Bi-Cultural Hosts Two Leading Authors

Posted on: May 2nd, 2016 by admin

 

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Local author Stacy Mozer poses with some of Bi-Cultural’s 5th grade class following her presentation of her recently-published book, The Sweet Spot. (Photo by Dora Salm)

Bi-Cultural Day School celebrated National School Library Month of April by hosting two inspiring children’s book authors, one a local first-time author and the other a best-selling internationally-acclaimed writer. Each captivated their audience with inspiring stories of storytelling and writing.

On Friday, April 15th, Stamford resident and newly-published author, Stacy Mozer, visited the 4th and 5th grades in a combined presentation where she discussed her personal and creative journey to authorship, which began with the seed of an idea that grew into a her recently-published, middle-grade book entitled The Sweet Spot (published by Spellbound River Press last year). This story of a girl who meets resistance in her pursuit of playing baseball, the game she loves, speaks to children positively about the power of perseverance in their lives.

Mozer, who is a 3rd-grade teacher in Greenwich, shared with the students how it took years of her own determination, through multiple revisions of her original story concepts, characters and plot to create her final story.

“When you’re young, all your teachers tell you to ‘write what you know,’ and that’s true, but of course there’s so much more – it’s also research and re-editing, focusing on characters and writing dialogue, and believing that you have a story that’s worth sharing,” explained Mozer to the group of students and teachers, noting the many years and iterations it took for her to produce a book that she felt was worthy of sharing. In the lively discussion following her presentation, students got a chance to discuss their own writing with Mozer and ask her questions about topics ranging from books to baseball.

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Best-selling author Adam Gidwitz discussed his books and the writing process during his author visit to Bi-Cultural on Monday, April 18th. (Photo by Mati Finkelstein)

The following Monday, another exciting author, Adam Gidwitz, spoke to students in four different presentations throughout the school day. Gidwitz is a world-renowned author best known for his Grimm book series — fantasy middle school books inspired by the original Grimm Brothers’ fairytales. In discussing his books, Gidwitz explained that the intent of the original Brothers Grimm fairytales, published hundreds of years ago in Europe, was not merely to entertain young listeners, but also to provide moral lessons through its collection of dark, cautionary tales. These tales provide the inspiration for his new, modern works.

Gidwitz’s personal journey to authordom began as a teacher in Brooklyn, telling stories and sharing his personal writing with his students, before leaving teaching to focus on writing full-time. He explained that his entry to publishing included multiple revisions of his original ideas (his second book took more than 350 major corrections) and his own perseverance in the face of resistance and rejection on the path to publishing his first book. “The first editor that I ever met told me that I should just give up and quit trying to become an author. I decided that I could go one of two different ways: listen to that person and just quit or listen to myself and keep pursuing my dream. …I chose the latter. Never let anyone convince you to give up on your dreams,” said Gidwitz.