Guest post: Greg Forbes Siegman

Today’s blog post is from Greg Forbes Siegman, a renowned author who will speak at NCFL’s upcoming conference. Greg’s work has been featured by Good Morning America, USA Today, The Washington Post Co., Education Week and National Public Radio. Read below for Greg’s personal message — and why he’s looking forward to the conference. Be sure to check out Greg and his books, The First Thirty and The Silhouette Man at For more information on NCFL’s conference, including its all-star speaker lineup, check out our website.

— Emily Kirkpatrick

“As a child, reading was a struggle for me — words got scrambled up in my head — but my parents, Grandma, teachers and the librarians encouraged me to stick with it — and eventually, I got the hang of it. Once I did, I never wanted to stop reading.

“My ability to read was the first thing — and for a long time, the only thing — I did well. And that was no small matter to an awkward, scrawny, little, buck-toothed, giant-eared kid desperately wanting to do well. On a broader level, the books introduced me to people, places, things and ideas that could — and have — directly shaped the rest of my life. My interest in civil rights, my love of sports, my efforts to address major issues with simple solutions and my constant pursuit of transforming the imagined to the real — all can be traced directly to specific books I read as a boy.

“To this day, when I’m on the road for a speech or book signing, it is not uncommon to find me sitting on the floor deep within ‘The Stacks’ at a nearby library.

“I am excited about family literacy and NCFL’s work because it helps other people experience those same things. I am looking forward to the conference because it’s a chance to meet some of the incredible people  who influenced kids like me in such a positive, lasting, life-changing way.”