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I Wish I Could Visit a Different School Every Day

I did my first author visit in August, 2014, and I’m hooked. I love talking with middle school and high school students about writing and publishing and following their dreams.

I’m not kidding when I say I’d visit a different school every day if I could.

I’ve been to schools where the students are lucky enough to have guest speakers and professionals in and out of their classrooms all the time.

I’ve been to a school where a student shyly handed me the “book” she’d written–a single sheet of paper, folded in quarters. I told her I’d read it during my free period. What was contained on that one page was free verse, and told the story of her childhood in an abusive home, and how her personal “independence day” was the day “they came and took [me] away. Now momma wants her baby girl back. But I ask you–is she mother, or monster?” The girl’s teacher and I wept as we read it.

I’ve been to schools where the students were too shy to ask me questions, so I read to them from the first chapter of Counteract to draw them into the fictional world. I’ve also been to schools where the students asked so many questions I didn’t have time to answer them all.

Every visit is different, and they’re all amazing. I love it when students email me after I’ve visited their school and ask for advice about their own writing. I may not be the leading expert in my field, but I’ve been an aspiring writer, just like them. It’s hard to exist in a vacuum, and I’m happy to offer advice and encouragement.

I recently returned from a two-week trip in which I visited my parents, participated in a book festival and did four school visits, watched a play I’d choreographed, and squeezed in a side trip to New York with my sister to see On the Town on Broadway. It was a super-fun, exhausting time.

I’m looking forward to doing many more school visits next academic year. Maybe I’ll see you at your school! If you’re interested in having me visit, contact me through this website–you never know…

 

 

Here are comments from South Middle School in Morgantown, WV:

“I very much enjoyed Tracy Lawson’s visit to our school. Hearing how she worked through creating the story and being told about the process of publishing a book was extremely helpful, and provided curiosity and hope for a future career.”  –Emma 7th grade

“Mrs. Lawson’s visit to our classroom was a great learning experience for future writers. She seems to really love what she’s doing and what she’s explaining to us. Her book sounds fantastic!” –Ava 7th grade

“Mrs. Lawson was awesome! She did a great job talking to us–she knew how to connect with us in ways not all adults can. She was very welcoming and definitely made me want to talk to her more and read all her books!” –Wyatt 7th grade

“Tracy’s speech was informative to people who are interested in writing and even those who aren’t. I better understand the process of writing and publishing a book now!” –Gabby 7th grade

“I really enjoyed Mrs. Lawson’s visit to our school. Counteract is a great story, and the story behind the novel is just as great!”  Maeve 7th grade

“I loved Tracy Lawson’s visit because I really got to see her perspective on Counteract, and it really made me want to read it right away.”  –Annaka 7th grade

“We so enjoyed Mrs. Lawson’s visit to our classroom. She immediately connected with the students with her engaging personality and honesty regarding the challenges and excitement that come with writing and publishing a novel. She provided my students, many of whom are aspiring authors, with invaluable information about how they can, even now, begin the process of writing and publishing a book. The kids (and I) had so many questions for her. I wish we could have had her at school all day!” –Rachel Viglianco Wagner (7th and 8th grade teacher)

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