Janet Sumner Johnson
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Chris Grabenstein

Author Adventures

Oct

20, 2016 |

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Books

This last week has been a whirlwind of book events! On October 13th, I flew into the beautiful city of Cincinnati, OH for the Books by the Bank Regional Book Festival.

cincinatti

I had never been there before, and I was amazed at all the beautiful houses, the river views and of course the wonderful and friendly people.

On Friday, I participated in an author panel, along with Dee janetjohnson-booktableRomito (The BFF Bucket List) and Jenn Bishop (The Distance to Home) for a local school. Blue Marble Books arranged this visit, and if you are in the area, and haven’t been to their store, you should go!

On Saturday, I attended the Books by the Bank Regional Book Festival, along with so many of my fellow 2016 debut authors. I saw many friends, and made a few new ones.  Just to give you an idea:

And then I got to meet some other wonderful authors:

Laura was my table mate, and her super awesome book about dinosaurs being brought back to earth was a huge hit! (Alas, this blurry piture is the only one we got of the two of us). She sold out before the event was even over. You should look her up!

janetjohnson-lauramartin

 

She was kind enough to take some paparazzi pictures of me signing books for some of the kids who came by. I loved meeting all the amazing kids who came through the festival. The grins on their faces because they were in a place with so many books, and so many authors. So proud of their reading abilities, and so proud to be talking to an author. They would ask, “Did you write that book?” And when I said “Yes,” their eyes would get so big. Working with kids is honestly the best part of being an author.

janetjohnson-signingbooks

One of my favorite current books is “Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library.” So when Chris Grabenstein casually strolled up and started chatting with us before the whole event began, I was fangirling like crazy. He humored me (and quite a few others) by letting me take a selfie with him. Not only are his books amazing, but he is, too.

janetjohnson-chris-grabenstein

Of course, the local PBS tv station was at the event, so I couldn’t resist taking a picture with the famous Mr. Carson. He is as stiff in person as he is on Downton Abbey (hahaha!). 😉

mr-carson

And when Little Critter came by my table, I had to ask for a picture, because Little Critters by Mercer Mayer are a staple at my house. Even my older kids run over when we’re reading a Little Critters book.

little-critter-with-pbjI had such a great time at my first ever book festival (at least as an author). I hope to do this again soon! Have you ever attended a local book festival? What did you think?

 

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In Which I Gush About Librarians

Jun

01, 2015 |

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Uncategorized

I LOVE our local library. And more importantly, my kids love our local library. My sons aren’t shy about asking the wonderful librarians for help, and my daughter knows right where to go to find the cool computer with kid-friendly games (which are, of course, all educational).

One of our favorite things is the summer program. The nationwide theme this year is:

Every Hero has a story

 To add to the fun, our library made this awesome photo background (complete with cape and mask) for our photographing pleasure.

And see that kid right there? My second grade graduate? This reading program has fueled his love for reading. All year he’s been meh about it. Reading wasn’t horrible for him, but it was something he did when we made him.

But since the summer reading program started, he’s been determined to get in the minutes to earn those books and prizes . . . he’s a different child. He just finished Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library by Chris Grabenstein.

And before that it was all three of the Case File 13 books by J. Scott Savage. And he’s now dying to write to Mr. Savage who is now his favorite. (My reluctant reader as a favorite author!)

Obviously I love the summer reading program as an author. How great that kids are reading!

But I love it even more as a mom. I just want to thank all you librarians out there who work so hard to encourage a love of reading. Who put awesome books on display, and make going to the library a treat. Thank you for sharing your passion. Thank you for making it fun. Thank you for opening doors upon doors of opportunity and adventure to my children, because that’s what reading does.

Is anyone else out there participating in their library’s summer reading program?

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