Welcome to my blog!  Check back frequently for a discussion about writing techniques and to learn the latest information on children’s books and the book publishing business. I post most days.

Contrary to many authors, I didn’t always want to be a writer. Granted, my brother and sisters called me Bookworm and my parents insisted I stop reading and go outside for fresh air, but writing never occurred to me, not even after my college English professor suggested I major in English.

I might have been convinced if he’d given me better grades. He told me that I needed to revise my work. I did eventually take the professor’s comments to heart and now conduct workshops on revision. (Find out about the workshops I conduct here, and an article I wrote for Sprouts, the New Jersey SCBWI on revisions here.)

I graduated from The Pennsylvania State University with a degree in Food Science (not English). But after working in Quality Control and Product Development at a frozen food bakery for two years, I became Assistant Editor at Food Engineering, a food industry trade journal, and then started a gourmet take-out shop (one of my middle grade manuscripts is a mystery/adventure set in a gourmet shop). I  ran The Main Course until our first child was born.

After becoming a mother I began writing for children. Writing fiction, I found out, is totally different from nonfiction. But success in writing is as much about patience and determination as talent (fortunately my husband has plenty of patience). I’ve had a middle grade historical published with an educational publisher (it’s sold in packs of 25 with a teacher’s guide).

I also was the editor for Sprouts, (Find some of the articles I wrote for Sprouts here) and a freelance editor for an e-publisher.

I’ve written both contemporary and historical middle grade and young adult manuscripts. I also conduct writing workshops for both adults and children. You can find more information about those workshops here.


  1. I discovered your blog through a tweet sent by Ben Dawe. So pleased to find it, I’ll be back. I usually teach Kindergarten at Primary School but took this year off. I am passionate about writing and looking forward to reading more of your tips to help me with my writing as well as passing my passion on to the kids in 2010.

  2. Welcome Clare! Hope you find my blog helpful, and don’t forget to check out my website. There’s more writing info there.

  3. Hi Anita,

    Do you know if these people are credible: http://www.wlwritersagency.com/index.html ? I hope you can answer, please.

    Thanks so much


  4. Hi, Joy.

    I have not heard of wlwritersagency, but I went to check out their website. They may be fine, they say they don’t work with vanity presses and that the money should flow to the author, but the very fact that they have to deny so strongly that they are legitimate would make me a little concerned. The endorsements didn’t make me feel any better about them.

    Did you check Preditors and Editors? They don’t recommend them. http://pred-ed.com/pealw.htm
    Again, I have no knowledge of them, but I would proceed with caution.


    • Hi Anita,

      Thanks for your response. I didn;t realise you replied till just now as I didn’t get an email notification. Never mind. Thanks.

      I have another query and thought of you :-). I have tried to look up onloine but not seen anything.

      Maybe I’m being a bit paranoid and perfectionist but when using dialogue tags, which is more professional – to write Tom said or to write said Tom? Different writers use different placements but is any preferable or more professional and can you use both methods in the same piece of writing or do you have to choose one and make sure you stick to that ordering in the same piece of work?


  5. Hi Anita. A friend sent me a link to your blog last year. I like to check in every few weeks and see what’s new on your blog. I see a lot of writing contest information on here, and I’d like to pass on some of my own. I just started a monthly contest on my website for kids and I’m trying to build up steam. It’s for grades 1-6, 500 words or less, and I post the winning story on the site for a year. I’d love it if you’d help passed the word. Thanks! Michelle

    Contest at http://michelleisenhoff.com/KidsWriteContest.aspx

    • Thanks for letting me know, Michelle, I have it posted in a couple of days.

  6. wow – so glad I found this blog – I’m an aspiring writing (young adult) and would love for you to check out my short, feature story “End of Life Trip” in my portfolio on my site


    maybe you can tell me what you think!

    have a great weekend!


    • Thanks for visiting Grace!

  7. Hello, Anita. I found your blog when I was looking up an editor’s name. Glad I came across it. Will pass your blog on to other writers as well. If you are looking for authors to interview, I’m game! I have a new book in my Night Before series coming out May 10, 2012 called The Night Before Father’s Day. I am also one of the Picture Book Experts with Children’s Book Insider. I’d be honored if you are interested.

    • Thanks Natasha, I’ll keep that in mind.

  8. I love writing children short stories. I have written two short stories and haven’t had a chance to research on how to publish my stories.


    Lori Moleiro

  9. Interesting and informative blog and website, Anita. I’m enjoying exploring it.

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