Tag Archives: Norfolk Public Library Literature Festival

Nebraska!

Wow, Nebraska is gorgeous!  I had no idea it would be so green and rolling.  I flew into Omaha and was met at the airport by the lovely Karen Drevo of the Norfolk Public Library.  From there we drove north and east, criss-crossing the wide Missouri, dipping into Iowa and South Dakota, eventually wending our way to Norfolk, home town of Johnny Carson.

I was not the only author invited to the Norfolk Literary Festival.  My partners in crime were Deborah Hopkinson and Tony Varrato.  It was fun sharing a car and a weekend with these two wonderful writers.  Deborah’s Apples to Oregon is one of my all-time favorite picture books.  Her new book, Abe Lincoln Crosses a Creek is a new favorite.

Deborah and I share the back seat

Tony Varrato (who kindly provided all the photos for this post) is the author of the young adult novel, Fakie, a gritty story, boldly told.  He’s the kind of energetic, funny, inspirational English teacher I wish I’d had in high school.  Not only is he a good writer, he can juggle!

My amazing writer gals

One of the reasons for our visit to Norfolk was to give a writing workshop for kids.  I was thrilled to have three unique and talented young women in my class:  Krista, Aeriel, and Mattie.  We did some writing, some giggling, some sharing, some reading, some more writing, some more giggling.  I was really impressed with the love of books, the interest in writing, the observations, the immediate connection these three girls had.  Thanks, girls, for helping to make my day so special!  And remember what I said:  keep writing, keep writing, keep writing!  And also:  keep being you, keep asking questions, keep dreaming!  I know you all will go far!

Talking to folks at the Norfolk Literary Festival

After the workshop I talked to a great group of folks about how I came to write That Book Woman, which celebrates the work of the Pack Horse Librarians of Eastern Kentucky.  Many in the crowd were librarians themselves, and I always love talking to librarians about librarians, sharing the stories and photos of those early book women.

Norfolk Literary Festival attendees plus myself, Deborah, and Tony (on the end)

People came from far and wide for this annual festival (above are some of the attendees along with me, Deborah, and Tony on the end).  The librarians of Norfolk are great organizers and motivators.

The staff of the Norfolk Public Library (pictured above) are real book lovers and troopers.  (I hope you get some air conditioning soon!!!!)

Alas, at the end of the day, it was time to bid Nebraska adieu.  I really enjoyed my visit.  Thanks to everyone, including the Norfolk librarians and especially Karen Drevo (I’m so sorry I don’t have a pic of you by yourself because you, lady, are one stylish librarian!).  Thanks to Deborah and Tony too for making it such a memorable trip.

Please check back soon because I’m going to add Deborah’s and Tony’s website to my list of fav websites  (but first I have to ask my helpful husband and web monkey, Tim, how to do it 🙂

Heading to Nebraska!

I have been asked to speak on Saturday, July 31 at the Norfolk Public Library’s 16th Annual Literature Festival in Norfolk, Nebraska.   I will be giving a writing workshop for kids in the morning and will be speaking to teachers and librarians about books and writing in the afternoon.

I have never been to Nebraska, and am excited to fly into Omaha next week.  My picture book That Book Woman is a 2011 Golden Sower Award nominee (which is the state Nebraska award).  Other award nominees will be at the festival too, including Deborah Hopkinson and Tony Varrato.

If any of you live in Nebraska, or are interesting in attending the festival, please email Karen Drevo at kdrevo@ci.norfolk.ne.us or call her at 402-844-2108.

The Norfolk Public Library is located at 308 W. Prospect Avenue in Norfolk, Nebraska.  Hope to see you there!