We had fainting goats and silly videos. We had announcements and updates and all that jazz. Now it is time to pay tribute to two of the greatest professionals in da woild!
The Librarian and the Teacher.
Did you feel that? Did your skin prickle? Mine did. Every time I talk with a librarian or a teacher I'm almost moved to tears. They are amazing. They work their knuckles to the bone to secure the future of books and reading. I've met many throughout my career. Yes, some of them fall in line with the stereotype. The grey bunned hair (bunned is not a word librarians, I know this.) Bespectacled. Ornery. Addicted to silence, with index finger permanently pressed against pursed lips (check out that alliteration, teachers. Booyah!)
But most of the librarians and teachers I've met wander inconspicuously among us. Observing. Calculating their next move to ensure our youth develop a burning love of mind-expansion. They deserve our praise. Our money. And in the very least, our attention. They know which books matter. They know it is not only all about the classics in literature or the controversial pieces that make a difference. They know sometimes a good book requires a little flatulence, a little tomfoolery, a little talking cockroaches. Yes, they know. Because if a doubting child can somehow pull through to the end of a book and feel that amazing sense of accomplishment, something ignites within them. So the librarians and the teachers endure the lows of book recommendations not containing the words "Ere" and "Yore" from time to time.
In my writing world, the librarians and teachers reign supreme. They make all the difference. They are the Mrs. LaDukes and the Mrs. Bennetts and the Mrs. Paschals and the Mrs. Haymonds. They are the Mrs. Nociforas and the Mrs. Nguyens and the Mrs. Perrys. They are so many and yet so few. Whoa now, we just got deep. Philosophical even.
So, in tribute to some of the greatest beings on this planet, I give you a contest. All you have to do to enter is make a comment showing your praise for the librarians and teachers of the world. That's it. Comment as many times as you like with as many pearls of praise as you desire. I'll hold a drawing in one week from today and randomly select one of the commenters to win a signed copy of the NYTimes Bestseller, Paranormalcy, by Kiersten White.
Even if you don't want to win this fabulous prize, you should still shower some kind words to those who quietly mold the future of our kids.