by Becky GINOS
BOUNTIFUL—Best-selling children’s author Obert Skye made a special visit to students at South Davis Junior High last week and shared his love of writing and encouraged them to pursue their dreams.
Obert is known for his series “Leven Thumps,” “The Creature From My Closet” and “Pillage.” He used the main character Ozzie from his latest book “Wizard for Hire” to describe some life lessons that the kids could use to be successful.
“I like wizards and I like writing,” he said. “I like doors because you never know what’s behind them. Sometimes in life when you open a door you might find small fortunes or great mysteries.”
There are six words that are important to any human to make a wizard or a writer out of anyone, he said. “The first word is read. How many of you like to read? My mom always tried ways to help me learn to love to read,” said Obert. “At my elementary school I had a librarian that found a book she thought would make me want to read. She’d say ‘read this book you’re going to love it.’”
Obert said he told her no but she kept popping up at the playground, on the bus or other places, even outside of the bathroom trying to get him to read the book. “She was kind of a stalker librarian,” he laughed. “Finally one day I came home and when I opened the front door there she was sitting at the table with my mom. What could I do? I took the book (it was Charlie and the Chocolate Factory) and I loved it. I loved to read from then on.”
The second word, he said, is brainstorming. “Inside your head are ideas, stories, coding and songs that are going to change the world. It’s my favorite part of the writing process.”
Work is the third word, said Obert. “If you want to be a writer – or anything – it’s going to take some work. It’s so much easier when you include people who love you. You should all be writing things down even if you’re not a good writer. You can always flip the page and write something better.”
The fourth word is reach. “You’re always working but reach a little further and it will turn what you’re working on into something special,” he said. “Turn your pencils into wands and create something magical.”
Finish is the fifth word, said Obert. “If you finish what you begin remarkable things can happen. There are people watching at the finish line to read what you finish. Cool things have happened because I finished what I started when I was your age.”
Last, word six is jump, he said. “You’ve reached the top of your accomplishment now take that leap. Everybody has something they’re afraid of,” Obert said. “Life is full of silly fears but taking a tremendous leap is important to the process of becoming a writer. Take a hike to each one of the words and they will play a part in you having unbelievable lives.”