monique polak

Monique Polak's Books

2 minutes reading time (389 words)

Happy Day at Beaconsfield High School

I spent most of today at Beaconsfield High School, where I visited Melinda Cochrane's Grade Seven classes. Ms. Cochrane's students had all read What World Is Left and they had prepared some really terrific questions for me. Though I have presented the book to older audiences, I don't think I've had such thoughtful questions from any other group. One of my favourite questionscame from Tyler, who wanted to know, "How did you make such a sad story into a really good book?" I explained that I think sad stories or stories about difficult situations make the best stories (who wants to read about someone's perfect life, right?). But I also told Tyler that I tried to lessen some of the sadness in the book by telling about the ordinary teen experiences of my narrator, Anneke -- for instance, she remembers getting her period, and she experiences romantic feelings for the first time.

I also struck a rather interesting deal with a student named Shanel. Shanel said she doesn't really enjoy writing. "I don't think I'm good at it," she added. But Shanel looked interested when I pointed out that no matter what kind of work people end up doing, some kind of writing is usually required. Shanel told me afterwards she wants to be a police officer. "So I might have to write reports," she said. So here's the deal we struck -- I told Shanel that if she writes half a page in a journal for three months, I guarantee that her writing will improve. Shanel thought that was worth a try -- so she told me she's going to get herself a journal and start it tomorrow. (I think I helped give her that idea because I showed the students the journal I write in every morning.) Shanel is going to officially start this experiment tomorrow, on March 29, 2009 -- and she's promised to check in with me before June 29, 2009 to tell me how things are going. I suggested writing five times a week might be enough, but Shanel didn't think so. She's going to try and write that half-page every single day. So here's to all  you young writers, out there. Anyone else up to taking the same challenge as Shanel? (Oh, here's a pic of me and Shanel -- and my trusty journal!!)IMG_1411.jpg
Writing Rituals
Panel on Writing at College Beaubois
 

Comments

Guest - Tyler on Sunday, 29 March 2009 21:54

Heeey MY NAME IS THERE YAYAYAY! sorry i just find it rlly kewl tht my name is there, ON AN ACTUALL WEBSITE, and by the way i really liked your book,it was excellent and i would buy it and read it 5 billion times!!! :-*

Heeey MY NAME IS THERE YAYAYAY! sorry i just find it rlly kewl tht my name is there, ON AN ACTUALL WEBSITE, and by the way i really liked your book,it was excellent and i would buy it and read it 5 billion times!!! :-*
Guest - Monique on Monday, 30 March 2009 16:30

Hey Tyler! I'm glad you enjoyed my book. Your class had so many great questions for me, including yours! Ask Shanel if she found herself a journal this weekend! Bye for now from Monique

Hey Tyler! I'm glad you enjoyed my book. Your class had so many great questions for me, including yours! Ask Shanel if she found herself a journal this weekend! Bye for now from Monique
Guest - name llol on Wednesday, 19 August 2009 18:32

i just want to say a couple of things one i really loved your book two thank you for the writing tips u gave our class they really helped me .

i just want to say a couple of things one i really loved your book two thank you for the writing tips u gave our class they really helped me . :)
Guest - Monique on Wednesday, 19 August 2009 22:33

Hey you LLOL! Thanks for your message. Delighted to know that you loved my book -- YESSS!!! -- and that you are using my writing tips. Hope you had a great summer and that you have a great school year. I think I'll be back at BHS some time this year -- make sure you come say hi, okay?

Hey you LLOL! Thanks for your message. Delighted to know that you loved my book -- YESSS!!! -- and that you are using my writing tips. Hope you had a great summer and that you have a great school year. I think I'll be back at BHS some time this year -- make sure you come say hi, okay?
Guest - samantha on Saturday, 03 October 2009 17:51

hi i remember that i loved that book i read it five other times since that day you came to my class It still hasn't changed.i am getting flipturn this week and i will tell you how that was!!! bye ;D

hi i remember that i loved that book i read it five other times since that day you came to my class :D It still hasn't changed.i am getting flipturn this week and i will tell you how that was!!! bye ;D
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