Skinny Dip with Kara LaReau

Kara LaReau
We’re pleased to con­nect you with author (and edi­tor) Kara LaReau, whose two book series, The Infa­mous Rat­sos and The Unin­ten­tion­al Adven­tures of the Bland Sis­ters, are tick­ling read­ers’ fun­ny­bones and stir­ring their sense of adven­ture. She was an edi­tor for ten years, edit­ing some of our most-loved books such as Because of Winn-Dix­ie and the Mer­cy Wat­son series.… more

Skinny Dip with Lee Bennett Hopkins

Lee Bennett Hopkins
You can­not be a part of the chil­dren’s lit­er­a­ture com­mu­ni­ty with­out know­ing his name. Lee Ben­nett Hop­kins has been writ­ing for chil­dren and adults since 1968. His Books Are by Peo­ple (1969) had a pro­found effect on me. With his antholo­gies, he has kept our eyes focused on poet­ry, know­ing how much chil­dren love the images and emo­tions evoked by well-cho­sen words.… more

Skinny Dip with Cathy Camper

Cathy Camper
Are you fans of the Lowrid­ers graph­ic nov­els? We are! And we can’t wait for the next one. The author who thinks up those great sto­ries is Cathy Camper. We invit­ed her to Skin­ny Dip with the Bookol­o­gist … and she said yes! When we asked her point­ed ques­tions, here’s what she had to say. Favorite breakfast or lunch as a kid?more

Skinny Dip with Suzanne Costner

Suzanne Costner
We’re thrilled to Skin­ny Dip with out­stand­ing edu­ca­tor Suzanne Cost­ner, Thanks to Suzanne for answer our ques­tions dur­ing her very busy end-of-the-school-year hours. Who was your favorite teacher in grades K-7 and why? My favorite teacher was Mrs. Hill in 4th grade. She read to us every day after lunch: Stuart Little, Where the Red Fern Grows, James and the Giant Peach.… more

Skinny Dip with Aimée Bissonette

Aimee Bissonette
We’re thrilled to Skin­ny Dip with Aimée Bis­sonette, who is the author of two acclaimed pic­ture books so far, North Woods Girl (Min­neso­ta His­tor­i­cal Soci­ety Press) and Miss Col­fax’s Light (Sleep­ing Bear Press). Thanks to Aor tak­ing time away from writ­ing and work to answer Bookol­o­gy’s ques­tions! When did you first start reading books? My best friend, Lyn, taught me to read when I was 5 years old.… more

Skinny Dip with April Whatley Bedford

April Whatley Bedford
We inter­viewed April What­ley Bed­ford, life­long read­er, cur­rent­ly the Dean of the School of Edu­ca­tion at Brook­lyn College. Which celebrity, living or not, do you wish would invite you to a coffee shop? Can I choose two? I would love to have coffee with Michelle and Barack Obama, either together or individually. I’m sure I’m not alone in this answer, but there are no two people I admire more in the world, and I also believe we would laugh a lot during our conversations.… more

Skinny Dip with Linda Sue Park

We inter­viewed Lin­da Sue Park, vet­er­an author and New­bery medal­ist, whose books have inspired chil­dren in many ways, appeal­ing to a wide range of read­ers with books like A Sin­gle Shard, The Mul­ber­ry Project, Keep­ing Score, Yaks Yak, and A Long Walk to Water. Which celebrity, living or not, do you wish would invite you to a coffee shop?… more

Skinny Dip with Caren Stelson

Caren Stelson
We inter­viewed Caren Stel­son, first-time author, whose non­fic­tion book Sachiko: a Nagasa­ki Bomb Sur­vivor Sto­ry has received a good deal of pos­i­tive recog­ni­tion, includ­ing the longlist for the Nation­al Book Award and inclu­sion on many Best Books of 2016 lists. (Her name is pro­nounced just as you would say Karen.) Which celebrity would invite you like to invite to a coffee shop?more

Skinny Dip with Janet Taylor Lisle

Janet Taylor Lisle
For this inter­view, we chat with Janet Tay­lor Lisle, New­bery Hon­or-win­ning author of After­noon of the Elves, the Scott O’Dell Award-win­ning The Art of Keep­ing Cool, and the thriller Black Duck, along with many oth­er read­er favorites. Which celebrity, living or not, do you wish would invite you to a coffee shop? I’m quite sure Emily Dickinson, shy and secretive as she was, would never invite me to a coffee shop, but perhaps I could slip a note under her door in Amherst, Massachusetts and beg for a visit.… more

Skinny Dip with Ed Spicer

Ed Spicer
For this inter­view, we vis­it with Ed Spicer, edu­ca­tor, author, cur­ricu­lum guide writer, and ALA com­mit­tee mem­ber many times over. Which celebrity, living or not, do you wish would invite you to a coffee shop? I would love to spend some time in a confidential, friendly chat with Michelle Obama. Which book do you find yourself recommending passionately?more

Skinny Dip with Candace Fleming

What’s the first book you remember reading? The first book I remember reading on my own is E.B. White’s Stuart Little.  I was seven years old and it was the Saturday before Christmas – the day of St. John Lutheran’s annual holiday party. I loved that party! The potluck. The carols. The visit from Santa Claus (really Pastor Frankenfeld in a red suit). … more

Skinny Dip with Vicki Palmquist

What do you wish you could tell your 10-year-old self? A good many things, but most emphatically I would tell myself to not listen to the comments about being too smart or showing off by using big words or being too curious. I have always enjoyed learning about new things and sharing what I’ve learned. I love discussing ideas and unknown-to-me corners of the world and people who have accomplished great things and shown great imagination.… more

Skinny Dip with Augusta Scattergood

What is your proudest career moment? My proudest career moment? Being invited to the American Library Association’s mid-winter conference to introduce my new book. As a career librarian turned middle-grade novelist, it doesn’t get much better than that. I was also hon­ored to have my first nov­el, Glo­ry Be, which takes place dur­ing Free­dom Sum­mer, cho­sen by sev­er­al groups high­light­ing the fifti­eth anniver­sary of that event.… more

Skinny Dip with Avi

What keeps you up at night? Meeting deadlines. What is your proudest career moment? When, after fourteen years of trying to write, I published my first book, Things that Sometimes Happen (1970). In what Olympic sport would you like to win a gold medal? I don’t know if the game of Squash is part of the Olympics, but if so, that would be it.… more

Skinny Dip with Lynne Jonell

Favorite holiday tradition? One of my favorite things ever is when we sit around the table at Thanksgiving and take turns telling what we are particularly thankful for, that year. I get a little choked up, especially when I listen to my sons. Were you a teacher’s pet or teacher’s challenge? I was a teacher’s pet up through sixth grade, and then teacher’s nightmare thereafter.… more

Skinny Dip with Virginia Euwer Wolff

What’s your favorite holiday tradition? I have so many favorites. One of them is the hanging of the Christmas stockings. My aunt made felt and appliqué stockings for my two tiny children in the 1960s. Thirty years later, my daughter made felt and appliqué stockings for her husband, their two children, and me. She designed the appliqué motifs to reflect each family member.… more

Skinny Dip with Maryann Weidt

What’s your favorite holiday tradition? I love getting together with my children—all grown-ups now—at Christmas. My daughter-in-law majored in ‘entertaining’ and she always has ‘Poppers’ and we always play games. One year she taped a question on the bottom of each plate. Questions like these: What is the best Christmas present you ever received—and we each had a chance to answer the question.… more

Skinny Dip with Nancy Loewen

What keeps you up at night? At various times: Panera’s iced green tea; the sound of my 18-year-old daughter raiding the fridge; playing Sudoku on my phone; and, as with everyone, a head full of this-and-that. What is your proudest career moment? I’m going to reach way back for this one, more than 20 years ago.… more

Skinny Dip with Karen Cushman

  What’s your favorite holiday tradition? Phil is Jewish so we celebrate Hanukkah. I light the house with candles—one hundred or so white candles of all sizes and shapes. It looks beautiful but makes the house very, very warm. Were you a teacher’s pet or teacher’s challenge? Oh, teacher’s pet, without a doubt. I was too nervous to misbehave, smart enough to learn quickly, and quiet enough not to show off (see question #5).… more

Skinny Dip with Marion Dane Bauer

  What is your proudest career moment? My proudest career moment I suppose should be the day in 1986 when On My Honor won a Newbery Honor Award. But though that was the moment that changed my career more than any other, it’s not my proudest. My proud­est was when I was just begin­ning writ­ing, had fin­ished my first nov­el and had no idea whether what I was doing had any val­ue at all.… more

Skinny Dip with Sharon Chmielarz

What keeps you up at night? Nothing keeps me up at night (knock on wood). I have a couple of glasses of red wine, then shower (usually), hit the mattress, do some leg exercises, and I’m a goner until the next morning. If I slip from that routine and drink something with caffeine too close to 6:30 pm or so, then it’s a different story.… more

Skinny Dip with Elizabeth Verdick

Skinny Dipping
What keeps you up at night? Reading much, much too late! What is your proudest career moment? In 2005 I won the Henry Bergh Award, which honors books that recognize the need to treat animals with kindness and caring (for my book Tails Are Not for Pulling). I got to stand on a stage in New Orleans with Norman Bridwell, author/illustrator of the Clifford books.… more

Skinny Dip with Margo Sorenson

Skinny Dipping
What is your proudest career moment? My proudest career moment was doing my first author visit at Hale Kula Elementary School, Wahiawa, HI, the Schofield Barracks elementary, where I spoke to 200 kindergarteners and their parents, many of whom were in cammies, about Aloha for Carol Ann. Tears came to my eyes as I watched the parents and kids interact in the activity the librarian (SLJ Librarian of the Year Michelle Colte) had designed for them, based on my book.… more

Skinny Dip with Joanne Anderson Reisberg

Skinny Dipping
What is your proudest career moment? I entered a Writer's Digest Contest and received an Achievement Certificate for having placed 37th out of 100 in 'picture books." I felt thrilled to be included, and then I read the contest had received 11,000 entries in 5 different categories. Woo Hoo.  Describe your favorite pair of pajamas ever When I was ten, I received an outrageous pair of silk pajamas from a childless aunt in Chicago.… more

Skinny Dip with Lisa Bullard

Skinny Dipping
What keeps you up at night? I don’t need anything to keep me up at night—I am almost always up at night no matter what! When I have morning obligations, I force myself to go to bed at a reasonable time. But when I have a few days in a row where I don’t have to get up “early,” my bedtime slips to a later and later time—until I am regularly staying up until 3:00 or 4:00 in the morning.… more

Skinny Dip with David LaRochelle

Skinny Dipping
Favorite holiday tradition?  Without a doubt my favorite holiday tradition is carving pumpkins. It has become such a trademark of mine that people start asking in September what I plan to carve for the upcoming Halloween. I’ve learned to jot down possible pumpkin ideas in my sketchbook throughout the year, but it usually comes down to crunch time (the week before Halloween) before I finally decided on the 4-6 pumpkins I carve each year.… more

Skinny Dip with Nikki Grimes

Chasing Freedom
What keeps you up at night? My brain! I can't shut it off. I'm constantly bombarded with thoughts about what's on my to-do list (I live or die by the list), what arrangements I need to make for the next conference, book festival, or school visit; what work I need to do to elevate the relationships of my characters or ways to make them more authentic; what manuscript I need to concentrate on next (I'm always juggling three or four at one time).… more