Nathan Hale’s Reading Tales

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The year is 1776. America’s first spy, Nathan Hale, is about to be hung for crimes against Britain. Flash forward around 220 years, and the author Nathan Hale starts his series about the spy, Nathan Hale’s Hazardous Tales.

Nathan Hale’s series is about different important points in history, all told from the viewpoint of the original Nathan Hale on the gallows. He relates tales about the Civil War ironclads, the Donner Party’s fatal trip, and even the story of World War 1 using animals wearing hats!

He keeps telling stories to the Proctor and the Hangman, both there to hear the fantastic and often fatal stories that he can tell to keep them occupied before the hang him for good.

The author Nathan Hale recently spoke at the Colorado Council International Reading Association’s annual conference. He talked about how he became a reader of books, and not a writer of them.

“Most writers are asked how they became a writer. It’s easy: you send in a manuscript again and again until the publisher publishes it and then you are a writer” he says. “I rather like to tell the story of how I became a reader.”

He goes on to tell us about how he discovered the audiobook shelf in the library and how this got him to read and draw a lot more. When he was in high school, he would paint scenery for theatre class while listening to these audiobooks.

“This is the format that worked for me. I am not saying that this will work for everyone, but it definitely worked for me.”

He worked on picture books for a while before he finally decided he hated having to run everywhere looking for the next big thing. “So I said, let’s do a series on the most boring thing to a student: American History.”

He is now a New York Times #1 author, and he is also doing a lot of talks to students around the country, giving a not-yet seen story about Lewis and Clark and the Louisiana Purchase. You can visit his website at http://hazardoustales.blogspot.com .