Friday, May 3, 2013

Young Authors Festival

Earlier this week I traveled to Trinity Christian College (near Chicago) to be the guest at their annual “Young Authors Festival.” The young authors were elementary students from surrounding schools, all of whom had written and illustrated their own books for the festival. I played the part of the crusty “old author,” sharing writing and drawing tips with the young creators, answering questions and jumping around a lot (like I do). Meanwhile the college’s improve team acted out some of the kids books. Rousing fun! There’s a nice article about the event here.

Trinity has a beautiful little campus. It had been a long time since I’d wandered about a college campus. The weather was beautiful and so, of course, the students were out in droves, enjoying the sunshine. As I was about to leave what did I happen upon but a bunch of young guys building a trebuchet. A TREBUCHET. They were using it to launch gallon jugs of water across the soccer field. I wanted to hug them.

I also enjoyed meeting one of the education professors at the college, professor Bill Boerman-Cornell, a graphic novel lover who uses Zita the Spacegirl in his children’s literature course. A few of his students caught me between presentations to talk about the book and have their copies signed. It was cool. I don’t usually have a lot of college-age fans.

Oh, and Trinity has an awesome mascot. They are the Trolls. There were posters that said things like “Tweet like a TROLL” and shirts that said things like “TROLL BASEBALL” which, you know, just sounds like a fantastic sport.

14 comments:

Tim Canny said...

Troll baseball does sound sweet. But I'm guessing you have to find relatively small trolls and it is probably tough getting them to stay rolled up when you hit them with the Yew tree club.

You should video tape one of your talks for all your online fans who can't get to one. You know, because you don't have enough to do. :]

Bill Boerman-Cornell said...

Thanks again, Ben, for an excellent presentation. Oh, and my daughter Frances completed her 100 quick rabbit sketches yesterday. We gave her the sketchbook she had earned and she was pretty happy. Then we told her to open it up to make sure the paper was the right kind. When she saw that "Mr. Hatke drew in my book! And then apologized for it!" she got the huge smile on her face that we knw would be there. Thanks again so much. (Oh, and Trinity is, in fact, the only school in the country with a troll as a mascot).

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