MG Authors

Laurel Brady
I grew up in Vermont, graduated from BYU, work part time as a 911 dispatcher, full time as a mom, and every chance I get as a writer. I have eight kids who are growing up too fast. I like bicycling, reading, writing, photography, traveling, fishing, and camping with my family.

Ann Edwards ("A. E.") Cannon

Platte F. Clark
Platte F. Clark shares his first name with the midwestern Platte River, which he's been told means "wide and shallow." Despite that he was able to find a woman to marry and produce seven offspring with. Platte graduated Cum Laude with a BS in Philosophy and an MS in English, and currently lives with his family in Utah.

Frank L. Cole was born into a family of Southern storytellers and wrote his first book at age eight. Sadly, he misplaced the manuscript and has since forgotten what he wrote. Highly superstitious and gullible to a fault, Frank will believe in any creepy story you tell him, especially ones involving ghosts and Bigfoot. Currently, along with his wife and three children, he resides in the shadow of a majestic western mountain range, which is most likely haunted.

Chris Crowe
Chris Crowe, born in Illinois to a father with wanderlust, attended 8 different schools before he graduated from high school in Tempe Arizona. He later taught high school English at his alma mater for 10 years before accepting a teaching position at a university in Japan. From there he bounced to BYU-Hawaii for 4 years, and then to BYU, where he now works in the English department. He loves sports, french fries, diet Dr. Pepper, French-burnt peanuts, hiking in Utah's foothills, watching SportsCenter, teasing his children, traveling, hanging out with his 4 kids---and with his new granddaughter Ella!---and spending time with his beautiful and patient wife, Elizabeth. He hates opera and soap operas, fat-free low-salt creamy peanut butter, burned popcorn, flying in single-engine planes, centipedes, digging ditches, losing his temper, and any sort of physical pain. In the last 10 years, he's had the good fortune to have dinner with 13 Newbery Medal winners---and he knows that's the closest he'll ever get to that prize.

James Dashner
James was born and raised in Georgia but now lives in the Rocky Mountains with his family. He has four kids, which some might think is too many but he thinks is just right. Once upon a time, James studied accounting and worked in the field of finance, but has been writing full time for several years. (He doesn’t miss numbers. At all.)

In his free time, James loves to read, watch movies and (good) TV shows, snow ski, and read. (Reading was mentioned twice on purpose.) Most of all, he’s thankful that he gets to make a living writing stories and considers himself pretty much the luckiest guy on the planet.

Jessica Day George
All I've wanted to do all my life is sit and read. Eventually, about age 11, I started to write my own stories. I did manage to graduate from high school and then BYU, in Humanities/Comparative Literature with a minor in Scandinavian Studies. I've lived in three Idaho towns, Delaware, and New Jersey, in addition to three different places in Salt Lake Valley. I can speak Norwegian and German, read Old Norse, knit my own socks, play the viola and the piano, and spend hours lying down reading or watching TV. In 2007 my genius was realized when my first book, DRAGON SLIPPERS came out from Bloomsbury USA..

Linda Gerber
I grew up in a college town in the shadows of the Wasatch Mountains in Utah. While my dad worked as a professor at the University and my mom played activities coordinator and chauffeur to six kids, I spent a lot of time avoiding homework by making up stories and daydreaming about life outside what we used to call Happy Valley. College took a long time because I kept skipping out every few semesters to move somewhere or travel – and I haven’t stopped since. I’ve lived in Utah, California, Arizona, Ohio, Michigan, Washington D.C., Finland and Japan, and have traveled through Europe and Asia, Mexico, Australia, Hawaii and Micronesia. For the time being, I’m back in Ohio… but plotting my next adventure.

Shannon Hale
Shannon Hale started writing books at age ten and never stopped, eventually earning an MFA in Creative Writing. After nineteen years of writing and dozens of rejections, she published her first book, The Goose Girl, an ALA Teens’ Top Ten. Enna Burning and River Secrets are companion books to Goose. Her stand alone novels include Book of a Thousand Days, a CYBILS award winner, and Princess Academy, a Newbery Honor Book and New York Times best seller. She and her husband are co-writing a series of graphic novles for kids, beginning with Rapunzel's Revenge (2008). They reside in Salt Lake City with their toddler son, baby daughter, and their pet, a small, plastic pig.

Tess Hilmo
Tess Hilmo grew up belting out classics like Amazing Grace and Swing Low Sweet Chariot in the shower. There was a power about those songs that made her feel she could accomplish anything her heart desired. With A Name Like Love is a tribute to those rich, African-American spirituals that shaped so much of Tess' childhood. She now lives at the base of jagged, rocky mountains with her husband, three children and adorable poodle, Daisy. If you stand outside her bathroom door, you will still hear her singing.

Marion Jensen
I have feet in two worlds. I’ve worked for ten years in the field of instructional design. I currently work for American Express as a Sr. Instructional Designer, and enjoy the field of education, particularly open education, and social learning. On the other hand, I’ve always wanted to be an author. My books include Chicken in the Headlights, Bullies in the Headlights and, Almost Super.

Clint Johnson
I write novels.  It’s hard to be definitive beyond that because there aren’t many more consistent characteristics of my writing.  I write for adults, teens, and children in any genre that strikes my fancy, though I mostly write fantasy and historical fiction.  (I suspect my consistent devotion to fantasy in particular stems from the liberating inconsistencies it allows me as a storyteller.)  In the past I’ve written and published everything from academic essays and journalistic articles to short stories and commentaries on writing and literature.  I’ve also worked as an academic editor as well as a professional technical writer and freelance editor of fiction.  Now I’m completely devoted to my novels, where I write about Olympic penkrationists suffering marital trouble, and obsessive-compulsive robber barons committed to mental asylums at the turn of the twentieth century, and redneck fairies, and demonic angels patronizing towns in puritan America, and cows falling on dragons, stuff like that. Born and raised in Utah, I still live in the Salt Lake area.

Kim Williams Justesen
Kim Williams Justesen was born and raised in the Salt Lake valley in Utah. She is married to the man of her dreams and is mother to three of the greatest kids on the planet, along with one funny dog, and one mean cat. After 12 years in public relations and advertising, Kim left the corporate world to pursue her dream of being a writer. Since 1996 she has taught creative writing and writing for children through the University of Utah's Life Long Learning program, and through workshops, conferences and in public schools. She has served in the past as the regional advisor for the Utah/So. Idaho chapter of the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators. In 2003 she earned her MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults from Vermont College.

Matthew J. Kirby
I was born in Utah, but with a father in the Navy I’ve lived all over – Rhode Island, Maryland, California (twice), and Hawaii.  As an undergraduate at Utah State University, I majored in history.  I then went on to earn M.S and Ed.S degrees in school psychology. I also write, something I’ve done since I was a kid.  In high school I discovered comic books, and I wrote and illustrated one of my own.  I produced a single issue and photocopied it at Kinkos.  I stopped writing for a while after that, until later in college.  Back then I wrote mostly science fiction and fantasy short stories, and a little bit of poetry.  I’ve continued to write short stories (see issue 11), but my passion is for middle grade and young adult novels.

Mike Knudson
Mike Knudson is the author of the humorous RAYMOND AND GRAHAM series of books for middle grade readers. He lives in North Salt Lake with his wife, Annette, five children, a turtle and a hamster. Mike writes full-time and visits over one hundred elementary schools each year around the country. When not writing, you can find him coaching little league, swimming with his kids, and annoying his family with his banjo playing.

Brandon Mull
Brandon Mull is the author of the New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal bestselling Beyonders and Fablehaven series. Brandon resides in a happy little valley near the mouth of a canyon with his wife and four children. He spent two years living in the Atacama Desert of Northern Chile where he learned Spanish and juggling. He once won a pudding eating contest in the park behind his grandma’s house, earning a gold medal.

Jennifer A. Nielsen
Jennifer Nielsen is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of The Ascendance Trilogy, the Mark of the Thief series, A Night Divided, and other books that some people have heard of. She lives in Northern Utah with her husband, three kids, and a dog that won't play fetch.

E.J. Patten
In April 1974, a beautiful baby boy was born at a small hospital in Mesa, Arizona. E. J. Patten (“Eric James”) was in the next crib over. The first story he ever wrote involved a strange ad, a Laundromat, and a bowl of chili; thankfully, it was never published. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Media Arts, and a Masters in Business Administration from Brigham Young University. He currently resides with his wife and three children in Utah.

Sydney Salter
Sydney Salter writes middle-grade and young adult fiction. She is the author of My Big Nose & Other Natural Disasters, Jungle Crossing, and Swoon At Your Own Risk. Sydney lives in Utah with her husband, two daughters, lazy cats, big hairy dogs, and a pair of quiet tortoises. When not writing, Sydney likes to read, think up adventures, experiment with new recipes, sample exotic chocolates, hike with her family and go to movies and rock concerts with her husband.

Brandon Sanderson
Best known for his Mistborn series and his work in finishing Robert Jordan's epic fantasy series, The Wheel of Time, Brandon Sanderson is also the author of the middle-grade series Alcatraz Versus the Evil Librarians. Brandon has hit the New York Times Hardcover Fiction Best-Seller List six times and has been nominated for numerous awards for his books. Born in Lincoln, Nebraska, Brandon now lives in Utah.

J. Scott Savage
J. Scott Savage is the author of the Far World middle grade books. He grew up in the California Bay Area, but now lives in Northern Utah.

Gloria Skurzynski
Gloria Skurzynski is an author of historical fiction, science fiction,
science nonfiction and other nonfiction titles, and co-author with Alane
Ferguson of the National Parks Mystery series. She is the recipient of the Golden Kite award, Christopher Award, Western Writers of America Spur Award, Utah Children's Book Award, International Reading Association Young Adults' Choice, American Institute of Physics Science Book Award, and other awards

Michael Spooner
A part-time writer for children, Michael is author of LAST CHILD (a novel), DANIEL'S WALK (a novel), A MOON IN YOUR LUNCHBOX (poems), and OLD MESHIKEE AND THE LITTLE CRABS (an Ojibwe folktale)--all published by Henry Holt & Co. DANIEL'S WALK won the Regional Book Award from the Mtns & Plains Booksellers Association and was a finalist for the Mark Twain Award. Michael’s scholarly interests include writing research, response theory, collaboration, and alternate style.

Michael O. Tunnell
Michael O. Tunnell's book titles include Mailing May (Greenwillow), The Children of Topaz (Holiday House), Brothers in Valor (Holiday House), and The Wishing Moon (Dutton).  He teaches children's literature at Brigham Young University, and he has served on the Newbery Award Committee and on the selection committee for the NCTE Award for Excellence in Poetry for Children.  Tunnell also has published several professional books, including The Story of Ourselves:  Teaching History Through Children's Literature (Heinemann) and Children's Literature, Briefly (Prentice Hall), and he has written articles for a variety of educational journals.  He and his wife, Glenna, live in Orem, Utah.  They have four grown children.

Barbara Williams
Barbara Williams can probably claim the longest career of any Utah writer. The Salt Lake Tribune bought one of her short stories in 1937 for a whopping $1.50. While that amount may not seem like very much today, it was a fortune to a Depression Era child who babysat for ten cents an hour. Sixty-six years later she is awaiting publication of two juvenile books for which she has received (and spent) the advances. Except for one year at Boston University, she received her education (B.A. and M.A.) at the University of Utah. For twelve years she also taught at that school and wrote two college textbooks which came out a second time in modernized and politically correct editions. She loves good grammar, chocolate covered peanuts, and U of U gymnastics. She dislikes fans who boo opposing teams, people who leave shopping carts loose in parking lots, and cutesy-pie misspellings. With her husband (a retired U of U professor) she reared four adopted children and is great grandmother to the World's Most Beautiful Baby.

Carol Lynch Williams
Carol Lynch Williams is the award-winning author of nearly 20 middle grade and young adult novels. Her books have been on several states' reading lists. She has been speaking about writing, editing writing and writing for more than ten years. Carol is a member of SCBWI, a conference organizer and lover of homemade eggrolls.

Ron Woods
Ron Woods is married to the former Zina Peterson, and they are the parents of seven children. Originally from Horseshoe Bend, Idaho (a small town near Boise), he has lived, since 1973, in Provo, Utah, where he works as Budget Controller in the College of Humanities at BYU. A Utah-certified teacher, Ron has taught high school English and LDS Seminary in Ogden, Utah, and Western Samoa. He teaches creative writing part-time at BYU. He attended college at Boise State University and BYU, graduating with a BA in English and German, and a master's degree in education. Ron lived in Germany for 2 ½ years and in Western Samoa for three years. He likes to hike, fish, travel, read, write, and bike. His articles and fiction have appeared in various magazines. He is also the author of seven self-help books and one young adult novel. The self-help books were all written in a five-year period, while the novel took 18 years of off-and-on effort.

Randall Wright
In addition to the co-authored picture book, The Cheshire Cheese Cat: A Dickens of a Tale, Randall Wright has written several novels for young readers, including Hunchback, A Hundred Days from Home and The Silver Penny.