Here is why:
Student: You are the second most popular person I have met, Ms. Zarah.
Me: Awww... Who is the first?
Student: Vice Ganda!
This happened during my book signing at lunch break. There was a long line! To my amazement, my books have been identified as summer readings by the grade school teachers and librarians of Assumption College. So, writer friends, befriend the school librarians and the teachers you meet in school visits, book signings and launches. They provide access and gateways for our books to parents and the bigger community. My books were all sold out!
After my author talk in the early morning, I was a privileged guest in AC Antipolo's Speech Fest where I saw and heard students perform our book, A Tale of Two Dreams (Gagatiga, Solina-Wolf, Lampara 2013). It was a first for me.
I felt I have gone full circle too as I have seen and witnessed how teachers make use of the stories I write for children.
I met friends, old and new, like former Xavier School teacher Mrs. Winnie Posadas Santiago who teaches fourth grade Language Arts and Mrs. Luisa Buenaventura whose son happened to be my son's friend in college. I learned from Teacher Winnie that she used My Daddy My One Only and The Day Max Flew Away for their Morning Circle. This is the advisory period and quieting time of the community. A time for devotionals. Bible stories are amazing and passages are filled with life lessons. For young students to have a better appreciation of it, Teacher Winnie uses stories for kids to make the life lessons more accessible.
Teacher Luisa was my companion the whole day. We had wonderful conversations about life in general, writing, sharing of one's work, health and well-being and the graces that can be had in service to community.
Antipolo is a long way from where I live in Laguna, but the trip, tiring as it was because of the terrible traffic in the metro, was all worth it. Thank you, AC Antipolo!