By far the best part of finally having my book out in the world is getting to talk to people about it. And probably the best people to talk to about it are teenagers. I love the honesty and spontaneity of teens and how open they are to new ways of looking at things. If it’s true we all have an “internal age,” mine is somewhere around 16. I consider that an honor. I once read somewhere that it’s best to write for teenagers because they’re still thinking about the important stuff. I so totally agree.
Here’s a pic of me and the great staff at the library of T.C. Williams High School in Alexandria. (A group of grown-ups who know all about the magic of teenagers). When I stepped into the beautiful, well-lit library at T.C. Williams with its soaring windows and its happy strings of origami birds and I felt what it’s like to be in a space where reading is beloved. Below is a little blurb Beth Ebenstein Mulch, Librarian, wrote about my visit (Beth is the one in the blue t-shirt to my left – your right). She’s running a book club that’s growing by leaps and bounds. During my visit, it was easy to see why. Students were eagerly talking about books they loved, discovering new ones to read and bringing their friends. Everyone should know a librarian like Beth (and the rest of the staff at T.C. Williams!). T.C. Williams High School is a special place.
“It was a great pleasure to welcome Maria to our school. Maria’s visit with our students was inspiring and exciting for our students and staff. She did a wonderful job connecting with students both in her formal presentation and informally. Her story resonated with many of our students and her personal story was so engaging that it elicited participation from students who weren’t part of the presentation. Her novel was loved by our students and after her presentation our holds list grew. She was flexible and accommodating and had a nice balance of presentation and taking questions from students. Our students asked some interesting questions and she always responded with patience, encouragement, and enthusiasm. It was a great day.“
Beth and everyone one at T.C. Williams, students and staff alike, the feeling is mutual: It was indeed a great day.