Creativity, Smiles, and Book Hugs: A Conversation with Kevin Sylvester

Kevin Sylvester is an author and illustrator of more than 20 books. He’s a part-time broadcaster with the CBC, plays a lot of hockey, and watches a lot of baseball. Kevin Sylvester has been a longtime supporter of First Book Canada and we are so glad he took the time to tell us why he continues to support First Book Canada by being an Author Champion!

What do you remember about your first Reading Celebration with First Book Canada?

I’ve done a few events since then, but I think the first one was about three years ago – using my picture book Splinters to present to an under-resourced school. It was obviously cool to talk to the kids, but it was also cool to have the corporate volunteers see what an impact their work was doing with actual kids. They all did separate story-time and cartooning, and it was neat to see the adults enjoying it as much as the kids.

Is there one event that stands out for you?

It’s been cool to have so many varied opportunities. At the Start2Finish event earlier this summer, the kids ran a 5K (FIVE KILOMETRES!!) and then sat down to read. It was amazing. Recently, I did a presentation at the Horizons Program at Upper Canada College. I gave the kids the beginning to a story and then sent them off to craft an ending. Their creativity, and their bravery in presenting their stories to their peers, was truly inspirational.

What has been your experience with giving your book to children to take home?

The look of a kid getting a new book for (possibly) the first time in their lives is incredible. The smiles and the book hugs are precious.

First Book Canada gets books into the hands of kids who want them, but might not have a way to own them. It’s a little gift of literacy that they can keep for themselves.

Thank you, Kevin, for being an Author Champion and getting books to kids!

Kevin Sylvester speaking about how to be a writer at the Horizon’s Program, Upper Canada College. July 2018.


Learn more about our Author Champions!

Are you an author who has worked with First Book Canada and you want to share your experience? Contact our Communications Coordinator.