Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Best Friends with YALSA Member, Betsy Fraser

Elizabeth (Betsy) Fraser is a selector for the Calgary Public Library system in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. She has been a reviewer for VOYA, School Library Journal, and Canadian Review of Materials. Fraser served on several committees for the American and Canadian Library Association, including the Michael L. Printz Award and the YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults.

 I first saw Betsy speak at a writer's conference where she was discussing upcoming YA books and her top picks. I was blown away by how knowledgeable and passionate she was about YA books and have been a fan of hers since. I've since learned she has also penned YA Nonfiction reference books, because she is fancy like that. *smile*

Betsy was lovely enough to come to a book launch of  mine and we had a chance to chat. Since then we run into each other at conferences, and it's always a pleasure to catch up! We both live in Calgary, but it seems we usually see each other in other cities! So on to the best friend questions.

Did you have a best friend in high school? If you did, are you still in touch in any way? How involved are you in each others’ lives now?

BF: I had a lovely BFF in high school – he lives in another Province (the same one in which we went to school), and we mostly keep up by Facebook, on birthdays and occasions.
Facebook is the best for keeping up with friends. So, were you ever betrayed by a best friend?

BF: Nothing so dire, thank heavens.

Thank heavens, indeed! What is something your best friend did for you, that probably no other person would ever do.
BF: My best friend(s) have always been the people who stood beside me when nobody else would.

And that's why we love best friends!! What did you love most about you teenage best friend?

BF: My best friend was the most popular boy in our school – I certainly wasn’t. On Valentine’s Day our school had a horrible and truly frightening tradition where students could buy roses for each other and have them delivered to each other; as an overweight, bespectacled, ‘smart’ kid I found this to be an absolutely terrifying prospect. I got a red rose – the first flower I’d ever received – from my best friend, to the amazement of pretty much everyone in the class, and my delight.

Oh my GOSH. That is the best story ever. I LOVE him for that! What a great friend!
Was there anything that drove you crazy about your teenage best friend?

BF: He never thought he was as smart as he is.

Well, that's one of the good things that comes with age, I suppose! Sounds like you two were a great match. So all in all, what did you learn from your best teen friend?

BF: That I’m actually pretty cool.

Yah you are. And man, a best friend who can show you that is worth his weight in gold. Warms my heart! Thank you so much for sharing your amazing friend story, Betsy. Hopefully I will run into soon, and this time it won't be in another country!!!



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