Newbery Medalist Erin Entrada Kelly

Click here to watch the 2018 ALA Youth Media Awards press conference.

I asked Erin Entrada Kelly, Derrick Barnes, Jason Reynolds, and Renée Watson to answer two questions and to finish two sentence starters. 

First up is Erin Entrada Kelly. Thank you, Erin! 

Congratulations, Erin! Everyone loves hearing about THE CALL. What ran through your head when the phone rang? What were you thinking about when the Newbery committee was clapping and cheering for you? 

Erin: My head wasn't working because my heart was beating too loudly. When they cheered and clapped, I was very confused. I asked them to repeat what they said to make sure I heard them correctly. I think I understand what happened now. Maybe.

What does the Newbery mean to you? 

Erin: Imagine having a big dream all your life. Since second grade. The dream is so palpable that it's part of who you are. You work every day toward that dream. You never stop, for two reasons: Because you love it, and because you can see it on the horizon. It's almost within reach. You're getting closer and closer. And suddenly there are people on the path with you. And they say, "We see it, too! We'll take you there." It feels something like that.

Please finish these sentence starters: 

Reading is a journey through the soul.

School libraries smell like books, sound like peace, and feel like hope. 

Borrow Hello, Universe from your school or public library. Whenever possible, please support independent bookshops. 


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