Yesterday I was filling out a questionnaire for a promotions manager regarding a book coming out in the spring — a tedious but necessary task to be done now and then. In looking up the address for Maya Kucij, director of the Children’s Literature Festival held annually on the UCMO campus in Warrensburg, MO, I ran across the listings of authors who have donated papers to the university’s archival collection.
Next year will mark the festival’s 50th anniversary. It was started by teacher Phil Sadler and librarian Ophelia Gilbert.
When Phil and Ophelia retired, the festival continued to flourish under the great leadership of Naomi Williamson, and when Naomi retired not long ago, the reins were handed to Maya. We who write or illustrate books for kids count our blessings for this wonderful event and the folks who make it all happen.
You can go to the link provided to see how large the collection of donated manuscripts has grown in the university library over the years. I’m proud to have many of my things in it. They fill three dozen boxes or more. I have a lot more in my basement that I need to place before the humidity ruins them. http://guides.library.ucmo.edu/harrisond1
To show how times have changed, my original donation included over 1,100 letters to and from editors, fans, and others involved in my efforts. Today? Letters? Really?