Monday, January 4, 2010

Thanks Jon Scieszka, the First National Ambassador for Young People's Literature

Very soon, Jon Scieszka, the great author and perhaps even greater first National Ambassador for Young People's Literature (hmm ... "first national" makes him sound like a bank ... oh well; better wording for the next ambassador) will pass on his sceptre and ambassadorial sash to a new candidate.

I don't envy that person; Scieszka set the tone for the entire shebang: fun, pomp and circumstance, theme music, and a knack for engaging the young readers and would-be readers of America in the mystique of the ambassadorship (they mostly came up with all of his accoutrements of office) and the excitement of reading. He emphasized that there is no "right" kind of reading, and that reading material that has often been frowned upon by the Powers that Be—magazines, comics, joke books, sports books, nonfiction in general—is just fine for kids, thank you very much.

So, thanks to Ambassador Scieszka for his reign, and good fortune on all of his future endeavors beyond the office.

ETA: See links to other tributes here!


Jon Scieszka said...

Thanks for joining in the digital Ambassador Party, Matt.

I think you've given me a great idea of what to do next – I will become a bank.

Mary Lee said...

It's hard to imagine Katherine Paterson following in Scieszka's shoes...but I'm sure she'll put her own unique spin on the position.

Next year, I vote for BabyMouse as Ambassador!!!