Friday, May 3, 2013

A Writer's Week #69: On the Road

This was an awesome week. I got a chance to do one of the things I love best, a school visit. I just want to give a big thank you to Mrs. Robinson's 5th grade class. You guys asked some awesome questions! It was great getting to meet you all.

Dan draws
This visit was doubly awesome because for the first time I was accompanied by illustrator Daniel Vogel. Dan added another dimension to my presentation, because he was able to answer all the students' questions about the "art" of illustration. I was fascinated by his description of his creative process. I think we were all impressed when he drew something for the class on the spot. The kids asked him to draw a James Bond-type character. Dan went right to work, asking the kids for details such as what type of tie he would wear as he drew.

I know they were impressed. I loved to see him in action. The class was also inspired by the fact that Dan is just 15 years old and had already illustrated one book with a second due out shortly. He showed them the original artwork for the cover of The Deliverers: Sharky and the Jewel as well as the original drawing of the map.

After our talk, Dan and I were treated to an art show of our own as the class showed us the pictures they had drawn of the opening scenes of The Deliverers: Sharky and the Jewel. They all did a fantastic job, and I'll be featuring them in another post in the near future. It was a lot of fun to see the different interpretations of the book. Eric and Stig's first meeting and meeting the Gatekeeper in the Hallway of Worlds were two of the most popular choices for subject matter. I had intended to have Dan and I judge the drawings and award some prizes, but I loved them all so much that I couldn't decide which I liked the best, so I kind of scratched that idea. It didn't seem right to pick just one or two. I did take the pictures and will display them on a page of the blog soon.

I really have to credit Mrs. Robinson for instilling such a love of reading in her students. This is the second year I've visited her class and both times it was obvious that the kids were excited by reading, and writing their own stories. By the way, she is one half of the talented writing team (along with Jessica Haight) behind the fantastic middle grade mystery The Secret DMS Files of Fairday Morrow.

Next week I have another school visit scheduled. I can't wait to talk to another class about their writing and to answer all their questions. I'll let you know how it went next week!


  1. I have posted a link to your post for my students and parents! We loved having you and Dan into our classroom to hear about the writing and illustrating process. Thank you for taking the time to come in and talk to us. It is so inspiring for kids to hear from authors and illustrators. We had such a great time! Awesome job, Greg and Dan!

    1. Thank you for having us. As I said, Dan and I had a blast! Your classes are always so much fun to visit. I am hoping to scan the class' drawings and upload them tomorrow. I'll let you know when I post them.