Win a Skype with Anne Marie Pace


About 4 years ago, I participated in my very first World Read Aloud Day and scheduled Skypes with several great authors.  I was pretty new to using Skype, especially with authors, so I was a bit nervous about how the day would go.  What I discovered during that day was how powerful it can be to connect with an author or illustrator in their studio or home.  Students get to see a side of an author or illustrator that is hard to replicate in a library visit because they can easily reach over and grab items that they are working on, tools that they use, objects that inspire them, and more.  Skypes can also be an affordable alternative for schools on a budget for author visits.


One of the authors that I connected with on that first World Read Aloud Day was Anne Marie Pace.  She knew there was a big snowstorm coming, so she proactively gave me her contact info in case anything happened. That morning, I got a call from her because her power was out. She was so sad to miss our connection, but we immediately rescheduled and had an amazing connection.  Since that first Skype, she has shared Vampirina Ballerina with us, had Kindergartners up and dancing with her on the screen, and shared favorite picture books with our school and 4 others during our picture book smackdown.

She is a delight, and offers her wisdom on writing books and her love of reading.  I’m so excited that she has a new book coming out that started when she was in the 1st grade. It’s so important for our students to hear that adult authors often save writing from their childhoods and sometimes those writings turn into a new published book.

Anne Marie has an opportunity coming up for 1st graders.  I hope you’ll take a moment to read a message from her.


A Message from Anne Marie Pace:

“Because I was a first grader when I wrote the first draft of the story that has become my new book PIGLOO, I’d love to celebrate its release by talking with first graders about reading and writing.  I am happy to offer ten free Skype visits to first grade classes across the United States in November and December (and January, if needed to schedule with the schools).  To enter, I’d like first grade teachers to use this form to send me their information between October 3 and October 24.  I’ll choose ten schools using a random number generator and contact the winners to arrange the scheduled visit.


Skype visits will be 20 minutes long and will include my reading PIGLOO, a bit of chat about how writing is hard but fun, too, and a Q&A.  I’ll also send the winning classes some book-related swag and a teacher activity guide.


If teachers would like to send home a book order form to allow students to purchase a signed copy of the book, I have arranged with my local independent bookseller to ship copies of PIGLOO which I will inscribe and sign before they are shipped.  This is NOT required to enter or to win, but some students and their families like to have this opportunity.


First grade teachers and librarians on behalf of first grade teachers only, please.  Yes, I love kindergarteners and second graders, too, but this one’s for first grade.  (Ks will get a chance in the spring for Vampirina at the Beach)”

Submit your info by following this link!


Skyping with Anne Marie Pace

IMG_0350Back on March 6th, we celebrated World Read Aloud Day with Skype sessions with authors and schools around the country.  On that very same day, a major winter storm was making its way across the country creating chaos, power outages, and librarians frantically rescheduling connections.  Anne Marie Pace was scheduled to Skype with Ms. Wright’s and Ms. Yawn’s 2nd grade classes.  We had read Vamperina Ballerina and written several questions to ask her about writing and the book.  However, the snowstorm knocked out Anne Marie’s power.  Fortunately, we were able to find a time to reconnect and the students were so excited to finally meet her on Skype today.IMG_0361

IMG_0351We did a brief “hello” and then Anne Marie read us Never Ever Talk to Strangers.  She had the book on a presentation so that the kids could easily see the pages as she read.  After that, the students begged to hear Vamperina again.  Because our schedule wasn’t so rushed today, we had time, and Anne Marie graciously gave the kids a 2nd reading of Vamperina Ballerina.

We printed all of the students’ questions from a Google Doc so that they were prepared to quickly ask their questions.  Here’s a look at our questions:IMG_0358

  • Natalie:  Who is your publisher?

  • George:  Why did you make Vamperina Ballerina?

  • Tykeria:  Why did she turn into a bat in the story?

  • Lucy:  Is it a long process to make a book or does it depend on the book?

  • Nikolas:  Do you only write picture books?

  • Olonix:  Do vampires change into anything else?

  • Grace:  How did you come up with the details?

  • Myles:  Why did you put the vampire into the spotlight?

  • Sam B:  What are your other books?

  • Sam G:  Why did you put a vampire in a ballerina class?

  • Miles:  Do you make chapter books or comic books?

  • Mr. Plemmons:  Do you feel like the illustrator drew what you were thinking when you wrote your words?

  • Ms. Wright:  Did you have to write multiple drafts of the book?

  • Harper:  How do you know so much about vampires?

  • Danny:  Do you ever have writer’s block?

  • Repp:  Have you ever messed up on a published piece?

  • Eddie:  Do you have more books than 3?

  • Jeremiah:  Why do you like books so much?

  • Diana:  Who inspired you to write books?

  • Ty’Najia:  How long does it take to make a book?

  • Tom:  How did you come up with these book ideas?

  • Xander:  If you do have chapter books, how many do you have?

  • Mrs. Yawn:  How young were you when you first started writing?

IMG_0359This year we have been so fortunate to make so many connections through Skype.  I can’t wait to incorporate it even more next year.  The students left this session energized about reading and writing.  I just know this will translate into what they do in the classroom.  Thank you, Anne Marie Pace, for making our day so special!  We can’t wait to read the Vamperina sequel!