The Styling Librarian

In my opinion, books are the best accessory.

Styling Librarian Author Visit with Alan Gibbons

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Alan Gibbons author visit reflection: I have a job I’m passionate about, whether connecting with students through literacy promotion, teaching about research and technology skills, or continual professional education for life, the job of a teacher librarian fits me well. When it comes to meeting authors and actually welcoming them to my school, that is simply an amazing experience, each time!

This year I’ve welcomed four authors to my new school, one by Skype, the rest in person. Other authors and publishers have reached out as well which was lovely since I wasn’t sure if Hong Kong would have a vibrant writing community in comparison to Portland, Oregon. One of the authors that visited my school this year is Alan Gibbons. I was grateful that fantastic Hong Kong teacher librarian Dianne McKenzie organized a group of schools to welcome and host Alan Gibbons at various schools. It was a relief to approach having an author visit as a team versus individually.

Alan Gibbons is a prolific author, I have read many of his books and feel like I’ve barely scratched the surface. I appreciate his personal story about how he a Blue Peter Book Award, prestigious UK award for children’s authors. I also enjoyed the easy, entertaining, fascinating conversation my assistant and I had with him through the day. I know many authors who are powerful advocates for school libraries and public libraries, Alan Gibbons stands out as a powerful advocate with respectful, thoughtful points every time he speaks out.

His creativity and extensive knowledge and experience lead him to be a fantastic author visitor in addition to a wonderful writer. Alan captured my students’ attention within a few words and spun tales left and right throughout the day. I appreciated that authors offer the option of having writers workshops replacing one or two author visit presentations. Alan led two at my school for different grade levels and a large group of students walked away with story beginnings written about getting a super power or visiting Count Dracula’s home. Alan granted me permission to post videos and pictures from his visit here on my blog, so I’m sharing a few below. I’ve mentioned Alan’s books before, I will again- they’re quite entertaining and fascinating! I’m interested in reading more of his YA books…

Videos of Alan Gibbons Visit:
Part 1: http://vimeo.com/61160955
Part 2: http://vimeo.com/61226136
Part 3: http://vimeo.com/61231192
Part 4: http://vimeo.com/61234334
Part 5: http://vimeo.com/61235169
Part 6: http://vimeo.com/61244626
Finally, here are a few notes from Alan’s writer’s workshop thanks to my wonderful assistant’s keen ear:
“A story is not what you do, it’s how you do it” – Alan Gibbons:
There’s a descriptive writing emphasis during the writer’s workshop- show the story…; show the detail of the journey from car to door; build tension to capture the reader- hook them in; don’t tell a story, show a story, that leads to using great descriptions; begin with a good descriptive opening sentence and then come up with a reactive sentence; plan for the rest of your story- will there be a struggle between good and evil? Where will you set your story- where the struggle occurs; invent your own rules.
I just read Alan Gibbons article in The Guardian on school libraries, think it should be shared with all: http://www.guardian.co.uk/childrens-books-site/2013/mar/22/love-your-library-school-alan-gibbons – my two favorite quotes from the article are: “The library is the beating heart of the school…” and “The library isn’t shelves full of books. It is the home of reading, both physical and electronic.”

Here’s Alan Gibbons article on his new book Raining Fire – good research: http://www.booktrust.org.uk/news-blogs-and-press/blogs/booktrust/545   Also, Alan Gibbons has posted elsewhere, here’s a great piece on writing advice: http://web.aqa.org.uk/becreative/advice.php

Want more book ideas and reviews? – Yes, I’m quite brief, but a prolific reader!  Please visit me at Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/user/show/1941055-the-styling-librarian Also, please follow this blog through email updates – (do so to the right of this blog post), my Facebook page, comment, or meet up with me on Twitter. I appreciate all of the support, makes my day! Honored by all the wonderful followers.

2 comments on “Styling Librarian Author Visit with Alan Gibbons

  1. Pingback: Photos and videos of Alan Gibbons on tour in Hong Kong | Alan Gibbons' Diary

  2. Pingback: Alan Gibbons in action | Alan Gibbons' Diary

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