On March 4th and March 6th, I visited my last two schools for the 2019-2020 school year.
But they weren’t supposed to be my last two schools.
No, March, April, and May were supposed to be filled with connections with young readers. At schools, libraries, and book festivals. As you know, schools and libraries closed and book festivals were cancelled. My author world came to a complete halt.
I spent those shelter-in-place months hopeful that this would pass, those schools and more would book for the fall, and life would return to normal.
- sharing my love of reading and writing with young readers and writers
- talking to kids about where ideas come from and how not to let one slip away
- sharing stories of real people like Dottie Kamenshek and Charley Harper, and Emma “Grandma” Gatewood, and real animals like Coal, the great horned owl
- encouraging young writers to keep going even when the words aren’t coming
- fostering a love of science and all things STEM
- meshing STEM and Literacy at the earliest grades, when both are critical
As June rolled around, I realized that while hopeful is good, realistic is better.
It seems that I’m probably not going to be meeting my readers face-to-face very soon. And, if it is possible, I’m not likely to be speaking to 300 kids in a gym or auditorium.
That leaves me two choices. Stop connecting or find a new way.
I decided finding a new way sounded like a lot more fun. And, really, that “new way” is the same “new way” we’re doing a lot of things these days. It’s the same way kids finished school this year. It’s the same way moms and dads continued to work in lockdown. It’s the same way kids are saying hello and goodnight to their grandmas and grandpas.
So, I’ve completely revamped my author visit pages to include VIRTUAL VISITS – small and large. I’d love to talk with single classes and whole schools – all online. Another way to connect with me is through StorySeer, a new service that partners schools and libraries with vetted authors — both in person and virtually, while taking on the work of logistics and planning.
I got my feet wet with classes in Texas and California, and I was amazed at how much fun we could have on Zoom meeting! I even rang the bell for them at my one-room schoolhouse studio. A bell ringing in Ohio was heard in Texas and California. Technology!
I’m beyond excited to announce this! I’ve always dreamed of doing a book club with readers of my Lucy’s Lab series and thanks to a great bookseller in Columbus, Ohio, it’s actually happening this summer!
ANNOUNCING: Lucy’s Lab Super-Sciency Summer Author-Led Virtual Book Club
Three club meetings, one for each of Lucy’s adventures.
This is a ticketed event with limited participation. Book purchase required (the books are only $5 each!). Please click here to register
Or call Cover to Cover Children’s Books with questions.
This has been a very strange year for all of us. We’re learning, we’re growing, we’re adapting. And we’re doing it together.
I heard expert epidemiologist Michael Osterholm speaking to Terry Gross on NPR the other day, and he said we should stop using the phrase “social distancing.”
“It’s physical distancing. … Don’t socially distance. If there was ever a time when we all need each other, it’s now,” Osterholm said.
I couldn’t agree more. I may be physically distant from my readers right now, but I’m not going to stop looking for ways to be social with them.
Keep in touch, won’t you?