R.J. Palacio is the pen name of Raquel Jaramillo, who is best-known as the author of the children’s novel called Wonder. Recently, some people might have seen her name because said novel has been made into a movie of the same name that was released on November 17 of 2017.
Here are five things that you may or may not have known about R.J. Palacio:
She Was an Art Director
Before she became an author, Palacio was an art director. To be exact, she was an art director for books, with the result that she has worked on both book covers and book jackets for numerous books from a wide range of both fiction and non-fiction genres. With that said, it is interesting to note that Palacio has always wanted to write books instead of just doing the book covers and book jackets for them.
She Never Found the Right Time to Write a Book
Palacio wanted to write a book, but for years and years, she kept putting it off with the excuse that it was not the right time for her to write a book. As a result, she did not start writing her book until she realized that it would never be the right time for her to write a book, meaning that she just had to go for it if she actually wanted to pursue her dream instead of just clinging onto it for the sake of personal comfort.
Her Book Was Based on a Real Life Incident
It is interesting to note that Wonder was inspired by a real life incident. What happened was that Palacio was out with one of her two sons when he noticed a girl with birth defects that had affected her face. Palacio was concerned that her son would upset either the girl or her family by making a fuss, which is why she decided to remove him from the situation. However, her interference actually made the whole situation that much worse. Later, when Palacio was thinking about a Natalie Merchant song called “Wonder,” she realized the the incident could serve as the seed for a valuable lesson, which went on to become the nucleus of the novel.
She Has Written a Couple of Spin-offs
So far, Palacio has written a couple of spin-offs of her initial success. One of these two spin-offs is a book of precepts from one of the characters in the novel. In contrast, the other spin-off tells some of the same events covered in Wonder but from the perspectives of other characters in the novel, thus making for a fresh reading experience.
Promotes the Choose Kind Campaign
Since she wrote Wonder, Palacio has promoted what is called the Choose Kind campaign. Essentially, the campaign encourages kids, their parents, and their teachers to practice kindness whenever possible, which is important because even a single moment of kindness can affect someone else for not just a single day but their entire lifetime. Furthermore, the campaign has a place where interested individuals can share their stories, thus encouraging others to put the same principles to practice.
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