Billie is NOT happy with her new hat! (Please ignore the grubby carpet — Oregon rain + two dogs = mess)
Girls, start your engines!
Next Tuesday evening, May 31st, from 8 p.m. – 9 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time (that’s 5 p.m. – 6 p.m. Pacific Daylight Time, the rest of you will have to figure out your own time zones ha ha), I’ll be chatting live online with New Moon magazine’s book club. You can join us, too!
Click here for more information on how to chat with me. You’ll have to sign up — but you don’t have to subscribe in order to chat — New Moon has a generous 30-day free offer you can try. Warning: New Moon is FABULOUS and FUN, though, so you just might get hooked… 🙂
Talk to you Tuesday!
Mimi, mom of one of the fabulous fund-raising fifth graders who brought me to Michigan last week for a school visit, just posted some really fun photos of our day together. Click here to visit her blog and see them!
So this afternoon my husband and I decided it was high time to clean off our back patio/storage area. Well, you know how these things go — you start in one corner and move to another, and then pretty soon you’ve dismantled the entire house inside and out and things are strewn across the lawn and everywhere and the junk pile for Goodwill is growing and so is the pile of “I totally forgot we had this!” and “Wow, so THAT’S where this went to!”
The best thing I unearthed today was this photo. That’s me in the bow (front) of the boat behind the girl in pigtails, circa let’s just say many years ago. I was 12. As you can see, I’m posing with my Twin Pines cabin mates and our fearless counselors (one of whom, that beauty perched on the stern, is a dear friend of mine today — Betsie Ellington Tegtmeyer, you know who you are!).
I’m glad to see that I’m smiling in this picture. A lot of my memories of that summer are of being homesick. It was my first time away from home, and camp lasted SEVEN WEEKS. (What were they thinking?!) Plus, we were stuck in those dorky uniforms. Can you believe it? Uniforms at summer camp!
Anyway, to cheer myself up I wrote a story during rest hour. A story which, over the course of the summer (did I mention camp lasted SEVEN WEEKS?!), eventually turned into my first novel. It never got published, of course (it was one of my many “practice” novels), but it was the spark that ignited the fuse for me, and eventually led to me becoming a writer. So thank you, Camp Newfound, for giving me my start!
Who else has a summer camp memory to share?
That was my reaction when I found out about three fifth-grade fans in Michigan who love my books so much that they wouldn’t take no for an answer.
We had written back and forth, and the girls made me the most AMAZINGLY BEAUTIFUL notebook. Here it is:
I treasure it.
They wanted me to visit their school, but like most schools these days, theirs has a tight budget, and the girls were told it couldn’t be stretched to fund an author visit. Did they droop when they heard this? Did they give up? Not these spunky young women! Instead, they decided to take matters into their own hands. And so they held a bake sale. They organized a bottle drive. They came up with fun and creative ways to raise the needed funds (would you make a small donation to a good cause in order to wear jeans to school? A hat? I would!).
All their hard work paid off, because guess where I’ll be in a few weeks? Yup. At their elementary school. You can read about it here, in their local newspaper.
I can’t wait to meet Gabbi and Halee and Olivia in person!