Educators & Librarians

Hipple Collection of Young Adult Literature

Posted by on Nov 21, 2017 in Book: Deadly Flowers, Book: Deadly Wish, Educators & Librarians, Writing Process | 0 comments

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A first draft pages from Deadly Wish. Am I the last writer alive to do first drafts longhand?

I was flattered and excited to be asked to donate signed copies and original manuscripts of Deadly Flowers and Deadly Wish to the Ted Hipple Collection of Young Adult Literature at the University of South Florida! My books will live on the shelves beside books by Judy Blume and S.E. Hinton, so you can see they’ll be in very good company.

I must confess I’m a little sad to give up the original first drafts, though. It’s funny–I save all my first drafts, although I don’t know why. I don’t look at them again. They just take up space. I don’t mind throwing away intermediate drafts, but those first, handwritten ones–they feel like part of me. I’m surprised by how much of a wrench it feels to send them away. Like sending a kid off to college, I imagine. You always hoped they’d get there, but they’re not all yours anymore. Time to see what they can offer the world!

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Talking about The Eureka Key at Victor Intermediate

Posted by on Nov 16, 2017 in Author Visits, Book: The Eureka Key, Educators & Librarians, School Visits, Secrets of the Seven, SERIES: Secrets of the Seven | 0 comments

IMG_9623 This week I visited Victor Intermediate School in Victor, NY, a lovely little hamlet near Rochester. What made it super exciting to me was that this school had picked The Eureka Key for a community read. It was my first time (as far as I know) to be read by an entire school (of 1100 kids, no less).

Now normally I’m in a favor of a LOT of choice when it comes to reading. We’re not all the same as readers; let’s let the nonfiction kids read about dinosaurs and the fantasy kids read about dragons and the sensitive kids read tearjerkers. It’s all reading! It’s all good!

But I have to admit to a certain thrill in having a shared experience of reading every now and then. It was part of what made the Harry Potter phenomenon so fun. It wasn’t that they were the best books in the world (not the worst, either). It was the joy of sharing Hogwarts with so many other people. With your friends and classmates and strangers you met on the bus. It brought the fictional world into real life, joined us together into a community who shared our imaginary lives. It was lovely.

I felt a little bit of that in the school today. The kids were so excited to see me and so eager to take in what I had to share about writing and so excited to do some writing themselves. And sharing the book with the whole school, kids and teachers and families and all, was what built that excitement.

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I signed A LOT of books!

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Everybody made their own “Eureka Keys” with terms describing themselves–the keys to their personalities!

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Ninjas In the Stacks!

Posted by on Oct 10, 2017 in Book: Deadly Wish, Educators & Librarians, Events, Japanese Demons, Ninjas | 0 comments

All other gifts in the stock must beware the ninja nesting doll!

Beware the library ninja!

Don’t forget to drop by the main branch of the Portland Public Library this Saturday, 10/14, at 2:00, for an adventurous event to celebrate the launch of Deadly Wish. There will be a stealthy scavenger hunt through the stacks, ninja tattoos, Japanese snacks (green tea Kit Kats! Really!), and signed copies of Deadly Wish to purchase.

Click here for more details!

(Drop by the exhibit of art by Maine treasure Dahlov Ipcar while you are here. Gorgeous art in pop-off-the-wall color!)

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What To Read When

Posted by on Sep 15, 2017 in Book: Amazing Animals, Children's Literature, Educators & Librarians, Nonfiction | 0 comments

Pam Allyn’s What to Read When is a great resource for parents and teachers trying to find that just-right book for a certain age or interest. What a thrill to find one of my own books included! Amazing Snakes is listed under “Research Books” for five-year olds. I love the idea of my books helping to inspire a love for science and a fascination with the natural world.

Allyn says, “What better way to introduce our kids to the value of exploration and research than to seize their interests and passions early on and and introduce them to books that will help them puzzle out the answers to their most fervent wonderings.” I couldn’t agree more!

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