Alexandria LaFaye is best known for her historical fiction, including the novel Worth which won the Scott O’Dell Award for Historical Fiction, the picture book Walking Home to Rosie Lee which was an IRA Teacher’s Choice selection, Stella Stands Alone, The Year of the Sawdust Man, and Nissa’s Place, but she’s also done reality based fantasy Water Steps, and supernatural tales in a historical setting, The Keening.
Alexandria is an associate professor of English at Greenville College and a visiting associate professor in the summer graduate program in Children’s and Young Adult Literature at Hollins University. Alexandria is a versatile presenter, able to speak to kids from pre-school to high school and offers workshops for teachers and librarians on a variety of subjects.
You can discover more about Alexandria, a talented author and mother of five, by visiting her website at http://www.alafaye.com You can also follow her on twitter @artlafaye or on FB at https://www.facebook.com/alafayeauthor
Emma Bland Smith
Emma Bland Smith lives in San Francisco with her husband, Alex, and two kids, Everett (10) and Cate (7). Emma was born in Scotland, grew up in San Francisco, and has lived in New York, Santa Barbara, and Paris. Now she's back home, living a block away from the house she grew up in. She has master's degrees in French and library science, and past careers have included magazine editor and French teacher. Today, Emma works part-time as a librarian and fills the rest of her time volunteering at her kids' school, leading a Girl Scouts troop, driving to baseball practice, cooking, gardening, and writing. (You can read her book reviews at emmaskidsbooks.wordpress.com, and on the website Red Tricycle.)
Emma thinks picture books are about as magical as it gets. (Her top five? Miss Rumphius, by Barbara Cooney; A Good Day, by Kevin Henkes; Blueberries for Sal, by Robert McCloskey; Library Lion, by Michelle Knudsen; and Ira Sleeps Over, by Bernard Weber.) She started writing picture books when her kids were little, and she never thought she'd want to try another genre. Then they got a little older, and she fell in love with early chapter books. Now that her son is a tween, she's considering jumping into middle grade. But YA? Never! Because, you know, her kids will never turn into teens. @EmmaBlandSmith
Debbie grew up in Ocala, a small town in North Florida that’s home to mostly retired folks and horses. But she had big dreams and shook the dust of that little town off her feet and went to see the world. Well, maybe not the world, but more than Ocala. So, after graduating from college she moved to Los Angeles and began her career in advertising with J. Walter Thompson.
Her favorite part of the job was finding out what motivates and inspires people and even today she loves to travel and discover how people choose to live, work and play. In fact, she has been known to ask complete strangers about their life story.
Debbie draws on these experiences and likes to combine fact with fiction in her stories. She considers herself an easy audience and is happy to pay for a ticket as long as she doesn’t have to go anywhere near the stage.
When not writing, she can be found playing ball with her husband and two children and volunteering for parks and PTA’s. She finds volunteering in the front office of the middle school absolutely fascinating.
No matter what that pesky Meyers-Briggs Test may say, Katey Howes is convinced that she is equal parts Thinker and Feeler. She also lays claim to a characteristic not listed on any test. She calls it Jumper. It’s rare for her rational head and her passionate heart to agree on a plan of action. When they do, Katey jumps in - no looking back.
Katey spent more than ten years as a physical therapist, specializing in brain injury rehabilitation. In 2014, fired by a passion for books and by stories that begged to be told, she “jumped” – and dedicated her energy to becoming a children’s author. Katey is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators and advocates for improved literacy education and access to books worldwide. Her popular blog, kateywrites, features Raising Reader Monday posts that help parents, teachers and others encourage children to love books and value reading.
Katey currently lives in part of New Jersey that reminds her (fondly) of the MidWest. She shares her story ideas with her husband, three school-age daughters, a guinea pig named Cutie Pie, and an ever-changing cast of imaginary friends. When not writing or reading, Katey leads a Daisy troop and enjoys hiking, swing dancing, and searching for fairies. An epic battle with the unruly raspberry bushes behind her house inspired her first picture book, Grandmother Thorn.
Jean Healey lives in the UK with her partner, daughter and two cats. Jean's love for writing began at a very young age. Her favorite subject at school was literature and she won her first writing competition, when she was just 10 years old by putting together her very own poetry book. Growing up, she was inspired by the likes of Dr Seuss, Roald Dahl and Enid Blyton. The Worst Witch Series by Jill Murphy was her favorite.
Although she's had lots of different jobs over the years, nothing gives Jean greater pleasure than writing, doing what she loves best. In her spare time, Jean actively volunteers for her local Cats Protection Charity and has recently taken up art as a hobby. She is also a member of SCBWI – Society of Children’s Writers & Illustrators.
Taking a break from work to raise her daughter, Jean found her passion for writing again. She can often be found browsing the bookshelves in the children’s section of her local library or bookstore, looking for inspiration. Being surrounded by children’s books, made her keen to put pen to paper and Jean has not stopped writing since.
Website – www.jeanhealey.com
Storm Literary Agency is excited to welcome Jean and looks forward to representing her many picture books and chapter books, including Hungry Horace and Myrtles Moggles Cat Hotel.
Mirka Breen was born and raised in Jerusalem, Israel.
In first grade, Mirka discovered story books. Books seemed to convey some deep truths, and ask very good questions. She kept lots of books by her bedside, the way some keep their favorite stuffed animals.
In a way, the die was cast then. Some day she would grow up to write stories for children.
Mirka now lives in California, in a small house by the sea. At least her home seems to be close to the sea if you look at a map. You’d have to walk a few blocks and then you’d get a glimpse of the ocean, on a very clear day. But she thinks “by the sea” sounds better. Mirka shares her home and anchor with her husband, three adopted cats, and two rapidly maturing children who visit on college breaks, and come home to nest in the summer.
When not weeding, cooking or cleaning, Mirka writes stories. (Full disclosure— writing every week day.) Two of her stories were traditionally published, one picture book and one award-winning novel for pre-teens.
You can read more about Mirka on her website www.mirkabreen.com
…and her blog http://mirkabreen.blogspot.com/
G. L. Cronin
Much of what G.L. Cronin learned about reading and writing she gleaned from junior high—the second time around. As a school librarian/teacher passionate about reading and writing, she feels privileged to spend her days surrounded by books and middle school readers. Each day her students inspire her.
At school, she supervises a creative writing club. Her own poetry, picture book, essays, nonfiction articles, and stories for children have appeared within a variety of publications. G.L. Cronin writes books that she hopes her students would want to read.
When she’s not writing or teaching, she’s reading. Although her students believe that she’s read every book within the school library, she’s still turning the pages. Someday she hopes to achieve that reading goal.
G.L Cronin lives in the Chicago area with her husband, her three equally favorite daughters, two dogs, and two “visiting” cats.
Storm Literary Agency is thrilled to welcome G.L. Cronin and looks forward to representing her outstanding middle grade novels: The Last Word & The Fateweaver's Secret.
Born and raised in the Midwest, Amber Hendricks grew up reading everything she could get her hands on- including the morning cereal boxes. That passion melded into writing as well, and by the age of 11 she was writing and binding her own “books”. Although she dreamed of becoming a writer, when it came time for college, Amber opted for a more practical major. She earned a Bachelor’s degree in Merchandising, with an emphasis on Visual Merchandising, from Northwest Missouri State University. Amber has worn many hats in her career : Army wife, Mother, Visual Merchandiser, Certified Pharmacy Technician, and most recently, Childcare Professional. But she has always circled back to her first love of telling stories. Amber currently resides in Missouri with her husband and two children.
Storm Literary Agency looks froward to representing Amber's fun and engaging picture books, beginning with Pirate Stew & Sophie and Little Star .
Suzanne grew up in Northern Ireland, and taught high school Geography for five years in Belfast before meeting her husband on a Mediterranean cruise.
Since becoming a United States Air Force spouse, Suzanne has traveled the world experiencing countries and cultures firsthand from Texas to Rome. Suzanne also worked as a first grade teacher of reading in Colorado, a middle school special education teacher in Massachusetts, and an independent book consultant for Usborne Books in Alabama.
Suzanne currently lives in Stuttgart, Germany where she teaches English communication at her local high school. She is a member of SCBWI and an online critique group for picture book writers. A strong supporter of daily reading to children, Suzanne is passionate about creating books to be enjoyed by both children and adults alike. Her daughters, aged ten and seven, still love to cuddle up with their favorite picture books.
Suzanne is the author of several outstanding picture books. The Snowman Plan is her debut, the first of several of which Storm Literary Agency is happy to represent.
Jennifer Novotney is the author of the best-selling young adult novel Winter in the Soul. She was a 2014 recipient of the Moonbeam Children’s Book Award. Jennifer grew up in Los Angeles, California and attended Northern Arizona University, graduating with highest honors in English. She lives in Pennsylvania with her husband and daughter. Jennifer has been teaching English for eleven years and loves reading stories with students. Infinite Spring, the Winter in the Soul sequel, releases Summer 2015. Her young adult novel, Electrified, will release shortly after. Jennifer is completing her middle grade novel, Felix and the Dream Tree.
Watch Jennifer's Book Trailer for her published novel Winter in the Soul here:
Kelly Johnstone has been a copywriter, lifestyle writer, spa and restaurant reviewer, celebrity magazine editor and travel PR guru. Although from the UK, she has spent more of her life outside of her homeland than in it, having called Saudi Arabia, Dubai, Qatar and now Malaysia home. While she is the first to admit that being an expat has plenty going for it (just don't mention the term "trailing spouse" in her presence), Kelly's longing for English seasons, long country walks and local libraries is unwavering.
Kelly is currently wrapping up an online diploma in journalism, editing a travel news website and working as contributing editor on Malaysia's number one expat magazine all while trying to ensure her two children are fed, watered, rested, in the right place at the right time and most importantly, are kept out of the trouble that seems to follow them around.
Having parents with wild and creative imaginations meant that Kelly's childhood was packed with crazy, humorous and fun stories, which is probably what sparked her love of writing for children.
Storm Literary Agency is pleased to represent Kelly and her debut picture book Claude the Clawless Dragon
Mister C. Jones
Although Born in Toronto, Canada, from British Parents, Mister C Jones grew up in the The Middle East. He has always liked to draw and tell tall tales, and has subsequently enjoyed one or two adventures of his own. He has ridden elephants in India, skied down the slopes of Andorra and taught himself how to swim, alone, in the the dead of the night. His closest friend is his cat Henry, who is never too far away and a constant source of inspiration.
Mister C. Jones recently completed writing and illustrating Captain Max: A Pirate Yarn which Storm Literary Agency is proud to represent. His picture book debut, Dark Things was recently revealed on twitter. Mister C. Jones is currently working on his second picture book, and hopes to release that in the New Year.
Other published works by Mister C. Jones include the Illustrations for "Corazon of the Outer Banks" and "The Half hearted Girl," both by Author Sandra Harvey.
Mister C. Jones studied Fine Art at the City and Guilds of London Art School.