Saturday, April 16, 2016

#AuthorApril: N is for Never Counted Out Co-Founder, e.E. Charlton-Trujillo #AtoZChallenge

Dear Kim,

Although e.E. Charlton-Trujillo has only one "N" in her mighty name, her revolutionary organization counts for our challenge, as a matter of fact, it is called NEVER COUNTED OUT.


Never Counted Out Co-founder, e.E. Charlton Trujillo

I met E. at a screening of her powerful documentary, At-Risk Summer, at the 2015 NCTE Conference in Minneapolis. I was beyond inspired by her documentary, I was charged. My heart and head raced with ideas. She asked for literary activists. She asked for folks to join her revolution. The entire room leaned in and screamed yes. I may have been crying. Ok...I definitely was.



E. brought me to tears with her big heart, her big ideas, and in time, with the story of Fat Angie. The book that carried Charlton-Trujillo across the country for her At-Risk Summer book tour.

Winner of a 2014 Stonewall Book Award
Relationships are at the heart of Fat Angie. Angie's relationship with her presumed-dead war-hero sister. Angie's relationship, or lack thereof, with her mother. Angie's relationship with her coach, her neighbor, her brother, her dad (and his new life). Angie's relationship with KC, her first love. And, Angie's relationship with herself.

Angie's life is complex, to say the very least. She has a dark view of the world that teens can relate to, especially paired with Angie's equally dark sense of humor.

From Fat Angie:

"... 'Oh, Debbie, that's the best story,' said her mother in the voice she used only for social gatherings and Wang's therapist. The voice made Fat Angie's skin want to rip from bone. She didn't quite know why."

The love between KC and Angie gives readers hope that Fat Angie may get a happily-ever-after. I'm sure I'm not the only reader to fall for KC. Her little note: "I think you rock too. -KC Romance" and when she draws the heart in the snow at the end. Yes-- I heart KC. Big time.

There are so many pieces for Charlton-Trujillo to fit together in Fat Angie, yet somehow, by the 264th page, she gives us the ending we all want (even if we didn't know it was what we wanted). I know I keep promising to bring you Fat Angie. I promise-promise that I'll bring it next weekend. You'll read it in one sitting, like I did.


Never Counted Out Co-founders, e.E. Charlton-Trujillo and GG Watson.


I'm honored to work with E., and co-founder, CG Watson, on a new project: Never Counted Out Camp at the Highlights Foundation. Our goal for NCO Camp mirrors NCO's non-profit mission of providing mentorship for teens in the arts. We know that art matters. Writing matters. Teens matter. The teens who attend our camp will have the freedom to dream and create, as well as, engage with and learn from published authors and illustrators.

Even in the shadow of E.'s greatness it feels warm. She radiates a determination unlike anyone I have ever met. I know our camp will come together. I know her organization will succeed. I know she will continue to inspire others with her words and this creative revolution. I hope you will read more about E.'s Never Counted Out by clicking here.

As E. would say: Rock the Word!
Happy #AuthorApril!
Much Love,
Alison

P.S. To learn more about donating to our NCO Camp please contact me or leave a message below.