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Monday, April 1 • 2:30pm - 3:30pm
Closing Keynote: From reading to writing

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The library was a second home for me as a boy, and as an adult I’ve written most of my books while sitting in a library. All good days begin when the front doors open at the BPL or Athenaeum,  and when I say “good morning” to the librarians and staff, and then I sit down and open a book, and then I open my journal and pencase and work some words onto paper, and at the end of the day the library closes … yet my mind, even at rest, is always drifting around like the library cat.
The first portion of my keynote will march through my primary publications thus far—and cast an eye toward future projects.
My career has had it ups and downs. My first twelve books were rejected—mostly for the standard reasons: uninteresting characters, loopy plots, themes with no point, and problems with no solutions. The usual suspects for “rejections.” Most recently, I’ve had a different kind of rejection—an adult picture book—"A Suicide Bomber Sits in a Library”--that was in a prepublication state when it was perceived to be unsuitable for publication due to cultural insensitivity content, and thus the illustrated book was cancelled, yet the story continues to exist in the Amnesty International Anthology on ‘themes of freedom’ where it was originally solicited and published.
The cancelled illustrated version of SBSL will be the second portion of the presentation.
The third portion will be a question and answer session led by Sandy Kelly, MSLA Past President

avatar for Jack Gantos

Jack Gantos

Jack Gantos is the author of over fifty books for children from the “Rotten Ralph” picture books, collections of “Jack Henry” short stories, upper elementary and middle school “Joey Pigza” novels, the “Norvelt” novels, and young adult novels: Love Curse of the Rumbaughs... Read More →

Monday April 1, 2019 2:30pm - 3:30pm EDT
Grand Ballroom