Friday, August 10, 2012

Authors...My Rock Stars!


I like musicians and actors just like most other people, but I get most excited when I get to meet an author.  I enjoy hearing them talk about their writing processes, books, and ideas.  Some young adult and children's authors I've met or heard speak include Christopher Paolini, Jerry Spinelli, Shannon Hale, Libba Bray, Richard Peck, Wendy Mass, David Wiesner, Brian Pinkney, Sharon Draper, Holly Black, Lester Laminack, Ralph Fletcher, Georgia Heard, George Ella Lyon, Tony DiTerlizzi, and Chris Colfer (also known as Kurt in "Glee").  I enjoy letting kids know that I have reading relationships with these authors and meeting them gives me the opportunity to find out more about their literary lives.  I'm reading Reading Ladders by Teri S. Lesesne right now, and she makes a case for using contemporary young adult literature in the classroom, not as a substitute for the classics, but in conjuction with them.  Using the "Four Rs - rigor, relevance, relationships, and response," we can help students choose books with essential characteristics of quality literature.  Meeting authors and interacting with them develops relationships with literature, which  helps students become better and more involved readers.  Therefore, when I get an opportunity to meet an author, I take it!

My colleague, Megan, and I had a great time at Blue Manatee Children's Bookstore Thursday when we saw  Tom Angleberger of Origami Yoda fame. He did a great presentation and entertained all his fans - kids and adults alike. I took this video clip of Tom explaining how he patterned Dwight's character after himself.  It would be a fun video to show kids how authors get ideas and write characters after themselves at times. 

Anglebeger talked about each of his books and promoted his newest one, The Secret of the Fortune Wookiee.  We each got a free Wookiee cookie, too!

Fake Mustache

Wookiee Cookie

Look who else visited the bookstore:

Lucky I am to have had Tom Angleberger write this on the inside of my book!

Thank you to all those authors out there who take the time to talk to us about their books! 

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