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21st Century Storytelling: More W.A.R. Nominees for Person of the Year

“Throughout my life I have seen that fiction is a far better way of building understanding than statistics. Only fiction can bring you fully into someone’s world, can let you see through a different pair of eyes. And I wanted readers to see through this narrator, not to feel sorry for him, and not even to root for him, but to try to imagine his lifetime journey.” –Ira Socol (SpeEdChange)

“I’ve also used my platform as an author to promote a diversity of fellow children’s-YA book creators and their works. My official author site features Children’s & YA Literature Resources, including a substantial section on multiculturalism, offering bibliographies, articles, and related resources of interest to educators. Beyond that, my children’s-YA writer blog, Cynsations, is inclusive of its celebration of the field.” -Cynthia Leitich Smith

“Writing became my way to give back. As a journalist, I made it my mission to write stories about people whose voices were too seldom heard. I wrote about young African-American men who attended the Million Man March, Native American elders passing on important traditions, a Latino mom who scrimped to give her daughter the quinceanera she never had.

That’s part of my mission as a children’s book author too. I write to turn moments, memories and history into stories of discovery. I write to give children reflections of their lives. I write stories that I never read growing up.” -Kelly Starling Lyons


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