Hello all! My name is Allyse, and I've been graciously offered the opportunity to be insideadog's Writer in Residence for the month of December!
Today is my last guest post at Inside A Dog. I had a fun time and was so inspired by your comments, particularly the ones from my post about "being different" (http://insideadog.com.au/blog/being-weird-being-different-and-finding-hope-3). You all inspire me and give me a lot of hope for the future!
First off, HUUUUUUUGE congrats to Barry Jonsberg and Maggie Stiefvater for the Inky Awards!!! It was such a thrill to be on the shortlist with the other authors. Hooray!
Hello from freezing cold Vermont! It was 15 degrees here the last time I checked. Brrrrrrr.
I had a fun weekend in Boston attending the NCTE (National Council of Teachers of English) Conference. There were thousands of teachers there and tons of authors too. This is such a fun event to attend because everyone there loves books and students and celebrating reading!
I was on a panel to talk about a wonderful summer program started by Kate Messner called "Teachers Write!" (http://www.katemessner.com/teachers-write/)
Yesterday my son was getting ready to take off for another day of rehearsals for a musical his school is performing (In The Heights) but he sat down to chat before he left. Then our cat George walked over...
And I thought, this looks familar...
Clover is loosely based on our cat, Fred, actually. And a cat I had when I was growing up, called Calico, who always seemed to know when I needed love and silent understanding.
Who is your favorite fictional pet?
Yesterday I had the honor or speaking with author Sara Zarr at This Creative Life, a podcast series Sara has on her Web site. This is a fantastic resource for writers and readers who want to learn more about their favorite authors, their writing processes, and other interesting stuff. Sara is becoming like the Terry Gross of the YA world!
Here's the teaser for our talk:
This weekend I was at a conference in Connecticut for the American Association of School Librarians (AASL). School librarians from all over the country gather to attend workshops and share information. One of those librarians was my sister!!! This was the first big conference we've attended together! It was so much fun to walk the exhibit halls together, where we collected great new books and fun gifts (we both thought the cat on this book bag bore a strange resemblance to me):
Tonight, I'm driving to Connecticut to attend the American Association of School Librarians Annual Conference. It's a huge honor to attend, and I'm looking forward to meeting the men and women who play such important roles in helping kids develop a love of reading.
I've written a lot about why I think libraries are important. Most recently, I talked about it here:
This is the library I went to when I was a kid:
I hope you all had a wonderful weekend. I had a very cool experience on Saturday. I was invited to spend that day at a writing conference for teens through The Young Writers Project (http://youngwritersproject.org/). I don't know if you have anything like this in Australia but if you don't, I hope you do soon! It's a pretty fantastic organization that encourages young people to read and share their work with each other. Teens from all over post their work to the site and give each other valuable feedback. It's pretty cool.
One of the best things about being an author is getting to meet and talk with kids who've read your book. Last night, I was invited to speak to a library book club in Colchester, Vermont. In addition, a reporter from Vermont Public Radio was there to record the meeting for a series they're doing on books that have been nominated for a book award in Vermont. (It's a little like the Inky Awards.)