RovingFiddlehead KidLit

Iowa City Book Festival Memories

July 17, 2011

This is the third year of the Iowa City Book Festival, but the the first year I haven’t been out of town so I was determined to check it out. Lots of library folks were there working, but I was there just for fun! My first stop of the day was joining the Book Character Parade as Clifford. If you need some affection, I highly recommend donning a Clifford costume. Lots of love and hugging for Clifford!

Me as Clifford

As in any festival, there were conflicts and sessions I would like to have attended, but I haven’t figured out how to be in three places at once yet. After sweating in the Clifford costume, I needed an indoor presentation. All of the children’s authors and activities were outdoors so I went to Jane Hamilton and Mary Helen Stefaniak’s talk about research and writing. The highlight of their presentation was Jane Hamilton’s son’s essay for P.E. class. While she bashed the “writing across the curriculum” approach that gave rise to his hilarious essay on the healthy lifestyle of party clowns, I thought it also demonstrated that the best work is often done under duress.

Linda Gerdner

Linda Gerdner

After an energizing talk with Anna from The Haunted Bookshop, I caught part of Linda Gerdner’s talk about her book, Grandfather’s Story Cloth. Unfortunately I was too busy looking at the storycloth and didn’t get my camera out until she put it away!

Dori Hillestad Butler

Dori Hillestad Butler

Next up on the Family Stage were Dori Hillestad Butler and Laurel Snyder. Dori Hillestad Butler talked about therapy dogs and read the first chapter of the fifth book in the Buddy Files series. I learned that library directors are Alpha Humans in dog speak. I think I will refrain from using this term at work 🙂

Laurel Snyder

Laurel Snyder

Laurel Snyder talked about truth and lies in fiction writing and read Inside the Slidy Diner. She also read the first chapter of Bigger than a Breadbox. I just picked up the ARC at the Festival so I haven’t read it yet to give a full-fledged recommendation, but I can say that I think her chapter books just keep getting better and better so I’m pretty sure it’s going to be awesome!

Book Festival Purchases

Book Festival Purchases

On Sunday the Book Festival heads into the community with a host of presentations and activities throughout town. I head back to work where Dan Wardell’s Reading Road Trip is appearing at the library as a Book Festival event.

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