Meet Our Kid Lit Authors
Our authors are among the most talented in the industry, ranging from break-out debuts to award-winning bestsellers. It is our pleasure to introduce you to them.
Since The Seymour Agency's founding in 1992, we have sold thousands of titles and have had the privilege of representing hundreds of clients. A few of them are listed below.
If you would like to find out more about our authors and their works, please visit the Literary Sales pages on Publishers Marketplace or search for a listing of recent sales.
Our Kid Lit Authors
Our Kid Lit Authors
Maria Wen Adcock
Maria Wen Adcock
Maria Wen Adcock is a first-generation Chinese-American writer who grew up in Michigan and moved to New York with dreams of working in media.
She founded BiculturalMama.com, an award-winning parenting blog that celebrates mixed families like her own – a combination of Asian and American cultures. As an established blogger, Maria has appeared on The Dr. Oz Show, Bloomberg News, Newsday, Huffington Post, and a YouTube Asian Food docuseries.
A passionate supporter of diversity, she is a Board Member and Supervisory Editor of Multicultural Kid Blogs, an organization with 200+ diverse global parenting bloggers. Prior to blogging, she worked as a marketing executive for magazines such as InStyle, Real Simple, and Entertainment Weekly.
Maria is an active SCBWI Long Island member and oversees its largest writing critique group. She resides in Long Island with her husband and two children. Maria looks forward to sharing her heritage with young readers through her books.
Facebook Author Page:
Instagram Handle: @BiculturalMama
Twitter Handle: @BiculturalMama
Raised between the bustling cities of Dubai, UAE and Karachi, Pakistan, Marzieh Abbas loves traveling, reading and samosas. She is a member of SCBWI-International Central and a graduate of the Children’s Book Academy. Whether she is writing picture books, chapter books, middle grade novels or poetry, Marzieh is passionate about bringing diverse cultures and characters to children all around the world.
She is active on Twitter, where she continues to form connections with the Writing Community, runs a kidlit review group on Facebook (Children’s Book Reviews- CBR Global) and blogs about her author journey and life in Pakistan on Instagram.
Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/marziehabbas/
Kelly Anne Blount
Kelly Anne Blount
Kelly Anne Blount is a USA Today bestselling author of young adult novels. She loves to alternate writing sweet romances, gritty thrillers, and fantasy books. She’s a firm believer in balancing light with dark.
When she’s not writing, she’s probably lost in a book, watching Twilight, or having an adventure with her sweet family, which includes her handsome husband, their darling daughter, and their five furry loving rescues.
After living in a palace in Scotland, across from the Caribbean Sea, and in the snowy land of Wisconsin, Kelly and her family reside in beautiful Asheville, North Carolina. She draws inspiration from the places she’s lived while world building in her books.
Kelly loves connecting with readers on social media! Stop by and say, “Hi!” or ask a question. You can find her everywhere @KellyAnneBlount.
Author Newsletter link: http://kellyanneblount.us16.list-manage.com/subscribe?u=0bc41130c2d01cf594a95c565&id=cde3f820c1
New York Times Bestselling author Barbara Bottner started writing for children after teaching kindergarten. Having gotten a degree in painting, she began to visit the children's section of bookstores and fell in love with picture books. She then wrote I Can Reads, middle grade and YA novels. She's also worked in TV sitcom, After School Specials and film. She wrote lyrics for Jim Henson and won animation awards for Sesame Street.
She's also published essays and short stories in The LAWeekly, The Miami Herald and Cosmopolitan. Bootsie Barker Bites, illustrated by Caldecott winner Peggy Rathmann, was translated into eight languages and animated for television and spawned a sequel. Barbara's MD husband, Gerald Kruglik, co-wrote Wallace's Lists, illustrated by Olof Landstrom, which was animated, translated into French and Swedish and mounted as a musical in Stockholm many times. In Miss Brooks Loves Books (and I don't) and the sequel Miss Brooks Story Nook, anyone who's ever struggled with reading or is the parent or teacher of a picky reader will rejoice in the way Miss Brooks handles a curmudgeon of a first grader. Bottner’s work regularly appears on the 'Best Of' lists as well as state reading lists. I Am Here Now, her 2020 YA free verse novel garnered a star from the Horn Book.
She’s authored or author/illustrated fifty books for children so far. She teaches writing and was honored to receive the New School Distinguished University Teaching Award in 1990. Her papers are collected in the Arne Nixon Center for The Book in Sacramento.
Sharon Chriscoe writes her books from the passenger seat of a bread truck where she and her husband, Ricky make deliveries of fresh bread and sweet cakes. Whether she is writing picture books or middle grade novels, she is passionate about creating lively worlds to entertain, educate, and inspire children everywhere.
She is the author of Race Car Dreams, Bulldozer Dreams, Fire Truck Dreams (Running Press Kids), Rainy Day Picnic, Best Snow Day (Read Your Story), and The Sparrow and the Trees (Arbordale Publishing). She is also published in a wide variety of magazines including Highlights, High Five, and The Old Farmers Almanac for Kids.
She and her husband live in North Carolina. They have three adult children and one adorable granddaughter.
Stacy B. Davids
Stacy B. Davids
Stacy B. Davids, Ph.D. is a licensed psychologist who works as a school psychologist. She’s also a former special education teacher. Her gender-identity themed, fiction picture book, ANNIE’S PLAID SHIRT, was praised by the GLBT Roundtable of the American Library Assoc., and won Silver in the Foreword Reviews’ INDIES Book of the Year Awards. Her consent and boundaries-themed picture book, SIMON THE HUGGER, will be published in Nov. 2022. She’s also the author of Hi-Lo (high interest, low reading level), nonfiction books – STRANGE BUT TRUE WEATHER, STRANGE BUT TRUE SCIENCE, and HIP-HOP GREATS. Stacy threw out her dresses and high heels years ago and wears men’s and women’s clothes. She lives in Florida, and loves cats, cookies, and chocolate.
Learn more at website: www.stacybdavids.com
A biracial Black author, Gabriele grew up longing to see families like hers reflected in the books she read. She’s delighted to have an opportunity to make that happen for other underrepresented readers. Gabriele holds a master’s degree from S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications and has worked as a children's magazine editor, a freelance writer and a tutor. She is a member of SCBWI and the 12x12 community and was honored to be a KidlitNation Mentee and a PBParty finalist. Gabriele's debut picture book, PEACHES, will be released by Abrams in 2022. She lives and writes in the Northwest Hills of Connecticut.
Gabriele is represented by Joyce Sweeney.
www.gabrieledavis.com (under construction)
writes in rhyme, most of the time - but not always. She is the author of the award-winning picture books, 1 Zany Zoo (illus. by Colin Jack), 2010 Winner of the Cheerios New Author Contest and 2013 Illinois Reads Book List; Cock-a-Doodle Oops! (illus. by Deborah Zemke), 2014 International Literacy Association Honor Book; and Just Read (illus. by Victoria Tentler-Krylov), 2020 – 2021 Illinois Reads Book List. Other titles include Norbert's Big Dream (illus. by Marco Bucci), Like a Girl (illus. by Mara Penny), and Travel Guide For Monsters (illus. by Dave Szalay). Lori was a teacher of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing and now writes full-time. She enjoys doing school visits and presenting at writing conferences. She lives with her family in a suburb of Chicago.
Gina Detwiler was planning to be a teacher but switched to writing so she didn’t have to get up so early in the morning. She’s the author of the Amazon bestselling YA supernatural Forlorn series, soon to be released in a 3-book bundle by Vinspire Publishing.
She also co-authored the bestselling middle-grade fantasy series The Prince Warriors with Priscilla Shirer. Her latest book is The Ultimate Bible Character Guide, published by LifeWay. She has three grown daughters and lives in Pennsylvania with her husband Steve and her dog Morey, who will never grow up.
Her aim in writing is to help make God real and relevant to young people who don’t always see a need for Him in their lives and who are more often attracted to the “dark side” of spirituality. “I saw my daughters devouring books like Twilight and Harry Potter and I realized that there’s a whole lot of supernatural content in the Bible that’s not only fascinating, it’s actually true. Why not write about it? That’s how the Forlorn series was born. I’m currently working on the fourth installment with no end in sight.”
Melody Dean Dimick
Melody Dean Dimick
Melody Dean Dimick is an award-winning author, the president of the Florida Writers Foundation—a not-for-profit organization promoting literacy—and a member of the Florida Writers Association (FWA), the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI), the Daytona Writers Guild, the Florida State Poets Association, and the Florida Authors and Publishers Association.
Eight of Melody’s short works appear in (FWA) collections. Both her Backpack Blues and What Lies Beneath won First Place in the unpublished general category of the Florida Writers Association’s Royal Palm Literary Awards. Her YA novel No Parents Allowed won the 2020 Gold Award. Her poem, “Ysobel Gomez,” captured Second Place in an FWA Royal Palm contest and her poem, “Running of Air” was selected for inclusion in Poetic Visions a Poetic Competition and Exhibition 2020 Anthology published by the Museum of Art DeLand, Florida.
Melody conducts poetry workshops, served as a speaker on the First Books Panel at a Miami SCBWI conference, participated in a panel discussion at the Museum of Arts & Sciences as part of the Volusia County National Endowment for the Arts NEA Big Read, and speaks at writers’ groups, schools, and libraries. To learn more about Melody and her books, readers can follow her blog under My News at www.MelodyDeanDimick.com.
Steven dos Santos
Steven dos Santos
Steven dos Santos is author of THE TORCH KEEPER novels, a Young Adult Post-Apocalyptic series featuring LGBTQ+ characters. Book One, THE CULLING, was named an American Library Association 2014 Rainbow List Top Ten Selection. Steven’s other series, DAGGER: THE DUST OPS, is a Young Adult Paranormal Espionage Adventure, also featuring LGBTQ+ characters. Steven graduated from Florida International University with a B.S. Degree from the School of Journalism and Mass Communications Television Broadcasting program and also has an MFA in Writing from Spalding University. He is an adjunct English Professor and a passionate advocate of LGBTQ+ rights.
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ stevendossantosauthor
Lori Dubbin was born and raised in Miami, Florida. She has been active in the local community as a past President of the National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW), Kendall Chapter, and as a board member of the Dave and Mary Alper Jewish Community Center. Lori also spent nineteen years as an early childhood educator at Temple Beth Am Day School in Miami, Florida.
Lori is an active member of SCBWI. In January 2020, she received the SCBWI Florida Regional Rising Kite Award for second place in the Picture Book category for her manuscript, Over the Rainbow with E. Y. “Yip” Harburg: The Man Who Wrote the Words the Whole World Sings. Her nonfiction picture book, A Walk Among the Stars, will be released by Kar-Ben Publishing in Spring 2023.
Lori enjoys doing crossword puzzles. Sometimes she steps away from a puzzle and that helps her figure out the missing words. She writes nonfiction picture books the same way, but with a lot more research and revision.
Carol Coven Grannick
Carol Coven Grannick
Carol Coven Grannick is an author, poet, and chronicler. Her poetry and fiction for young children has appeared or is forthcoming in numerous magazines, including Hello, Babybug, Highlights, Ladybug, and Cricket. She is a regular columnist for the Illinois SCBWI Prairie Wind, reporter for Cynthia Leitich Smith's award-winning blog, Cynsations, and a member of the GROG blog. Her awards include: Finalist, 2014 Katherine Paterson Award at Hunger Mountain (VCFA) Honorable Mention, 2018, Sydney Taylor Manuscript Competition Ragdale Foundation Writing Residency, 2016 Illinois Arts Council Grant, 2019. She is a member of The Society for Children's Writers and Illustrators and The Chicago Writers Association. She looks forward to many conversations with young readers about REENI'S TURN.
Spencer Hyde is the author of Waiting for Fitz and What the Other Three Don’t Know. Stories have a way of changing lives—Spencer learned that the first time he picked up a Tom Stoppard play and realized words can nudge the world and build bridges to hope. He is currently an assistant professor of English at Brigham Young University. Spencer and his wife, Brittany, are the parents of four children. His next novel is about the thousands of unexploded bombs from the Second World War.
Peggy Robbins Janousky
Peggy Robbins Janousky
Peggy Robbins Janousky was born in New York City, but spent the rest of her childhood dreaming of becoming a country girl. She now lives in a small town in Florida where chickens are protected citizens and sandhill cranes wander the streets.
Peggy's writing is just as quirky as the town that she lives in. She is especially drawn to humorous picture books as well as all forms of poetry. Much to the disgust of her family, Peggy naturally thinks in verse. It is a habit that she does not plan on breaking.
Peggy holds a master's degree in education and has taught on all levels- preschool through college. She has a diverse background in international student affairs, special education, as well as parenting and cross cultural education. Her dream is to combine her educational background with her writing, to help make a difference in a child's life.
To learn more about Peggy, please visit her at PeggyinPrint.com.
Joni Klein-Higger is an award-winning children’s book author, songwriter and musical theater playwright. Barnyard Bubbe’s Hanukkah,(Kar-Ben Publishing, 2019,) a board book Joni co-wrote with Barbara Sharf, was a #1 Amazon Best Seller and made The Washington Post Top Ten Holiday Books list. Her middle grade novel, Coby Ryan Harris is Officially Fat, won a Children’s Literary Classics Gold Award, and her picture book, Rainbow of Friendship, is the recipient of the 2015 Creative Child Magazine Book of the Year Award. Joni’s songs have been recorded by various artists, have been featured in motion pictures, and her children’s songs and musicals can be frequently heard ringing throughout the halls of preschools, elementary schools and middle schools across the country.
Visit Joni at her website: www.joniworld.com
Joni [email protected]
Joni Klein-Higger Books
Lillie Lainoff is a writer, a fencer, and now, a writer who writes about fencing. She doesn’t understand why her parents gave such a clumsy eight-year-old a saber, but she’s thankful for it every day. A former Div I NCAA athlete and NCAA Championship competitor, she currently coaches fencing and is the founder of Disabled Kidlit Writers. Her writing has received awards from the Los Angeles Review, Glimmer Train, and the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards, and has been featured in The Washington Post Outlook and Washington City Paper, amongst other places. ONE FOR ALL (FSG, Winter 2022) is her debut novel.
Melissa Landers is a former teacher who left the classroom to pursue other worlds. A proud sci-fi geek, she isn't afraid to wear her Princess Leia costume in public just ask her husband and three kids. She lives just outside Cincinnati and writes adult contemporary romance as Macy Beckett.
Lorie Langdon is an Amazon best-selling author of YA novels such as; the Doon Series, Gilt Hollow, and Olivia Twist, which has received a starred review from Booklist Magazine and was picked up by Target Stores across the nation. She is an international speaker who has been featured on such media outlets as; USAToday.com, NPR Radio, EntertainmentWeekly.com, RedbookMagazine.com, and Girl’s Life Magazine. Chapters Interactive Stories developed her fantasy series into a ‘choose your own ending’ mobile video game.
And in 2019, Olivia Twist was contracted for film development by Lonetree Entertainment. Lorie is a self-professed Wonder Woman Wannabe who lives in Ohio with her husband and two superhero obsessed teenage sons.
Heather Macht, author of REX THE...WE-DON'T-KNOW (Pelican, 2020), THE ANT FARM ESCAPE! (Pelican, 2019), and YOU MAY JUST BE A DINOSAUR (Pelican, 2015), is an active children's author who has been creating stories since the third grade! She earned her degree in fine arts from Florida State College at Jacksonville and holds a career as an I.T. professional and a full-time mom. Macht’s an active member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, is a volunteer judge for Rate Your Story, and lives with her family in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida. In her spare time, she dwells in poetry and picture books, and enjoys painting beach scenes and monsters of all sorts.
For more, visit www.heathermacht.com.
Bethany Mangle is an author of young adult contemporary fiction. Her debut novel, PREPPED, will be published in spring 2021 by Margaret K. McElderry Books. She lives and writes in Mississippi. She can be found online at
www.bethanymangle.com or on Twitter as @bethanymangle.
Lynne Marie is the author of HEDGEHOG GOES TO KINDERGARTEN - illustrated by Anne Kennedy (Scholastic 2011), HEDGEHOG's 100th DAY OF SCHOOL (Scholastic 2017) and THE STAR OF THE CHRISTMAS PLAY - both illustrated by Lorna Hussey (Beaming Books 2018), MOLDILOCKS AND THE THREE SCARES - illustrated by David Rodriguez Lorenzo (Sterling 2019 and Scholastic 2019), and a nonfiction picture book, LET’S EAT - MEALTIME AROUND THE WORLD - illustrated by Parwinder Singh (Beaming Books 2019) and AMERICAN PIE - illustrated by Deborah Cuneo (Dancing Flamingo Press, 2022). When she’s not observing the bees and enjoying honey-tasting, she lives on a lake in South Florida with her family, a Schipperke named Anakin and several resident water birds. You can learn more about her at www.LiterallyLynneMarie.com.
Anne Marie Meyers
Anne Marie Meyers
Ann Marie Meyers grew up in Trinidad and Tobago in the West Indies and currently lives in Toronto, Ontario, with her husband, daughter and two cats. She has a degree in languages and translates legal and technical documents from French and Spanish into English. In addition to being an active member of SCBWI, she is one of the organizers for SCBWI Canada East’s membership ‘Get Togethers’ in the Toronto area.
Although Ann Marie initially started writing for adults, when her daughter was born she kept getting ideas for stories that would appeal to kids. Her first children’s book, a middle grade fantasy entitled Up In The Air, was an Amazon best seller. Ann Marie has also won grants from the Toronto Arts Council, The Ontario Arts Council and Recommender Grants associated with the Toronto Arts Council for two of her Works In Progress.
Nora Nickum is a children’s author, writing fiction and nonfiction picture books. Her stories range from lyrical to humorous and often celebrate the quirkiness and diversity of animals and nature. In addition to being a writer, Nora works in ocean conservation. She lives on Bainbridge Island, WA, with her husband and daughter. Nora is an active member of the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI).
Aixa Pérez-Prado is a native of Argentina who immigrated to the United States as a small child. She is a writer, illustrator, translator and professor at Florida International University with a PhD in Social Science and Education. Aixa has lived in Argentina, the U.S., Costa Rica, Morocco and Brazil, and draws inspiration for her stories and illustrations from these diverse locations. Aixa has published two academic books on teaching through critical and creative thinking strategies and created the cover art for both texts. Her current passion is writing and illustrating picture books aimed at giving diverse children a chance to see their multilayered identities represented through stories that resonate with heart and humor.
Aixa writes in both Spanish and English and enjoys mixing languages in her prose. Similarly, she loves illustrating by employing different techniques in a whimsical style including watercolor, acrylic, ink, and digital. She especially enjoys combining all of these elements through collage. Aixa has been a finalist in several writing and illustration contests including two honorable mentions in Florida SCBWI’s Rising Kite Contest, and is the KidLit 411 banner illustrator for November 2021. Aixa is represented by Joyce Sweeney.
Stacie Ramey is the author of The Sister Pact, a contemporary realistic Young Adult novel which was named a YALSA 2016 Popular Paperback and a 2015 PSLA Top 40. Her sophomore novel, The Homecoming was awarded a Florida Book Award. Kirkus called her third book, The Secrets We Bury " A sensitive, funny, and sometimes awkwardly romantic story of survival and self-awareness" and also named it to its list of 13 YA Books Both You and Your Teen Will Enjoy. It’s My Life is about a high school junior with cerebral palsy, who is on the verge of giving up on herself until she learns that her childhood crush has moved back to town. When Stacie’s not writing, she engages in Netflix wars with her children or beats her husband in Scrabble, all while watching the Florida Gators and Penn State Nittany Lions play (Go Gators).
Kiley Roache is the author of FRAT GIRL and THE DATING GAME, two young adult novels published by Inkyard Press, a division of HarperCollins. Kiley grew up in the suburbs outside Chicago, and has been writing since the 7th grade. She signed with a literary agent days before graduating high school.
She is a graduate of Stanford University where she studied Political Science. She authored both her books while she was still a college student, and once got up early to look at copyedits before painting her face for a tailgate.
Kiley has also worked as a journalist, and her bylines are in The Wall Street Journal, San Francisco Chronicle, and the Chicago Tribune’s teen publication The Mash, among others. She holds a master’s degree from Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. In 2018, she wrote an op-ed for The New York Times’s “On Campus” series entitled “The Future of Frats” arguing that fraternities should go co-ed. It was the lead story in the Times’s “The Edit” newsletter that week.
She now lives in New York City, where she is writing her third novel and running (very slowly) in Central Park.
Lisa Brown Roberts
Lisa Brown Roberts
Lisa Brown Roberts is the award-winning author of The Bookworm Crush, The Replacement Crush, and more. Her novels—featuring adorkable teens navigating family, friendship, and first love—have earned praise from Kirkus Reviews, Publishers Weekly, and the School Library Journal. Her novel Spies, Lies, and Allies was selected by the Denver BookBar for their Local-to-Local program, which distributes books by local authors to community schools to encourage summer reading.
Lisa has presented at the Colorado Teen Literature Conference, Tattered Cover Teen Book Con, Denver BookBar Children’s BookFest, Denver Comic Con, SHINE Summit Day of Empowerment and Education for Young Women, Letters and Lines SCBWI conference, and the Northern Colorado Writers Conference. Lisa lives in Colorado with her family and loves to hear from readers.
Leah and Kate Rooper
Leah and Kate Rooper
Leah and Kate Rooper are sisters who live on beautiful Vancouver Island, BC. Ever since they were little, they have loved playing make-believe. Now even as "grown-ups", they play make-believe every day in the stories they write. When not writing, you can find Leah and Kate teaching in an elementary school, cosplaying their favorite princesses, or rolling the dice for an intense Dungeons and Dragons game.
Leah's Twitter: https://twitter.com/leahrooper (@leahrooper)
Kate's Twitter: https://twitter.com/katerooper (@katerooper)
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/leahkatewrite/ (@leahkatewrite)
Jonathan Rosen is a transplanted New Yorker, who now lives with his family and rescue dog, Parker, in sunny, South Florida. When not writing, he can be found with his family, most likely watching Impractical Jokers. Jonathan is proud to be of Mexican-American descent, although neither country has been really willing to accept responsibility. He is the author of Night of the Living Cuddle Bunnies, and its sequel, From Sunset Till Sunrise.
He is an administrator of FromtheMixedUpFiles.Com, a site devoted to MG books, and a founding member of SpookyMG.com, a site devoted to spooky middle grade. Jonathan is proud of the fact that between him and JK Rowling, they have more followers on Twitter than any other two Middle Grade authors combined.
Hi. My name is D.R. Rosensteel. I write clean YA fantasy action-adventure stories wrapped around real teen issues like bullying, drug abuse, and peer pressure. There may be a hint of romance or a touch of horror, but there will always be action, action action!
My message to kids who feel different—stick together. We have the rest of the world outnumbered.
My message to parents—pay attention. The evils of bullying, drug abuse, and peer pressure are real, and our kids don’t always talk about it. Don’t be a helicopter, but never be afraid to be a parent. Our kids need our guidance and our love. It’s great that they have friends who have their backs, but it’s better that they know you do.
My message to Psi Fighters—Vanquish Evil, Do Right, Protect the Innocent!
Melissa Roske is a writer of contemporary middle-grade fiction. Before spending her days with imaginary people, she interviewed real ones, as a journalist in Europe. In London, she landed a job as an advice columnist for Just Seventeen magazine, where she answered hundreds of letters from readers each week. (Her column was called “Life Sucks,” but it was Melissa’s job to insist it didn’t.)
Upon returning to her native New York, Melissa contributed to several books and magazines, selected jokes for Reader’s Digest (just the funny ones), and received certification as a life coach, from NYU. Currently an active blogger for the popular MG website, From the Mixed-Up Files of Middle-grade Authors, Melissa lives in Manhattan with her husband, daughter, and the occasional dust bunny.
Kat Greene Comes Clean is her debut novel (Charlesbridge).
Joanna Rowland is the award-winning picture book author of THE MEMORY BOX: A BOOK ABOUT GRIEF. She writes comforting books that offer support and encouragement to children during difficult times and fun books with a twist.
She’s a teacher by day and a writer by night. Joanna lives in Sacramento, California.
@WriterRowland - https://twitter.com/WriterRowland
@writerrowland - https://www.instagram.com/writerrowland/
Erin Danielle Russel
Erin Danielle Russel
Erin Danielle Russell is the author of the picture book, How to Trick the Tooth Fairy, and coauthor of eight books in the New York Times bestselling children’s series, Dork Diaries. Erin started her creative career as an award-winning cartoonist for the University of Michigan’s newspaper, The Michigan Daily, and then dove into the exciting world of children’s books and never looked back. When she’s not daydreaming or writing, she’s drawing, cooking, playing Dungeons & Dragons, or geeking out over fantasy books and TV shows. Erin lives in Northern Virginia with her husband, Jacob, and her pet teddy bear, Stanley.
Erin Danielle Russell
Chantele Sedgwick is a YA author, harpist, wife to one cute hubby and stay-at-home mom to four silly kids. She is the author of Love, Lucas, Switching Gears, Interlude, the forthcoming The Summer of Lost Things (June 4, 2019) and other titles. She's also a Gryffindor, Kit Kat hoarder, avid reader & lover of all things nerd. Chantele is represented by Nicole Resciniti of The Seymour Agency.
Medeia Sharif was born in New York City and presently calls Miami her home. She received her master’s degree in psychology from Florida Atlantic University. After becoming a voracious reader in high school and a relentless writer dabbling in many genres in college, she found her niche writing picture books, short stories, and novels for young people. In addition to being a published author, she’s a public-school teacher.
When she’s not writing, she is busy collecting recipes and is fond of baking. She also loves to garden and take care of her feline fur babies.
An Oregon native, Stephanie completed her Bachelor of Science degree in Education at Oregon State University and her Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology at Lewis and Clark College. Her professional life includes teaching children with severe behavioral challenges, school counseling and school administration. But now her love is working with illustrators and editors to create stories that range from quiet to quirky, poetry to prose. When she isn’t assisting door-to-door vacuum cleaner vampire salesmen, taking cows on shopping trips for muumuus, or helping garden slugs with their calligraphy, she can be found at home with her husband Brad and her labradoodle Milo.
Stephanie is a member of SCBWI and has served on the faculty of Oregon SCBWI at annual conferences and as a mentor to aspiring writers at Oregon Great Critiques many times. She is a three-time award winner for her contributions to Highlights for Kids and High Five Magazine.
Martha Seif Simpson
Martha Seif Simpson
Martha Seif Simpson is a wife, mom, librarian, and author. During her 26 years as Head of Children’s Services at the Stratford Library in CT, she has attended over 50 library conferences and dragged her kids along to many of them. The result is two more librarians to perpetuate the species. Martha is a long-time member of the American Library Association and the Association for Library Service to Children and has served on numerous committees, including the Newbery Award. She is also a member of the Association for Jewish Libraries, the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, and the Author’s Guild.
Martha’s earliest publications were library resource books, starting with the first-ever manual for summer reading programs. She also published three picture books, including two Jewish holiday stories set in an old Eastern European toy store. When she is not working at the library or writing, Martha and her husband enjoy travelling. Martha is proud to be an #OwnVoices author and has more stories she hopes to share with young readers.
Martha KidLit Author
Joyce Sweeney is the author of fourteen novels for young adults and two chapbooks of poetry. Her first novel, Center Line, won the First Annual Delacorte Press Prize for an Outstanding Young Adult Novel. Many of her books appear on the American Library Association's Best Books List and Quick Picks for Reluctant Readers.
Her novel Shadow won the Nevada State Reading Award in 1997. Her novel Players was chosen by Booklist as a Top Ten Sports Book and by Working Mother magazine as a Top Ten for Tweens. Her novel, Headlock (Holt 2006), won a Silver Medal in the 2006 Florida Book Awards and was chosen by the American Library Association as a Quick Pick for Reluctant Readers.
Her first chapbook of poems, IMPERMANENCE , was published in 2008 by Finishing Line Press, her second, entitled WAKE UP will be released by the same publisher this spring. She has had numerous poems, short stories, articles and interviews published; and her play, FIRST PAGE CRITIQUES was produced in 2011.
Joyce has recently switched to writing young adult fantasy fiction and is represented by Nicole Resciniti of the Seymour agency.
Andrea Tripke is a German born children’s book writer and illustrator. In 2003, she moved to the United States and has lived in Michigan, California, Ohio, Alabama and Florida. Her adventurous lifestyle paved the path for a somewhat different career and opened her up to follow the lifelong dream of becoming a professional artist. Andrea got a degree in fine arts, majoring in illustration, from the Columbus College of Art and Design.
She made her debut as a picture book illustrator published by Ripple Grove Press. Excited by working in the children’s book industry and the thought of leaving a footprint behind through her books, she got hooked. She wanted to do more, and while working on a project, Andrea became inspired with the idea to write and illustrate her own stories.
Growing up ecologically aware, Andrea often but not always includes environmental problems in her otherwise fictional and mostly humorous picture book stories.
She lives with her husband, daughter and very stubborn Lhasa Apso Frankie in Melbourne, Florida. Andrea loves the sun and beaches, and might stay there forever… But then, you never know.
As a child, Katie Venit mapped ant trails and listened to maple leaves in the wind. She wished goodnight to the stars and never missed a chance to smell honeysuckle. As an adult, she continues to search for wonder in everyday objects and moments. Her heartfelt and STEM-loving writing illuminates everyday wonder through lyrical prose or science-driven deep-dives.
Katie’s debut picture book FORTS will be released by Viking in 2023. Her flash fiction for adults has been nominated for Best of the Net and Best Small Fictions. She lives in Wisconsin with her husband and two kids. She is a member of SCBWI and sits on the advisory board of the Chippewa Valley Writers Guild.
Her website is www.katievenit.com.
Beth Vrabel is author of the Cybils’-nominated Caleb and Kit, ILA award-winning A Blind Guide to Stinkville, JLG-selection A Blind Guide to Normal, The Reckless Club, the Pack of Dorks series, and The Newspaper Club. She lives in Connecticut with her family.
Jenna has always had a passion for creating for children, from her playful greeting cards, to her work as a toy designer. Jenna is the author of two forthcoming picture books, LARRY’S LATKES and SHARK-BOT SHALOM, Apples & Honey Press, Fall 2021. She was chosen as a #PBChat Mentee by author Lori Degman in 2019. Jenna is a member of SCBWI, Poet’s Garage, and a contributor to Cricket Media. Jenna, her husband, their two boys, and three cats (Tupac, Midnight, & Pippa) have their home in Northern CA; where there is always an experiment bubbling, or fort construction underway.
Donnie Welch is a poet, author, and educator who has worked with students with intellectual, developmental, and multiple disabilities since 2014. He runs sensory and movement-based writing workshops inclusive for students of all abilities at schools, museums, and cultural centers in New York City including: the Rebecca School, the Bronx Museum of the Arts, the New York Public Library, the Brooklyn Public Library, the New York Restoration Project, and more. When not teaching or writing he can most likely be found hiking in Inwood Hill Park, the Hudson Valley, or along the Appalachian Trail.