The website of Dorothy Jane Mills

The website of Dorothy Jane Mills

Blog: Feb. 26, 2013


Children's books have become as important in the publishing field as adults' books. The Sunday New York Times Book Review always carefully sets aside space that gives attention to newly published children's books, just as it does for the separate category of adult mysteries.

Some old children's books become perennials. A few years ago I realized that the best-selling of all my books was Ann Likes Red, a short book for 6-year-olds just learning to read, first published back in 1965 and republished by Purple House Press in 2000. Women who learned to read it when they were little grew up to demand it for their own children and grandchildren. It's never been more popular than it is now.

Along with another of my old children's books, Ballerina Bess, Ann Likes Red is, according to GoodReads, actually as popular as the Seymour-Mills baseball trilogy published over the years 1960-90 by Oxford University Press. These works get more "stars" after their names than any of my recent books, despite the fact that the recent books, mostly published by McFarland, are selling at a respectable rate.

Now I'm working on something else that's not aimed at adult readers: something for high-school age and up. It's a history of women's and girls' baseball beginning with their play in long skirts back in the 1860s and continuing down almost to the present. For this book I'm under contract with Thinker Media, publisher of electronic books, so it will appear as an eBook only -- which is the way young people like to read.

Although it's meant mainly to inform today's youth, this book should also be an eye-opener for adult baseball fans who think women have no star players in baseball history and that women and girls ought to stick to softball. Women have minds of their own and think they should be able to decide which game they love to play. Their past is studded with good baseball players.

The title of my new book is taken from a question raised by an early male baseball writer: Who Ever Heard of a Girls' Baseball Club? If you never have, your attitude may be changed by this book.

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