Author Brad Meltzer meets the kids of Ogden and touts the power of books | News, Sports, Jobs


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Author Brad Meltzer speaks to a group of fifth and sixth graders from Ogden at Ogden High School on Friday, November 11, 2022. Meltzer was the guest speaker at the Authors Fall Event of the Ogden School Foundation this year and also met with students.

Tim Vandenack, Standard Examiner

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Author Brad Meltzer signs a book for Polk Elementary student Spencer Peterson after speaking with a group of fifth and sixth graders from Ogden at Ogden High School on Friday, November 11, 2022. Meltzer was the guest speaker at the Ogden School Foundation’s Fall Author Event this year and also met with students.

Tim Vandenack, Standard Examiner

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Author Brad Meltzer signs a book for a pupil after speaking with a group of fifth and sixth graders from Ogden at Ogden Secondary School on Friday November 11, 2022. Meltzer was the guest speaker at the Ogden School Foundation fall author event this year and also met with students.

Tim Vandenack, Standard Examiner

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OGDEN — Author Brad Meltzer, unsurprisingly, believes in the power of books and stories to help children open up to the possibilities that await them.

“They show your potential and our children need to fulfill their own potential,” he said, contrasting with social media. “So much on social media shows you your limits. Isn’t it time to show kids their potential? »

It can be difficult trying to counter the power of social media, full of negativity, but Meltzer – the guest speaker at the Ogden School Foundation’s fall event this year – says “you need to meet the kids where they find themselves”. In other words, parents need to find reading material according to their children’s interests, whether it’s sports, animals, art or otherwise.

“When you find what kids like and show them other people who like the same things, just walk away,” he said.

Meltzer, based in Florida, is the author of thrillers, non-fiction, comics, children’s books and more. He spoke at the fall author event on Thursday and on Friday he met with fifth and sixth graders from across the Ogden School District at Ogden High School. He regularly speaks across the country in schools and with student groups. During his travels, he said, he was struck by “how much our children have in common, wherever they are.”

Earlier, he spoke with the Standard-Examiner about the importance of reading, how to get kids interested in reading and more.

He doesn’t see any particular genre as more appealing than another to kids, teens, or others. It’s about the characters – the characters in the books who give readers a window into their own lives.

“It’s funny, everyone always wants to say there’s a certain genre that’s working right now, but in every genre all the kids react to is seeing each other,” he said. . “What kids see in all of these stories is that they see themselves and what it’s like when it feels like the world is against you.”

His general advice to children is to research what interests them. He had a teacher when he was a child who developed his interest in writing and the impact lasted.

“What I would say to all kids is the same advice my teacher gave me, which is to find what you love to do. And when you find that passion, you’ll find that just becomes something that really makes you unstoppable,” he said.

As for his own writing, Meltzer’s interests run the gamut – thrillers focusing on power and the political system, Batman comics, biographies of famous people for children and more. “I write what I like. I love hero stories. I like stories that are mysteries. I love stories that actually happened,” he said.

When it comes to inspiration for writing, he says the process can be cathartic. “I’m the one working on the things that I personally take care of. I think it’s me dealing with the fears I have and the questions I have,” he said.

Still, writing isn’t always glamorous, he told the small group of students he met on Friday before addressing a larger group in the auditorium at Ogden High School. ” It’s a work. People think it’s magic. It’s not. It’s work,” he said.



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