Guest Interview: Uma Krishnaswami & Vaunda Micheaux Nelson Reflect on Writing’s Journey

By Uma Krishnaswami

I have been a fan of Vaunda Micheaux Nelson’s work for decades now. We’ve been together in a writing group since 1997. I can’t imagine letting a manuscript go to my agent without having this amazing writer and friend cast her eyes on it first. I feel so fortunate that she is in my writing circle—my life circle.

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Carrie Firestone on Youth Activism & Dress Coded, Her Debut Middle Grade Novel

By Stephani Martinell Eaton

Today I am excited to introduce our readers to Carrie Firestone. Carrie is the author of two YA novels, The Loose Ends List (Little, Brown, 2016) and The Unlikelies (Little, Brown, 2017). Recently, her middle-grade novel Dress Coded (G.P. Putnam’s Sons,

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Career Achievers: Alex Sanchez on Thriving as a Long-Time, Actively Publishing Children’s-YA Author

By Cynthia Leitich Smith

Alex Sanchez is a successful tween-YA author with a long, distinguished career.

In children’s-YA writing, maintaining an active publishing career is arguably an even bigger challenge than breaking into the field.

Reflecting on your personal journey (creatively, career-wise, and your writer-artist’s heart), what bumps did you encounter and how have you managed to defy the odds to achieve continued success?

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Heart and Spirit: An Interview with Lisa Jenn Bigelow

By Carol Coven Grannick

As an author, poet, and chronicler—and clinical social worker—my writing tends to explore social-emotional learning (SEL). While I deeply value the STEM and STEAM frameworks (and poetry and stories!) my own commitment and abilities lean toward creating work that handles issues that promote and build on SEL, without which STEM and STEAM learning cannot thrive.

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Career Achievers: Anne Bustard on Thriving as a Long-Time, Actively Publishing Children’s Author

By Cynthia Leitich Smith

Anne Bustard is a successful children’s author with a long, distinguished career.

In children’s-YA writing and illustration, maintaining an active publishing career is arguably an even bigger challenge than breaking into the field. Reflecting on your personal journey (creatively, career-wise, and your writer-artist’s heart), what bumps did you encounter and how have you managed to defy the odds to achieve continued success?

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Career Achievers: Laura Ruby on Thriving as a Long-Time, Actively Publishing Author

By Cynthia Leitich Smith

Laura Ruby is a successful author with a long, distinguished career.

In children’s-YA writing, maintaining an active publishing career is arguably an even bigger challenge than breaking into the field.

Reflecting on your personal journey (creatively, career-wise, and your writer’s heart), what bumps did you encounter and how have you managed to defy the odds to achieve continued success?

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Guest Post: Kate Messner on The Secrets to Writing Lots of Books, Promoting Them, and Still Having a Life

By Kate Messner

I’ll start this post with a confession. I don’t really have any secrets.

The truth is, when my first novel came out in 2009, I made all of the same overeager mistakes other debut writers make when that first book is released–over-promoting and dragging my wonderfully supportive family to book event after book event for an entire season.

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Cynsations Return & Author Update: Cynthia Leitich Smith on Author Events, Balance, Social Media & What She’d Change About Publishing

Thank you, Cynsations readers, for joining us in the 16th year of this blog! We are so grateful to you all for reading, sharing and supporting our efforts. You’re the whole reason we’re doing this.

Thanks also to those of you who submitted questions for Cynthia over our winter hiatus. Full disclosure: Some of the wording was changed to fit the style of this blog.

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Guest Post: Carol Lynch Williams on Writing Craft, Perseverance & Writing Life

By Carol Lynch Williams

I’ve always been a writer.

The first thing I wrote, and produced, was a play. There were two members of the cast (myself and my younger sister), and one member in the audience. My grandmother, Nana.

I don’t think I was much more than seven years old.

Still,

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