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Can’t You Write About Something More Pleasant? Acknowledging Reality in Novels for Kids and Teens

  • Blue Hill Public Library 5 Parker Point Road Blue Hill, ME, 04614 United States (map)

“Can’t you write about something more pleasant?”

A group of young adult (YA) and middle-grades authors, Megan Blakemore, Ellen Booraem, Cindy Lord, and Maria Padian, will participate in a panel discussion on writing for young audiences and take audience questions.

MEGAN FRAZER BLAKEMORE is a school librarian as well as an author for children and young adults. Her middle grade novels include The Firefly Code (2016), The Friendship Riddle (2015), The Spy Catchers of Maple Hill (2014), a Maine Literary Award winner, and The Water Castle (2013), which was a Kirkus Best Children’s Book and won a Maine Library Association Lupine Award honor. Her books for young adults are Secrets of Truth & Beauty (2009) and Very in Pieces (2015). The Daybreak Bond (middle grade) and Good and Gone (young adult) are out this fall.  Megan lives in Maine with her husband and two children as well as a cat and (sometimes) a hive of bees.

ELLEN BOORAEM, a native of Massachusetts, is a former Hancock County journalist and an award-winning fantasy author for young teens. Ellen is the author of The Unnameables (an ALA Best Book for Young Adults), Small Persons With Wings, and Texting the Underworld. All of Ellen’s books have, among other awards, been picked as Best Books of the Year by Kirkus Reviews. In addition to being a writer, Ellen is also a mentor and a long-time volunteer writing coach. She lives in Brooklin with a cat, a dog, and an artist.

MARIA PADIAN is a young adult novelist whose titles include Brett McCarthy: Work in Process, Jersey Tomatoes are the Best, Out of Nowhere, and her most recent book, Wrecked. She is a three-time winner of both the Maine Literary Award for young people’s literature, and the Maine Library Association’s Lupine Award honor. Before devoting herself full-time to fiction she worked as a news reporter, congressional aide, radio essayist and freelance writer. These days, she takes breaks from the computer by playing with her Australian shepherd, texting her grown children, taking long walks along the beach or feeding logs into the woodstove. She lives with her family in Brunswick, Maine.

CYNTHIA LORD won a Newbery Honor and a Schneider Family Book Award for her first middle-grade novel, Rules (2006). Since then she has written three more middle-grade novels: Touch Blue (2010), Half a Chance (2014), and A Handful of Stars (2015). She is also the author of the Hot Rod Hamster series of picture books and early readers and the Shelter Pet Squad early reader series. Lord’s books have won one Maine Literary Award, a Maine Library Association Lupine Award  and a Lupine Award honor, among many other accolades. A former teacher, she lives in Brunswick with her husband and two children.

This event is free and open to the public.