In 2015, I wrote and illustrated a story and self-published a paperback edition book called “Too Late For Pie“. I debuted it during my November Open Studio, to a warm reception by all the adults who read it. I read it out loud at an open mic, also filled with adults, to positive reception as well. Due to cash constraints, I only printed a handful of hard copies. At the last minute, I decided to throw two copies in my suitcase for Gettysburg.
While in Pennsylvania, a series of coincidences* led to my reading the book to Mrs. Cook’s third grade class at Rolling Acres Elementary School in Littlestown, Pennsylvania. What a fun, lively, engaging discussion we had! Led by Mrs. Cook’s questions, the students came up with several alternate endings, and plenty of ideas about the characters’ backstories that I had not thought about before.
After a second reading, we posed for a class picture, and a few of the girls in the class approached me.
“Will you be writing more books?” one of them asked me.
“Um…should I?” I asked.
“YES YES YES!” they chorused. “And you should send the books to us in the mail!” one of them said, while jumping up and down a little.
“Well, OK! I guess I will be writing more books! But here’s the deal. Will YOU keep writing and make your own books too? And send them to me?” I said.
“Uh huh,” the girls nodded their heads in unison.
None of us were quite sure what we had just gotten ourselves into.
All I know is I have made a promise to an entire class of third graders in Littlestown, Pennsylvania, and it’s time to get working on that next book!
*Details on these “coincidences” will be revealed in a future list of all the Pleasant Surprises that appeared for me during this residency in Gettysburg.
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