Wednesday, May 1, 2013

On Passion and Librarians

Me, Laura and Heather at the Alabama Library Association.
Last week, I had the honor of speaking on a young adult panel at the annual convention of the Alabama Library Association. Seriously, you guys--a whole room full of book-loving librarians? Died and went to heaven.

Authors Heather Montgomery and Laura Golden joined me on the panel. It became evident pretty quickly that although we write vastly different types of books (Heather writes nature and science books and Laura writes mid-grade fiction), the three of us gravitated toward a single message: passion is the key to connecting with kid readers. Once each of us got to talkin' about our favorite subjects, we were fairly hopping with energy. Our writing reflects this excitement and kids feel it when we present at schools.

We were, of course, preaching to the choir, but still. It was a terrific session. And then I discovered that the entire time I was speaking, my name tag was upside down. Before the program began, I was speaking with someone when I slapped the "speaker" ribbon on my name tag and didn't notice I'd slapped it on the wrong end. Typical.

After the presentation, my good friend @AshParso took me on a tour of Montgomery. And friends, she does not play. If I lingered over anything I found fascinating at the Alabama archives or museums, girlfriend all but snapped a whip to keep me moving.  

Still, I was able to take some pictures of some fascinating things. My favorite is this photo of Coretta Scott King at MLK's funeral. This little picture doesn't capture the beauty and intensity of this shot--breathtaking. 

I also loved seeing Zelda Fitzgerald's fainting couch. Seriously, I want a fainting couch of my very own so badly, I actually feel a swoon coming on.
Our last stop was the Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts inside the Alabama Shakespeare Festival compound. Such beautiful property and a wonderful museum. I was very impressed with the kid's section of the museum, especially the way they turned James Hopper's New York Office paintings into a 3-D interactive set. Very cool.

The painting, which hangs in the galleries.

The 3-D interactive recreation of the painting in the kid's section of the museum. 
All in all,
it was a great visit. I hope I get to present at more ALA conferences because it was just plain awesome.


Robyn Hood Black said...

What a fabulous time this must have been! [I wanna go, and I want Ashley to give me a city tour. But I'm a lingerer, too... .]

Seriously, I'm sure you three offered a wonderful panel full of energy and insights. Congrats!

Amalia Dillin said...

That image of Coretta is really moving, even in that small piece you shared. wow.

Cathy C. Hall said...

I've seen you when you get passionate about your subject--believe me, no one noticed the name tag thing. :-)

I like to read the stuff on the walls next to every exhibit--Ashley would SO leave me behind!

Heather Montgomery said...

You were so passionate during your presentation, Vicky! It made me want to dig right into history. What a treat to get to see you and Laura sharing your passion and wisdom with the attendees.

It made me so proud of Southern Breeze!

Vicky Alvear Shecter said...

@Robyn--thanks, it was awesome!

@Amalia--I know. The photo stopped me COLD.

Vicky Alvear Shecter said...

@Cathy--you have been warned. Do not go to a museum with Ash! ;-)

@Heather--It was a treat to watch you guys too!

Laura Golden said...

It was such fun presenting with you and Heather! Your presentations were awesome. And Heather is right, the fun historical facts you included in your presentation and during Q&A were fascinating. I still can't get over teeth whitening with urine. Eeep!

Thanks again, Vicky! Hope to see you again soon. :)

Elizabeth O. Dulemba said...

Sounds AWESOME! And I'm not at all surprised about the passion thing - you and Heather are two of the most passionate writers I know! And isn't Montgomery fascinating? I did a festival once down there and got a tour too - that town needs more than a drive-through. So cool on the Hopper 3-D thing! :) e