SCAVENGER HUNT rules:
(if you already know the rules, skip ahead)
SCAVENGER HUNT PUZZLE
Directions: At the bottom of the post below you'll notice that I've listed my favorite number. Collect the favorite numbers of all the authors on the gold team, and then add them up.
Entry Form: Once you've added up all the numbers, make sure you fill out the form here to officially qualify for the grand prize. Only entries that have the correct number will qualify.
Rules: Open internationally, anyone below the age of 18 should have a parent or guardian's permission to enter. To be eligible for the grand prize, you must submit the completed entry form by Sunday, at noon Pacific Time. Entries sent without the correct number or without contact information will not be considered.
If at any point you get stuck in the middle of the hunt, go here for help.
Welcome to the Fall 2020
YA Scavenger Hunt!
Hello! You've made it to the next destination on the BLUE TEAM. I am Michelle Reynoso and I am your host for this stop.
Scroll down for that super secret number you're looking for and EXCLUSIVE CONTENT from author Emil Sher.
Also, (HINT, HINT) don't miss the special giveaway at the bottom of this page.
I have the distinct honor of introducing you to Emil Sher and his book Young Man with Camera.
P.S. You can purchase Joyce's AFTER HER here: Amazon
Emil is sharing a deleted scene from Young Man with Camera.
Young Man with Camera
About the book:
YOUNG MAN WITH CAMERA is about a young man who must make a moral choice about crime and punishment, a gifted photographer who stands at a crossroads and must choose between what he knows to be true and the price to be paid for staying silent. This is a story about a boy, his camera and a singular perspective that gives him an uncommon strength.
About the author:
Emil writes books and plays for the young and the once-were-young. His debut novel for young readers, Young Man with Camera, was a 2015 Governor General’s Literary Award finalist and White Raven Book. His picture books include Away, beautifully illustrated by Qin Leng, and Mittens to Share, featuring sumptuous illustrations by Irene Luxbacher. Many infants have chewed on his two board books, A Button Story and A Pebble Story. Upcoming books include Hold On To Your Music (Little Brown, 2021), a picture book adaptation, and Resistance, a YA novel based on the film by co-author Jonathan Jakubowicz (Little, Brown, Fall 2021)
Tell me about this picture.
Call me Sarah had her hair in a very tight ponytail and held up a photograph of Lucy. Lucy’s face is as twisted as her crooked teeth. Lucy was cursing at someone who had tossed a half-eaten sandwich on the sidewalk where she sat. I called it Sandwich, which is a What the heck? title because you don’t see a sandwich.
I didn’t order a second-hand sandwich, Lucy said the day I took the picture.
Don’t make a scene, said Someone’s Girlfriend. She tugged at his arm. He tugged it back.
I’m not making a scene. I’m making a statement. He put his half-eaten sandwich back in front of Lucy and said, You look hungry. I’m full. I have half a sandwich. You don’t. What could be simpler?
Lucy’s eyes turned into small stones. You’re saying I’m simple?
Someone sighed. You’re twisting my words.
You’re blocking my view, Lucy said.
Someone stepped to the side and looked at the wall behind him. I wouldn’t call it the Grand Canyon.
Lucy looked up at him. You ever been to the Grand Canyon?
No. But that’s not the point.
I prayed he wasn’t getting ready to Make a Point.
This is hardly a view.
This is hardly a sandwich. Lucy tossed it back at Someone. He picked it up and made a real show of dumping it into a nearby garbage can. Someone’s Girlfriend made an even bigger show of rolling her eyes.
Let’s go, she said.
And off they went.
I didn’t tell Call me Sarah about Someone or his half-eaten sandwich or the Grand Canyon that wasn’t the Grand Canyon. I didn’t bother telling her that it was all part of the photograph but none of it was in the photograph. I didn’t tell her that a photograph can never tell the whole picture, which is the whole point of a lot of photographs. All I said was, She’s angry.
Call me Sarah nodded. Do you know why she’s angry?
You’d have to ask her.
Call me Sarah folded her lips. Her mouth was a line on her too-tight face.
Do you know her?
I waited a while before I nodded. Lucy.
Lucy, Call me Sarah repeated, as if I had just given her an answer she knew all along. As if she was some kind of tutor and not some kind of psychologist that was sent to assess me. When I asked what the assessment was about all I was told what that Call me Sarah would ask me some questions about some of my photographs.
Do you know Lucy?
I didn’t shake my head or nod. I looked straight ahead but didn’t look at Call me Sarah.
I see, Call me Sarah said, but I knew she would never see. She would never see the pictures of Lucy’s Last Moments. She would never see what Joined at the Hip had done.
What about you, T--. What makes you angry?
Annoying assessments, I unsaid.
I don’t know.
Call me Sarah shuffled through a whole pile of my photographs. She pulled one out like she was doing a card trick.
What about this one?
She held out Child with Toy Grenade.
That's not mine.
She turned the photograph around so she could look at it again.
It was on your wall.
It’s not my photograph, I said. Diane Arbus took it.
Call me Sarah’s too-tight face loosened up a bit. Is Diane Arbus a friend of yours?
She’s dead. I made sure my voice was flatter than a pancake because pancakes aren’t that flat to begin with.
The too-tight face tightened up again.
Why did you choose this picture to hang on your wall, T―?
I shrugged. Call me Sarah sighed and was getting really frustrated. She was trying to pry me open and every shrug was another nail.
There must be some reason you chose this picture.
Another shrug. Another nail. Another sigh.
She put down Child with Toy Grenade and picked up a photograph of a woman with lots of wrinkles and painted eyebrows holding a chihuaha.
I like this one, Call me Sarah said.
I like it, too.
Call me Sarah’s face opened up as quickly as one of those flowers that blossom on a commercial when it has less than a minute to blossom. All it took was four words instead of a shrug.
What do you like about it?
It doesn’t tell the whole story, I unsaid. It doesn’t tell you the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. All you see is the woman holding her dog. You can’t tell by looking at the photograph that the woman never lets go of the dog. She must put him down at home. It’s not like the mutt is stapled to her chest. But he might as well be when Painted Eyebrows takes him outside because I’ve seen her and her dog a lot and the dog is never on the ground. Ever. She doesn’t take him for a walk. She takes him for a hold. When I asked her if I could take a picture she said, Of course. But Mr. Jackson has to be in the picture, too. Like I had a choice. Like I could ever pry Mr. Jackson off her chest. It’s like she was a five year old clutching a stuffed animal only she wasn’t five and Mr. Jackson wasn’t stuffed. Sean would say there was a reason why Painted Eyebrows wears her dog instead of walking it. Sean reads too many mysteries with detectives who think there’s a reason for everything and who always solve the crime by the last page, like the flowers that blossom before the commercial is over. Maybe Painted Eyebrows doesn’t have a last page and the reason why she never lets go of her dog is an unsolved mystery. If she does have a reason, I don’t want to hear it. She would probably take so long telling her story Mr. Jackson would die stuck to her chest. No thank you.
I think it’s interesting.
Call me Sarah nodded. It’s very interesting. She held the photograph away from her, like she was looking for something. And it’s very good, she said. She put the photograph down on her lap. Do you talk to people when you photograph them?
I ask for their permission.
And after you get their permission?
I take their picture.
Call me Sarah leaned back. She smiled a small smile. She thought she had pried off all the nails.
And after you take their picture? Any kind of conversation?
I shook my head. I wanted to ask Call me Sarah how many different kinds of conversations she thinks there are. If you ask me, there are only two kinds of conversations. Conversations with other people and conversations with yourself. A lot of conversations you have with yourself should be with other people but if you ask me most people don’t really want to hear what you have to say. To me, pictures are like unfinished conversations. The magnificent ones make you want to keep talking.
What about this one?
Call me Sarah held up one of the pictures that used to hang in the Second Floor. It was the one of the wedding couple with burned faces who look like they’re from a cheesy horror movie that ran out of money for special effects. They’re skin was like plastic that wishes it was plastic again and the bride is trying to smile but it’s hard to smile when all you’re left with is a mouth that wishes it was a mouth again. A lot of the photograph was burned in the fire, so it’s like the wedding couple got burned a second time.
I didn’t take it.
Call me Sarah took another look at the picture. Her face went all funny, like she ate a noodle and was told it was a worm.
Where did you get it?
I told her I found it on-line.
She nodded. Investigators found a whole bunch of pictures like this one in the aftermath of the fire. They were yours, weren’t they?
Can you tell me what attracts you to pictures of burn victims?
Have you always been interested in these kinds of pictures?
Another shrug. I didn’t feel like talking to Call me Sarah for much longer. I told her I needed to go to the bathroom. That’s fine, she said. We’ll continue when you’re back.
Okay, I said. I didn’t tell her to expect more shrugs when she tried to pry me open. I didn’t tell her she would need a bigger hammer.
Thanks for stopping by Emil, and sharing your story.