I asked Kwame Alexander (The Crossover), Cece Bell (El Deafo), and Jacqueline Woodson (Brown Girl Dreaming) the same three questions.
Today is author-illustrator Cece Bell's day to shine. Congratulations, Cece!
El Deafo by Cece Bell | Newbery Honor | Abrams
Mr. Schu: What ran through your head when the Newbery committee texted you that El Deafo won a Newbery Honor? What was your response?
Cece Bell: I couldn't believe it! I kept thinking, the committee took the leap! They really took the leap into graphic novel territory! I was beyond happy, and so grateful to the committee for just going for it. Lots of grinning, and grinning through tears.
The whole text exchange is on Tom's phone, and I think the first thing I texted was OMG OMG OMG. That about sums it up.
Mr. Schu: What does the Newbery mean to you?
Cece Bell: It's an award for writing...great writing...and for books that capture the imagination. I mainly think of myself as a decent illustrator; I write so that I can draw. The fact that I got honored in this way—as a writer—is surreal. But the best kind of surreal!
Please finish this sentence starter:
Reading is an escape from your world when you need it, and an introduction to other worlds when you're ready for them.
Cece Bell: John, thank YOU for your years and years of support. You've always been so kind to me, and so generous with your time and talents
Mr. Schu: Thank you for creating books that touch our hearts. You are one of the kindest people I have ever met.
Borrow El Deafo from your school or public library. Whenever possible, please support independent bookshops.