One of the things I love about being a children’s book author is that I have the honor of meeting and speaking to children at schools. I enjoy interacting with children, sharing information about my life as an author, writing books, and publishing books. Part of my presentation, naturally, includes tidbits about my family. Much to my children’s chagrin, my presentations generally include several photos of them along with a few humorous stories. I always ask the students to never mention that they heard any stories about my children if they ever meet them. I usually get a few chuckles from this request, and lots of “we promise” statements from the audience. The truth is, my children are well aware of the stories and photos. They aren’t thrilled about this fact, but they know it comes with the territory. This promise was recently put to the test.
I was book shopping with my daughter, equipped with gift cards saved from Christmas and birthday gifts. We had each gathered a large stack of books to purchase, and in deep discussion about another possible purchase when a young girl approached me. “Hey, you came to my school. Do you remember me?” she asked. I told her she looked familiar then asked her to please remind me which school she attended and her name. We talked about the visit and a few things that happened that day. She seemed pleased that I enjoyed visiting her school, and I thought the conversation was over. Then, the unthinkable happened, at least from my daughter’s perspective. (Cue the showdown music from The Good, The Bad and The Ugly) The young girl looked at my stack of books, then looked square on at my daughter and asked, “Is this the daughter you talked about in your presentation?”
My daughter’s eyes darted up to me and glared, then moved back to the eye-lock with the young girl. “Why, yes it is,” I said. “What grade is she in?” she asked, still looking into my daughter’s eyes. My daughter just stared, not saying a word. “She is in the fourth grade. What grade are you in?” I replied. “Fourth.” Oh, no. Same age. Not good.
My daughter didn’t say anything about this interaction until we were in the parking lot. Then she said, “You know, stuff like that is happening more and more, Mom. I guess that is just the way it is going to be the more famous you get.” First, I was relieved that she wasn’t mad, then touched that she paid me such a sweet compliment. I love what I do, am passionate about great books for children, and feel honored to be part of the incredible world of creating books for children. Now to have my daughter add a little stamp of approval… it doesn’t get any better!
What we are reading:
Me: I’d Listen to My Parents if They Would Just Shut Up: What to Say and Not Say When Parenting Teens by Anthony E. Wolf, Ph.D
My son: Through My Eyes by Tim Tebow with Nathan Whitaker
My daughter: Sophie The Hero by Lara Bergen