Amazing Kate Messner, Amazing Auction

Elizabeth Bluemle -- August 31st, 2017

Kate Messner. Photo from katemessner.com

Kate Messner is a woman who makes things happen. Somehow, even without Hermione Granger’s Time Turner, she manages to get more done in a day than any three humans I know. In addition to effective time use, another of Kate’s crowning qualities is her generosity–of time, of energy, of information, of spirit. She is an author whose website and Twitter feed I love to point new and aspiring authors toward, because she doesn’t use her platform to plug herself and her writing; she uses it to share helpful resources and interesting news relevant to children’s book writers and lovers. She’s a major cheerleader for other authors, and she’s someone who values direct and immediate action. All of these qualities are evident in her latest effort, the #KidLitCares Auction for Hurricane Harvey relief.

Because she is a master of social media and connectedness and quick work, Kate has already gathered more than 200 auction ‘items’ to raise money for the Red Cross relief effort for Hurricane Harvey and its flooding aftermath. She’s blogged about the items up for bid with additional details and deadline information. You can scroll down the list on her website’s blog to learn about these amazing offerings, from Skype visits and manuscript critiques from authors, illustrators, agents, and editors, original artwork, signed books, career consultation with agents, and more. 

One of the fab auction prizes, a collection of nine books and a piece of original art by Dan Santat. Photo from the auction page on katemessner.com

The list of items is truly impressive — many, many incredible and generous people in the children’s book field are represented, and some of these things are opportunities you just can’t buy (a ‘skip-the-slush-pile’ offer from an editor, for example).

Kate received such an outpouring of responses to her call for auction items that she had to cap them at 201 offerings.

This is a truly special way to support the Red Cross efforts in the wake of this deadly natural disaster. Bid as soon as you can!

If auctions and bidding make you anxious, you can instead enter a drawing to win an autographed classroom set (36 hardcover copies!) of Kate Messner’s upcoming new book, The Exact Location of Home (Bloomsbury), by making a donation to the Red Cross here by September 4 and emailing your donation receipt as described beneath the book cover on this page.

You can also keep up with updates about the auction by following the #KidLitCares Twitter feed.

Speaking of Kate’s new book, run, don’t walk! It’s vintage Kate Messner: high kid appeal, tons of jumping-off points for classroom and family discussions, loaded with heart and the sensitive, hopeful treatment of challenges many kids face. Plus, the book’s quest will doubtless kick-start the geocaching adventures of thousands of kids. Fun additional fact: the main character, Zig, first showed up in Kate’s earlier book, The Brilliant Fall of Gianna Z, and I was so delighted that Gianna’s in this book! (She’s one of my favorite characters of Kate’s.)

It’s oddly fitting that a book about a family dealing bravely with some hard knocks is written by an author raising money for families dealing bravely with some (different, but equally) hard knocks.

Thanks so much to Kate Messner for being extraordinarily effective at turning good thoughts to action.

Now, let’s go bid!!

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