1. How did you first get involved with 826NYC and why did you decide to volunteer?
I’ve been a fan of almost everything that’s come out of the McSweeney’s enterprise since picking up issue 6 of the Quarterly Concern (the one with an accompanying soundtrack by They Might Be Giants). The books, magazines, DVDs, t-shirts, and of course the 826 writing centers. I had often thought about getting involved, but until recently it never quite made it to the top of my to do list. I’m glad that it finally did.
2. What’s your favorite part of volunteering at 826NYC?
The crazy things that kids come up with. And getting to witness the germination of those ideas.
3. What do you do when you’re not at 826NYC?
I do freelance design work, read books, watch too much TV, and recently started constructing crossword puzzles. I attend a regular weekly trivia night, go to concerts, and occasional comedy shows. Also, I’m looking for work as a librarian, if you happen to be an eccentric billionaire who wants someone to manage your personal collections, please get in touch.
4. What advice would you give a new volunteer?
It can all be a little intimidating, especially if you’re not used to being around gaggles of kids, but just jump in and roll with it. They’ll probably only be able to pull the same fast one on you a couple of times before you catch on. Try and convince the students at tutoring to spend the 15 minutes with the writing prompt, no matter how much they tell you they don’t want to—oftentimes the most intransigent holdouts, when they finally set their pencil to paper, will produce the funniest or most touching (or both) bit of prose. If tutoring is not your thing, sign up for a field trip or help out in the Superhero Supply Underground Factory. Or, do a little of everything.
5. What are your super powers?
Animals tend to like me. And I don’t seem to age.