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Book Title: The Center of Everything|
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The author of the book: Linda Urban
Edition: Recorded Books
Date of issue: 2014
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Format files: PDF
The size of the: 857 KB
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For Ruby Pepperdine, the "center of everything" is on the rooftop of Pepperdine Motors in her donut-obsessed town of Bunning, New Hampshire, stargazing from the circle of her grandmother Gigi's hug. That's how everything is supposed to be-- until Ruby messes up and things spin out of control. But she has one last hope. It all depends on what happens on Bunning Day, when the entire town will hear Ruby read her winning essay. And it depends on her twelfth birthday wish-- unless she messes that up too. Can Ruby's wish set everything straight in her topsy-turvy world?
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Read information about the authorThis was from the About Me section at Linda Urban's website.
I was born in Detroit, Michigan, and raised in a suburban house that looked like all the others on my street. Sometimes I liked that sameness. It made me feel normal, when I worried I wasn’t.
Other times, though, I wanted to be different — to shine, to have people see me as special. I tried ballet dancing and singing and playing musical instruments, but I wasn’t very good at any of those things. But writing stories was fun! And often people liked what I wrote.
At Oakbrook Elementary, I wrote lots of poems and stories. One story, SUPERBOX, was about a crime-fighting shoe box. That story won me a prize. Even better? I got to read it out loud to my classmates, who laughed at the funny parts and cheered when Superbox fought off the evil potato chip can that was his mortal enemy. Nothing made me feel more special than hearing an audience cheer for a character I had written.
So, I kept writing. All through elementary school and junior high I wrote short stories and plays and poems.
But then I learned something.
Not everyone will like every story you write. And sometimes, that will make you feel very bad.
I remember once, I wrote a story about how I felt on Christmas Eve. I described my excitement, that tingling sensation I got anticipating the presents I knew would be under the tree the next morning. A boy in my class thought one of the words I used was “weird” and that I was weird as a result. He laughed at my story and his laughter stung.
I began to write more nonfiction, mostly articles for my high school yearbook and newspaper. These pieces took thought and hard work, but unlike my stories, I felt like I didn’t have to put my secret heart into them. I could hide behind the words and no one would make fun of me or the things I wrote about.
I also started to worry that maybe I was not as good a writer as I had imagined myself to be. I started comparing my writing to that in the books I read. No way was I as good as that! (More about that sort of thing here.)
By college, I had turned my writing toward advertising and marketing, using my creativity to sell the creative work of others.
Which wasn’t such a bad thing.
Why not, you ask?
It landed me at Vroman’s Bookstore, a large independent in Southern California, where I served as marketing director for about ten years.
What a great job! I was surrounded every day by books and authors and artists and readers. One of my responsibilities was to organize author events. I met thousands of writers and learned that most of them have their own fears. Even the most successful worry that readers won’t like their books. Even the most talented sometimes think they aren’t as good at writing as they ought to be.
Hearing this gave me courage.
While I was at Vroman’s, I also ran a summer writer’s workshop series. Every Saturday a writer, illustrator, or editor would come talk to aspiring writers about writing. Secretly, I took notes. Their talks gave me tools for writing better stories.
Finally, when my daughter turned two and I turned 37, I got the guts to try writing fiction again. Having a child brought me back to reading the kinds of books that I most loved, books for kids. As much as I enjoy reading grown-up books, it is kids’ books that grab my heart and make me think and spin my imagination.
Reading those books gave me inspiration.
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