School Program Story by Tyrion Perkins
Sandy brought props to show – a gong, which a couple of children got to hit, a Shakuhachi flute, and a Bokken which everyone thought was an actual sword until she said the penalty of touching the blade was death.
It was a Bokken which was wooden for practice like the ones used by her characters in her Samurai Kids series, and also used by the Greatest swordsman in the world, Mitsuka Minamoto.
She told us about her research into Japanese history and surprised the class with the fact that young Samurai students were expected to learn poetry and flower arranging along with fighting.
Her love of Pokemon lead to the spirit animals of her series. She had known many disabled people and decided to make her character more interesting by him having only one leg. But what happens when you try to do a one-legged kick? The audience guessed right, except she fell forward and did a face plant.
She went on to do sword fighting classes where her son stayed on the other side of the room so not to be embarrassed, and also did hands on research when she came to write “Polar Boy.” No, she didn’t go to the pole. She filled the bath with ice and sat in it!
She gave tips on writing which included: close your eyes and notice other senses; be mean to your characters and make something awful happen, then something worse; use the best words ever; and practice lots.
For more information http://www.sandyfussell.com/
Blogging Team 2017