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Carolyn Mackler

As a child

Carolyn Mackler grew up in a small town in western New York. When she was a teenager, she loved flirting with boys, hanging out with her best friend, and counting the days until summer vacation. She took violin lessons from a nun. She participated in a ski club, but the hills are not very high in western New York, so each run took about five minutes. One thing Carolyn really loved was walking to the library every week and stocking up on young adults’ novels. She’d take a long time reading all the descriptions, select about ten, and load them into her backpack. The second she got home, she’d make hot chocolate and cinnamon toast and crash on her bed, where she would devour the snack and the books.

As an adult

Carolyn lives in New York with her husband, Jonas Rideout. She decided to write novels for teenagers because she had tons of stories in her head. Plus, she still loved reading these novels, so she wanted to try it herself. Carolyn still loves cinnamon toast, but now she drinks coffee instead of hot chocolate. Coffee definitely helps her come up with a lot of ideas. Also Carolyn is a big snoop and listens in on teenagers in cafés, on the subway and in Central Park. So if you’re a teenager and you talk about your life in public, watch out! You may wind up in one of Carolyn’s novels some day.

As an artist

Carolyn has written many novels for teenagers, including Love and Other Four-Letter Words, The Earth, My Butt and Other Big Round Things and Vegan Virgin Valentine. She recently won the Michael L. Printz Honor Award for The Earth, My Butt and Other Big Round Things. That’s a big deal in America, and when they called to tell Carolyn that she’d won, she started hyperventilating and running all around her apartment. She also writes short stories for magazines and anthologies. Carolyn’s realistic characters, candour and humour, have struck a chord with thousands of teen fans. They frequently write to her, thanking her for her honesty, telling her that her books make them feel less alone, and accusing her of reading their journals.

Things you didn't know about Carolyn Mackler

  1. She’s been a vegetarian since she was four.
  2. She loves swimming underwater in lakes and opening her eyes.
  3. She composes most of her stories in her head, while taking long walks.
  4. She loves baked goods, like croissants and apple turnovers.
  5. Summer is definitely her favourite season.
  6. Her birthday is her favourite holiday. That’s 13 July, in case you wanted to know!
  7. She loves walking barefoot, but NOT in New York City.
  8. She and her husband met in their apartment building. She lived on the eighth floor and he lived on the third floor.
  9. She won’t allow herself to check emails while writing, or she’d get totally distracted.
  10. When people ask her what her ideal job would be, she says that it’s exactly what she’s doing.

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