I visited a fourth grade class this week and talked about that characters in my book and how I developed their external and internal traits. The kids asked questions as always, but the teacher wanted to know if I had made any personal connections to my story. Students today are used to making personal connections to the text they read, but I hadn't given it a lot of thought. For The Cemetery Sleeper the most obvious connection I have is to the setting since I set it in my hometown of Kingston, TN. Having grown up in the south I do feel a natural connection to the language and the traditions of the area. I most relate to the character of Emily having grown up as a doubtful teenager but I also was extremely naive about many things like Freddy. Once again I am amazed at the way students analyze text in school. We just read stories and wrote book reports that were dull summaries.