Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Thinking about school visits

Next spring, I will be participating in the Cavalcade of Authors, which I'm very excited and honored to be a part of. Middle school students from all over Washington's Tri-Cities come to learn about writing from a number of Pacific Northwest young adult authors in a full-day event. 

I'm leaving a day early so I can visit a middle school in Umatilla, a fairly rural area, the day before the Cavalcade. I'll be speaking to all of the students for about an hour.

I've been thinking about what I have to offer the students. I'm not a stand-up comedian, unfortunately. I know kids this age love to laugh, and I'll try to throw in some funny lines, but uh, it's really not my strength.

I'm thinking more along the lines of inspiration. I figure I'll share my bumpy path to publication, throwing in things I've learned along the way of pursuing my dreams - things that they can apply in their own lives. I want to inspire them to read and to write through personal stories - that those two things will help serve them well throughout life.

Do you think inspiration is a good goal to have at a school visit like this one? I'm curious how others might approach a one-hour talk like this one.

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