April 11th, 2010 by Kidsmomo
Did you know that long before becoming an author, Newbery Medalist Jerry Spinelli didn’t even like to read books (preferring comics and cereal boxes instead)? Or that Jon Scieszka grew up with five (count ’em — five) brothers? Or that as a boy, Roald Dahl was asked to sample and rate chocolates from the Cadbury company, eventually inspiring him to write Charlie and the Chocolate Factory?
Yes, amazing as it may seem, all your favorite authors really did have lives before writing children’s books. To get the scoop — in their own words — check out these author memoirs and autobiographies (in no particular order):
- Knots in My Yo-yo String by by Jerry Spinelli (Karen’s pick)
- Knucklehead: Tall Tales and Almost True Stories of Growing Up Scieszka by Jon Scieszka (Nancy’s pick)
- A Girl from Yamhill by Beverly Cleary
- Homesick: My Own Story by Jean Fritz
- Boy by Roald Dahl
- Little by Little: A Writer’s Education by Jean Little
- My Life in Dog Years by Gary Paulsen
- How I Came to Be a Writer by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
If you’ve read any of these, send in your book review. Or send in a review of your favorite author memoir.
UPDATE 4/27/10: We revealed the answer to our Author Memoir Mystery Book Theater in the “Author! Author!” Podcast, so take a listen if you want to know the answer. Or just tune in to hear Nancy and Karen fight over who gets to eat with Roald Dahl (yes, we know he’s deceased; just listen and it’ll all make sense, we promise).