Having lived all her life in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina, mountain ways and lingo are deeply embedded in Lisa Fowler’s heart and mind.
Fowler did her undergraduate studies at Trevecca University in Nashville, Tennessee, and is currently a member of SCBWI, but what has prepared her to write for children is the time she’s spent teaching primary Sunday school classes and heading up a Bible quiz team for teens. She also traveled for the better part of ten years arranging instrumental music with a young people’s singing group: CELEBRATION, and she volunteered with the public school system assisting elementary-aged children with writing and reading.
Her publishing credits include devotions for DevoKids, and a short story published in the series of books: God Makes Lemonade.
She lives now in North Carolina with her brilliant and talented daughter, her elderly, confused (but still lovely) mother, and the feisty pit bull she rescued from the pound.
D. Ann Graham
D. Ann Graham is an adventurer, presently living with her husband aboard the sailing vessel GLORY B (near Seattle) and getting ready for a trip up the Inside Passage to Alaska, but in the past she worked in the journalism industry for many years, both on staff and freelance. She has been a writer and editor for The Autoscene, an automotive aftermarket magazine (California), editor and columnist for the Curry Coastal Pilot Newspaper (Oregon), the Petersburg Pilot Newspaper (Alaska). She has also published articles in national magazines, such as Sea, Pacific Skipper, Women’s World, and Chickadee.
Her online experience includes website design and management, and writer and editor for Wilderness Kids Club, an outdoor children’s magazine sponsored by the Wilderness School Institute. She has been a regular columnist for the online Childcare Magazine, where she interviewed well-known scientists and medical personnel.
Graham also spent several years as a schoolteacher (grades 1-10), and worked for over twenty years as a specialized foster parent for delinquent youth (Nevada, Oregon, and Alaska), the training for which she received from the University of Kansas and Boys Town.
More recently, Ms. Graham has been writing inspirational adult novels under the pen name Lilly Maytree. But she loves writing for middle-grade and YA audiences most of all.
For more information, visit: http://www.lillymaytree.com/
Hannah C. Hall is wife to a worship pastor and stay-at-home mom to three delightful kids ages four to four months. She and her family live in a small town in Arkansas. She enjoys cotton candy, roller coasters, sunshine on her face, traveling to faraway places, and writing with a really good ink pen.
Though she studied broadcasting and journalism in college, she found that being a full-time mom was just way more fun. And when she added writing children’s books on the side, she knew she had found her dream job.
When she’s not wrangling kiddos or writing you can also find her serving in her church where she writes a monthly newsletter column, chairs the mission committee, volunteers in the nursery and has led several women’s Bible studies.
Visit Hannah on her blog: http://hannahchall.com/
Elizabeth Harper believes that some days she has more power than the President. Those are the days when a child looks her in the eye and asks, “Mrs. Harper, what book should I read?” Oh, how heavy weighs the golden scepter of a child’s book choice in the hands of the School Librarian.
The question, “What book should I read?” repeated in so many different voices over so many days, drove Elizabeth to read on, looking for literary treasures to place in the hands of a child.
Over time, her search revealed holes in the literature market. Some gems of infinite worth were simply missing, and other diamonds of great literature no longer glinted in the eyes of this generation. “Can old truth shine in new eyes?” she wondered.
The hunt for missing literary treasures prodded the librarian down a long and windy path of reading and eventually of writing. She decided that what could not be found must be created. So she gathered her resources—the love of her family, the humor of her husband, the uncanny if occasionally off-kilter wisdom of her kids—brushed the dust from her English degree, and set to work.
Joyce Magnin is the author of nine books. Seven books for adults including the award-winning Bright’s Pond series, the Harriet Beamer novels, Maybelle in Stitches (Quilts of Love Series) and two middle grade novels, Carrying Mason and Cake—Love, Chickens, and a Taste of Peculiar.
Her debut novel, The Prayers of Agnes Sparrow (Bright’s Pond) was named one of the top five titles of 2009 by Library Journal. Joyce’s most recent release, Cake was awarded the coveted Starred review from Kirkus Reviews. Her work has received much critical acclaim.
Joyce can be found on the web:
By day Lauricia Matuska is a mild-mannered teacher of high school literature and creative writing. By night she is a clandestine writer, fighting battles against time and responsibility to steal precious moments in which to compose the next few lines of her novel-in-progress.
Lauricia (pronounced La-ris-sa) grew up in Roswell, New Mexico but graduated high school and moved to college one year before the city’s alien visitations became public knowledge. Currently, she lives outside of Houston, Texas, with her husband, sons, and entirely too many pets.
An avid reader of fantasy literature since the age of ten, Lauricia is especially inspired by the novels of J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, Madeline L’Engle, Tad Williams, and Neil Gaiman, among many others. Her desire to write manifested in middle school, but was buried under the well-meant warnings of concerned adults, so she decided to study physics, instead. Her freshman year in college began with courses in honors English, and remedial college algebra. Two semesters of immense success in her literature classes and abysmal failure in remedial math convinced her that she was not designed to be a scientist, so she changed her major and returned to her first love.
You can find out more about her on her website at http://lauricia-matuska.com/.
Stephanie’s work for children has been published in Highlights for Children, Spider, Chickadee, Jack & Jill, and Club House, among others. Several anthologies also include her work for children. Her book, The Tornado, was published by HarperCollins as a part of their Comets series.
A former faculty member for the Institute of Children’s Literature, Stephanie has lectured at the International Reader’s Association annual convention and been an instructor for the Chautauqua Writers’ Workshop sponsored by the Highlights Foundation. She has presented workshops for children in schools and libraries in the U.S. and Canada.
As a certified Master Naturalist in Georgia, she specializes in stories for children that focus on animals’ natural (and not so natural) habitats and the protection of our environment.
Currently she is Chairman of Georgia’s Atlanta-Fulton County Library Board of Trustees that oversees 33 branch libraries with a circulation of 4 million, and its specialty branch: the Auburn Avenue Research Library on African American Culture and History. She is also Local Liaison for Southern Breeze, SCBWI’s southeast affiliate, where she is well known for hosting writers’ workshops at branch libraries.
The first time Cathi O’Tyson thought about writing for kids as a career, she was just a kid herself at thirteen years old. In high school, she was drawn to the stage and joined the drama club, and her new dream of becoming an actress led her to Valdosta State as a Theatre major. As a young college student, Cathi was cast as fifty-year-old supporting characters more than once and was awarded the pivotal role as the skunk in Winnie-the-Pooh. It was then that she realized she would never get the ingénue roles that she craved and that as a writer there is no typecasting, so she gets to play all of the parts. After a few years of writing screenplays, Cathi finally came full circle back to her original dream and adapted one of her unproduced scripts into her first childrens’ novel.
Cathi lives in the Atlanta area with her husband Mark. They share a love for travel, and the only things holding them back from auditioning for The Amazing Race are Cathi’s vegetarian diet and her acrophobia. After a long and unplanned career in accounting, she left her corporate job to pursue her writing career. Cathi is hard at work on her fourth novel.
Paul has a 30-year ‘stint’ in plying his trade as a freelance illustrator, cartoonist and writer. His work has appeared in books (Coaching Young Athletes) newspapers (a syndicated feature called Strictly Classified), magazines (Yoga Editor for Inspiration Magazine), art shows and the Web.
Paul has also worked with the San Francisco’s Cartoon Art Museum, San Francisco City College, and the Half Moon Bay continuing education program in teaching the art of cartooning both to adults and to children.
What started out as a volunteer gig in 2001 is now Chris’s full-time vocation as he makes his living as a school-visiting author-illustrator-musician. In the last ten years, Chris
has encouraged over 300,000 students in over 900 schools in 37 states coast to coast and has spoken at numerous
events and conferences. He is the creator of three traditionally published and three self-published books, and is now making his mark as a painter of murals and other works by commission. Chris lives in the mountains of north Georgia with his wife Cathy. They have two grown children, Zachary and Kara.
Find Chris on the web:
Taryn’s first book, Whole-y Cow! Fractions are Fun was published by Sleeping Bear Press (2010), and Scholastic purchased paperback rights. It was a best seller for Scholastic’s Book Clubs in the non-fiction category in March, 2011. It was awarded a Preferred Choice Award by the Creative Child Awards Program, and it was recognized by the Albany City Reading Council, in New York, as one of the Best Books of 2010 in the Primary category.
She has presented at the Florida Council of Teachers of Mathematics, the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, and also the Florida Reading Association, Tennessee Reading Association, Arkansas Reading Association, and at the Virginia State Reading Association on the topic of using children’s literature to reduce math anxiety in the classroom. She will be speaking at the Florida Association for Media in Education on the same topic. Taryn has also visited several schools in Florida and Texas to share her story with students.
Taryn graduated from the University of North Texas with a degree in Interdisciplinary Studies and a specialization in Mathematics. She taught until she and her husband had kids. She now stays at home with her three children and, using her experience as a teacher and a previous mathophobe, writes books to help students who struggle with math phobia.
Kim Sponaugle is a free-lance children’s illustrator. Upon graduation from The Art Institute of Philadelphia, she began working for DC Cook Publishing as a children teaching aid designer but soon found her heart vocation in children’s illustration. While working as a kid’s portrait artist, Kim developed a style that captured the effervescence of childhood and has tried to incorporate that joy into her book work.
In 2007, Kim started Picture Kitchen Studio, and has since had the opportunity and pleasure of illustrating more than forty books for kids. Picture Kitchen Studio has been honored to receive the Mom’s Choice, Pinnacle Book, CIPA EVVY and Reader’s Favorite Awards.
Kim enjoys life as a wife, mom, and westie owner, living in Southern NJ.
Find Kim on the web:
Lisa Lowe Stauffer
Although from childhood she secretly longed to write fiction, Lisa Lowe Stauffer has written her way through journalism, marketing, consulting, travel writing and poetry. Her work has appeared in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the Miami Herald, Literary Mama, Stories for Children, and numerous business websites, brochures, newsletters, press releases and magazine articles.
Today, Lisa writes picture books and novels from Roswell, Georgia, and is an active volunteer with the Southern Breeze region of SCBWI.
Theodocia (Teddy) Swecker
Teddy (aka the Color Witch) has been an art instructor at Great Basin College, Winnemucca, Nevada, for 28 years and a painter, and muralist for 30 years. Her art appears in galleries in Northern Nevada. She received her BA in Fine Arts at the University of Nevada, Reno along with a secondary teaching certificate in art (k-12). Teddy was Nevada’s Co-Regional Advisor for the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, 1988-1995. She was nationally selected as 1 of 12 artists/writers to attend the Uri Sheluvitz Summer Workshop at Hartwick College in Oneonta, New York.
She is the illustrator of three books, Mommi Watta, Spirit of the River written by Virginia Castleman, Children in Distress, an art therapy book for medical students written by Linda Whitney Peterson and Milton Edward Hardin and her third is a children’s book, Ducks Ducks, which she wrote, illustrated and published.
Yearly, she visits schools (K-12) as an artist for Very Special Arts Nevada, VSAN, a non-profit organization that reaches rural schools where art programs are not available.
As an illustrator she travels throughout Nevada teaching students and presenting in-service writing and drawing seminars to teachers. She has also presented in California, Washington, Idaho and South Dakota. Teddy has been a guest speaker for “Art of the Children’s Book” Annual Seminar, “The Path of the Children’s Book Illustrator” University of Nevada, Reno and featured speaker for Awards Night for Washoe County Teachers and Catesol (California Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages).