(3/28/01 3:10:24 pm)
|Conference in Amherst, MA this weekend|
Just wondering if there are any New Englanders going to the Perspectives in Children's Literature Conference thisweekend at UMass, Amherst. Here's a list of the speakers:
Keynote addresses by Gail Carson Levine and Julius Lester:
The keynote speakers will be Julius Lester and Gail Carson Levine. Lester, a professor of Near Eastern and Judaic studies at UMass, has won awards for his children’s books, which include From Slaveship to Freedom Road and When the Beginning Began. He will speak about imagination and its role in his work. Levine, a Newbery Honor winner for her book Ella Enchanted, and author of The Princess Tales, will discuss writing fairy tales, inventing a fairy tale, and uses of the fairy tale in stories.
And there will be workshop presentations by:
Anne Sibley O'Brien
I'm going to workshops led by Liza (on the "Revival of the Series Story) and Jane Yolen(about collaborating). Let me know if anyone has any messages to pass along (Terri, I know you've worked with Jane Yolen a bunch) and I'll do my best to see them to their marks!
Trying to surface from under life,
Edited by: Kerrie at: 3/29/01
(4/9/01 2:58:01 pm)
|Perspectives in Children's Literature- brief notes|
Well, this was an amazing conference!
I have to say, I was scared at first, not knowing anyone or for
what specific reason I was going (I knew, somewhere in my heart,
there wsa a reason I was being pulled towards it, but didn't know
why at first), but life seems clearer now, and a bit more detailed!
Gail Carson Levine seemed to be made of pure energy! She talked
about how goofy fairy tales really are, and the matter-of-fact
treatment they seem to give (her example was of the seveen-league
boots- you know what happens, but not what it feels like). She
even told us a story (from the Lang Green Fairy Book ?) that seemed
to be a combination of many of the more familiar tales, and had
us laughing so much, I couldn't keep my notes up!
Liza Ketchum spoke of her book ORPHAN JOURNEY HOME, and how she
had started it as a serial story in about 120 newspapers across
the country. Based on a true historical event, she pieced together
history to write a 20 chapter series, then used letters from readers
to revise parts before printing it as a full novel.
Julius Lester was a surprise for me. Not by his presence at the
conference, but by his presence. I had read part of his BLACK
COWBOY, WILD HORSES in one of our pupil books at work, but never
realized what, and who, was behind the words. The reverence he
gives to life in story form, life in reality, it's just hard to
describe. He was given a standing ovation, which we were told
was the first in the history of the conference.
Jane Yolen spoke about the books and albums she's worked on with
collaborators, including family, the roles and games and rules
involved. Her talk was very inspiring and has me plotting ideas
to work on with my father, with my sister, and possibly with both.
(Still trying to think of what I can work on with my mother.)
I must say, it was a thrill to hear another voice utter the word
"interstitial"- my boyfriend and I have been trying
to spread the word amonst those we know, and to hear Jane speak
the word had me giddy in my seat!
I know this isn't much to go on, but I was in 7th heaven just
being there, so my notes are scattered. I must admit, I clipped
printouts of the latest topics for the board to the bookplates
I asked Jane and Gail to sign, hoping they'd join us.
Jane, I was just wondering
what you thought of the day, if you went to any of the morning
workshops, or how it compared with past conferences at UMass.
Gathering my notes,
Kerrie / Perrina