Presentation on theme: "Gary Paulsen Born in Minneapolis, Minnesota May 17, 1939 By: Patty Medeiros and Corey Hendrickson."— Presentation transcript:
Gary Paulsen Born in Minneapolis, Minnesota May 17, 1939 By: Patty Medeiros and Corey Hendrickson
Much of Paulsen’s writing is a reflection of his own traumatic childhood: “the stories come from my life- if not my own experiences, then about topics and subjects that interest me.” - Gary Paulsen
“I was a really poor student and I had a rough childhood” Paulsen grew up in poverty Paulsen did not meet his father until the age of 7, at which time he referred to his son as “the boy” Paulsen grew up living with his Grandmother, Aunts, and various other relatives Both Paulsen’s mother and father battled alcoholism Paulsen would sleep in the basement with his books to avoid the abuse of his parents Paulsen witnessed his mother’s numerous affairs
Paulsen’s own experiences are what makes his writing so vivid He refers to his personal research as “personal inspection at zero altitude.” As a child Paulsen witnessed a plane crash and the passengers killed by sharks At 14 Paulsen ran away and joined the carnival
Gary Paulsen is a Natural Outdoorsman: At the age of 12 Paulsen bought his own rifle, which he used to hunt for food. He eventually gave up the rifle and manufactured his own bow and arrows which he used for hunting deer. Paulsen is a hunter/trapper, breeds and trains sled dogs and has participated in several sled races.
“Stories are like a river that flows- you dip a bucket in it” Paulsen’s love of the outdoors is eminent in his stories of wilderness adventure for young adults
“I was a poor reader until a public librarian turned me on to reading. That saved my life.” Paulsen, seeking warmth, wandered into a library for the first time at the age of 13.
Paulsen became an avid reader after the librarian handed him a library card with his named typed on it. “I looked at it and somehow that made me somebody.”
Paulsen struggled as a writer for decades In 1985 Paulsen experienced his first success with the publication of his first award winning book “Dogsong,” which won a Newbery Honor Award
Despite Paulsen’s success, he chooses to live in relative poverty and away from other people “I don’t have anything against individuals, but the species is a mess.”
“I pick up my laptop and a bunch of notebooks and pencils and I go from one place to the other.” Paulsen has a dog kennel on a 4o acre spread in Alaska where he breeds and trains dogs for the Iditarod. “There’s no towns, no roads, no people all the way up to Siberia.” Paulsen also spends time on his 200 acre Ranch in New Mexico in the Jicarilla Mountains, 40 miles from the grocery store. And when not in Alaska or New Mexico, Paulsen can be found sailing his houseboat on the Pacific Ocean.
“I just work. I don’t drink, I don’t fool around, I’m just this way…The end result is there’s a lot of books out there.” After an attack of angina forced Paulsen to quit dog racing he put all of his effort and energy into his writing. Paulsen will work 18- 20 hour days. He has written more than 200 books and some 200 articles and short stories for children and adults.
“In the time I’ve got left, I intend to write artistic books- for kids- because they’re still open to new ideas.” Paulsen stopped writing for adults 15 years ago because, “it’s artistically fruitless. Adults are locked into car payments and divorces and work. They haven’t got time to think fresh.” It is Paulsen’s overwhelming belief in young people that drives him to write.
LIFE OF GARY PAULSEN Paulsen’s wife Ruth Wright Paulsen, an artist, illustrated 4 of his picture books and one prose poem.
Gary Paulsen in his own words: “I sail, run dogs, ride horses, play professional poker and tell stories about the stuff I’ve been through.”
HATCHET- About the Book A tale about the “coming of age” of Brian Robeson Troubled by his mothers affair. Brian leaves to visit his father in the oil fields of Canada Following a crash-landing, Brian must survive the Canadian wilderness with only the clothes on his back, and a hatchet. Follow Brian on this adventure of self-discovery and perseverance.
HATCHET- Newbery Honor Award Hatchet was originally published in 1987 First novel in the Hatchet series, followed by four sequels. 1985: First Newbery Honor award given for Dogsong. Newbery Honor awarded in 1988 for his novel, Hatchet.
About the Newbery Award Newbery Medal Award named after 18 th century bookseller John Newbery. Awarded annually Author must be a US citizen Awarded to the author with the most distinguished contribution to children’s literature from the preceding year.