The Skype tour bus has pulled to the side of the road- and here’s Bobbie Pyron, climbing out to talk about her amazing school visits.
Hey Bobbie! Tell us about your new book!
I’m an author, librarian and dog lover living high in the mountains of Utah with my three dogs, two cats and one very patient husband. My first novel, THE RING, is for teens and is about learning to believe in your self. My second novel, A DOG’S WAY HOME, is for middle graders and is about the power of love.
What do you like best about writing for middle graders?
I think kids that age still have such a strong sense of wonder and curiosity and passion about the world. They still believe in themselves and their ability to affect the world. I also love how kids that age still allow the world to see their joy and enthusiasm and even sadness. Although I do enjoy writing for teens, I have a certain freedom writing for middle grade readers that I don’t with teens.
What was your favorite book when you were 8-12?
Oh gosh, I was such an avid reader! When I was eight, I was devouring all those great dog stories like LASSIE COME-HOME, THE INCREDIBLE JOURNEY, and the IRISH RED series. I also read a book called A SEASON OF PONIES by Zilpha Synder over and over and over. But by the time I was twelve, I was reading books with deeper social and psychological relevance such as BLACK LIKE ME, TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD and LISA BRIGHT AND DARK. I grew up in the south in the 1960s, and I was trying very hard to understand the division between blacks and whites. As always, books helped me make sense of the world.
What makes your school visits special?
Well, I think the kids absolutely LOVE meeting my dogs! If I’m working in person with a large group (like 80 or more) they usually just get to see photos of my dogs. But even with skype visits, I try to have time at the end for the kids to meet my dogs. I also like to tailor my visits to what the host thinks the kids would most enjoy hearing about and what she would like me to focus on as a “take away.” But mostly, I just LOVE talking with kids and connecting with my readers (or potential readers) and answering their questions. I think that enthusiasm comes through in my visits, whether in person or on line.
Tami Lewis Brown is the proud parent of a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel (Murphy Brown) and two humans. Alas the children in her middle grade novel, THE MAP OF ME, don’t have a pet… maybe next book!