Happy Cinco de Birthday!

The Forest is decorated with streamers and margaritas today. Yes, it is Cinco de Mayo (and take it from me: San Jose is where you want to be on Cinco de Mayo weekend). But it is also the birthday of Stephanie, my oldest daughter. You can leave birthday greetings on Bookavore, her blog, if you want. AND it is the 50th birthday of my most very Beloved Husband, Scot. All he wants for his birthday are a few more donations to his charity run.

So, yeah. This is Party Central today.

It’s also Catching Up from the Weekend Day. Friday morning I ran along the Guadalupe River Park Trail – it reminded me a lot of the trail that runs through the middle of Austin. After a long shower and lunch, my intrepid hosts, Dr. Mary Warner and Dr. Jonathan Lovell, drove me to Yerba Buena High School. Thanks you very, very much to Ms. Goltzer and her students for making the afternoon so much fun! After we left the school, we went to Hicklebee’s, an amazing independent bookstore run by Valerie Lewis, who ought to be called She Who Knows Everything. I would love to take her out to dinner with Teri Lesesne. The two of them in the same room at the same time might be enough to fix everything that is wrong with our world.

Image and video hosting by TinyPic This should be a Destination Bookstore; the kind you plan an entire vacation around.

Image and video hosting by TinyPic Not only do they have tons of books, artifacts from writers (like The Pants from Ann Brasheres and an early drawing of Clifford the Big Red Dog), and a terrific staff, but they have wall after wall crowded with signatures and drawings from authors and illustrators who have dropped by.

Image and video hosting by TinyPic Thanks to everyone who came out to see me at Hicklebee’s, especially !

Image and video hosting by TinyPic And my buddy Debbi Michiko Florence!

Saturday was a total Blur. First I gave a speech to a group of teachers, then a two-hour writing workshop to a room full of teenagers, then I signed books for a long time. I was so into the speeches that I was giving that I forgot to take pictures. Thank you to all the teens who came out and the parents and teachers who prodded them to do so. It was a blast hanging out with you guys.

It was a very intense day and by mid-afternoon I was face-down in my pillow for a long overdue nap. But then I rose because in San Jose, the sun never sets, and I had dinner with several terrific teachers and my friend Dr. Joni Richards Bodart. (I have to say, Dr. Mary and Dr. Jonathan made sure I ate very well in CA; I gorged on fresh tomatoes at almost every meal.)

Next thing I knew, the alarm was going off again and it was four o’clock Sunday morning. All the interesting people were just going to bed. Yours truly dragged herself to the curb for her on-time ride to the airport.

Two quick airport stories. I saw Stevie Wonder in Chicago O’Hare (was so stunned by His Presence I forgot to take out my camera) and

Image and video hosting by TinyPic I ran into the Shippensburg Women’s Rugby Team. They were headed home in triumph, having just won the USA Rugby Division II Women’s College Club Championship. This is Meaghan holding their trophy. Congratulations!

It’s May 5th, my friends. Start the party!!!

7 Replies to “Happy Cinco de Birthday!”

  1. glad to hear your trip went well! happy birthday to stephanie and your BH! you’re lucky you saw stevie wonder! i really like his music. that’s neat that you saw the shippensburg rugby team too! (btw my friend megan hall is on the rugby team. she didn’t mention to me about seeing you though, but she did tell me that they won the championship lol.) hope you have a great cinco de mayo! =) ♥

  2. Shippensburg University Loves Laura Halse Anderson

    What Laura Halse Anderson doesn’t know is that this semester several women of the SU ruby team, and other SU pre-service teachers have been reading her books as part of their teacher education training in using authentic literature in the classroom! How wonderful that she has acknowledged SU’s success. We have always been a big SPEAK (just to name one) fan on campus. How about a trip to Shippensburg?

  3. Excuse me for a moment: I HATE INTERNET GAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!

    Ok. Got that out of me. I just wrote you this wonderful, beautiful, AMAZING comment. The best thing I’ve ever written- Really. Ok, no. But still, and firefox crashed, and I was ALMOST DONE AND-

    *Sighs deeply* Ok, starting again.

    First off I apologize for this. You’re probably so sick of posting about Cinco de Mayo and… Arthur? That cartoon character? *Saw a doodle… I haven’t read this post yet- ala my point* and instead have people rant about how much they love your books. And yet here I am doing that because I really want to say it, am too lazy to find a better post to post it on, and having found out you had a livejournal went ZOMG THAT’S AWESOME YAYYYYY!

    I just finished Speak for pleasure reading (Had seen the movie because I wanted to see how Kristen Stewart acts, eagerly anticipating the Twilight movie and went I-need-that-book-NOW) and was absoltely blown away. Melinda’s story freaked me out in quite a few ways, the highest among them that I’ve been helping my suicidial friend Gwenee for the past year and while the reasons for both girls (and freshmen at that as well!) respective depressions are VERY different, the same symptoms are there. If Gwenee is not a bit more, uh, vocal in her cries for help than Melinda.

    Also though it screamed of my freshmen year, which was only remotely less hellish than Melinda’s. And then had so many layers of things that just made me giggle and snort- such as the list of lies they tell you (SO completly true) and in general Melinda’s observations on everything. It was so loaded with symbolism as well! Being a self-proclaimed Symbolism Bitch! it made my heart very very VERY happy. The trees, oh they represented her growth and decay and then acceptance at not being Perfect- and oh, her SPEAKING! Because she was able to say no, and she was able to get him to not speak, she was able to shut IT up, and- Oh Oh Oh! I was happy :).

    And, of course, the Scarlet Letter part made me snort, having just been through that process a few months ago with a teacher who was obsessed with WHAT DOES THE GLASS HOUSE REPRESENT? WHAT DOES THIS ALL REPRESENT? WHAT DOES THE A REPRESENT? The entire (AP) class after awhile: SHUT UP!

    But also, perhaps most of all, Melinda helped me find the voice I needed for my own novel. I had the hazy outlines of a story formed months ago, but it wasn’t coming along and I wasn’t going to push it. And then I was in the office one day (I’m a junior, btw) wasting a period and I see this girl come up. I can only see her from behind, and she’s thin as a rail with her thin, lanky mousy brown hair tied back in a handkerchief and she seemed to scream of a Hardy! Cancer survivor to me. I liked her before I could even see her face. And I ended up talking to her, and she was, and she was the most amazing person, and unbenowst to her another version of her was forming in my head, a girl who’s story I needed to tell and who might very well be the story I was looking for. And I was inspired by Melinda, because I thought of Speak and I thought ‘Savanna needs her story told as well.’ It’s a round-about way, but you are VERY high in my thank-you list if I ever write it. *Needs to figure out the PLOT a lot more at the moment..*

    So in short (short. REALLY. …. YAAA…) I adored your book and am gonna look up your other novels- if I can, what with there only being 16 days of school left and all I don’t know if the library is still lending OUT books- and have so far passed Speak along to two other people and already have another one (my guidance councilor- well, one of the five I’ve had, lol) in line to borrow it tomorrow. It is a gem, an absolute treasure, and if I ever taught high school literature (which I’m sure I wouldn’t) I would assign it to the class, heh.

    So thank you. And I’m sorry this is so terribly off topic from the point of your post. And I REALLY hate stupid firefox browsers that randomly shut down. I’m gonna friend you, if that’s ok, and then read all your posts like a Good Girl and actually reply to, you know, the topic at hand?

    But yes. Thank you. So, SO much.

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