Author Spotlight

  • S.E. Hinton

    Posted by Jennifer Rivette on 9/12/2022

    “A writer's life is not very exciting - usually you're alone in a room with your tools - paper, pen, imagination.

    I walk the dog, ride my horse, wander the grocery store wondering what to cook for dinner.

    So much for my glamourous life.”

    Susan Eloise Hinton was born in Tulsa, Oklahoma on July 22, 1948. She wrote “The Outsiders” at the age of 16 while still in high school. The publisher of that book advised her to use her initials instead of her full name so that her book was not brushed aside by male book publishers. 

    Hinton is credited with creating the Young Adult genre. She started writing because as an avid reader, she was disappointed that there weren’t more books that appealed to teenagers. 

    After writing “The Outsiders” and having it become successful quickly, S.E. Hinton experienced writer’s block. Her husband helped her overcome this telling her to write two pages per day before she went anywhere. This routine helped her overcome the block, and she published her second book in 1971. Hinton wrote and published five young adult novels between 1967 and 1988. She took a break from writing and then restarted her career with a couple of children’s picture books. Most recently, she has written two books for adults. To learn more about S.E. Hinton, check out her website

    The King Middle School Library has the following books by S.E. Hinton: “The Outsiders,” “Rumblefish,” “Taming the Star Runner,” “Tex,” “That Was Then, This Is Now,” and “The Puppy Sister.”


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  • Jason Reynolds

    Posted by Jennifer Rivette on 2/28/2022 7:00:00 AM

    Jason Reynolds is a celebrated poet and writer of novels for middle school to high school audiences who got his start writing poetry when he was nine years old. He is a down-to-earth, passionate story-teller. Jason believes that kids should have access to books that are NOT BORING. The school library has the following books written by Jason Reynolds: 

    All American Boys; As Brave As You; The Boy in the Black Suit; Long Way Down; Look Both Ways; Miles Morales Spider-Man; When I Was the Greatest; and the four books in the Track series: Ghost, Patina, Sunny, and Lu.

    Jason held the title of the 2020-21 "National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature. This role was created by the Library of Congress to raise national awareness of the importance of young people’s literature as it relates to lifelong literacy, education and the development and betterment of the lives of young people.

    To learn more about Jason Reynolds, check out the link below!

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  • Stuart Gibbs

    Posted by Jennifer Rivette on 11/29/2021 8:00:00 AM

    Stuart Gibbs is the author of five mystery series. His book “Space Case” was published in 2014. It is the first of 3 books in the Moon Base Alpha series. Stuart’s inspiration for writing this series came from his friend Garrett Reisman who is an astronaut. Garrett even took one of Stuart’s books (Belly Up from the FunJungle series) into space!

    When Stuart was in 2nd grade, he already knew he wanted to be an author. However, when he went to college, he majored in biology. After graduating from the University of Pennsylvania, Stuart worked on a project for the Philadelphia zoo studying capybaras. At that time, he was one of the world’s leading experts on capybaras. He has a passion for conservation and the preservation of animal habitats in nature.

    Besides writing books, Stuart has also written movies. He lives in Los Angeles with his two children, Dashiell and Violet. Check out his website to find out more about what he is writing now. Be sure to read the FAQs. Stuart is very funny! 

    Stuart Gibbs books available from the King Middle School library: Space Case, Spaced Out, Waste of Space, Belly Up, Big Game, Panda-monium, Poached, Lion Down, Tyrannosaurus Wrecks, Spy School, Evil Spy School, Spy Camp, Spy Ski School, Spy School Secret Service, Spy School Goes South, Spy School British Invasion, Spy School Revolution, and Charlie Thorne and the Last Equation.

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  • Gary Paulsen

    Posted by Jennifer Rivette on 5/17/2021 8:00:00 AM

    Gary Paulsen was born in 1939 in Minnesota. World War II was raging during his early childhood. His father was in the military, and after the war ended, Mr. Paulsen and his mother moved to the Philippines where his father was stationed. They crossed the ocean on a Naval vessel. During the journey to the Philippines a plane crashed into the ocean near where they were. The Navy rescued as many survivors as they could, but the passengers also watched many victims be attacked by the sharks that were following the boat.

    When Mr. Paulsen was around age 12, his parents brought him back to the United States. They were both alcoholics, and Mr. Paulsen was on his own most of the time. He became very good at fending for himself, taking on jobs where he could but also hunting for his own food. Many of (the character) Brian’s survival skills in the book Hatchet are based on Mr. Paulsen’s personal experiences. Later in his life, Mr. Paulsen also raced in the Iditarod, a sled dog race. His survival skills in the wilderness came in handy - it took him just over 17 1/2 days to complete the 1,150 mile race. He placed 41st out of 54 finishers.

    Even though he is a famous writer now, Mr. Paulsen almost flunked out of high school. When he was in 11th grade he discovered the public library. He had never read a book on his own before, but the librarian convinced him to try. It took him a month to finish the book, but then he came back for more and eventually was reading more and more. Mr. Paulsen has written more than 200 books and says he still has more books to write. If you’d like to read more about him, check out this interview, or his biography

    “It’s a staggering thing to climb into a book and learn from it. Now, when I do tours, I tell kids to read like a wolf eats—just gobble books up.” - Gary Paulsen

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  • Sharon Creech

    Posted by Jennifer Rivette on 5/10/2021 8:00:00 AM

    Sharon Creech was born in a suburb of Cleveland, Ohio in 1945. She is one of five children (two girls and three boys), and her house was a very loud place when she was growing up. When she was young, Ms. Creech wanted to be many things: a painter, an ice skater, a singer, a teacher and a reporter. She says, “It soon became apparent that I had little drawing talent, very limited tolerance for falling on ice, and absolutely no ability to stay on key while singing. I also soon learned that I would make a terrible reporter because when I didn’t like the facts, I changed them.” 

    Ms.Creech loved literature in college, and she became an English teacher after she graduated. She has taught in Switzerland and England, but now she lives in Maine. She has written 21 books and hopes to write more. When asked where she gets her ideas she says, “This is a hard question to answer because a book contains not one, but hundreds, maybe thousands, of little ideas. Often it seems as if the main character and the place just arrive in my head one day, but later I can see that perhaps they arrived there because I’d been thinking about my family or someone I’d seen at a bus stop... Many ideas come during the revision process, after the first draft is written, when I begin tinkering with a scene. I’ll think, “What else is this character thinking or feeling?” and that will lead to a whole new scene, and that, in turn, will lead to other new scenes.”

    If you would like to learn more about Sharon Creech, check out her website.

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