met a duck, should have eaten pâté

The author ran a little late and seemed a little brittle and our students were rambunctious. We almost lost them when one student made a slightly “smart” remark and she treated him like a heckler, but I do think they got something from the presentation. There were three or four girls amongst the group who had a ready series of questions and tracked said author between sessions to ask her more questions, so I suspect maybe one or two may have had a life changing moment and that is more than what a TL can ever hope for, so I was well pleased.

Second session was  goal setting with a group of our senior indigenous students and that went really well. It was a group of about 20 and so more one to one. They impressed her as they had firm goals in mind.

The teacher session was attended by about a dozen, many sadly not English or History teachers who would have gained the most from it, but the Principal did attend and I made sure he got his photo taken with the author. Never one to miss an opportunity he hit the author up for a quote to use in a grant application. She was wary and asked to be emailed details. I admire his Irish chutzpah.

She is a very confident and intelligent woman, but I don’t think she liked being with us. I don’t think we are her area of interest and maybe she is just on the tour for money, well, of course she would be, but I found myself disliking her as the day wore on. Not that she may have liked me all that much either. Neither opinion means much in the scheme of things as I am sure our paths won’t cross again, but isn’t it funny how you can form an opinion of someone from one impression, much like a first date, only to have more exposure erode that opinion? Third date, you’re out!

For next year I am in negotiations to get an author that our students actually study, but as she lives in another state we will have to pay flights and accommodation, so I am trying to find a couple other schools to join in sharing the costs. Yes, already planning 2014! Scared me too…


“There’s an epigram tacked to my office bulletin board, pinched from a magazine — “Wanting to meet an author because you like his work is like wanting to meet a duck because you like pâté.”
―     Margaret Atwood,     Negotiating with the Dead

4 thoughts on “met a duck, should have eaten pâté

  1. It is funny – they say never judge a book – but hell sometimes that cover is bad to the bone from the onset (I was so going to write get-go) but so hate that expression so thought better of it. No one can say you aren’t organised! PS I like Pate but hate what the poor duck endures.


  2. It’s funny how some people just jar from the first time you meet them. I don’t generally form opinions of people but some just don’t gel with me from day one. I’m more likely to like someone and then kick myself when they go bad. I’ve done that so many times.
    Authors are odd creatures because their lifestyle is to sit hunched over a manuscript, not to stand in front of Q&A sessions. I’d hate it.


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