Author Interviews

Q&A with Alethea Kontis—Bestselling Author, “Fairy Princess,” and Former Librarian

Alethea Kontis knew from the age of ten that she wanted to be a writer, but her parents informed her that writing was a “hobby,” not a career.  She has, as a result, become a self-described “professional hobbyist” and “fairy princess” who has made the New York Times bestseller list.  Ms Kontis’ debut novel Enchanted won the Gelett Burgess […]

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A Conversation with Author & Food Journalist Sarah Elton

Q: Starting From Scratch isn’t a cookbook, but it is a book for children about food. What need do you see this book fulfilling? What does Starting From Scratch offer children, families, and educators that no other kids book does? A: This book empowers kids with the knowledge they need in order to cook a […]

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R.J. Palacio,By Heather Kindschy

Mr. Browne’s September Precept: “When given the choice between being right or being kind, choose kind.” – Dr. Wayne Dyer On September 25th, I had the honor of hearing R.J. Palacio speak at Renfroe Middle School in Decatur, Georgia. Her visit was presented by my favorite independent bookstore, Little Shop of Stories, who awarded Palacio […]

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Meg Medina,Contributed by Sheilah Egan

Photo credit: Christopher Moore Story. The importance of each individual’s story had been on my mind when I attended The Shenandoah Children’s Literature Festival (Shenandoah University in Winchester, VA). Needless to say, I was bowled over when author Meg Medina began her presentation talking about the importance of story from the viewpoint of a Latina […]

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Being granted the opportunity to hear Chris Raschka give a speech or make a presentation is to be transported into the very real world of this gifted author/artist who has the ability to “reach” students and adults alike. He truly wants to share strong emotions “things that affect me” with people. Such themes as love, […]

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Matt de la Peña: Reading (and Writing) on the Wrong Side of the Tracks,By Sheilah Egan

Photo Credit: Heather Waraksa “Books were my secret.”Matt de la Peña secured the attention of his audience of teachers and librarians at The Shenandoah University’s Children’s Literature Festival (Winchester, VA 2013) with that opening. Knowing “your audience” is a skill that authors must master if they are to be successful in writing for specific ages […]

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The Natural World of Henry Cole,By Sheilah Egan

The 2013 Shenandoah University’s Children’s Literature Festival was the venue for Henry Cole’s presentation and slide show. It became obvious as he spoke, that Henry is very concerned that all children do not have opportunities to experience nature and the “out-of-doors.” Observing nature, first hand, should be an important part of “childhood development.” Many of […]

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Andrea Davis Pinkney-Human Dynamo,By Sheilah Egan

With a thesaurus in hand one could begin to list the adjectives that apply to the human dynamo that is Andrea Davis Pinkney. One should start with highly intelligent-having graduated from Syracuse University she immediately moved out on her own and began working as an editor with Mechanics Illustrated. Later she became a senior editor […]

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A Conversation with Author & Food Journalist Sarah Elton

Q: Starting From Scratch isn’t a cookbook, but it is a book for children about food. What need do you see this book fulfilling? What does Starting From Scratch offer children, families, and educators that no other kids book does? A: This book empowers kids with the knowledge they need in order to cook a […]

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LEMONADE IN WINTER,G. Brian Karas,17 August 2012 Blog Post

A while ago (2 1/2 years to be exact) I posted this on my blog about a book I had just begun to work on, LEMONADE IN WINTER by Emily Jenkins. why is it … ? 26jan10 That book is now published and will be released next month (Schwartz and Wade Books, Random House). Some […]

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Lynne Rae Perkins,Telling Stories with Words and Pictures,By Sheilah Egan

(My notes and observations of this impressive author/illustrator’s presentation were made during the Summer 2013 Children’s Literature Conference at Shenandoah University in Winchester, VA.) It was a wonderful day for the world of children’s and young adult literature when Lynne Rae Perkins decided to change her university major from architecture to art. Encouraged by her […]

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Interview with MONIKA SCHROEDER,By Sheilah Egan

Author Monika Schroeder is dedicated to writing for middle grade readers and young adults, utilizing stories and themes that often reflect the transitional times of a country’s history. Born in Germany, Schroeder was a schoolteacher for years before she decided to become a librarian. After getting her library endorsement at The American Embassy School, she […]

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Meg Medina,Contributed by Sheilah Egan

Photo credit: Christopher Moore Story. The importance of each individual’s story had been on my mind when I attended The Shenandoah Children’s Literature Festival (Shenandoah University in Winchester, VA). Needless to say, I was bowled over when author Meg Medina began her presentation talking about the importance of story from the viewpoint of a Latina […]

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A Conversation with Ann Hassett,By Peg Glisson

When I reached Ann Hassett, she was at her desk in a small K-8 school in Maine, easing back in to the opening of the school year. Tell me a bit about yourself. . . As an educator? As author? I’ve been in education for 32 years; I’m not sure I should admit that! I […]

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Jacqueline Jules

Jacqueline Jules is an award winning author and poet. Among her many children’s titles are No English, Duck for Turkey Day, and Unite or Die, Sarah Laughs, and Benjamin and the Silver Goblet, all recognized by the Sydney Taylor Award, and Freddie Ramos Takes Off, a Bank Street College of Education Best Books of the […]

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An Evening with Lisa Graff

An Evening with Lisa Graff By Sheilah Egan Photo by Emmy Widener. Used with permission. In the up-close-and-personal setting at Hooray for Books in Alexandria, VA, Lisa Graff began her presentation with low key remarks and a reading from A Tangle of Knots (Starred in Kirkus and Booklist), thus establishing the tone for a very […]

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Margarita Engle

Sunday, March 17, 2013 The Lightning Dreamer March 17 – Today’s post contributed by Margarita Engle THE LIGHTNING DREAMER, Cuba’s Greatest Abolitionist Margarita EngleI was inspired to write about Gertrudis Gómez de Avellaneda (also known by her childhood nickname, Tula) partly because she was brave, and partly because she was an independent thinker, far ahead […]

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Lori Epstein

Interview with Lori Epstein, Senior Illustrations Editor, National Geographic Society on National Geographic Book of Animal Poetry: 200 Poems with Photographs that Squeak, Soar, and Roar By Sharon Salluzzo If you are looking for a way to interest children in poetry, you need look no further than the National Geographic Book of Animal Poetry. It […]

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Phil Bildner

Phil Bildner“Reading is NOT optional.”   Anyone ever lucky enough to encounter the dynamic Phil Bildner will realize very quickly that: “Reading is Not optional” is his motto and his mantra. Bildner truly believes that reading is the key to life. It is the very source of freedom and liberation for everyone. He leads by example, taking […]

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Jon Klassen

Jon Klassen   Jon Klassen is the creator of the #1 New York Times bestseller I Want My Hat Back, which was named a Theodor Seuss Geisel Honor Book, a New York Times Book Review Best Illustrated Children’s Book of the Year, and a Publishers Weekly Best Children’s Book of the Year. He is the illustrator of […]

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