August already? Whoosh! That’s what happens when you spend your summer at CAMP! That’s me, "Drama Mama," with some of my amazing staff (left photo), and (right) getting an ice cream sundae on my head last summer. (Haven’t downloaded this year’s photos yet!) This summer we told all our theater students at Sugarloaf Fine Arts Camp NOT TO TELL US what happens to Harry. And–dare I admit this Muggle scandal?–I still haven’t had time to stop by my favorite indie to buy the book. (GASP! I can hear your curses now: RIDICULOSO !!!!)
As an author, I can’t even begin to imagine how Ms. Rowling must feel to have her books and characters take on such active lives of their own. Did I say Lives? Heck–more like complete universe! It’s mind boggling. No one has asked to make a theme park of Little Bo Peep Can’t Get To Sleep yet–not that I aspire to that kind of fan base…(And this is not reverse-jealousy-psychology talking. The woman deserves a theme park. Totally.). Nor have my teenage daughter and her friends made their own Goldie Locks Has Chicken Pox t-shirts to wear at the midnight showing of the latest Goldie Locks film… I’m o.k. with that.
Days before Harry-Time(Hey, if it’s a universe, it no doubt has its own time zone) I was at Kepler’sin Menlo Park CA for a great Storytime (Thank you Angela and Kepler’s staff for holding off Hogwartsing the store until after everyone had made their sheep craft and left with signed Bo Peeps and Goldies.YOU ROCK! ), and I realized Storytime is my universe.Seriously. I count my blessings for every opportunity to enjoy a fleeting rock-star status with 7-year-olds but still lead a normal life doing school visits without the Daily Mirror following my bad-hair days (of which I assure you I have plenty) and wondering if I’ll ever have another best-seller. (Come on, guys–leave the woman alone! So what if she never writes a grocery list again after all-things-Harry. That’s like asking the Queen if she’ll ever build another castle.)
As for me, it’s time to do something about the piles of camp laundry extending out of the laundry room and down the hall. (Perhaps there’s a spell to get it all done at once?) And then it’s back to PBIC and to the book store for Harry.
Happy Summer!Please mark your calendars and join the fun atKepler’s Book Store (see keplers.com) in Menlo Park, CA on Sunday July 8th at 11:30 for Storytime. I would LOVE to share my books with a storeful of young book lovers (and big ones). Check out the cool Kepler’s flyer at Download 8_SundayStorytime_ErinDealey.pdf and come on down!
This photo is of yours truly giving the keynote at the Reading Rainbow Young Writers’ and Illustrators’ Awards Night at Fairytale Town. (Goldieand Bo Peep’s home away from home.) What fun it is to listen to young authors read their own stories aloud! Many are budding artists too. Way to go you guys, and thanks PBS. I’m thrilled to be a part of this fabulous program that encourages kids to read and WRITE.
Speaking of which, my goal this summer is to squeeze in some writing time. I know–sounds simple. But the minute school gets out and our summer schedules kick in around here, writing time seems to fly out the window. (Well, not counting writing stuff for my theater students at Sugarloaf Fine Arts Camp, but that’s another story. Or PLAY actually…) So this morning I thought about those essays teachers love to assign at the beginning of the school year (I admit I’m guilty of this one myself.): WHAT I DID ON MY SUMMER VACATION. Which lead to the following proclamation. Let it be known that three months from now I want to be able to say:
I finished (We’re talking stick-a-fork-in-it DONE. Finished. Send it in already!) my tweener/mg.
Those PBs found good homes, thanks to my wonderful agent.
My critique pals have read my early chapter book ms. and I’ve revised and polished.
I found time between summer camp (Yes, I still get to go to summer camp!), the invasion of giant zucchini and (ugh) tomato worms, reunions, vacations, visitors, and a revolving door of teenagers to WRITE.
What do germs have to do with writing? I meet with three of my writing pals, Connie Goldsmith, Patricia Newman (www.patriciamnewman.com) , and Linda Joy Singleton (www.ljsingleton.com ), every other weekand we are all so proud of the great press Connie’s latest non-fiction books have been getting that I have to share. Check this out:
The National Science Teachers (NSTA) Children’s Book Council chose Connie’s book, Influenza, the Next Pandemic? (Lerner 2007) as an Outstanding Trade Book. "A seamless blend of history and science!" Believe, me , it’s true! I am not a scientist (I blew up the lab in my high school Chemistry class…), and fear of needles kept me from pursuing any medical profession so I need stuff like influenza and pandemics explained to me in user-friendly terms, with an entertaining voice to keep my eyes from slamming shut, and Connie does just that.
NSTA Children’s Book Council: "The author…describe(s) the impact of the flu on generations before us, the impact of another possible pandemic, and how to prevent and care for patients with the flu. Vignettes interspersed throughout the book make this important book real for readers."
Next out will be another book that has gotten our group to wash hands more frequently, SUPERBUGS STRIKE BACK, When Antibiotics Fail(Lerner 2007). These titles followed INVISIBLE INVADERS, Dangerous Infectious Diseases (Lerner 2006) which the School Library Journal called: "…clear, clever headed and brisk, intelligent writing that never patronizes." Way to go, Connie! For more info on all three titles, go to www.lernerbooks.com .
And speaking of germs, my lesson plans for Goldie Locks Has Chicken Poxprompted an e-mail from a wonderful Kindergarten Mom who helps in her daughter’s classroom. Missy shared this cool Germ experiment she used after she read the Kinders my book:
I cut potatoes into slices. I gave each table several slices. In one group they touched them all over and we put them in a baggie. Another group washed their hands first and then handled them before placing them in a baggie. The third group touched them all over but then spread hand santizer all over their potato slices before putting them in a baggie. The last table didn’t touch their potatoes at all. They used a set of tongs to put the slices in a baggie. I labeled each baggie with how the potatoes were treated. We decided to wait one week and check on the potato slices and see how they look. We made predictions ahead of time and will compare those with how the potatoes really did. FUN!!!
Suddenly I feel like washing my hands…and then it’s time to PBIC… and Write!
I met up with author pals Lynn Hazen (center) and Kim Zarins (with the bunny ears) at the Provost’s Egg Hunt last Saturday at Stanford. Big thanks to another author pal, Nancy Etchemendy (R) and her husband John, who hosted the event for all the darling little bunnies of the Grad students.
Nancy’s middle grade novel, The Power of Un , (Cricket Books 2000)is one of my all time favorite reads. Who wouldn’t want an "Unner" that could undo any event in your life?
The lawn of the The Buck-Meyer house was covered with eggs and the kids had a blast.
Here are some photos of my new friends "in their Easter bonnets," making sheep, and listening to stories.
Click on the image for a larger view.
I hope everyone had time to hang out with their own special bunnies last weekend.