Thursday, July 28, 2005

Telling Stories

Our family had the opportunity to see children's author and illustrator Steven Kellogg give a presentation at our county library last night. You may be familiar with his Pinkerton books, like Pinkerton, Behave about a large black and white great dane or one of the other 110 books he's published since the 1960's.

He started by talking about how he got started in writing and how he loved telling stories. He told us how Pinkerton entered his life and then the cat, Second-hand Rose. What the room was enthralled with, however, was when he started drawing sketches on big pieces of paper and telling a story. This is how he works in his studio. The words, ideas and lines came so fast and furious. As the plot of the story takes a turn, he adds a line or two and facial expressions change, a character dons a hat or a sail fills with air.  Then, he stops the story, "And if you want to find out how it ends, you'll have to read the book."

He finished by showing slides, some of the real dog (click on the link in the middle of the page to see the real Pinkerton) and cat that inspired many of his stories. Others were of books he had done recently. He also took us through another story and left us to beg the librarian for a copy so we can find out how it ends!

There were books to purchase (they were discounted and very reasonable, $4 per softcover) and he stayed to sign and draw a picture in each one. He did the illustration for our PA library reading program this year. My daughter was wearing one of the t-shirts, so he drew a picture of Pinkerton on the back and signed that.

If he's coming to your area and you have grade school children, you'll want to attend.


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