Ask the Author: Jason Reynolds

Are the children and teens in your life fans of Jason Reynolds? Were they inspired by his Write. Right. Rite. video series this summer or do they love his GRAB THE MIC newsletters? Is there something they’ve always wanted to ask him? Now is their chance!

Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden laughs while author Jason Reynolds speaks

National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature Jason Reynolds and Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden speak to local school groups during Reynolds’ induction ceremony at the Library, January 16, 2020. Photo by Shawn Miller/Library of Congress.

On February 25, the Library will premiere a conversation between National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature Jason Reynolds and Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden. Jason Reynolds will discuss his ambassadorship including his recent “GRAB THE MIC: Tell Your Story” virtual tour and will answer selected questions from kids. The conversation will be pre-recorded and will premiere with closed captions on both the Library’s Facebook and YouTube pages and will be available for viewing afterwards at those sites and on the Library’s website.

The Library will accept questions for Jason to address during the conversation until February 12, 2021. Parents or guardians may submit questions on behalf of children to [email protected] or here in the comments section. For children under age 13 parents or guardians must submit questions on behalf of their children and consent to the Library’s use of their child’s information. For the sake of privacy, do not include children’s full names. We will only publish a child’s first name and either age or home state, but not both. Please note that Jason may not be able to respond to all submitted questions. This program will be available online only.

The National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature is an initiative of the Library of Congress, in partnership with Every Child a Reader and the Children’s Book Council, with generous support from Dollar General Literacy Foundation.

21 Comments

  1. Waveland James
    February 5, 2021 at 5:22 pm

    Why are you interested in writing as a medium to express yourself, as well as, inspiring others to do the same especially with students?

  2. Christopher Calderon
    February 7, 2021 at 1:56 pm

    What got you interested in writing as a whole? Was there a specific event that caused this?

  3. Piyal Das
    February 8, 2021 at 11:21 am

    In your “Grab the Mic Newsletter”, you had mentioned that to make history is to ask the right questions. To what extent should questions be asked about history? When does history get repetitive? What questions should be asked as a staple?

  4. Stephanie
    February 8, 2021 at 3:49 pm

    In the February Newsletter that you wrote called “Grab the Mic Newsletter, Black History Month Edition”, you stated that history is the result of asking questions. What questions are you asking to make history and who do you ask? What questions do you think figures like Rosa Parks and Bessie Coleman asked? What questions did historical figures like them ask that we don’t have to ask to make history today?

  5. Stephanie
    February 8, 2021 at 3:54 pm

    In the February Newsletter that you wrote called “Grab the Mic Newsletter, Black History Month Edition”, you wrote that history is the result of asking questions. What questions are you asking to create history and who did you ask? What questions do you think figures like Rosa Parks or Bessie Coleman asked? What questions did historical figures, like the two mentioned, ask that we don’t have to ask today?

  6. Nicole Liang
    February 8, 2021 at 8:19 pm

    How do you think you are making history? What is exactly making history in your eyes?

  7. Ryan
    February 9, 2021 at 1:40 pm

    How do you write your newsletters in a way that they are so easy and casual to read, that it almost feels like someone is actually talking to us? In addition, how do you continue to make your newsletters so casual, but also thought-provoking and serious at the same time?

  8. Thanjila
    February 9, 2021 at 2:13 pm

    What does a National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature even do? Why do you think this position is important for young people in our country?

  9. Christian
    February 9, 2021 at 2:31 pm

    In the February Newsletter that you wrote called “Grab the Mic Newsletter, Black History Month Edition,” you stated that history is all about documenting the questions you ask. I wonder where this statement came from? Did you get inspiration from somewhere?

  10. Andrew Schilling
    February 9, 2021 at 3:20 pm

    In the “Grab the Mic Newsletter, Black History Month Edition”, you stated that history is made by questioning. Is there any way to know whether you are asking the right questions, and is there any such thing as a bad question?

  11. Rachel
    February 9, 2021 at 6:11 pm

    In the “Grab the Mic Newsletter”, you wrote that “to make history would be to ask the right questions.” So, what questions have you asked that led you to where you are now? How did those questions pave the path?

  12. LUEXI ZHAO
    February 10, 2021 at 12:17 pm

    In the “Grab the Mic Newsletter, Black History Month Edition”, you stated that history was all about learning. How could we be able to manage knowledge sharing to overcome the obstacles in our history ?

  13. Hurera
    February 10, 2021 at 7:12 pm

    What do we consider to be the social norm when actually looking into it should not be? Do you ever think racism will ever stop?
    P.S (We do still pass notes)

  14. Samuel Shteerman
    February 10, 2021 at 7:34 pm

    Can we provide proper representation of characters in today’s America without serious uproar?

  15. Maggie
    February 11, 2021 at 4:18 pm

    What will life be like in America after COVID-19? How will things and perspectives change?

  16. Penelope
    February 11, 2021 at 7:15 pm

    How should we address black history in our schools/society to avoid another ignorant generation?

  17. Naomi Coquillon
    February 12, 2021 at 10:21 am

    Thank you all for these wonderful questions! While Jason will not be able to answer them all during the taping, we will select a few for him to respond to. Please watch the program on February 25 to hear his responses, and stay connected by reading his GRAB THE MIC newsletter!

  18. Kaiyue Li
    February 12, 2021 at 4:32 pm

    Why did we discriminate against people with different colors when we are all the same?
    Where did racism start and when will it end?
    How does history teach us about our misunderstandings of racism
    How much history has been lost by the winners of war that have high importance to the end of racism?
    How does history tell us the importance of destroying racism?

  19. Elizabeth
    February 12, 2021 at 6:35 pm

    How do you think a major change can impact a society? How does this impact people trying to stop racism when so many people are still racist to this day?

  20. Mastura Mayesha
    February 12, 2021 at 10:24 pm

    In your “Grab the Mic Newsletter, Black History Month Edition”, you stated that history involves asking the right questions. How can the younger generations of society present the right questions about history to older generations and be taken seriously at the same time?

  21. Audrey
    February 12, 2021 at 11:43 pm

    In the “Grab the Mic Newsletter, Black History Month Edition”, you stated how to make history would be to ask the right questions. What questions do you think we should be asking to make history in today’s world?

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