In celebration of ABC CANADA Family Literacy Day(TM), Robert Munsch, beloved children’s writer and best-selling author in Canada, went online Friday night, January 27, for a live chat with Canadian children, teens and adults across the country. The special event, held 7:00 to
8:00 p.m. ET on Family Literacy Day(TM), was made available through www.YTV.com.
Chat-line comments and questions to Munsch poured in from Canadians coast-to-coast. Close to 5,000 messages were sent, with more than 500 online chatters reading and participating (and anywhere from 150 to 200 online at any given time). “I had lots of fun,” says Munsch, who is honorary chair of Family Literacy Day(TM). “To be connected with so many kids and parents across the country, and to do it on Family Literacy Day(TM), was a great experience.”
In the packed one hour, readers had the chance to tell the author directly how much they loved his books — one online chatter said: “You are one of my heroes because you’re so cool.” The cross-country chat also provided candid and amusing insight into the life of Robert Munsch. Among those bits of information, Munsch said:
– “It takes five years for a story to get good.”
– His favourite book that he didn’t write is Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings.
– His favourite book as a child was Angus Lost, a story about a dog by Marjorie Flack.
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– (asked if he has received awards): “Not very many, but I did get the Order of Canada.”
– He has “about 100 stories” that have not yet been published.
– The key to having a child read is “find what he likes and find a book about it.”
– His favourite singer is Mariah Carey.
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– The people he most admires are Dr. Seuss and Charles Darwin.
One online chatter exclaimed “You’re inspirational!,” and Munsch replied:
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“What, I’m perspirational?” “This was a fantastic event, and a wonderful way to celebrate Family Literacy Day(TM),” says Christine Featherstone, President and CEO of ABC CANADA Literacy Foundation, creators of Family Literacy Day(TM). It is held every year on January 27, with the support of numerous organizations and Founding Sponsor Honda Canada Inc.