December 30th, 2007


Giant Hot Dogs

So two weeks ago tomorrow (I'm not keeping up with this very well, am I?), I was at PS 63 on the Lower East Side, talking about Changeling to a class of 5th graders. They were having it read to them, a bit every day. One of the students is the daughter of a friend of ours, and had bragged to the class that she knew the author. When they said, "No way!" she offered to produce me, and since I adore 5th graders, I was very willing to be produced.

It was a great visit (particularly since they were willing to have me at 1:20 pm instead of 9:30 am, when I am Not At My Best). They had wonderful questions and remarkable suggestions for episodes and characters. My personal favorite was the Pickle Monster of the Lower East Side. And we took a vote on what I should call the next book (The Magic Mirror of the Mermaid Queen won, hands down). But my very favorite comment came in the thank-you letters. I got back from Sanibel, where we'd spent Christmas week with Ellen's family, to a bulging envelope full of compliments and. . . more ideas. I quote the most evocative (original spelling retained): "In the second book you make a part were Neef gose to Coniey Island and she meets the gineuis and it's a really big talking hot-dog."

Now that's a short story.