Ingrid Law is a huge fan of words and stories, of small towns and big ideas. Born in New York, Ingrid's family moved to Colorado when she was six years old. Ingrid's first book and New York Times bestseller, Savvy, received numerous awards, including a Newbery Honor, and appeared on many lists. Her second book, Scumble, takes place in the same world, but with a whole new cast of characters.
Visit Ingrid's website at www.ingridlaw.com to learn more about her and her books! Use the great Savvy/Scumble discussion guide for your book group, classroom, or for yourself. You can also listen to an audio clip from the audio book here.
If you are interested in having Ingrid make an appearance at your school, library, or conference, please use the online request form or email the Author Appearance Coordinator at authorvisits[at]us.penguingroup.com with possible dates, your organization, location, details about the day, and your contact information.
Author Appearance Q&A with Ingrid Law:
What can a school, library, or conference expect when you are making an appearance? What might you do differently with audiences of varying sizes, ages, and interests?
While I try to vary my presentations appropriately for different age groups, I focus on many of the same elements no matter what sort of group I'm speaking with. I discuss what inspired me to write and how important courage is in the creative process. I present a 'writing toolbox' with age-appropriate elements; these elements might include research, revision, plot, character, figurative language, and imagination. For school groups, I also touch on the use of tall tales, fairy tales, and pop culture in my books. And, with the release of my latest novel, Scumble, I may also include discussions about the differences between journalistic writing and fiction, and about children having fun creating their own newspapers.
What makes your author appearances unique?
My writing has always been inspired by three things: love of story, love of language, and love of knowledge. Thus, narrative, word play, and research are of particular interest to me. But above all else, I believe that it is courage that makes someone the best writer he or she can be. Without the courage to share our ideas and be who we are, many stories and talents are kept hidden in the shadow of fear. I believe in encouraging people, young and old, to be courageous in the pursuit of doing what they love to do.
Do you enjoy making appearances for adult audiences? What do you do when presenting to adults?
I have spoken to groups of librarians, teachers, aspiring writers, and even to an adult book club that chose to read Savvy. So much of what I do when presenting to adults depends on what type of group it is and what the group's interests are. I've talked about ways of teaching Savvy in the classroom, what my own creative inspirations have been, and about what my process of becoming published was like. I've even done a motivational session that was presented in full story form. I've given speeches and workshops, and I love speaking with adults as part of a panel or discussion. Having some interaction can be far more fun and rewarding for everyone than a straightforward speech or lecture. When I do the latter, I try to make my presentations fun and lighthearted.
What can schools and libraries do to ensure a successful appearance?
The best visits are always the ones where my time with the students is the 'icing on the cake' of their reading experience. Reading ahead of time, having students already involved in discussions and projects around the book, and building excitement about writing and reading make an author visit part of a larger, more engaged experienceone which will be far more memorable and rewarding for everyone.
Do you enjoy traveling to other parts of the country for appearances?
It can be a challenge trying to balance life as a single parent, the time I need to write, and large amounts of travel. But I always enjoy connecting with students, librarians, and teachers at schools, libraries, and conferences. I also enjoy seeing parts of the country I've never been to before, and returning to the places I have been and loved.
During times of the year when travel is more difficult, Skype is making it easier to connect with people in a variety of settings. I enjoy being able to offer 15-30 minute Q&A sessions with groups that have read one of my books and want to supplement a classroom study, a book club meeting, or a library event. I am also available to travel to select events throughout the year.
Do you ever make appearances at more than one school in an area? Could schools and libraries from one area join together to bring you to their institution?
Yes. I can visit 2-3 venues in one trip. I have even had two schools share a day in order to share the costs involved in scheduling a visit. I have certain guidelines as to the number of presentations I'm able to do in one day, and am happy to discuss the options and details as I get requests.
What do you hope your audience will come away with from your presentation?
I hope to inspire audience members to find the courage it takes to trust and believe in their own voices and creative processes, to love stories and words, and to see that there can be great fun to be found in elements of the writing process that some may find less enjoyable (like research and revisions).
What was your most interesting, favorite, or memorable appearance experience?
My most memorable experiences are those in which the students worked really hard on fabulous projects or made great strides to accomplish things in conjunction with my visit. It can be both humbling and inspiring to see how meaningful meeting an author can be to young people. Earlier this year, a fifth-grader, who had just had an emergency appendectomy the day before my visit, got permission from his surgeon to come to the performing arts center where I was speaking. I would never want anyone to compromise his or her health to meet me or hear me speak, but it reminded me of the impact a book can have on someone's life, and how powerful it can be for readers and writers to connect.
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Do you have questions about an author visit or comments about this page? Please contact the author appearance coordinator.