aprilhenry (aprilhenry) wrote,

Back in the classroom

As part of Read Across America, I spoke to a group of fifth graders at Teen's old elementary today. Some observations:

1. Just standing on my feet for 40 minutes makes my back hurt. How do teachers do it?

2. The fidgety kids are often the ones who ask the best questions.

3. Some of the kids seemed amazed to learn that I get paid to write. I should be amazed too.

4. Telling the kids that I get 10 percent of the cover price of a hardcover gave them a chance to use their math skills and seemed to satisfy them. It's an answer and it doesn't reveal my advance, which I never feel comfortable talking about to anyone, ever.

5. I told the kids that because of a middle school student in Texas who asked why I used the "b" word in Shock Point, I took it out in the paperback. Later I passed around a page covered with my editor's green pencil marks to show them that even published writers get edited. At the end of the class, one girl shyly pointed out that the "b" word appeared on the bottom. Other kids chimed in "Show me!" "Tell me what the b word is!" I smiled enigmatically and left. Oops!
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