Tuesday, August 7, 2012

'Delroy in the Marog Kingdom' at the Granville Reading Program

This is a follow-up to the guest blog with Natalie Bennett on the Summer Reading and Arts Program. On July 23, I went with  friends and family to the Granville Community Centre, where we were warmly greeted by Jakki Strong-Rhoden, the co-ordinator of the program. She suggested that we start by gathering a group of children around each of us at different tables and  read age-appropriate material to them.  We observed some of the problems Natalie mentioned, especially the inattention and tendency for the children to get confrontational with each other.
   After about half an hour, most of the children enrolled in the program had arrived, so it was time for me to read from Delroy and the Marog Kingdom. This story is actually intended for 9-13 year-olds, so I was not expecting the younger ones to concentrate for long. However, as I began by introducing them to the frog who says "Ribbit, ribbit" and asking if frogs could talk, in order to explain that this story is not only fiction, but is also fantasy, their attention was engaged. Then an 11-year-old boy, acting as Delroy, put the frog in the pot and another boy, acting as Mario, clamped on the lid. Acting as Delroy's mama, I screamed when I opened the pot and saw the frog. I also read from the chapter 'River Mumma' and of Delroy's conversion into a marog (a type of frog). I hope that the parts of the story I read were enough to motivate the older children to read the whole story for themselves.

Presenting a copy of my book to Jakki

Thanks to Dr. Doris Channer-Watson, who, in addition to buying a copy of Delroy in the Marog Kingdom, paid for a copy to be given to a worthy recipient, I was able to donate it to the Granville Summer Programme. People have suggested to me that I should donate copies of my book to schools. I would love to be able to do this, but I cannot afford to, as I myself have to purchase them. I do not have a stack of free books to give away! When you buy a book, the author receives only a small percentage. The rest goes to the publisher, who has paid for the cover design, editing, typesetting, printing, shipping and warehousing; and to the bookshops who have all their overheads to cover. Neither the publisher, nor author nor bookshop can afford to give away books, unless it is for promotional purposes, from which they expect to get some returns.  However, if anyone reading this post would like to purchase a copy of my book to be given to a school, I would be happy to read to the children from my book at the same time as it is presented to the school.

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