Léna is also a Regional Manager for Writopia Lab whose mission is to foster joy, literacy, and critical thinking in kids and teens from all backgrounds through creative writing.

"Well, the question is, what do you want to believe? Do you want to live in a world where things are possible, or in one where they aren't?" Cin, Edges.

Friday, April 23, 2010

CHAPTERS: Part Trois

I made sure that I left in plenty of time to get down to the Center for Fiction for the second in the CHAPTERS reading series expertly put together by the team at Girls Write Now. You may remember mes chéres, that Meg and I were slated to read together at the first GWN reading in February, but were thwarted by a ginormous (evidently, ginormous is now an acceptable word) snowstorm and the event was canceled. (But then I was able to hear three of my Writopia students read at Barnes and Noble, so it was all good.)

I want to take a moment to send good vibes to Meg who is visiting The University of Rochester and couldn't be with me at this event.

Thank you. The Center for Fiction is in a beautiful deco building on East 47th Street. I walked through the bookstore and up the stately staircase to the second floor with high ceilings and crown moulding, folding chairs set up in rows with the names of the readers up in front. I saved two seats for my friend YA author Courtney Sheinmel and her friend, up and coming YA author Amanda Berlin. Amanda had contacted me about GWN and has applied to be a mentor. Of course I couldn't stop gushing! They came bustling in with other friends, parents, mentors and volunteers to hear these beautiful voices.

The evening started out with a reading by Lizzie Skurknick, a blogger, poet, journalist and now YA author. Her writing was beautiful and lyrical - mesmerizing. (Afterward, I bought her book, Shelf Discovery, a reading memoir: The Teen Classics We Never Stopped Reading. I had her sign it and then was delighted when I got on the subway to open it and have her first book be A Wrinkle in Time! It's probably a good thing that I didn't run back and brag about the author being my grandmother - not the way I want to win friends and influence people!)

But the big show tonight was the girls, and the overwhelming support and love in the room, for the creative expression in a variety of genres. Some mentees read on their own, while others read pieces with their mentors. It made me all fired up about writing, and once again showed me how empowering words can be! And yes, I'll say it again: how I wish there was Girls Write Now when I was a teen! It was made all the more wonderful by hitting a diner with Courtney and Amanda, where we talked more about the powerhouses we had heard tonight. Thanks gals, for being my date!


  1. Thank YOU for telling us about it! What an amazing place! And seeing you is always a highlight. xxox

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