Lesa Cline-Ransome

Lesa Cline-Ransome
Lesa Cline-Ran­some

Author Lesa Cline-Ran­some is known for her pic­ture book biogra­phies of poets, anti-slav­ery cru­saders, musi­cians, ath­letes, and math­e­mati­cians. Her nov­el Find­ing Langston received a Scott O’Dell His­tor­i­cal Fic­tion Award and a Coret­ta Scott King Author Hon­or. We impa­tient­ly wait­ed for the com­pan­ion nov­el, Leav­ing Lymon, which was pub­lished in ear­ly 2020. Lesa is a won­der­ful sto­ry­teller and a stel­lar non­fic­tion researcher and author. We’re glad she’s Skin­ny Dip­ping with us!

One green thing I wish every­one would do: Recycle

The book I wish every­one would read:  Isabel Wilkerson’s The Warmth of Oth­er Suns: The Epic Sto­ry of America’s Great Migra­tion. It will for­ev­er change the way in which you see his­to­ry, race and inequal­i­ty in this country. 

The best way to stay fit: Walk.  Every sin­gle day.

What keeps me up at night:  The cur­rent state of pol­i­tics, divi­sive­ness, and partisanship. 

Proud­est moment in my career: Com­plet­ing my first mid­dle grade nov­el (Find­ing Langston) after years of writ­ing pic­ture books. 

I don’t believe in: Limitations

My mom was right about: Near­ly every­thing, but when I was young, she told me to always focus more ener­gy on groom­ing my inte­ri­or than my exte­ri­or and I would grow into a woman I could be proud of. 

I tell myself every day: To trust myself. 

The bravest thing I’ve ever done:  Become a moth­er to four chil­dren.  There is no instruc­tion man­u­al and yet every day requires a dif­fer­ent skill set, hard work, ener­gy, humor and resourcefulness. 

If I could give you a piece of advice, it would be this: Be a reader.

The food I can’t resist: Choco­late lay­er cake (warm, with a lit­tle scoop of vanil­la ice cream on the side)

What I do when I want to feel joy:  Sur­round myself with friends and fam­i­ly, good music and great food.

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3 years ago

Con­grat­u­la­tions on your suc­cess­es.… Your work is awesome.

Virginia Euwer Wolff
3 years ago

What to do in a pan­dem­ic? Find an invig­o­rat­ing inter­view with Lesa Cline-Ran­some and take heart about read­ing, writ­ing, walk­ing, lis­ten­ing to our moth­ers, being brave. Thanks to her for writ­ing her res­o­nant books, and to Wind­ing Oak for bring­ing her strength­en­ing pres­ence into this unsteady time.

David LaRochelle
3 years ago

What wise advice from your mother!

Laura Purdie Salas
3 years ago

I love your mom’s advice! Con­grat­u­la­tions on your new book!