Saturday, January 29, 2011

Lois Lowry's Keynote, part two: Inspiration

Lois is going through nine of her books, sharing the inspiration and genesis of how each one came about.

She's now sharing that on a visit with her father in his old age, they were looking through their family photo album. Her father had lost much of his memory, and asked about her sister, to which Lois had to respond that her sister had died. They turned the page, and he forgot. A page later, another photo of her sister, and Lois' father smiled, and once again asked about her sister. Lois had to again tell him that she had died.

Driving home from that visit, Lois thought, "What if" - What if there was some medication that could erase everything sad in your past - the way her father in his old age couldn't remember the death of her sister. ...And what kind of society would that create? And from that came "The Giver."

Wow, it's fascinating, how example after example, Lois is sharing with us tips that sparked her to write her books (books that then captivate the hearts and minds of readers all over the world... books that deservedly win the highest awards!):

an old photograph of a young boy that haunts her.

Asking what if?

Re-working her own history

And taking the intense emotions of her life and giving them words.

So many paths to Lois' inspiration, and each is, well... inspiring the spellbound audience. As writers and illustrators, we all need to be open to inspiration, nurture it, develop it. And one after another, Lois is sharing amazing techniques to finding our own inspirations.

Are you inspired, yet?

I am!


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