Konferences, Keynote Junkie and Kids!

I've been a super, fantastic, marvelous really, really bad blogger lately!

I've been busy presenting.

The joy of writing is that you get to emerge from your sasquatch cave and go out into the sunlight and hang out with students who read your books! And teachers and librarians who appreciate your books! It's a whole lot of awesome and reminds us why we spend countless hours in the cave devoid of human contact.

I presented two sessions at a school. They were already reading Dead Frog on the Porch so I read a chapter later in the book, which is a treat because I usually read from the beginning, then I talk about where I get my ideas, and put the students through a writing exercise. The writing exercise really engaged them.

Then I was invited to present at two conferences: the Calgary Youth Writers Conference and the Foothills Young Authors' Conference in High River River. There was 1100 students at the Calgary conference and I presented two sessions on writing with humour called: What's so funny? Exercising your funny bone.  I introduce the concepts of writing with humour and then make the students write until their fingers bleed (hyperbole much!). The High River conference had 450 students attending and I did two sessions there as well.

At both conferences all the presenters attend an autograph session (read: hundreds of kids running around the gym getting autographs) great fun and a great ego boost!

Both conferences are the result of dedicated school boards, teachers, volunteers and the students willing to give up a Saturday to learn about writing.      

What I realized about myself these last two weekends is that I'm a Keynote Address junkie. I love listening to the stories of how the keynote presenters got published and the ups and downs of their writing careers, I love the inspiration and I love to see how the kids react to their stories. I wasn't disappointed at the two conferences. At the Calgary conference authors Jacquline Guest and Michele Martin Bossley were the keynote speakers, and at High River it was Sigmund Brouwer who presented a rock and roll keynote and had us singing in our seats. Great fun.

Now, once rejuvenated, back to the sasquatch cave to write.