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Tuesday, May 30, 2023

'One word at a time'


“I think the reason I'm a writer is because first, I was a reader. I loved to read. I read a lot of adventure stories and mystery books, and I have wonderful memories of my mom reading picture books aloud to me. I learned that words are powerful.” – Andrew Clements
During his senior year at Springfield, IL, High School, Clements’ English teacher handed back a poem he’d written awarding him an A—a rare event in this teacher’s class.  And, she’d written in large red letters, “Andrew—this poem is so funny. This should be published!”

As many writers say, a teacher often shapes their writing lives, definitely true for Clements, who was born on May 29, 1949.   In college, he began writing regularly and authored more than 70 books, while also working in publishing and as a writing teacher.         His books have won some two dozen major awards.

“Sometimes kids ask how I've been able to write so many books,” he said.   “The answer is simple: one word at a time. Which is another good lesson, I think. You don't have to do everything at once. You don't have to know how every story is going to end. You just have to take that next step, look for that next idea, write that next word.”

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