Monday, December 20, 2010

One we'll hear from in a decade

On 11/18/10, I ventured almost halfway across the wilds of Long Island for what turned out to be a most rewarding school visit. They’ve got solid security at Lindenhurst Middle School in Lindenhurst; I arrived early so I sat in the car in the parking lot doing a bit of work, and a guard came up to me to ask if I had business at the school. I wish all schools had protectors this attentive!

Before the presentations, I was treated to a bounty of art based on my books that the students had created. Some pictures were hung around what was labeled as “The World’s First Six Foot Celestial Sphere”:

(I would’ve assumed that distinction would belong to a lab somewhere, but I was never a strong science thinker.)

One drawing took inspiration from the cover of Vanished: True Stories of the Missing

I especially enjoyed the following pair, the first because it combines the subjects (Superman and ghosts) of two of my books and the second because it pits me against Superman villain Brainiac, which is sorry news for me:

They sold books, too, some of which I, post-signing, managed to stack without toppling:

Yet the most memorable aspect of the visit was a particular sixth grader and possible (likely) future author. In my years of visiting schools and blogging about it, I’ve never singled out a student. This one, however, made quite an impression on me. I’ll call him AM.

AM’s teacher allowed AM to miss some of his lunch so she could bring him to see me specially, in between sessions. AM was articulate and confident. He asked intelligent questions and knew a significant amount about comics history—in some cases, more than me. (Though, in my defense, while I know a thing or two about Siegel and Shuster and Finger, I never claimed to know extensively about comics history in general.)

I referred him (as I do all aspiring young writers) to I told him I will be eager to see where he ends up. And so I have already made a note in my calendar to Google his (luckily unusual) name—ten years from now. (Maybe he'll work with this one.)

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