Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Author PJ Hoover Talks Writing with Secondary Students

Guest post from Amy Toombs, Library Information Technology Educator at T.A. Howard Middle School

Students from four Mansfield ISD schools were treated to a visit from PJ Hoover, author of the young adult novel Solstice. Students from Lillard Intermediate School, Wester Middle School, Jobe Middle School, and T.A. Howard Middle School experienced a colorful talk highlighting the writing and publishing process and Hero’s Journey in literature. After briefly summarizing Odysseus and his odyssey, Hoover documented her own hero’s journey. A question and answer session followed, and students quizzed her about everything from how long it takes to write a novel to what Greek myth was her favorite.
Hoover with the Literary Knights Book Club at T.A. Howard

Hoover first fell in love with Greek mythology in sixth grade. After a fifteen-year stint as an electrical engineer designing computer chips, she decided to take a stab at mythology and started writing books for kids and teens. When not writing, she enjoys practicing Kung Fu (she’s a black belt), solving Rubik’s Cubes, and watching Star Trek. PJ is the author of four novels, including the forthcoming Tut. She lives in Austin with her husband, two children, and dog.

Hoover’s novels mix mythology with modern or future societies, and are non-stop action.  Her presentation was non-stop action too, mixing myth and the current day to capture students’ attention and reinforce the importance of the writing and editing process. There’s nothing like learning from an expert source!