Barnes & Noble is challenging young readers to flex their mental muscle with a Reading Triathlon. Young readers can upload a reading journal or come into a store and to pick a copy. The more they read the more FREE BOOKS they earn. And I am blessed to have my book, President of the Whole Fifth Grade, as one of the prizes.
Well, a thing like that simply must be celebrated. So here’s the deal. I’ll be appearing at the Florida Mall B&N at 8358 Orange Blossom Trail on Friday, 4:30 p.m. What am I doing there? Well, glad you asked! I’m going to show young readers how I use sketches and doodles to help me visualize my stories. Another favorite way to spark my creativity is playing with LEGO. I use LEGO structures to help me physically connect with my stories. OK, I use them mostly ’cause they’re a hoot. Even so, deciding on the pieces and what they mean and where they stand and who they stand for requires a type of narrative. Assembling those same pieces for a stop motion mini movie demands even more storytelling skills. A great way to wile away an afternoon, a weekend or more!
I’ll be debuting my latest LEGO mini-movie based on characters in President of the Whole Fifth Grade and my yet-to-be-released novel, The Sweetest Sound.
Parents, caregivers and anyone needing to breakup the cries of “what’re we gonna’ do now” should come by and get ideas to use throughout the summer. I know, awesome, right?
To download your reading journal:
I want to thank everyone who participated in my gofundme.com/sherri-winston fundraising campaign. I was overwhelmed by how many of you reached out and helped me toward my goal of donating hundreds of books to needy young readers. Even though anticipated donations fell short or never came to fruition, I’m sill going to donate as many as I can–approximately 400 books–purchased with my own funds and funds raised and donated by you.
I want to give these children more than a book. I want to give them courage and inspiration. I want them to look at that book and realize it’s not just paper and cardboard, but a dream that lived in me when I was their age, eating square pizza and drinking not-quite-cold chocolate milk. I want them to understand that I came from the most improbable of circumstances for an author–low-income, working class, broken home, even though I never ever thought my home was broken. I want these kids to hold this book and study its shape and edges. I want them to know that even if they never read a word, that book has power. Its existence proves that you can start in a small, distant place; a place of poverty and struggle; and you can capture the light in that place and hold it against your chest and follow that light into more light until you are lifted.
All I ever wanted to do was to write and illustrate books. Maybe working as an illustrator is a ways away, maybe its around the corner. But for now, I will hold this precious book and thank the Lord above for blessing me with this opportunity. For all of you who cared enough to send checks or go online and donate, from the bottom of my heart, It hank you. Your support will allow me to share my dream with young faces. Who knows, maybe I’ll even make a difference in some child’s life.
I can’t wait to try.
Looking for the perfect book for your kid reader this summer?
Ask yourself, what does school politics, dirty tricks and cupcake recipes have in common? Find out in President of the Whole Fifth Grade! The story features Brianna Justice, a precocious fifth-grader in a small community outside of Detroit, Michigan. Brianna wants to become a cupcake-making millionaire when she grows up, thanks to her idol, TV baker, Miss Delicious. So when the glamorous celebrity baker visits Brianna’s school and says she would never have made a success in her business without the skills she learned as president of her fifth-grade class, Brianna is like, “Well, I’ve gotta’ be President now!” So little Miss Thing launches the mother of all campaigns. She tells everyone she knows that the class president job is hers. And she would have walked away with it. Mmm, hmmph. Free and easy. Except for one thing: Jasmine Moon. Now what started out looking like a sure thing, isn’t so sure at all. How far will Brianna go to make her dream come true. Honey, it’s in the book. You gotta’ read the book!
*President of the Whole Fifth Grade, by Sherri Winston, is currently on the recommended summer reading list for the New York Public Library. It was formerly a Sunshine State Young Reader Award recipient in Florida, where it was also on the recommended reading list for grades 3 to 5; and it was a runner-up for Tennessee’s recommended reading list. President of the Whole Fifth Grade can be purchased online or ordered through your local bookstore.
*Coming soon–President of the Whole Sixth Grade (November).