For as far back as Jennifer can remember, she has shared her brain with imaginary characters. She figures it’s okay if she talks to them as she’s working on her stories, as long as they don’t start talking back.
Jennifer has always loved reading and for most of her childhood, kept a tall stack of books at the side of her bed. She loved the Hardy Boys and Encyclopedia Brown series’, but her favorite childhood book was The Wolves of Willoughby Chase by Joan Aiken. Her favorite book in junior high was The Outsiders. That book’s author, S.E. Hinton, published The Outsiders at the age of 17. Jennifer set a goal to be published sooner.
Jennifer didn’t make her goal, not even close. She got heavily involved in local theater and in school speech and debate competitions. The theater entertained the characters in her head, and the speech and debate filled her desire to never stop talking.
Jennifer completed her first book in her early 20’s. She told a neighbor she planned to be published one day. The neighbor smiled back like Jennifer had a greater chance of landing on the moon one day. That was understandable. The first book was pretty bad.
So was her second. And third. The fourth wasn’t terrible, but by then Jennifer had decided she was writing in the wrong genre. The characters in her head had changed from adult romantic suspense to young adult and children’s fantasy characters. Jennifer had to change her writing too.
Then one night while Jennifer was doing dishes, the idea for a first chapter of something popped into her head. She left the dishes (some of which might still be sitting there) and wrote it all down, then decided it was so fun she had better come up with a plot to fit that opening. Elliot and the Goblin War was completed soon after. It is Jennifer’s first published book and will be released in October 2010. Jennifer also has the first of another three-book series scheduled for release by Scholastic in April 2012.