HASBROUCK HEIGHTS, N.J. -- Author Melanie Conklin will meet with sixth- and seventh-graders at Hasbrouck Heights Middle School to discuss her journey to being a published author and her novel, "Counting Thyme," Tuesday Nov. 29.
She will talk about the process of becoming an author and share her own personal journey.
"This is a great opportunity for the students not only meet a published author, but more importantly, learn about the author’s journey," said Joseph Mastropietro, school principal. "Students are able to gain knowledge to enhance and improve their own writing."
Conklin is a writer, reader, and lifelong lover of books. She lives in South Orange with her husband and two small children, who are thankfully book lovers, too. She spent a decade as a product designer and approaches her writing with the same three-dimensional thinking and attention to detail. "Counting Thyme"(Penguin, April 2016) is her debut middle grade novel.
When 11-year-old Thyme Owen’s little brother, Val, is accepted into a new cancer drug trial, it’s just the second chance that he needs. It also means the Owens family has to move to New York, thousands of miles away from Thyme’s best friend and everything she knows and loves. The island of Manhattan doesn’t exactly inspire new beginnings, but Thyme tries to embrace the change for what it is: temporary.
After Val’s treatment shows real promise and Mr. Owens accepts a full-time position in the city, Thyme has to face the frightening possibility that the move to New York is permanent. Thyme loves her brother, and knows the trial could save his life — she’d give anything for him to be well — but she still wants to go home, although the guilt of not wanting to stay is agonizing. She finds herself even more mixed up when her heart feels the tug of new friends, a first crush and even a crotchety neighbor and his sweet whistling bird. All Thyme can do is count the minutes, the hours and the days, and hope time can bring both a miracle for Val and a way back home.