Teen Book Festival +Charles R. Smith, Jr.+

After a quick stop for some ice cream, we headed into a Nazareth College classroom to hear Charles R. Smith, Jr. talk about his life as an author.  Chameleon is his first novel among many non-fiction and poetry books about sports.

  • Charles grew up in Compton, California.  He knew he wanted to be a photographer from a young age, and went to college to study Photography.
  • Right after his college graduation, Charles moved to New York City.  He knew he’d have to pay his dues as an assistant for a while, and managed to work for a celebrity photographer (not a paparazzo).
  • While working as an assistant, he was lucky enough to help photograph the All Star Game the year of the NBA’s 50th anniversary.  Charles met and photographed some amazing basketball players from the top 50 NBA players list.
  • He was approached (not the other way around) by someone who wanted him to provide pictures for children’s books.  Charles mentioned he could write (see his website for some amazing audio of his poetry), and went on to write poetry for most of his books.
  • Charles’ biggest advice for teen writers? “Use only as many words as you need.”

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