My favorite speaker gave the Keynote address, and now I'd like to introduce to you:
Carmen Agra Deedy- children's author and storyteller.
Carmen Agra Deedy at TED 2005
Speaking to a large group early in the morning can be daunting, but Carmen Deedy was more than a speaker. She was a storyteller. In the first few minutes, this seemingly reserved woman stepped off the platform into the audience and brought the room alive with personal anecdotes about developing a love of reading. We learned about a feisty young girl who was determined to despise books and antagonize everyone around her until one day she discovered the book that was "looking" for her.
Mrs. Deedy’s humorous characterizations of herself resonated with everyone when she described the joy of discovering a love of books for the first time as a young girl. What made her story especially engrossing was her use of pitch and movement to bring each character to life. The comparisons between Southern and Cuban dialect were delightfully entertaining as she switched from mischievous young Carmen to the stately, Southern librarian. With a touch of suspense, Mrs. Deedy dropped small hints that left us wondering just which book tremendously affected young Carmen and eventually inspired her book, The Library Dragon.
Mrs. Deedy's award winning stories include: The Library Dragon, Martina the Beautiful Cockroach, 14 Cows for America, and several more. The illustrations are phenomenal and I highly recommend her books to any book-lover, child, or teacher!
And just in case you were wondering... the book that found Carmen?
None other than E.B. White's Charlotte's Web.
Do you remember the first book that "found" you? For me, it was CS Lewis' The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.