Wednesday, December 4, 2013

New Home for Author/Illustrator Papers

Sharron L. McElmeel Research Papers at the University of Iowa Special Collections

I have written over 35 books, all dealing in some way or another, with authors and illustrators of books for children and young adults.  In the process, I interviewed and corresponded with hundreds of authors and illustrators.  My files contain many of those hand-written letters, e-mail correspondence, notes from conference speeches/presentations, and many photographs of over 300 authors/illustrators.  I am pleased to announce that the files have been donated to the University of Iowa and will be housed in the University's Special Collections Area in the University's main Library.
Right this minute (December 2013) the 20 plus boxes are packed with hundreds of files which will eventually be placed on the shelves in the special collections section of the University of Iowa's Main Library.

The special collections area is beginning to create an emphasis in children's literature and I am very pleased to be among the early contributors to this collection; a collection that is already rich in material from other Iowa Authors.

Patrick Olson, special collections librarian, facilitated the donation and was there to receive the file-filled boxes of research material.  When I delivered bound copies of the books that were the result of the research represented in the papers, he graciously gave me a tour of the facility.  After the papers are processed and placed in the collection they will be available upon request for researchers.
I am pleased to have one more connection to the University of Iowa.  My graduate work in Library Science was completed at the University of Iowa, my daughter - Deborah McElmeel, completed her undergraduate work in anthropology there and earned her Masters of Teaching Science at the University.  One of my sons, Steven McElmeel, earned his degree in Civil Engineering at the U of I.  I am glad to make this very special connection.

One of the outgrowth of all of this research has been the many books I've written as well as the passion about surrounding young readers in literacy.  One of the activities that does much to promote a positive attitude about literacy is author appearances. 
McBookwords arranges appearances by authors/illustrators in libraries, school, other literature forums. We are now booking appearances for 2013-2014. McBookwords has a dozen or more authors that speak with young readers. If you would like to investigate having any of our authors visit your school or library -- for an author appearance please contact us via e-mail at McBookwords. Each of these authors often speak in schools with young readers, and at all types of groups that are interested in literacy and books. Authors/illustrators can provide so much in terms of background and inspiration for reading and writing. smc

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