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2018 Keynote Speakers and Success Story Speakers

Jane Yolen and Heidi E.Y. Stemple

Jane Yolen and Heidi E.Y. Stemple

2018 Keynote Speakers

Jane Yolen, often called "the Hans Christian Andersen of America," is celebrating her 365th published book in 2018. Her works have won an assortment of awards including two Nebulas, a World Fantasy Award, a Caldecott, the Golden Kite, three Mythopoeic awards, two Christopher Medals, the Jewish Book Award, the Kerlan Award, and the Catholic Library’s Regina Medal, as well as six honorary doctorates from six different colleges and universities. But, she doesn't write for the awards, in fact, one of her awards set her good coat on fire. She writes because she loves to write--needs to write.

She lives in Massachusetts in the winter and Scotland in the summer and in, in both places, she writes a poem every single morning. In 2018, she has books being published in almost every genre: A Bear Sat On My Porch Today, Monster Academy, On Gull Beach, Crow Not Crow, and How Do Dinosaurs Learn to Read (picture books), Finding Baba Yaga (novel in verse), Mapping the Bones (YA novel), Fly With Me (Nonfiction), Mixti-Maxti (poetry collection), Stone Cold 2: Sanctuary (Graphic Novel), and Meet Me At the Well (which defies genre).

Follow her on twitter @janeyolen #Yolen365 or on facebook and visit her website: www.janeyolen.com

Heidi E.Y. Stemple didn’t want to be a writer when she grew up. In fact, after she graduated from college, she became a probation officer in Florida. It wasn’t until she was 28 years old that she gave in and joined the family business, publishing her first short story in a book called Famous Writers and Their Kids Write Spooky Stories. The famous writer was her mom, author Jane Yolen. Since then, she has published more than 20 books including Fly With Me, Counting Birds, Monster Academy, You Nest Here With Me, Not All Princesses Dress In Pink, and 2 Fairy Tale Feasts cookbooks, as well as numerous short stories and poems, mostly for children.

Heidi lives on an old tobacco farm in western Massachusetts where she writes, reads, cooks, sews, and once a year, calls and counts owls for the Audubon Christmas Bird Count.

Follow her on twitter and instagram: @heidieys, on facebook: Heidi E.Y. Stemple and at Owl Count, and visit her website: www.HeidiEYStemple.com

Each year a formerly unpublished conference attendee, who has gone on to publish in the field of children's literature, shares his or her experience with aspiring authors and illustrators.

Jean Reagan and Lora Koehler

Jean Reagan and Lora Koehler

Success Story Speakers

Jean Reagan is a picture book author from Utah. Her “HOW TO” series, which started with How to Babysit a Grandpa and How to Babysit a Grandma, regularly makes the NYT Bestseller list. How to Scare a Ghost will be out this September. Her first book, Always My Brother, was a Colorado Book Award finalist. Each summer she is a volunteer wilderness ranger in Grand Teton National Park. To learn more, visit www.jeanreagan.com.

Lora Koehler’s first picture book, The Little Snowplow (Candlewick Press), debuted at #1 on the New York Times Best Seller list three weeks after publication. A second book with Candlewick is slated for publication in Fall 2019. In addition to writing, Lora works as a children’s librarian with the Salt Lake County Library System. Originally from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, she now lives at the base of the ever-beckoning mountains near Salt Lake City, Utah. Reach her at www.lorakoehler.com or through Twitter, @LoraKoehler.

Jean and Lora have been writing together in the same critique group for nearly 15 years.

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