f2m: the boy within’

f2m: the boy within will be launched by Kevin Hague, Green MP and Rainbow spokesperson at 6pm on Wednesday 21st July 2010 at Unity Books, 57 Willis Street, Wellington.

Featuring co-authors Hazel Edwards (via Skype) and Ryan Kennedy, Mani Mitchell and the Tranzform transgender youth group.

I look forward to seeing you there!

Download PDF invitation | Facebook event

No need to RSVP. Queries to (04) 499 4245 or 0800 486 489

Links

‘f2m’ in the wild, reviewed

f2m Launch CakeIt’s been a busy couple of months, starting with the (first) launch of f2m: the boy within in Melbourne and now gearing up for the second launch in Wellington, NZ. Subscribe to email alerts and you won’t miss it!

I’ve been tweeting our reviews so far. In case you missed them, here’s a recap:

Recent reviews

Paper Tigers blog – A combined review and guest blog by Hazel Edwards.My favourite quote: “I read the book at one sitting – it’s a fast-paced and compulsive read.” For some reason I love hearing that readers get through the book quickly.

Sue Bursztynski in January Magazine and her own blog, The Great Raven – Sue describes herself as a ‘writer, librarian, book reviewer, educator’ so I’m honoured that she even read our book. I love that she pointed out that “the novel also explores the punk rock sub-culture, which is interesting in its own right.” I’ve been waiting for someone to say that! Exploration and accurate representation of the punk scene was just as important to me as the transgender aspects. An interesting comment conversation ensued on her blog.

ReadPlus – Recommended! by this resource site for teachers and parents. It sounds like this reviewer was immersed in the story: “I wanted to shake Finn’s mother and friend, Marla, for their initial lack of support, and I was surprised when Finn made judgments about others.”

The Reading Stack – Reviewed by Jo Burnell, a Paediatric Speech Pathologist and writer. “f2m provides answers to questions people don’t dare ask.” Being an out transgender person, I have been asked quite a few off-the-wall questions in my time. If you’ve ever wondered about it, someone’s asked it. That’s how I knew which questions to answer.

Aussie Reviews – Sally Murphy takes a break from blogging and writing children’s books to review ‘f2m’. “Teen readers will be drawn into Finn’s story.” I certainly hope so!

Book launched, cake eaten

Hazel Edwards and Ryan Kennedy at the 'f2m' book launchI’m back in Wellington, New Zealand after our very successful book launch for f2m: the boy within. A good-sized crowd of wonderful people attended. I know they were wonderful because every one of them came up to me and had a chat.

Here I am signing copies with Hazel while author Sofie Laguna looks on:

Signing copies of 'f2m: the boy within' at the launch Our publisher from Ford Street Paul Collins said a few words to start, then Hazel took the floor and explained some of the quirks of our writing process, namely being in different countries.  At the point this photo below was taken, I am pointing out that the book is the ultimate in recycling, as I drew from my online journal to start the writing process.

f2m launch crowdMy favourite photo from the day: myself and author/illustrator Felicity Marshall, gazing into each others’ eyes for effect (we’d met that day).

Ryan Kennedy and Felicity Marshall

And there was cake! It was delicious.

f2m Launch CakeA fabulous day in all. Thanks to everyone who came! I’m very proud to be a part of this collaboration and the opportunities it will bring to readers.

Life Matters interview

Our interview on Life Matters with Richard Aedy was aired on Wednesday morning. Recording in the ‘Tardis’ at Southbank was an experience in itself. I have new respect for anyone working in radio.

Listen to the Life Matters podcast

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