Michael D. Beil grew up in Andover, Ohio (pop. 1200), where he learned to sail, milk cows, tell the difference between hay and straw, and many other important lessons. He worked as a sailmaker and lawyer before finding his true calling in 1997: Teacher. Since 2001, has taught English and drama at an all-girls Catholic high school in Manhattan, where he lives his wife Laura, and 2 dogs and 2 cats. Michael is the author of the Red Blazer Girl mysteries (for which he was a 2010 Edgar Award nominee), as well as one of this summer’s top IndieNext Picks Summer at Forgotten Lake.
Brian Biggs writes and illustrates the new Everything Goes series. He illustrated the children’s book series, Shredderman, written by Wendelin Van Draanen, which was turned into the Nickelodeon TV film Shredderman Rules. He also illustrated the Roscoe Riley Rules book series and Brownie & Pearl, written by Cynthia Rylant.
Nick Bruel is the author and illustrator of New York Times bestseller Boing, Bad Kitty, Bad Kitty Gets a Bath and Bad Kitty Meets the Baby, among others. Nick is a freelance illustrator and cartoonist, and during his down time, he collects PEZ dispensers and grows tomatoes in the backyard. He lives in Tarrytown, NY, with his wife Carina and their lovely cat Esmerelda.
Alison Formento’s first picture book This Tree Counts! won numerous “green” awards and is also available as an abridged board book, This Tree, 1, 2, 3. Alison’s second picture book These Bees Count! is out now, to be followed by These Seas Count! in 2013. Her freelance writing has appeared in such publications as The New York Times, The Writer, and Parenting. Alison may be recognizable to many in the Lititz area because she served 2 years as the Queen at the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire!
Amy Ignatow is an illustrator and cartoonist who lives in Philadelphia with her husband Mark, their daughter, and their cat, Matilda. She is best known for the children’s book series, The Popularity Papers. Ignatow has worked as a teacher, a farmer, a florist, a short-order vegan cook, a ghostwriter for Internet personal ads, a telefundraiser, a wedding singer, and an air-brush face and body painter.
A.S. King author of 2011 Printz Honor Book, Please Ignore Vera Dietz, spent a decade in Ireland dividing herself between self-sufficiency, teaching adult literacy, and writing novels. Amy’s last teen novel, Everybody Sees the Ants was a Junior Library Guild selection, an Andre Norton Award finalist, a Cybils finalist, and a 2012 YALSA Top Ten book for young adults, and has been called “a subtly written, profoundly honest novel” by Booklist. Coming in October 2012 is Ask the Passengers, a unmistakably original portrayal of a girl struggling to break free of society’s boxes and definitions, Amy now lives near reading with her husband and children and is a huge fan of Kurt Vonnegut, corn on the cob, libraries, her community swimming pool, and fleece socks.
Daniel Kirk has illustrated a number of popular and bestselling books for children, including Library Mouse, and the fantasy series Elf Realm. Daniel lives in Glen Ridge, New Jersey, with his wife and three children. Visit his Web site at www.danielkirk.com.
Alyssa Sheinmel is the author of novels for teens, including The Stone Girl about anorexia, The Beautiful Between and The Lucky Kind. She grew up in Northern California and New York, and attended Barnard College. Alyssa lives and writes in New York City. You can visit her on the Web at AlyssaSheinmel.com.
Courtney Sheinmel is the author of the “tween” novels All the Things You Are, Sincerely, Positively, and My So-Called Family. Most recently, Courtney is taking the elementray schools by storm with her delightful Stella Batts series. She graduated with honors from Barnard College, part of Columbia University, and attended Fordham University School of Law. Courtney lives, works, and writes in New York City.
Jessica Spotswood, author of the new teen paranormal novel Born Wicked, lives in Washington, DC, with her playwright husband and a cuddly cat named Monkey. She’s never happier than when she’s immersed in a good story, and swoony kissing scenes are her favorite.
N.D. Wilson is the author of kids’ adventure and fantasy novels including Leepike Ridge, the 100 Cupboards series (chosen for The Today Show’s Al’s Book Club), and the new Ashtown Burials series. He enjoys high winds, milk, and night-time. He received his Masters degree from Saint John’s College in Annapolis, Maryland, is the managing editor of Credenda/Agenda magazine and is also a Fellow of Literature at New Saint Andrews College.