Meet the Writers

The Kidliterati began as a critique group on Twitter: the #MGBetaReaders! Now we are much more than just critique partners -- we've become friends. We are thrilled to share our love of kidlit with you through unique content like the Kidliterati Ten, our interview series with young readers, as well as our book reviews, interviews with publishing insiders, and writing tips. Read on for bios on all of our Kidliterati writers.

Paul Adams is a teacher, MG/YA writer, embarrassing father, geek of a husband, and represented by Sally Harding of The Cooke Agency. Member SCBWI and Vermont League of Writers. Full time nerd.
Twitter
Becky Appleby writes MG fiction. She is a photographer and mother to four. If there is any time left in her day, Becky likes to read and run, but never at the same time.
Website | Twitter

Ronni Arno is the proud mom to two kids, two dogs, and two novels. Her next MG novel, DEAR POPPY, publishes with Simon & Schuster/Aladdin in October 2016. Ronni is represented by Sarah Davies of Greenhouse Literary.
Website | Twitter | Goodreads
Jo Marie Bankston writes MG fantasy and YA magical realism. She is a mother of two teenagers and three rescue dogs. When Jo is not writing or reading, you can find her thinking out story ideas while hiking through the prairie and woods.
Website | Twitter


Rhonda Battenfelder writes MG and YA fiction. She is the mother of two amazing kids and a PK-5 special education teacher. Rhonda is a member of SCBWI and Pennwriters. She is represented by Uwe Stender of TriadaUS Literary.
Twitter


Brooks Benjamin is the MG author of MY SEVENTH-GRADE LIFE IN TIGHTS from Delacorte/Random House. He is a reader, teacher, eater of pizza, & father to a 75-lb spoiled German Shepherd mix named LeeLoo. Brooks is represented by the fantabulous Uwe Stender of TriadaUS Literary.
Website | Twitter | Goodreads

Jeff Chen is a crossword puzzle constructor published in the NY Times who writes MG novels. He volunteers for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Puget Sound and Treehouse for Kids. Rep'd by Alec Shane of Writers House.
WebsiteTwitter
Melanie Conklin is a contemporary author whose MG debut, COUNTING THYME, published with Putnam in 2016. She's represented by Peter Knapp of Park Literary Group.
Website | Twitter | Goodreads 


Abby Cooper writes MG fiction and is represented by Rebecca Sherman of Writers House. Her debut, STICKS & STONES, was published by FSG/Macmillan in 2016.
Website | Twitter | Goodreads



Dana Edwards writes MG fiction and works as a middle school counselor. She's a mother of two and baseball fanatic. Dana lives in the South where she finds plenty of inspiration for interesting characters.
Website | Twitter


Jessika Fleck writes YA and MG fiction that leans towards the dark and fantastical with a dash of realism. When she isn't writing, she's knitting or reading. Her YA debut THE CASTAWAYS will be published in 2017 by EntangledTEEN.
Website | Twitter | Goodreads


Jean Giardina writes MG fiction. She is the mother of three, a science nerd, and was once awarded a patent for innovative cheese slices. Her mother was very proud. Jean never leaves home without a book.
Twitter

Karen Lee Hallam writes MG & YA short stories. She is an illustrator, member of SCBWI, an over-time mom, and sometimes Jazz Singer. Her debut, THE UNMOVING SKY, arrived in 2016 from Leap/Shine Books.
Website | Twitter | Goodreads | Facebook | Instagram


Colten Hibbs writes MG and YA fantasy. When he's not writing it, he's reading it, or he could be painting...or chasing after his three dogs and two cats. Should you be so brave you can follow Colten on Twitter. Be warned: He tweets. Often.
Twitter

Akossiwa Ketoglo writes MG and YA fiction. She also reads a lot and writes middle grade book reviews. You can find Akoss on Twitter and on her writer blog.
Website | Twitter


Laurie Litwin writes contemporary MG & YA fiction. When she's not reading or writing, she's usually spending time with her family, working as an environmental planner, or training for yet another Disney Half Marathon.
Twitter
Jen Malone writes YA travel romance for HarperCollins and "girl power" MG with Simon & Schuster. She is a former Hollywood publicist who once traveled the world solo and met her husband on the highway...literally. Represented by Holly Root.
Website | Twitter | Goodreads


Gail Nall writes fun realistic MG fiction with Aladdin/Simon & Schuster and YA with HarperCollins. She likes road trips and cats (but no cats on road trips). Her next novel OUT OF TUNE features both. Represented by Julia A. Weber.
WebsiteTwitter | Goodreads


Brian Sargent is a writer of exciting MG fiction and far-less exciting academic non-fiction. If he's not re-imagining his plot for the 30th time, Brian is outside with his wife and three daughters. Represented by Brooks Sherman of The Bent Agency.
Website | Twitter


Ella Schwartz spends her days saving the Internet from bad guys as an Internet security manager. By night, she writes MG and YA. She is the mother of three boys and longs for more sleep. Represented by Clelia Gore of Martin Lit
Website | Twitter


Chris Brandon Whitaker writes MG & YA fiction and contributes to Old Main News and Empire of Soccer. He also advises teachers-in-training at college, teaches qigong, plays guitar, and reads next to his lovely, bookish wife.
Website | Facebook

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