Canaan York: A Real Class Act

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I was doing some beginner spring cleaning the other day, when I found a letter Olivia had written to family friend and author, Canaan York after he had visited her class.  It’s a sweet little letter.  It reads: “Dear Cannan,

I REALLY love your books!  I want to be a author when I grow up just like you.  I have been working really hard on a lot of stories that I would LOVE you to see one day.  I was wondering if you have any tips for me about writing.  If you do, I would really like it if you could write back.  It’s fine if you can’t I understand.  Hope your writing career works out nicely.  Thanks!

                  Olivia Whitehouse”

I imagined that it never got sent because we don’t have a street address for Canaan.  It got tucked into the basket I was going through and was quickly forgotten about.  I snapped the above pic of it, sent it to Canaan via Facebook Messenger, and sent along Liv’s address should he care to reply.  Reply he did.  Here’s the letter:

“Dear Olivia:

How are you?  I recently received a Facebook message from your awesome dad sending me a photo of a letter (I’m sure he has shown it to you, but if not you should ask him about it) you had written to me a few years ago expressing your gratitude and appreciation of me as an author and a story I had shared in your classroom…and expressing your dream of possibly being an author yourself one day!  It was, to say the least, an unexpected especially bright spot in my day.  Then again, from what I know of you and your personality, that is true to your character. 

You are an intelligent, kind-hearted, talented, passionate and energetic young lady who I admire very much.  I hope that, just because you are older, your perceptions of me have not changed.  The thing with someone like you is that there is no limit to your potential or the possibilities of things you can (and will) attain.  If you decide to pursue a career in writing, I have no doubt you will be stellar and a grand success.  I know I will be first in line to buy your books and listen to you read your words!  However, whatever it is you wind up doing, I know you will be excellent at it and will go on to change the world in important, memorable and incredible ways!

Never stop being kind to others, working hard and believing without abandon in yourself, your capabilities and the relevance of your wildest dreams.  You deserve them.  I am grateful for your kind words, your friendship and your sincerity.  I am proud to know you.  Keep shining and believing in yourself…and thanks for always supporting me!

Your friend,

Canaan A. York”

I thought this a wonderful gesture to a young girl.  I had recently heard Canaan on the Maine Show podcast, where he did an excellent job speaking, and presented himself and our area very well.  You can listen to his interview here:  Maine Show Episode 072.

Canaan’s books can be found on Amazon, and at many local stores.  We have most of them (still need to get one more for the set).  You should pick up a couple.  They’re very good, and their message works for adults as well as for kids. 

Thanks for responding Canaan.  You’re a class act.  Keep it up. 


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