Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Gabrielle Zevin Book Signing

Living in Ohio I am not as fortunate as Flo,who seems to have great authors coming to town every month.  About a week ago, I was thrilled to see that our library was going to host a talk and book signing with Gabrielle Zevin as part of their teen week.

I immediately went out and purchased Elsewhere for her to sign.

While I haven't read any of her books YET, I am certainly inspired to do so after listening to her presentation.  She has been traveling around giving what I would consider a motivational talk to teens, which she shared with those of us in attendance.

She talked about how she was interested in writing at a very young age.  She has discovered over the years that it takes 10,000 hours of practice for someone to excel at anything.  While this may sound like a lot of time, it is only 1.5% of the average life expectancy and breaks down to only 20 hours a week for 10 years.

So how did Gabrielle acquire her 10,000 hours you may ask? 

First, she didn't like riding the bus to school so her dad dropped her off an hour early.  She decided to start a school newspaper and began writing articles to pass the time before school.  Next, she started entering writing contests. Then, she started writing letters.  One of the letter she wrote was to the local newspaper detailing why their review of a Guns N Roses concert she attended was DEAD WRONG.  The newspaper ended up calling her and, based upon her persuasive letter alone, she was offered a job as a concert critic at the age of 14.  She then began writing some of her school's theater productions.  Eventually she started writing screenplays because she realized the prospects of making a living as the next William Shakespeare was highly unlikely.  The only one of her screenplays to actually make the big screen was Conversation(s) with Other Women. 

One night, after she finished reading Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix at 5 in the morning, groggy and sleep deprived, a sentence popped into her head.  This was the beginnings of her first novel Elsewhere.  She reached her 10,000 hours of practice prior to the start of this novel.  She was fortunate enough to have the book published and received numerous positive reviews.  She has since gone on to write several other novels, which include the Birthright series.  I have added these to my to be read list as well.  It will be a trilogy with the final book being released in the fall of 2013.

I enjoyed hearing her inspiration for Elsewhere and can't wait to read it.  Her presentation was very inspiring and I was happy to see that she is sharing such a positive message with today's youth. 

You can count on reviews of some of her work in the near future. 

1 comment :

  1. I have been wanting to read All These Things I've Done for awhile now. Like without coffee & chocolate?!?!? I can't even ...

    Great pic of you two & I love how she signed your book!