Authors visit F-M middle schools

Two seasoned authors – who are perhaps best known for the out-of-the-ordinary and humorous teen books they’ve written – recently visited Fayetteville-Manlius School District where they talked with middle school students about what it takes to draft, write and publish a book.

Eagle Hill Middle School

In November, non-fiction author Alicia Klepeis paid a visit to Eagle Hill Middle School where she spent time with sixth-grade students talking about her creative writing process, including how she plans, writes and edits her books.

Klepeis is the author of more than 150 nonfiction and fiction children’s books, including “Explore Dubai,” “Superfast Cars” and “The World’s Strangest Foods.” She’s also written the picture book “Francisco’s Kites,” historical fiction novel, “A Time for Change” and a series of world adventure chapter books, including “From Pizza to Pisa.”

While visiting Eagle Hill, Klepeis led writing exercises to help students “think like writers.” She shared tips for seeking inspiration, which she told students for her derives from traveling, meeting people and looking at photographs.

She also discussed the importance of researching topics and writing drafts, and concluded each session by answering students’ questions.

Wellwood Middle School

On Jan. 27, New York Times best-selling author Gordon Korman visited Wellwood Middle School where he took students on a book-writing journey that was peppered with humor and anecdotal advice.

Korman has written more than 80 children and young adult fiction books, including “This Can’t Be Happening at MacDonald Hall,” which he wrote while attending seventh grade. He went on to pen many more books during his career, including “Restart,” “War Stories,” “Ungifted” and “Schooled.”

During his visit to Wellwood, Korman talked about how he perfects his page-turners and encouraged students to research and brainstorm before writing. He also discussed ways students can more thoroughly develop story characters and dialogue while writing.

In advance of the author’s visit, families had the opportunity to purchase books written by Korman. An autograph session was held at the conclusion of his visit.

The author visits were sponsored by each building’s Home and School Association (HSA). The HSA is a school volunteer organization that plans and coordinates extracurricular activities and events for students.

This is an image of author Gordon Korman autographing a book and students waiting in line
In January, New York Times best-selling author Gordon Korman spent time at Wellwood Middle School.
This is an image of author Gordon Korman sitting down next to a middle school student
During his visit to Wellwood Middle School, author Gordon Korman shared writing tips with students.