A couple weeks ago, we shared an interview with our incredible cousin Alex. Well today, we'd love to share her thoughts on getting to meet Laurie Halse Anderson as well as her award-winning song in response to the novel SPEAK. The coolest part about this entire project is the power of books. We felt it, Alex and her friends felt it and we hope you will too! Enjoy!
It was a normal school day. Except that most of my reading class and the eighth grade class were going to load up on two buses and get hauled ten minutes away to a college campus with an award-winning author waiting for us. So yeah, maybe not such a normal day.
The whole time during my lunch block, as I was eating my delicious orange chicken, all I could think about was how the next block I would be in was the auditorium. Where Laurie Halse Anderson was.
At first I didn’t see her, just walked in and sat on a folding chair. Once all my friends arrived, Isabella (part of my song group) pointed out an adult wearing a “There and Their. They’re not the same” shirt with glasses, and long brown hair; just sitting there looking bored. I looked up, and recognizing her from photos I shouted to my friends, “Guys, look! It’s Laurie Halse Anderson!” We all grabbed our favorite book we had brought written by her and ran up to her.
She was sitting at a desk, just off the side of the stage. No one else had noticed her, and offering our books and names she gladly signed our books, even though she wasn’t supposed to sign anything until after her speech. Thinking we were all that, we fluttered our freshly signed books at the rest of the anxious audience before sitting down. Then she started speaking; none of my friends and I noticed of course, we were too busy reading what she wrote. But we figured it out by all the clapping, whistling and shouting.
She. Was. AH-mazing. A natural born public speaker, completely at ease in front of a huge crowd. Everyone watched with their mouths hanging open as she revealed some of her scariest and most embarrassing secrets. Laurie was hilarious, and not at all shy to tell people what her opinions are.
At the end of the day, all the teachers, parents and students were herded back into the auditorium for the Award Ceremony. Having been previously informed that my group had got an honorable mention for our song, “Help Us Speak” inspired by Laurie’s book; Speak, we were all excited (My group; Toni Cameron, Isabella D’Urso, and of course, me). Needless to say, when they called our names and had us go up on stage in front of at least a thousand people and receive a check for fifty dollars, a book and handshake by Laurie Halse Anderson; we were shaking. Add a “Congratulations” from Laurie and it was one of the best days of my life. It only could have been better if Taylor Lautner was there.
And now for Alex and her friends' award-winning song!
And don't forget to check out what the rest of the Bookanistas are up to this week!
Nikki Katz has been hit by STRUCK
Katy Upperman adores AMEILA ANNE IS DEAD AND GONE - with ARC giveaway!
Jessica Love is thrilled by TRANSCENDENCE
Christine Fonseca is celebrating the release of SURRENDER with a big giveaway!