Last week I was lucky enough to be a visiting author at the Virginia Festival of the book in Charlottesville, Virginia. Charlottesville is my hometown, so I was extra excited to be invited to visit schools I had actually attended as a grade schooler. One librarian actually remembered my attendance at her school, over TWENTY years ago! Amazing!
I can't say enough how well organized and interesting the festival was, the organizers kept me up to date on my schedule and all the events like the pros they are, and I was amazed at how many events they managed to pack into 5 days! There were lectures and events nearly every hour of the day... including talks by a writer of the HBO show The Wire (which is breathtaking if you haven't seen it), and veteran journalist Helen Thomas. I highly recommend the festival both to other authors, and any teachers or educators interested in learning about all aspects of books and publishing.
Here are some pics from my visit to St.Anne's Belfield Elementary last Friday. My dad is a professional photographer and got some great shots...
Starting with a slide show:
Kids are invited to compare sketches to paintings:
Here I am drawing a character the kids created (a flying, knitting monkey):
One of my favorite parts of visiting schools is when the talk is over and kids rush up to ask a question or tell me about a book they've made or just say hi. Because I told them all about my work, they want to tell me about theirs, its a nice way to tie everything together...