I did want to take a moment to paraphrase what Anne Levy, Cybils founders and administrator, said about selecting the judges: It was really hard. We had about twice as many candidates as positions. All of the organizers take it very seriously, trying to place people in their first- or second-choice categories, while trying to get a balanced group in a variety of ways. When we can’t place someone in our group that we had in last year’s, we’re often recommending them to another category. But that’s still tough, because it is pretty likely the other group also has more volunteers than they need and they are doing the same thing.
While we look at a number of things — including blog, occupation, experience, credentials, and more — I’d advise potential candidates to think of their email request to the Cybils as a résumé. Follow the instructions given on the site. Tell us a bit about yourself. If you want consideration for a category that isn’t represented on your blog, tell us why. Show some enthusiasm if you feel it — and if you don’t feel it, you probably shouldn’t apply. Highlight your credentials — which can be as simple as being a parent of preschoolers. That certainly matters to me. Do this even if you think we know you, because if the person who does know you well has to pass for some reason, than the other organizers need to get a little flavor of who you are.
I would have loved to take everyone who wanted to work in Fiction Picture Books, but I had to narrow my choices down. Even so, I expanded my panelists from five to seven in order to accommodate a few more bloggers. And here they are:
Panelists (Round I Judges):
- Emily Beeson, Homespun Light
- Pam Coughlan, MotherReader
- Travis Jonker, 100 Scope Notes
- Natasha Maw, Maw Books
- Dawn Mooney, Five Minutes for Books
- Kiera Parrott, Library Voice
- Jennifer Warton, Jean Little Library