NOW FEATURING (DRUM ROLL) EILEEN CHRISTELOW

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Who loves to chant nursery rhymes? Oh come on…I’m sure some of you adults still act silly and sing an old nursery rhyme now and again, especially with children or grandchildren. Well, recently, Burlington, VT had a book festival, and I had the pleasure of writing the biography for author Eileen Christelow. If you haven’t heard of her, check her out!

Eileen Christelow is an impressive award-winning children’s author/illustrator who published her first book Henry and the Red Stripes in 1982 with Clarion Books. She is well known for her bestselling picture book series Five Little Monkeys. With abounding talent and precision, Christelow transforms the popular and timeless nursery rhyme into a delightfully entertaining and educational book enjoyed by both children and parents alike. The first book in the series, Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed, published in 1989, won the IRA/CBC Children’s Choice Award in 1990. Christelow then went on to write/illustrate more than ten more books in the Five Little Monkeys series, including some Spanish and simplified Chinese editions. Some of Christelow’s other titles include, Letters from a Desperate Dog and Where’s the Big Bad Wolf? Christelow is not only considered a creator of fiction, but is also accomplished in her nonfiction works, Vote!, published in 2003 and What Do Authors Do?, published in 1995. Christelow has won numerous awards with her artistic abilities. Just to name a few, she has been presented with such honors as the Washington Irving fiction award, the School Library Journal Best Books of the Year, and ALA Booklist Editor’s Choice. With over thirty titles published, Christelow has much to share during her school visits with elementary aged children. Christelow’s own history with books began as a child where books were a part of everyday family life. In college, she took art history and design courses and graduated with a BA in Architecture from the University of Pennsylvania. Later she found that she had an interest in photography as well. She went on to marry Ahren, her husband. They have one daughter and a dog named Emma. They reside in Dummerston, Vermont on top of picturesque Ascutney Mountain.

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About jvcarrwriterauthor

Everybody has realistic dreams, ones that start with a seed in the heart, are watered, then grow. Well...I finally published my dream, my young adult novel entitled Username: Bladen. The idea to write it literally struck me in the darkness of the night. I began this project not too long ago, though now it feels like forever. This book, in its original manuscript form, meandered down a typical publishing path in many ways, until it recently settled (Yay!) on the shelves of cyberspace. Soon, I hope it will find a happy home on the shelves of many book lovers, in a real home not just a virtual one. After all who doesn't like to see their dreams come true? Today, with the technological advances that we enjoy, dreams of publishing are well within a writer's grasp. Every mom, much to their chagrin, experiences sleepless nights. With six kids, I honestly can't remember the last time I slept through the night. Typically, when I wake up and can't fall back to sleep, I think too much about things, meditate, or pray. One night as I was praying, the plot for Username: Bladen literally flooded my thoughts. I got so excited about it that I decided to sit down and write and write and write. I spent a lot of time learning about publishing. I joined forums and writers' groups. When I finished my manuscript, I entered it into The Sandy Writing contest, which was a terrific learning experience. I didn't win, but one judge loved my story and gave me almost a perfect score. That gave me a lot of encouragement. I also queried it a little, and am amazed by how much I learned and loved the process. I know nobody likes rejection letters, but I appreciated the personal letters I received from agents that gave me insight into why they rejected my manuscript. Then finally, after I learned that publishers don't have a lot of shelf room for young adult novels with a male protagonist, I decided to stop querying and publish through Westbow. I found an extremely talented editor, and rather quickly finished the process of publishing my book. I couldn't be happier with the final result. If anyone has a story to tell, are willing to be diligent, and have a dream to be a published author, you can do it! Believe in yourself and make your dream come true!
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