Hello! I'm Jennifer.
I've been writing children's books ever since I was in grade school, and today I write children's books professionally. It's a creative job that I love very much.
My first published book, "Way Out in the Desert" (Rising Moon 1998) - which is still in print - was inspired by the Sonoran Desert where I lived for much of my life. Most of my books are inspired by nature, birds, scientific concepts and the great outdoors.
My books have been translated into many languages and have received many awards, honors and starred reviews. Of course, my biggest honor is knowing when one of my books resonates with readers in some way. It is always humbling to hear from readers.
And if you're ever in Buckeye, Arizona, check out their public library, Coyote Branch, where my book with illustrator Steve Gray is installed as part of the library's interior architecture!
Before I became an author I was an elementary teacher. An author visited the school where I was teaching and from that visit I was inspired to try publishing my own stories. I now write full-time from my home in Illinois where I live with my husband, a chihuahua and a crazy cattle dog.
In my free time I love to garden - and being a bit of a bird-nerd, I volunteer with a wild songbird hospital, which can be hard work but is also very rewarding and pretty cool!
I love visiting schools, libraries and nature centers, where I share my books and inspire young readers and writers with their own creativity.
Thank you for visiting!