In the mail this week came a fat envelope full of letters from second graders at Sampson Elementary, which I visited during my week of school visits in Houston. I've read them over and over again. Here are some of my favorite lines, with the original spelling reproduced as best I can.
Adam, liking my titles Kelsey Green, Reading Queen, Annika Riz, Math Whiz, and Izzy Barr, Running Star, suggested I write Jackson Baxter, Writing Master. Thomas, hearing that I was stuck on a rhyming title for my work-in-progress about know-it-all Simon Ellis, suggested Simon Ellis, King of Jealous. Great titles, you two!
The kids always like best the ape dance I perform at the end of my assemblies (don't ask!). One of them wrote, "I was laughing so hard I couldn't see or breathe." Another wrote, "I almost did my scream laugh."
Blake told me, "You are one of the best athers I know. I have not read one of your book's but I just know they are reily good. I hope a lot more of your books get publisht. Try to get 20 book's or more publisht in a row that would be awsom." Blake, I couldn't agree more! I'll pass this on to my editor.
Jillian asked, "How many scools have you been to? I think you have bean to a lot! I mean, watt athor rites great books and do's not go to a lot of scools?"
Maria: "I think you are vary prity and nice." Aw, shucks, Maria!
Ava: "War do you git your story idews? I git min from my dog."
Sophie: "What year were you born in. You look like your thert five." I'll take it!
A different Sophie already has a main character for her new story: "Billy the Bad. He is vary bad."
Emily, a "shy arther" herself, sympathized with my report of all the criticism I get on my drafts from my writing group: "I feel like you in your book club my older sister reads my books and she herst my feelings a lot of times."
A third Sophie told me her reading goals: "I want to read more chapter books to impress my teacher Mrs. Hopper."
And finally, Madison told me: "When I get home I'm going to write a book." Yes, yes, yes!
And this is why I love to do author visits at schools.