BRIARCLIFF MANOR, N.Y. -- Briarcliff Manor fourth- and fifth-grade students learned that many of the tales that have inspired popular children’s books and movies are anything but “cute, sweet or boring” from bestselling author Adam Gidwitz when he paid a visit to Todd Elementary School.
Gidwitz, author of a series of “Grimm” books told students about the Brothers Grimm, who collected stories and wrote them down in Germany.
“They were very dark and scary,” he said, before sharing the earliest known version of the story of “Snow White” with students, he said.
“I try to go back and forth between horror and humor,” said Gidwitz. “I try to be funny.” In addition to sharing details from his books, Gidwitz answered students’ questions about his writing career. He recalled a visiting author telling his seventh-grade class simply that, “Writers write,” and convinced himself he was not a writer. But after realizing he enjoyed acting out stories and telling them out loud, he realized he was indeed a writer.
“I had been a writer my whole life,” he said. Gidwitz’s visit concluded with a special lunch with six essay contest winners who had an opportunity to dine and chat more informally with the author. The group discussed their favorite books and shared love of writing.