Thursday, December 4, 2008

Sprucewood Elementary School

I had a great day today at Sprucewood Elementary School in Sandy, Utah. I spoke to the combined 5th and 6th grade classes, three of each, about 180 kids. They were a great group, a real tribute to their parents and teachers—especially Mrs. Simmons, Mr. Emmit and Ms. Blunt.

I spoke to them about writing for a while and answered questions. Then I spoke to the three classes of 5th graders and taught a mini-writing workshop. We created a very fun short story about Makayla, the tiniest dragon in the entire world, who couldn’t fly or breathe fire. No one liked her, not even her parents. She also had a problem with a tribe of goblins and nearly drowned in a muddy lake full of crocodiles. Then the goblins captured her and Makayla developed some pretty unique powers of her own. Good times.

We worked as a group and I taught them a quick method of planning and writing stories. I was so impressed with the kids’ ideas and the teachers were awesome too.

Then I spoke to three classes of sixth graders. We had so much fun in a very packed room. They came up with a bunch of amazing ideas and we created a story about Jose, a blond-haired, white-skinned orphan living in Mexico with a Latin family who had adopted him. He had a terrible burn scar on his neck from the fire his parents died in when he was a baby.

Jose also had a terrible power: he could see ghosts. In the story, Jose was chased into a traveling Haunted-Freakshow/Mirror House/Glass House/Fun House. Two boys had been lost in the Freakshow in the previous town and were never found. Bullies chased Jose into the house and he ends up using his power to see ghosts to save himself, and the bullies at the end. The ghosts of Jose’s parents help him escape, and Jose saves the bullies after being tormented by all sorts of evil ghosts—such as a werewolf ghost. You get the idea. The kids and I had a really killer story going. I enjoyed meeting them all and signed posters and books before I left. What a great bunch of kids.

Next, I hit the Southtown Mall Barnes and Noble (by the school) and signed ten copies of The Golden Cord per the Community Relations Manager’s direction. There should be signed copies at three local Barnes and Nobles now: Sugarhouse, Murray, and Southtown Mall.

Next I went to the hospital and visited one of my favorite patients. She’d been readmitted to the ICU and I had to see her. She’s hanging in there, but I’m quite worried. I liked seeing her and she liked seeing me. I had my black suit on with a cool tie. Everyone was impressed with my outfit—and I have to admit—I do like dressing up once in a while. My patient is such a cool lady. I end up connecting with some of my patients in a big way. Writing is great, but I’m never going to quit being a nurse. I love it too much.

Paul Genesse
Author of The Dragon Hunters
Book Two of the Iron Dragon Series
Releasing May 15, 2009

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I was really interested in your post about your visit to Sprucewood Elem School. Here in Scotland, I teach a class of P5 pupils(9-10) most of whom really enjoy reading. It can sometimes be difficult to get 'real' authors into schools to speak about their experience and work.
Please have a look at our brand new blog and leave us a comment. My pupils would love to hear about your work.
Mrs McC P5