Sunday, March 4, 2012

The Pull of Gravity goes to School(s)!!!

That's me in the middle, with the kids from Jennings Middle School.
I love those guys. 

Happy Monday!

Oh, yes, oh yes, it is!

Why? Because today is the first in a new First Monday of the Month series on my blog called The Pull of Gravity Goes to School. Yeah, original title, what's your point? :)

Over the past six months, I've been luckier and luckier to have my book get picked up by schools in one capacity or another -- into the curriculum, as a choice book or summer read, or as a read aloud -- and, let me tell you, I am grateful!

I'm also unbeliveably fortunate to live in a time that allows me to pop into a classroom half way around the country. Through the magic of Skype, I've been to classrooms in Michigan and Indiana, and am about to pop into one in Pennsylvania this week. Of course, it's my absolute favorite when I can be there in person, but, either way, being in a school or a classroom with my target readers is one of the most rewarding experiences I, as a YA author, get to have.

As such, on the first Monday of each month, I'm going to highlight some of these visits on my blog. I've asked the students some basic questions about the book and have gotten some amazing responses. In fact, I've gotten so many awesome responses, please know there's no way I can use them all. I will highlight them the best I am able, with the feature each week morphing, depending on the types of responses that roll in.

**Here are the LINKS (TWO, THREE, FOUR and FIVE) for the other TPoG's Go to School for the 2011-2012 school year) ** 

So, without further ado, this week, The Pull of Gravity goes to Jennings Middle School in Indiana, where awesome 8th grade teacher, Ms. McGriff, read it aloud to her students last month. Let's hear what they had to say!

Look how happy they are! Coincidence or TPoG? ;)
Was TPoG a good read aloud? Why?

David: Yes... the fact that Ms. McGriff is good at reading. I mean, the book is good either way.

Jason: No, because I had already read it myself and didn't wanna listen again.

Katelyn: Yes. Because ... we read it every day. If I was just reading by myself, I doubt I would have had enough time to read it in my own time. It was just a really good book!

Kristen: Yes... normally, when teachers read a book out loud they are extremely boring and I don't enjoy them. But when I heard Pull of Gravity I could read it again and again...

Brianna: teacher read with really great expression like she was the characters of the book. I felt like I was watching a movie.

Star: At first, I'll be honest... I didn't think I was really going to like it. At all. I really don't like it when books get read aloud in class. But as I listened to the book, I started to like it. I like it a lot, to be honest. I love the imaginative and colorful character Jaycee. Nick seemed kind of whiny at first, but in the end I liked him a lot and felt as if I understood him. The Scoot could probably be my favorite character...

and, last but not least, the classic, award-winning answer of the day:

Jacob: Yes, because it took up more time in class so we did not have to do work.


Speaking of favorite characters, who was your favorite character, and why?

Heather: Jaycee because of her personality. She's so prepared and smart. She makes the middle and last part of the book come alive!

Skylar: Jeremy because he's so honest.

Star: My favorite character was the Scoot. Even though he knew he'd be facing death at any time, he still evaluated an excellent plan and saw to it that it was excuted. He seemed so funny with all those Star Wars references . . .

Shelbi: Jaycee... she didn't care what people thought of her. If they didn't like her, it was their problem.

Keragan: Nick, because he gets very nervous when he was around Jaycee and he also is embarrassed by his dad.

Notice the troll buttons... :)

A lot of readers don't like the dad. Or, at least they get mad at him. Who was YOUR least favorite character, and why?

Heather: Nick's dad because how could someone leave their family just to lose weight? That was stupid. If I was Nick, I wouldn't read his emails either.

Jasmine: Jeremy, because he didn't care about anything or anyone, just himself. 

Ham Stacks: Well . . .I reckon Nick's dad because he lied to Nick and was a very lowsy dad.

Jacob: Jeremy, cuz he seems kind of mean.


Briana: ... I liked them all. Each character played their own part in their own way.

Michelle: The news reporter because he was annoying.

Kelsey: I liked all the characters.

Katelyn: Nick's mom because it seemed like she didn't really do much to help out with anything. Like she wasn't involved.

Did you have a most favorite or least favorite part?

Zachary: (most) -- when they were wrecked they were knocked out.

Kristen: (most) -- when they started the big trip. I think that was everyone's favorite part.

Jacob: (least) --when they kissed it was very disrespectful of their surroundings. They are too young to be doing that.

Nicholas: (least) -- the Scoot dying was the saddest so it was my least favorite.

Hannah: (most) -- When Jaycee got sick at the hotel and Nick was taking care of her until she felt better.

Ham Stacks: (least) -- when Jaycee and Nick kissed. It was completely shasta mcnasty. Ewwwww, growdy. (a direct quote ;));

Kameron: (least) -- when Scooter died;

Makayla: (most) -- at the end on their way home, it was kind of a mystery where the bus driver went.

and, drumroll for the brownie points:

David: (least) -- when the book ended.


Believe you, me, I loved them back. :)

So, maybe most important to me, did any part of the story make you laugh?

Catherine: Yes, when Jaycee had the wax lips!

Nicholas: Yes, the part about the thermometer.

Courtney: Yes, I laughed just about every time Jeremy spoke.

Cheyenne: Yes, I forgot though.

And, finally, the most dreaded question of all... did you learn anything you didn't know from The Pull of Gravity?

Aaron: about the disease Scooter had.

Jacob: no!

Kelsey: It made me want to read Of Mice and Men. I think I will some time.

Star: I honestly couldn't tell ya.

Huge thanks to Ms. McGriff's class at Jennings Middle School for doing this with me!

- gae

p.s. once again, the links to the other posts in the 2011-2012 series:


  1. I love it! I can't wait to share it with my students during 5th period. Thank you for making us look so good! My principals are impressed, too!

  2. My pleasure. I'm so honored to have been read in your class. :)

  3. I am so ragingly proud of you for doing this. I know how hard you've worked to get students access to this awesome book. One day, I might even write a book that they will be able to shelve in schools and I shall come fetch you and ask you all your sage advice.
    In case I don't say it enough, I like you. :)

  4. Fetch away!

    I like-a you, too! :)