Monday, February 13, 2006

The (Shy) Yellow Paperclip Meets a Children's Poet and Lots of New People

I attended an event with writer and poet Lara Saguisag tonight sponsored by the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators. Lara discussed and read poetry for children to a diverse group of people. Bec, an English teacher at ISM who studied poetry at Cambridge. Jandy, my classmate in Ateneo for an elective on Writing and Illustrating for Children. Pepper, illustrator extraordinaire and my teacher for that class. Jeline, an old friend from Heights, the literary publication of Ateneo. Rowena, a corporate trainer and writer. Reni, publisher for Tahanan Books. Nikki from the CCP. Ani from Adarna. Several moms who read to their children at bedtime. Chiles, an old acquaintance, doctor-by-profession, and fellow fan of children's literature. (Thanks, Chiles, for telling me about tonight's event!)

The first hour was spent with each of us introducing ourselves and talking about our favorite children's book. I didn't even know we were supposed to bring a book; but it was a good thing I brought a copy of The Yellow Paperclip with Bright Purple Spots because I wanted to give it to Lara as a thank-you gift. I was actually really nervous. I honestly felt a little uncomfy talking about my book infront of the SCBWI... I felt like such a novice, like a naive freshman in a tambayan of graduating seniors. On hindsight, I should have said more, shared more. I should have told them all the amazing stories behind my story. I should have shared the inspiration behind it all. I should have said something about this blog. (So why didn't you, Nikki?!)

Maybe it's because I don't have any formal training in children's literature. I don't have an MFA in Creative Writing (although it's at the back of my mind...). I can't rattle off names of famous authors and illustrators of children's books. But... what am I talking about? It should be enough that I really enjoy reading books for children. (For example: I got teary rereading The Missing Piece Meets the Big O over the weekend!) I love all the funky illustrations and silly or serious plots. I love the different layers we can read. Children's books have changed my life so I really should speak out.

I'll do better on Wednesday when I speak at the PSTD Tipanan. I hope. (No, I will. I'll keep you posted.)


Anonymous said...

hi Nikki!
Its me Nina (Yuson) writing from Toronto. Just got your blog and ATD storytelling experience from Bing Manlapaz.
Am so happy and proud of what your'e doing - enlarging a circle of friends to get them interested in your story and their stories. Love your blog.
Sana and I had a whole week for the ATD seminar in Montreal...a lot of thinking went into it and we are just relieved that we can wake up today and go see Niagara Falls!
Am forwarding your blog to friends.

Cheers from the "Maple leaf forever" country!
See you soon,

We should put your article in the papers. Museo can help!

CloudWoman said...

Hi Nina! Thanks for visiting my blog and for sharing it with your friends. I hope they enjoy the adventures of this one unique paperclip! I look forward to seeing you again and possibly working with the Museo Pambata! Cheers!