Wednesday, November 20, 2013
This past summer, a celebration of Philadelphia's Literary Legacy that began at the Philadelphia International Airport spilled into an evening at Warm Daddy's along the Delaware River. Among those who celebrated our city that day was a certain Sister Kimberly Miller, one of the biggest advocates for young adult literature—and for young people—anywhere.
I had previously met Sister Kim through our mutual friend K.M. Walton. I began to see her everywhere—at book festivals, at readings, at launch parties. I sensed her through-and-through goodness and her love for her students, and I had some extra copies of some young adult novels to share. And so, that Legacy evening, in a parking lot near Warm Daddy's, I carried boxes of UNDERCOVER, HOUSE OF DANCE, NOTHING BUT GHOSTS, and THE HEART IS NOT A SIZE (not to mention copies of SEEING PAST Z, my book about working with younger writers) from my trunk and lowered them into the trunk of Sister Kim's car.
And then we drove off our separate ways.
Recently, Sister Kim introduced some of those books to her students at Little Flower Catholic High School for Girls. She gave them inspired projects and waited for the work to come in. That work has arrived, and I am blown away by the projects that Sister Kim has photographically shared. There isn't room on this blog to share them all. Each and every single one matters to me, moves me. And when I go to Little Flower in April for an amazing writing day that Sister Kim and K.M. Walton have organized, you better believe that I'm going to be thanking every student personally for caring so much about their work.
Sister Kim is what greatness is all about when it comes to teaching. And her students are nothing short of inspired.