S. J. Bushue’s post-graduate studies involved helping children learn through visual, auditory, and multiple language formats. It was this work that inspired her to create playful, entertaining, and educational picture books. She focuses on writing bilingual and special situation children’s books for preschool and early elementary school-aged children.
Giora Carmi spent fourteen years as a freelance graphic designer in Israel. During that time, Giora illustrated over two hundred book covers and fifteen children's books. He came to the United States in 1985 and established himself as an illustrator for The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal. In the U.S. he continued to pursue his interest in children's books, illustrating twenty-eight books, two of which he also wrote.
In 2004, Carmi received a degree from NYU in art therapy. He now works as an art therapist with troubled teens in Bergen County, NJ. He has two daughters, a son and one grandson from a previous marriage. He lives with his life partner, Anita Gold, in New York City.
Born in England, Catherine Carvell has always enjoyed reading, writing, and collecting things from nature. Her family migrated to Australia when she was eight and her love of nature and stories continued, so she studied botany and journalism. Darcy Moon and the Aroona Frogs is her first children's book. She currently lives in Singapore with her husband, two children, and pet turtles. Sometimes, she talks to the turtles, but thankfully, they don't talk back.
Jin Choi was born and raised in South Korea. She earned a Master’s degree in architecture at Yale University, where she met her husband, Thomas. Together, they founded an architectural practice in Boston, with projects ranging from product design and architecture to infrastructure and public art installations. Jin first created Shapes at Play, then a handcrafted book, for their child when he was only a few months old. She wanted to “tickle his brain” with shapes that are related and transformed and demonstrate how to recognize them. With the inspiring giggles and contemplative long gazes she received from her son, Jin was encouraged to create more books for young children in the future. Visit her website at www.choishine.com.
Miriam Cohen was an avid champion of the emotional rights of children, and was interested in their "immense vulnerability, and their need to be nurtured, encouraged, and allowed to unfold naturally." She had spent many hours in classrooms reading, listening, and talking with children 'not as a lecturer, but as a fellow writer.' The time she had spent in the company of children is one reason why her books ring true, and why young readers hear themselves in the voices of her characters.
Michael J. Daley has written eight books for children. Beach Socks, his first book for young children, draws on memories of long summer visits to his grandmother on Cape Cod. He lives in Westminster, Vermont with his wife, children’s book author Jessie Haas. Michael writes his stories on a solar-powered laptop in a five-foot square tower room. His website is: www.michaeljdaley.com
Claire Datnow was born in Johannesburg, South Africa, and wears many colorful hats: nature lover, conservationist, historian, world traveler, teacher, and writer. She is the author of numerous books for young people and adults. Claire earned master’s degrees in education and public history and taught gifted and talented students in the Birmingham, Alabama, public school system. She has received numerous teaching awards, including a Fulbright Memorial Fund teacher scholarship in Japan, the Blanche Dean Award for Environmental Education, the Alabama Nature Conservancy’s Outstanding Nature Educator award, and Birmingham Public Schools Teacher of the Year. In 2019, the Birmingham Audubon Society announced they have named the Audubon-Datnow Forest Preserve, behind Putnam Middle School in Birmingham, to honor Claire for creating a nature trail and outdoor classroom during her tenure.
Claire is a local liaison for her SCBWI chapter and an active member of the Birmingham Audubon Society. Monarch Mysteries is her first book with Star Bright Books. Claire and her husband, Boris, live in Birmingham.
Kirsten DeBear is an occupational therapist and early childhood specialist who works with young children with special needs. She teaches at Bank Street College and serves as a mentor to teachers and therapists in several New York schools for children with different abilities. Kirsten lives in New York.
Mike Dumbleton started writing when he decided he wasn’t getting any better at basketball and his three children were old enough to allow him some uninterrupted time. His first book, Dial-A-Croc, was published in 1991, and is still very popular. Since then Mike has written many other picture books, including the bedtime story Let’s Escape. His work has been adapted for stage and television, and many of his books have been selected by the Children’s Book Council of Australia as Notable Books. Born in England, Mike now lives in Australia with his wife Linda. He is a high school English teacher and Cross Curriculum Literacy Coordinator.