Jacqueline Dembar Greene

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Jacqueline Dembar Greene is the award-winning author of more than 30 books for young readers, including the American Girl® Rebecca Rubin series and The Secret Shofar of Barcelona. She lives in Wayland, Massachusetts.


What was your favorite book when you were a child?

I always had my nose stuck in a book! Among my favorites were Anne of Green Gables and Charlotte’s Web.

Who are your top three favorite authors or illustrators?

J.K. Rowling, with her amazing Harry Potter books, is always at the top of my list of remarkable authors. I am also a huge fan of Roald Dahl’s fantastical stories, and anything by E.B. White, which opens a new way of thinking about animals.

Why did you want to become an author or illustrator?

I never thought of becoming an author until I wrote newspaper stories for a number of years. It seemed I was always drawn to the people I interviewed, especially if they had an interesting bit of history to share. I loved writing an article that made the person’s character leap off the page. My first historical novel, The Leveller, grew from a short news article I wrote about a legendary man from Westborough, Massachusetts, named Tom Cook. After that, I only wrote books, and left journalism behind.

Do you have any advice for future authors or illustrators?

The best way to prepare for becoming a writer is to be a great reader. You will discover what type of books you enjoy the most, and that will probably be the kind of book you would enjoy writing. whether it’s historical novels, or mysteries, or humorous tales. You’ll also be learning lots of great words that will help you express yourself when you write. Also, I would recommend that you keep a journal. Write down your everyday expereinces, but more importantly, write about interesting people you meet, and your thoughts and feelings about things that happen in your life. Someday, those pages will give you some great book ideas!