Archived Arts & Entertainment

Mountain Momma

art mtnmommaI don’t buy the theory that texting has fueled an explosion in writing among kids.

The claim is texting is like a “gateway drug.” Kids who normally wouldn’t read or write very much now do so prolifically, albeit in truncated words and cryptic acronyms. But any writing is better than no writing — the notion goes — and once hooked there’s no holding back the inner reader and writer within.


PMFJI (pardon me for jumping in), but IRL (in real life) that’s like saying strawberry ice cream and fried pickles opens the door to eating more fruits and veggies. JTLYK (just to let you know), that’s BS IMHO (in my humble opinion.)

Luckily, our local bookstores and libraries give kids a chance to rub elbows with real authors. The book on your kid’s nightstand seems a lot more special when they can say “I know the person who wrote this!” The end goal, of course, is to develop a lifelong reader.

Blue Ridge Books in Waynesville has three youth authors making appearances in coming weeks with their books in tow — from a middle-school thriller to a tell-all tooth fairy tale.

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• First up is youth mystery writer J.E. Thompson coming to Blue Ridge Books in Waynesville at 6 p.m. this Friday, Nov. 15. Billed for older elementary and middle school kids, he’ll talk about being an author and read from his adventure mystery, The Girl from Felony Bay. He’s also doing programs at Waynesville and Bethel middle schools earlier in the day, where students have been reading The Girl from Felony Bay. 

• Anna Browning, author of Tanner Turbeyfill and the Moon Rocks, will have a book signing at 11 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 7. Her book follows a young boy who’s a budding astronomer on a magical journey to the moon — in his treehouse-turned-spaceship — bringing back his own beloved moon rock as a keepsake.

Browning has been all over the place the past few months sharing her book, from area libraries to elementary schools. 

• Karla Wood, author of the tooth fairy tale Riley’s Mission, will be at Blue Ridge Books at 3 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 14. Her book answers all your kid’s burning tooth fairy questions — is there a whole cadre of them or just one, and why don’t the kids wake up — as it follows a rookie tooth fairy on his first night of collecting. Bonus point: it also inspires kids to want to brush their teeth.

City Lights Bookstore in Sylva regularly stars children’s writers in its robust line-up of author talks as well, although none were on tap this month. 

Our local bookstores have great children’s sections, by the way, so try to resist the Amazon cop-out this Christmas.

To keep up with children’s author appearances, follow the “Kids and Families” category in our calendar at the back of the paper.

And now, OATUS (on a totally unrelated subject) … more zombies! Teens should love the live theater show of “Zombies on Campus! A SlaughterPocalypse!” being put on by stage and screen students at Western Carolina University this week. The fast-paced comedy full of twist and turns follows a group of college kids as they fend off a zombie outbreak. It’s at 7:30 p.m. at the Bardo Fine and Performing Arts Center nightly through Tuesday, Nov. 19.

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