Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Children, “best readers in the world”

Novelist Katherine Paterson has been appointed national ambassador for young people’s literature:

“When people say, ‘Don’t you want to write for adults?’ I think, why would I want to write a book that would be remaindered in six weeks? My books have gone on and on, and my readers, if they love the book, they will read it and reread it. I have the best readers in the world.”

New Envoy’s Old Advice for Children: Read More (New York Times)

comments: 4

Pete said...

I'd have to agree with that. My nine-year-old has suddenly set aside her Nintendo and gone on a reading binge. When I got home from work last night, I called out hello to her but got only silence in response. I found her on the living room couch, totally immersed in a book. What a great feeling that is.

JuliaR said...

When I was going through this book ("The 500 books you have to read" or something), I knew almost every one in the children's category. And I have read many of them more than once. There's something about kids' books.

Elaine said...

Katherine Paterson's book about writing for children is well worth a read, but after trying and trying to get the title to come forth! (like Lazarus) I give up and trust that you can find it. She tells a delightful (poignant) story of speaking to a group of students...one of whom has written to her: "[This is] the best book I have ever read. I am on page 8."
What more needs be said?
WAIT! _The Gates of Excellence._
Thank you, Lord. I remembered something.

T. said...

Hi! I LOVE Paterson. She was part of the "Big Four" that changed my life (literary, moral, intellectual) when I was growing up: Paterson, L'Engle, Konigsburg, and Babbitt.

The Gates of Excellence and another volume, The Spying Heart, were brought together and republished as one volume, A Sense of Wonder: On Reading and Writing Books for Children. These essays were then published WITH some of her speeches in The Invisible Child.

One speech that may not have made it into the above anthologies is this one, which reveals the power of her classic Bridge to Terabithia:

Worth reading! Paterson ROCKS.