Varian Johnson is the author of numerous novels for young readers, including The Parker Inheritance, which was named a Coretta Scott King Honor Book and a Boston Globe-Horn Book Award Honor Book among other accolades; The Great Greene Heist, which was named a Kirkus Reviews Best Book of 2014, and Twins, his first graphic novel. Varian received an MFA from Vermont College of Fine Arts, where he now serves as a member of the faculty.
Varian lives outside of Austin, TX with his family, and can be found online:
Each year a formerly unpublished conference attendee, who has gone on to publish in the field of children's literature, shares his or her experience with aspiring authors and illustrators.
2020 Success Story Speaker
Sayantani DasGupta is the New York Times bestselling author of the critically acclaimed, Bengali folktale and string theory-inspired Kiranmala and the Kingdom Beyond books, the first of which – The Serpent’s Secret – was a Bank Street Best Book of the Year, a Booklist Best Middle Grade Novel of the 21st Century, and an EB White Read Aloud Honor Book. Sayantani is a pediatrician by training, but now teaches at Columbia University. When she’s not writing or reading, Sayantani spends time watching cooking shows with her trilingual children and protecting her black Labrador retriever Khushi from the many things that scare him, including plastic bags.
She is a team member of We Need Diverse Books, and can be found online: