I had a 45 minute call with my business mentor, Elge Premeau, today. She was very pleased with my web site and my blog. She’s going to try to help Jamey (my technical administrator) figure out how to make this an RSS feed so I won’t have to e-mail everyone every time I have a new blog up.
Then Elge set a task before me. She told me to research influential people and suggested I start on Twitter. I floundered around for a while, and then had the bright idea to look up Neil Gaiman. He’s certainly influential. I set myself up as a follower of his, and then looked to see who he’s following. Most of the names were unfamiliar to me, but I spotted Judy Blume and Jon Scieszka. Jon Scieszka was a treasure trove of Who’s Who!
With my background in librarianship, I knew of course that he was the American Library Association’s first Ambassador of Reading for young people. I also knew that he has a web site specifically geared toward encouraging boys to read, because boys traditionally fall far short of girls in reading for pleasure. So it shouldn’t have surprised me that he would be connected to a miriad of greats in the realm of children’s and YA literature.
I had so much fun going down the list and clicking “Follow” on authors whom I’ve read or whom I know to be popular with young people. There were names like Rick Riordan who wrote the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series. There was Gene Luen Yang who wrote one of my favorite graphic novels, “American Born Chinese”. There was Norton Juster who wrote “The Phantom Tollbooth” and R L Stine who wrote the whole Goosebumps series. (Say what you will about Goosebumps; at least they got boys reading!) There were scores of other writers, not all of whom I’ve read, but I have at least heard of them.
And the fun doesn’t stop with following them. Elge wants me to occasionally comment on posts they write. Who would have thought that little old me would have an opportunity to make myself known to these people whom I have admired from afar? I’m really liking this social networking stuff!