After weeks of hoping, excitement and effort, we are pleased to officially announce that writing legend Laurie Halse Anderson will speak to the Mobile Writers Guild at its Oct. 6 meeting via Skype!
Her presentation will take place just a few days after Banned Books Week (Sept 24-30) which celebrates the year’s most-challenged books. Last year, Anderson’s iconic book Speak was labeled “pornography” by Wesley Scroggins, an associate professor of management at Missouri State University. His criticism ignited a firestorm and drew national attention to the act of challenging/banning books.
Unfortunately, Scroggins’ piece has been taken down, but you can read Anderson’s response here.
Speak is a modern classic used in hundreds of classrooms across the country and abroad. Here’s the synopsis:
Melinda Sordino busted an end-of-summer party by calling the cops. Now her old friends won’t talk to her, and people she doesn’t even know hate her from a distance. The safest place to be is alone, inside her own head. But even that’s not safe. Because there’s something she’s trying not to think about, something about the night of the party that, if she let it in, would blow her carefully constructed disguise to smithereens. And then she would have to speak the truth.
One of author Sarah Ockler’s books was also attacked in the Scroggins piece, and she took to YouTube to defend its and Speak‘s significance (she also describes the whole debacle in a nutshell):
Look for more information about Banned Books Week and Laurie Halse Anderson as we get closer to the event. And be sure to spread the word!