I’ve attended Kate DiCamillo events before and wrote about them HERE (2015, Mercy Watson’s 10th Birthday) and HERE (when Kate won the Newbery for Flora and Ulysses) and HERE (2013 TCRWP Reunion Sat. Keynote).
Today I heard her speak while on book tour for her newest book, Beverly, Right Here. The event was in a church down the street from my favorite independent bookstore, Politics and Prose. The afternoon sun shined onto the stained-glass windows adding a colorful hue to the pews as families and teachers filled them. She gave a speech, reading through her bright red glasses and then walked up and down the aisle with a microphone, asking and answering audience questions. She ended with a book signing.
Things I learned:
* She emphaisezed why read stories. It’s so important because stories show you it IS possible. It IS possible to choose to be what you want to be. Stories tell us that dragons CAN be defeated. Stories tells us we CAN act, we CAN change, we CAN become. Beverly, the main character of her latest book, a run-away, chooses to be a new person. The reader, through her story, understands it IS possible.
*Kate writes 2 pages EVERY day, no matter what. EVERY DAY. a writer needs to show up and do it. (Happy to be showing up today, a Tuesday, posting to the TwoWritingTeachers blog!)
*While writing, Kate listens to the music of Marten Lauridsen.
* Kate’s ideas come from being observant, eavesdropping, taking notes in the notebook which she always has with her. “Plane rides are the best for eavesdropping!”
*A favorite quote of Kate’s by Flannery O’Connor : “The writer should never be ashamed of staring. There is nothing that does not require his attention”.
* Kate’s advise for writers: Read LOTS, Observe LOTS, Find a way to write daily, and BE RELENTLESS (don’t let people decide for you. GET your OWN way.)
Thank you, Kate, for inspiring me as a Reading Teacher and as a blog writer.
Thank you also for Beverly’s story. I read it in one sitting after the event and had so many ideas in my head, I made a reading notebook page to help me process some of it. #AuthorsAreRockStars