Jeff Fleischer is a Chicago-based author, editor, and journalist. He is the author of A Hot Mess: How the Climate Crisis is Changing Our World (Zest Books, 2021), Votes of Confidence: A Young Person’s Guide to American Elections (Zest Books, 2020 and 2016), Rockin’ the Boat: 50 Iconic Revolutionaries (Zest Books, 2015) and The Latest Craze: A Short History of Mass Hysterias (Fall River Press, 2011). His fiction has appeared in more than seventy publications including The Chicago Tribune’s Printers Row Journal, Shenandoah, The Saturday Evening Post, and So It Goes by the Kurt Vonnegut Library and Museum. He has a master’s in magazine journalism from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism and a bachelor’s in both journalism and history from Indiana University.
What was your favorite book when you were a child?
If I have to pick one, Charlotte’s Web, but there are dozens of contenders.
What’s your favorite line from a book?
“There’s only one rule that I know of, babies—‘God damn it, you’ve got to be kind.’”—Kurt Vonnegut
Who are your top three favorite authors or illustrators?
Kurt Vonnegut, George Orwell, Studs Terkel
Why did you want to become an author or illustrator?
I’ve loved books since I was little, and reading and writing were always my favorite hobbies. Plus it’s a good excuse to tell other people the stuff I enjoy learning.
Do you have any advice for future authors or illustrators?
Write often. Write lots of different things. Write things you know you like doing, but also things that challenge you. Don’t limit yourself.