In my children’s literature classes, both creative and critical, students are encouraged to steep themselves in story and art, reach the childlike place within, seek their passions. There are no wrong turns, only glorious side trips. In the trusted space of our class, students benefit from my 30 years of publishing experience, and shape lasting, heartfelt works.
I teach from the belief that we have all grown up from a place with “good telling stories.” By learning our personal geographies, we can tap into that source and tell our good telling stories. We make our own maps, take creative risks, steer toward the mystery. My Hollins classes are varied: writing picture books, pairing autobiographical children’s books with writing memoir, exploring children’s book illustrators from the Victorian Age to the 21st century, writing children’s nonfiction, journeying through regional literature while writing place-based fiction.