NYT Bestselling Author Visits CVC
CVC rolled out the red carpet at the beginning of December to welcome best selling author, Lisa McMann, author of The Unwanteds series. Signs were waving, cheers were offered up, and Ms. McMann ran through the column of 4th-6th graders giving them high fives and fist bumps.
The Unwanteds is a fantasy series written for young adults and encourages readers to try to understand what the world would be like if creativity was squelched. The first book in the series won the California Young Reader Medal in 2014. CVC librarian, Mrs. Irvine, had already introduced the award-winning book to 4th-6th grade students, and many enjoyed reading it.
Ms. McMann spoke to two groups of students, grades 4-6 and the Middle School, during the day. She used a slide show to share her life, her writing inspiration and fun facts about The Unwanteds series. The students listened attentively and appreciated the tidbits and art she shared with them. Two Middle School students, Allison Girard and Jonah Hedlund, were given the opportunity to share their fantasy stories with Ms. McMann. Students were also encouraged to ask her questions. When asked what she liked about the visit from Lisa McMann, Jacie Hiemstra said, “Her visit was awesome! I really liked her son’s artwork for the book.”
After the presentations were over, Ms. McMann spent an hour talking with students and signing her books. The students had been given an opportunity to preorder her series, and over 200 books were given to Lisa to sign that day. She also engaged the students and talked with them about their favorite books and authors.
Part of the CVC mission statement states that academic excellence is valued. While it important to have excellent teachers and curriculum within the walls of CVC, it is also important to expose students to outside influences that are exceptional.
Teacher, Julie Cardoza, had this to say about Ms. McMann’s visit: “Lisa McMann’s visit inspired so many of my 6th grade students. I think the greatest impact of her time with us was how she shared her story about entering a writing contest several years in a row. It took her hard work, practice, and perseverance. She didn’t make the cut many of those times, until finally her writing was accepted. This New York Times bestseller knows what it feels like to be rejected. She didn’t let this discourage her, and she kept trying and didn’t give up. Whether students are pursuing a writing career or a different path in life, her message reminds us that we might have struggles before reaching our goal. And perhaps, some of these difficulties may help develop us into someone with a little more character. More importantly, if students can use their gifts and perseverance for God’s glory, then they truly have experienced success.”